Performance Test Configuration

 Performance Test Configuration
Processor(s): AMD Opteron Socket 940 at 2.0GHz (9x222) 444FSB
AMD Athlon XP 3200+ (2.2GHz, 400MHz FSB)
Intel Dual Xeon 3.06 (1 Mb Cache)* 533FSB
Intel Pentium 4 at 3.0GHz (800FSB)
RAM: 4 x 512MB Legacy ECC at 2.5-3-4-5
2 x 512MB Mushkin PC3500 Level II
2 x 256MB Corsair PC3200 TwinX LL
(v1.1 or 1.2) Modules (SPD rated)
Hard Drive(s): Maxtor 120GB 7200 RPM (8MB Buffer)
Western Digital 120GB 7200 RPM Special Edition (8MB Buffer)
Video AGP & IDE Bus Master Drivers: NVIDIA nForce version 2.45 (7/29/2003)
NVIDIA nForce version 2.03 (1/30/03)
VIA 4in1 Hyperion 4.47 (May 20, 2003)
Video Card(s): ATI Radeon 9800 PRO 128MB (AGP 8X)
Video Drivers: ATI Catalyst 3.6
Operating System(s): Windows XP Professional SP1
Motherboards: nVidia Reference nForce3 @ 222.0 MHz FSB
DFI NFII Ultra LANParty (nForce2 Ultra 400) @ 201.35 MHz FSB
Gigabyte 7NNXP (nForce2 Ultra 400) @ 202.77MHz FSB
Soltek KT600-R (KT600)@200.01 FSB
Asus PC-DL Dual 3.06 Xeon* @200.0 MHz
Asus P4C800-E @200.5 MHz
ABIT IS7-G (865PE)
ABIT IC7-G (875P)
Gigabyte 8KNXP (875P)
*IMPORTANT: While the Dual Xeon 3.06 Asus PC-DL was included for comparison, please keep in mind that our standard benchmarks are not multi-threading enabled. Results should not be considered a comparison of multi-threading to a single processor. Since the Dual 875 is being targeted at the Gaming and Enthusiast markets, we believe it is fair to include the Dual Xeon 875 in comparisons to other solutions that also target the gaming and enthusiast market.

Recent performance tests on Intel 875/865 boards used 2x512MB Mushkin PC3500 Level II Double-bank memory. Previous tests of Intel motherboards used 2x256MB Corsair 3200LL Ver. 1.1.

All performance tests run on nForce2 Ultra 400 motherboards utilized two 256MB Corsair TwinX LL PC3200 (v1.1 or 1.2) modules set to SPD timings in Dual-Channel DDR400 mode.

All performance tests that ran on the KT600-based motherboard used two 256MB Corsair TwinX LL PC3200 (v1.1 or 1.2) Corsair modules in DDR400 mode. 4-bank interleave and the highest available timing option (Turbo or Ultra) was used.

All performance tests were run with the ATI 9800 PRO 128MB video card with AGP Aperture set to 128MB with Fast Write enabled. Resolution in all benchmarks is 1024x768x32.

Additions to Performance Tests

We have standardized on ZD Labs Internet Content Creation Winstone 2003 and ZD Labs Business Winstone 2002 for system benchmarking.

Game Benchmarks

We have added Gun Metal DirectX Benchmark 2 from Yeti Labs as a standard game benchmark. We are also evaluating the new X2 Benchmark, which includes Transform and Lighting effects as part of the standard benchmark. Results are reported here for reference.

Jedi Knight II has been dropped form our standard Benchmark Suite. We were forced to use different patches for operation on Athlon and Intel Pentium 4, which made cross-platform comparison difficult, if not impossible. In addition, Opteron/Athlon64 requires a third patching variation for benchmarking. JK2 uses a Quake engine, and we are continuing Quake3 as a standard benchmark for the time being.

New Hardware

With the release of DirectX 9 late in 2002, the availability of Benchmarks to test DX9, and the availability of DX9-supporting video cards from both nVidia and ATI, we are now using the ATI Radeon 9800 PRO for all hardware reviews.

HyperTransport and Opteron/Athlon64 Overclocking Media Encoding and Gaming Performance Benchmarks
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  • Anonymous User - Saturday, October 25, 2003 - link

    I found it difficult to compare products because of the way the descriptions of processors and components were laid out.
  • Anonymous User - Wednesday, September 24, 2003 - link

    Well for any Intel posters you can avert your eyes. I've recently been doing some shopping to piece together a new system for myself. I'd decided on AMD since their systems have always been good to me and cuz ..screw the big boys.
    Anyways I've been out of the hardware game for a while and the 64bit cpu is really interesting for me. I do a lot of 3d animation and video editing. SO my question is this 1)is there a trustworthy, compatible Mobo out there now that will work with amd64 that I could build now and upgrade up to later? 2)Is there another solution from the current 32bit amd processors that could give me all my needs (gaming, animation, editing, etc..)? or should I just wait for 64 to come out (which I really REALLY need to build a pc fast)??
    I'm open to any and all suggestions :)
  • Anonymous User - Saturday, September 13, 2003 - link

    Speaking of AMD vs Intel & the Sysmark 2002 cheating allegation, just wait until XP-2003 for AMD comes out and you install Sysmark 2002. Anyone with half a brain will understand what Intel & Bapco did to stack the deck when the system reboots after install. Very revealing.

    Remember this.
  • Anonymous User - Saturday, September 13, 2003 - link

    Hmmm, talking about stocks. Actually in the last 3 months, AMD also doubled its price. So, if you own either Intel or AMD stock, you will have gain a lot of money. The stock increase occurs because investor expect that the chip sector is improving this year, i.e. there is an increase in the demand of cpus.
  • Anonymous User - Saturday, September 13, 2003 - link

    I don't know if anyone is considering this but don't you think the prices for a processor are becoming a tad bit HIGH!? As it stands in order for me to get a piece of this new technology(Athlon 64 and its motherboards) I would have to cough up $1000+! $1000 for a cpu and motherboard!!! For companies that want its customers to flock to thier stuff when they release them that is TRULY not encouraging anyone to go out there and buy at all. As it stands I don't think a lot of people will be able to buy this thing right off the back no matter how bad they want it. The Opteron 940 is higher than my HOUSE NOTE right now for my 2-story home. The AthlonFX isn't any better. Right now has the Athlon64 up for pre-order at the price $489. Ladies and gentleman that is a whole f***ing check for most people. I really do think that the Athlon64 and the Opteron are an advancement and a powerful one but could they please stop raising these prices?
  • Anonymous User - Friday, September 12, 2003 - link

    Please stop repeating the same questions...

    The only thing I wanted to point out is that the drivers that are recompiled for the Athlon 64 are going to make a difference more than anything else discussed in this comment section.

    As for this Pentium 4 arguement, the P4 3.2 GHz 800MHz is $613. That is about $200 more expensive than the Opteron 242 and $150 more thank an Opteron 144. The MBs will become cheaper due to the lack of a Northbridge and ease of design. $130-140 is the price I expect the Nforce 3 boards to sell.

    Whatever you want is what CPU you should use. Just know that if you buy an Opteron or Athlon 64, that every driver update is going to get you more speed. Every update patch to games will get you more speed. And you have the ability to go to Windows XP 64 when it is finished and run even faster. Over time, you may have a 20% or more improvement in speed. If it doesn't, then you have a really fast CPU at 1.8 GHz running less than 39c while benchmarking.

    It will be a nice laptop.


  • Anonymous User - Thursday, September 11, 2003 - link

    The testing methology is flawed here.

    You have an Opteron that is OVERCLOCKED to 222MHz HT bus/RAM, versus a stock standard 3GHz P4 (why no 3.2GHz?)

    It's like comparing a 2.8C @ 3.2GHz and comparing it to a 1.8GHz Opteron. I'm sure that would create an uproar of 'Intel BIAS!' type of comments. ;-)

    Don't get me wrong, Opteron/A64 is an impressive processor, but the review would've been much more credible had Anandtech reviewed a stock 2GHz Opteron vs a 3.2GHz P4, instead of an overclocked Opteron 1.8GHz @ 2GHz with faster HT bus and RAM, compared to a 3GHz P4, which isn't even the fastest available.
  • Anonymous User - Wednesday, September 10, 2003 - link

    I'm a noob and I have a question. I'm not understanding how us gamers will be able to play our games (like bf1942) when these processors come out if there isn't a 64 bit OS out for us to run. Can anyone clear this up for me?
  • Anonymous User - Wednesday, September 10, 2003 - link

    Considering this was testing its performance on a 32bit OS, I cannot wait to see how well it fairs in a true 64bit enviroment!

    I say....each to their own preference. Be glad you have the option to choose Intel or AMD and that their competion produces a less noticable strain on our pockets!

    **Ignorance is the weapon weilded by the man with closed eyes!**
  • Anonymous User - Monday, September 8, 2003 - link

    #18, some Xeon's (not XeNon) have 1 meg L3, as well as 512 K L2 like any nortwhood. The L3 is inclusive however, which basically means that data stored in L2 is also duplicated in L3 to allow faster chaches. This results in a "net" cache size of 1 Mb, not 1.5.

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