Testing the Rivals

AMD's Athlon XP gains a decent sized performance boost from being used with an up-to-date platform and thus we outfitted our AMD test bed with a KT266A based ASUS A7V266-E.

Likewise, the Pentium 4 is still best paired with RDRAM on the i850. With the recent rise in memory prices, the difference between DDR SDRAM and RDRAM is marginal making the 845 not as desirable as the 850 as a Pentium 4 chipset. Performance can be improved slightly with DDR333 SDRAM on a SiS 645 motherboard but availability is still not to the point where we'd like it to be.

As has become new tradition for our CPU reviews, we ran all benchmarks under Windows XP Professional. We disabled System Restore and followed Microsoft's directions for benchmarking under Windows XP to obtain repeatable results. We enabled all visual options including anti-aliased fonts.

SYSMark 2001 was run with the Athlon XP's SSE instructions enabled. For more information on why they are disabled by default read our explanation entitled: SYSMark 2001: The Benchmarking Controversy.

Windows XP Test System



AMD Athlon XP 1.67GHz (2000+)
AMD Athlon XP 1.60GHz (1900+)
AMD Athlon XP 1.53GHz (1800+)
AMD Athlon XP 1.47GHz (1700+)
AMD Athlon XP 1.40GHz (1600+)
AMD Athlon XP 1.33GHz (1500+)
AMD Athlon-C 1.40GHz
Intel Pentium 4 2.2GHz
Intel Pentium 4 2.0AGHz
Intel Pentium 4 2.0GHz
Intel Pentium 4 1.9GHz
Intel Pentium 4 1.8GHz
Intel Pentium 4 1.7GHz
Intel Pentium 4 1.6GHz
Intel Pentium 4 1.5GHz
Motherboard(s) ASUS A7V266-E ABIT TH7-II RAID (Intel 850)

256MB PC800 Mushkin RDRAM
256MB DDR266 Crucial (CAS2) DDR SDRAM

Hard Drive

Maxtor D740X Ultra ATA/133 80GB HDD


Phillips 48X

Video Card(s)

NVIDIA GeForce3 Ti 500 64MB DDR


Linksys LNE100TX 100Mbit PCI Ethernet Adapter


Operating System

Windows XP

Video Drivers

NVIDIA Detonator 4 v23.11

Northwood - The Pentium 4 loses weight Content Creation Performance
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