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Old 09-23-2003, 11:51 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Intel Pentium 4 EE vs Athlon 64/FX!

As you may or may not know, the Athlon 64 was debuted today around the world. In nearly every single benchmark application and gaming benchmark ran, the Athlon 64 (and it's more powerful counter-part, the Athlon 64 FX) simply slaughetered everything Intel has to offer, including it's 800 MHz FSB Hyper-Threading 3.2 GHz Pentium 4's. Well, I noticed something a bit fishy about all of the hype surrounding the Athlon 64's a while back. Intel was doing absolutely nothing to eliminate AMD as a competitor.

Scores were being released that suggested AMD would actually become the CPU leader in the world, and Intel simply kept increasing the clock speed.

Lo and behold my friends, Intel did indeed have something up their sleeves: say hello to the Pentium 4 EE, Intel's answer to the Athlon 64. The P4 EE was shipped (in some cases driven) to benchmarking companies as late as TODAY in order to compete with the Athlon 64 FX. Guess what? Intel has nearly ruined AMD's Athlon 64 launch. Benchmarkers around the world have now reported that the 3.2 GHz EE and the 3.6 GHz EE Pentium 4's (each of these "EE" Pentium 4's are simply Xeons with increased on-board cache, usually by about 2 MB) are up-to-par with the Athlon 64 FX and actually beating it in about 60% of benchmark tests.

Nearly every review/benchmark I've read up today has mentioned that Intel was basically being really shitty/sneaky about the EE. It was released today, when the Athlon 64 was supposed to make its monumental launch. AMD's 64-bit launch will NOT go as planned now, due to the ass-raping it received by the Pentium 4 EE.

Don't get me wrong, the Athlon 64 FX's are still kicking major ass (the 2.0 GHz Athlon FX beats out every single non-EE Pentium 4 Intel has to offer, even the 3.2 GHz), but the release of the EE definitely took some of the fame from AMD. Call it sneaky, bastardly, or even cowardly, but Intel knew they had to do something against the Athlon FX monstrosity. And they did, unfortunately.

Tom's Hardware and many other respectable hardware reviewing sites have reviewed the Athlon 64 FX vs. the Pentium 4 EE, and every single one of them are showing the same thing: Athlon 64 FX pulls ahead in many games and a few benchmark programs, but overall, the EE is still beating ass.

This throws a major kink in AMD's plans. It really, really pisses me off that Intel released the EE today, when AMD was about to have the well-deserved honor of CPU leader. On top of that, this isn't even a new chip by Intel. It's a 3.2-3.6 GHz Xeon with more L cache. This move was made simply to ruin AMD's launch. Hell, I'll stay with AMD through this simply because Intel has pissed me off so bad.

It isn't over yet, however. The SLOWEST Intel Pentium 4 EE at 3.2 GHz cost $850.00 with the fastest one going WELL over $1,000 simply for the CPU. The absolute best Athlon 64 FX right now is $750.00. On top of that, AMD plans to release the Athlon 64 FX 53 soon which will come with a standard clock speed of 2.4 GHz.

AMD fans' day of glory may have been extinguished by a cheap but marketable move by Intel, but at least AMD has proven that it can and WILL keep up with the competition, especially in the performance/price ratio.

-Lasereth
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Old 09-23-2003, 12:03 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I'll never buy an Intel chip. I could care less how fast they are. AMD is still cheaper.
The 2GHz 64 is faster than a 3.2 P4 and about $200 cheaper. It's a no brainer in my book.

Last edited by sixate; 09-23-2003 at 02:24 PM..
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Old 09-23-2003, 12:20 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Just shows you how ruthless businesses have gotten. I also do hate to admit that Intel won this round, but they did. And I do agree with Lasereth that it was just release to destory all of the hype by the Athlon 64
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Old 09-23-2003, 03:04 PM   #4 (permalink)
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for the price an athlon is still worth it
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Old 09-23-2003, 04:35 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by sixate
I'll never buy an Intel chip. I could care less how fast they are. AMD is still cheaper.
The 2GHz 64 is faster than a 3.2 P4 and about $200 cheaper. It's a no brainer in my book.
I'm not really sure where you got your prices from, but the Opteron 246 is almost 800 dollars. The 3.2 is no where near that. I can get it at local stores here in Alaska for 170 less then 800 bucks. No telling about pricewatch or newegg.com.

When you buy Athlon, you get what you pay for.

You can post somthing about these 2 every day, and have the same debate over and over. The bottom line, they are 2 different products, they excel at 2 different things. Both are fast, so fast it makes no difference what you really buy for a top end chip, it's all about preference and pocket book.

Personally, I had 2 1.4ghz T-Birds that were nothing but problems. From memory compatibility issues, to 1 chip actully overheating with an Alpha Hs/Fan.

I've got a P3 733 overclocked to 1005mhz and it's been there for 2 1/2 years, it's on everyday, 24hrs a day. (It's a webserver) and I haven't ever reset a fan, or new thermal paste, nothing. It's bulletproof, it's stable (77 days uptime in Linux, and it went out due to a power outage). My P4 is completely bulletproof, 2.66 ROCK solid @ 3.34ghz, watercooled, and I love it. I just haven't had the quality issues with Intel products, I choose to spend the extra money. I haven't had much luck with AMD ... Yet.


Last edited by Kurant; 09-23-2003 at 04:49 PM..
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Old 09-23-2003, 04:50 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Well, AMD is obviously excelling in some places since their Athlon 64 FX's at 2.2 GHz beat out the 3.2 and 3.4 GHz EE Pentium 4's in about half of the tests. They're damn good chip makers, they simply can't compete with a company as huge as Intel. Well, they can compete, but they'll always be behind in certain aspects.

-Lasereth
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Old 09-23-2003, 05:07 PM   #7 (permalink)
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The supposed manufacturing speeds of the chips, if you think about, mean nothing.

As far as I know, there isn't one universal program, or piece of hardware testing the chips of speeds. There isn't one company doing the diagnostics of these chips either. So really, how fast is 2.2ghz, or Intels 3.2ghz? No one knows, except them, or anyone else with the equipment to test it.

Speeds mean nothing, in my mind, which may be pretty clueless at times, it's all a marketing ploy. Intel throws huge numbers out there to make people buy these huge number chips, AMD, throws the little numbers out there to make people think think about how superior they're product is, with smaller numbers, competing with the bigger numbers.

Who REALLY knows how fast these speeds are?
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Old 09-23-2003, 05:09 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by Kurant
I'm not really sure where you got your prices from, but the Opteron 246 is almost 800 dollars. The 3.2 is no where near that. I can get it at local stores here in Alaska for 170 less then 800 bucks. No telling about pricewatch or newegg.com.
AMD 2Ghz 64 for $449

Intel 3.2 GHz P4 for $616

So make that a difference of $167. Does the Intel chip actually outperform the AMD sooo much to warrant such a larger price? Simply put, nope. Is there really a purpose to get a 64 bit chip right now.... Only if you have to have the newest shit. Maybe in about 18 months or more, but not right now. Looks like I'm gonna upgrade to an AMD 3000+ for my Christmas present to myself.
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Old 09-23-2003, 05:26 PM   #9 (permalink)
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yeah, unless I really needed that extra kick I'd go with the far cheaper AMD. i never buy the absolute fastest thing anyway. i do some gaming, a little video editing and nothing else i run really needs more than like a p3 at the most.
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Old 09-23-2003, 05:47 PM   #10 (permalink)
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So, is the "EE" actually a 64-bit chip?

I gotta go check out Tom's Hardware...
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Old 09-23-2003, 09:02 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by mpedrummer2
So, is the "EE" actually a 64-bit chip?

I gotta go check out Tom's Hardware...
no.

It's a rebranded Xeon (p4 with massive amounts of cache)
So it's still 32-bit, the Itianium is 64-bit

Last edited by juanvaldes; 09-23-2003 at 09:38 PM..
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Old 09-24-2003, 01:30 AM   #12 (permalink)
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To be honest it is not at all surprising what Intel did. I mean if you were Intel, and you knew that your biggest competitor was getting ready to release a chip, that has been highly publicized, then you too would try to do whatever possible to downplay the new rival chip. As for price, if someone were going to spend whatever money was needed, and were going to decide between the top chips from either AMD or Intel, then there really is not much price difference. People say get the AMD chips because it is cheaper, but if you take a look, you will see the prices are about the same. And by highest I mean the Athlon 64FX-51 and the Intel P4 3.2 EE. I know that Intel has P4 3.6 EE chips, but I am trying to go with comprable here. Based on a review and test at THG, the P4 3.2 EE won 32 tests, while the 64FX-51 won 15 tests. So in that case looking strictly at benchmarks, one would want to buy the P4 chip. So the next thing to look at is price. Well the 64FX-51 price is $799 and the P4 chip is $849. So there is a $50 difference in price. But if you look at the price of some of the hardware that will be needed with each chip, you will see that first the Mobo for Athlon will be $229 while the Mobo for Intel will be $214, so that cuts the price difference from $50 to $35, then we take a look at memory. Assuming you want 1GB of memory, the price differs even there. Apparently the Athlon requires a special type of DDR 400 RAM. Therefore the price for 1GB for the Athlon is $450 while for the Intel it is $356. With that, you can clearly see that the Intel now wins in price comparison. And if you were to tell me that the AMD chip is 64 and the Intel chip is still 32, you are right. However, again looking at THG you can see that as of right now, there is no advantage for the 64bit since all the software is optimized for Intel and 32bit. So to be honest, if I had all kinds of money to spend, and I wanted to choose objectively between the best from Intel or AMD, it looks like Intel's is not only faster but also cheaper overall.

Man Intel really spoiled AMD's day.

G_Lock

P.S. All numbers were taken from article on THG.

Last edited by G_Lock; 09-24-2003 at 01:36 AM..
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Old 09-24-2003, 05:39 AM   #13 (permalink)
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Wierd.

Like I said, where'd those prices come from, Newegg has it listed for 779$, the 3.2 for 589$.

I'm intrested. That's why I asked. I'm upgrading here shortly.


Newegg's prices a screwed up. Pricewatch has them listed at 779$, the homepage of Newegg says 449$, and if you go to the AMD product page on newegg, it's 779$. And what's the difference between an Opteron and an Athlon 64? The 449 is Athlon 64, I was looking at opteron's.

Who the hell knows.

Last edited by Kurant; 09-24-2003 at 05:43 AM..
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Old 09-24-2003, 06:44 AM   #14 (permalink)
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Re: Wierd.

Quote:
Originally posted by Kurant
Like I said, where'd those prices come from, Newegg has it listed for 779$, the 3.2 for 589$.

I'm intrested. That's why I asked. I'm upgrading here shortly.


Newegg's prices a screwed up. Pricewatch has them listed at 779$, the homepage of Newegg says 449$, and if you go to the AMD product page on newegg, it's 779$. And what's the difference between an Opteron and an Athlon 64? The 449 is Athlon 64, I was looking at opteron's.

Who the hell knows.
Well the $449 is of the Athlon 64 - Clawhammer. The one I was talking about above, and the price that THG has, is for the Athlon FX-51, which is at newegg for $799 Retail. Just Click HERE and look at the last one. As for the P4 3.2 EE, I don't see it in pricewatch, newegg, etc. So my guess is that it has not hit the vendors just yet. But if the price was right for the Athlon FX, I would believe the price in the article for the P4 EE.

As for the Opteron, I believe that is the workstation/server version, kind of like Intel's Xeon, except the Opteron supports 64bit.
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Old 09-24-2003, 07:08 AM   #15 (permalink)
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First, this forum amazes me once again, you guys should all get a pat on the back. When reading the title, i just knew this was going to end up in a flame war, like every other technical forum i visit. I then remembered this is Tilted.

As for the good old CPU wars. Intel make absolutely wonderful chips, and AMD have helped them along, by, producing absolutely fantastic chips too. I am very excited with the new 64bit chips. What it actually does is very impressive, and no one has really seen what the 64bit side of the core has to offer. The benchmarks (subjective in themself) are very impressive alone, not to mention that its handling 32bit processes, when its a 64bit cpu. If anything, this may hurry along Intels development, just like when the first Slotted Athlons hit the market.

At the end of the day, try to get the best cpu for your needs, and I am sure, you wont regret if you go AMD or Intel.

On a final note, remember one thing, this is the first generation Athlon 64's, and first gen Motherboards. Things get better with later revisions. The Intel chips/sets are getting a run for there money from AMD on revision 1 hardware. Thats GREAT for us consumers.
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Old 09-24-2003, 07:39 AM   #16 (permalink)
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People here are quoting me all of these great prices on Athlon 64's and Pentium 4's, but did you read my post at all? Give me a break! I said that the Athlon 64 FX 51 is $750, and guess what, IT IS. I also mentioned that the Pentium 4 3.2 GHz EE is $850 (some places have lowered to $800 already). I AM NOT talking about regular Pentium 4's, and I AM NOT talking about regular Athlon 64's (or Opterons, I liked that one). Please read my comments before you decide to price-flame me, because I did my homework and did not post false information. There is a difference between Athlon 64 and Athlon 64 FX, my friends. A BIG difference. There is also a big difference between the Pentium 4 and Pentium 4 EE. Just check out any of the tests.

I agree that it's too early to tell who's winning this battle. As of right now, I'd make the statement that AMD and Intel are just about equal with full confidence. The only EE chip that gives the FX 51 a run for its money is the 3.6 GHz and in some cases the 3.4 GHz, both of which will be at least $900 (with the 3.6 probably going well over $1,000). I think AMD is doing damn good, especially considering if Intel hadn't released the high-end EE then AMD would literally be manufacturing the most powerful CPU in the world, bar-none. Intel made a sneaky move, but it worked. It was designed to put an end to the hype of AMD's Athlon 64 launch, and that's exactly what it did. If these CPU's actually sell is another story. We just have to wait it out!

-Lasereth
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Old 09-24-2003, 07:55 AM   #17 (permalink)
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Here's a little clarification if some of you don't feel like reading my post or the previous ones about the matter:

AMD has released THREE 64-bit Chips now. The first was the server-CPU Opteron which is quite powerful, especially the high-end 246. Like I said before, the Opteron is a server CPU and it IS 64-bit.

AMD has also released a new chip called the "Athlon 64." The basic Athlon 64 is called the Athlon 64 3200, and is one powerful motherfucker. It's about the eqivalent of a 3.06 GHz HT Pentium 4. Let me remind you that the Athlon 64's have a 1.6 GHz Front-Side-Bus speed. The Athlon 64 3200 is similar to the Athlon XP 3200+, except this one is 2.0 GHz and has a 1 MB L2 cache (The Athlon XP had a 512 KB L2). Next, AMD has also released another Athlon 64, called the Athlon 64 FX51, which is the chip everyone is talking about. This chip literally slaughters everything but the EE Pentium 4 chips. The Athlon 64 FX51 is literally more powerful than the 3.2 GHz HT Pentium 4, and it runs at 2.2 GHz. If Intel hadn't released the Pentium 4 EE yesterday, then the Athlon 64 FX51 would be the most powerful CPU in the world.

I'll explain the EE now. Intel released the Pentium 4 Extreme Edition yesterday (the testers had it before, but it was officially announced to most places yesterday). These chips are Intel Xeon CPUs with a 2 MB L3 cache re-labelled as Pentium 4 EE. There is a 3.2 GHz EE, 3.4 GHz EE, and a 3.6 GHz EE. All of them have a FSB of 800 MHz and are all HT equipped. All three of these chips have given the Athlon 64 FX51 a run for its money, but none simply beat it except for the 3.6 GHz Pentium 4 EE. The Athlon 64 FX51 holds its own in most tests, only losing by a bigger margin to the 3.6 GHz EE. The Pentium 4 EE chips are 32-bit.

Opterons are damned expensive, usually from $250-$750. They are made for servers, and that's it.

I've only seen price quotes from one site (Tom's Hardware) on the EE's, and it seems that the 3.2 GHz EE is going to be around $800.00. Keep in mind the price difference of 200 MHz of current Pentium 4's; I'd expect the higher-end EE's to go over $1,000.

The Athlon 64 3200 is around $400-$500, with the Athlon 64 FX51 being around $750.

I hope this cleared up some things if anyone was confused.

-Lasereth
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Last edited by Lasereth; 09-24-2003 at 07:59 AM..
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Old 09-24-2003, 08:50 AM   #18 (permalink)
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I have to agree, even though Intel released a chip with comparable speeds, they still fall short with not having a 64-bit chip. I also questions the reasons for not releasing info on the EE chips. Was it to compete with AMD or just to sell as many of the old chips as possible before the new ones come out. I am sure both are a factor, but they also don't want people buying Intels to hold off on buying because something new and faster is coming out. Amd has always been very clear with the public on what they are working on! What do you think the speeds on Intels chips would be right now if AMD wasn't pushing them along. Don't get me wrong they both make very good chips, but until Intels shady practices and price milking stops, I will be shopping AMD.
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Old 09-24-2003, 10:10 AM   #19 (permalink)
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Well said Lasereth
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Old 09-24-2003, 10:11 AM   #20 (permalink)
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OK, first off to Lasereth, I hope you don't think I was trying to attack you or anything. Pretty much everything you said in your summary above is what I had already agreed with on my earlier posts. The only thing that I think we disagreed upon was the price of the FX51 which I thought was $799 and you say is $750. I think we are both right in the sense that mine was for a retail, not sure if yours was or not. Also, I am not a 100% crazy intel person. I have built computers with Intel chips, and I think they are very good chips. But I have also built computers with AMD chips, and have been pleased with them aswell. I just wanted to clear the air so to speak. Also, I think the MOST important thing to realize with all this is what rocinante2003 and cas305 said, which I totally agree with. To be honest I was worried back in the day when Cyrix, AMD, and Intel were in the CPU department. I got very woried when Cyrix had to pull out, and AMD was just about to, because that would mean Intel would have a monopoly on the market, and they could push up the prices and slow down the R&D because there was no competition. That was back in the days with the K6's. I remember all the problems surrounding that chip line, with the heat and speed issues. But luckily for US consumers, AMD rolled out the Athlon's and thats when the fun began Therefore I hope that both Intel and AMD continue to out do each other, so things will keep getting faster and cheaper.

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Old 09-24-2003, 10:18 AM   #21 (permalink)
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G_Lock, now all we need is another OS manufacturer thats as popular as Microsoft. What a nice world that would be if MS had an "AMD" pushing them along.
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Old 09-24-2003, 11:27 AM   #22 (permalink)
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Well, let's see. We have a completely new chip based on an (r)evolutionary archiecture. Typically, these sort of launches are lackluster at best. Look at the P4 or the P2. Both of which, when introduced, offered no real performance increase over prior generations. AMD has also had its share of lemons as well, with the K6 series coming out later than promised and not offering the performace that was promised. The K7 launch was well executed with a great product.

Now the K8 comes out and from the benchmarks I have seen it pretty much even with an overclocked Xeon, which the EE is essentially. Considering the price of a 2.8Ghz 2MB cache Xeon (it's a couple grand atleast) I can't even begin how much it is costing Intel to rain on AMD's parade.

The EE is a mutant chip, it won't be around long. A 2.8Ghz 2MB Xeon is selling for $4,013 here. Intel won't want to be loosing money forever.
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Old 09-24-2003, 11:55 AM   #23 (permalink)
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New from Tom's Hardware:

Benchmarks under Windows XP - UPDATED

Update Sept 24,2003: Unfortunately we have made a mistake in the original article: In addition to the official P4 EE 3.2GHz we had included benchmark scores of the P4 Extreme 3.4GHz and 3.6GHz. These values were planned for a future THG article and were not intended to be included here. We would like to apologize especially to those readers who misinterpreted our charts. The two bars of the P4 Extreme 3.4GHz and 3.6GHz have now been removed. However, this issue does not affect our conclusion as we have only compared the official P4 3.2GHz EE to all other test candidates in our original article. For your information: The press sample of the P4 Extreme provided by Intel does not have a multiplier lock and is already designed for higher clock speeds.


I don't know why they took out the 3.4 GHz and 3.6 GHz EE's, but I'm fucking confused now. Oh well. I guess now AMD really does have the most powerful CPU on the market.

-Lasereth
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Old 09-24-2003, 12:13 PM   #24 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by Lasereth
New from Tom's Hardware:

Benchmarks under Windows XP - UPDATED

Update Sept 24,2003: Unfortunately we have made a mistake in the original article: In addition to the official P4 EE 3.2GHz we had included benchmark scores of the P4 Extreme 3.4GHz and 3.6GHz. These values were planned for a future THG article and were not intended to be included here. We would like to apologize especially to those readers who misinterpreted our charts. The two bars of the P4 Extreme 3.4GHz and 3.6GHz have now been removed. However, this issue does not affect our conclusion as we have only compared the official P4 3.2GHz EE to all other test candidates in our original article. For your information: The press sample of the P4 Extreme provided by Intel does not have a multiplier lock and is already designed for higher clock speeds.


I don't know why they took out the 3.4 GHz and 3.6 GHz EE's, but I'm fucking confused now. Oh well. I guess now AMD really does have the most powerful CPU on the market.

-Lasereth
This is VERY odd. It makes it sound like THG got in trouble or pressured some how. I wish I had saved the graphics of the original tests
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Old 09-24-2003, 01:12 PM   #25 (permalink)
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Same here! I wonder if they accidently showed those and meant to show them with the Athlon 64 FX53 which isn't out yet?

-Lasereth
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Old 09-24-2003, 02:29 PM   #26 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by Lasereth
Same here! I wonder if they accidently showed those and meant to show them with the Athlon 64 FX53 which isn't out yet?

-Lasereth
You know now that I think about it. I remember reading the article a couple days ago, and whenever the benchmarks were there, I would see the 3.4 and 3.6 EE chips come out on top, but in the analisys of them, they always said the FX 51 out did the P4 by X%, or AMD is ahead of the pack, etc. I couldn't understand them saying that since I could CLEARLY see the Intel's at the top of the charts. Now I really wonder what happened. When I first read it, I just thought they weren't talking about the 3.4 and above because they weren't really available to the consumers. You may be right about them wanting to have them at a later date. However, I don't know anything about the FX53 or when it is suppose to debut. Either way, lets just say that it is going to get interesting in this Q4 and Q1 of next year. I look forward to seeing all the new technology.

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Old 09-24-2003, 09:25 PM   #27 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by rocinante2003
G_Lock, now all we need is another OS manufacturer thats as popular as Microsoft. What a nice world that would be if MS had an "AMD" pushing them along.


If people had the time and courage to get on computers and learn Linux, you'd find there is nothing appealing about windows anymore once you've used it, except, the amount of consumer software, and driver support. Even that is becoming better and better, and MS's policies become more ridiculious. I use Linux everyday, all my work machines are linux. It's truly great, and it's free. With open source code, and a little programming experience, you can do almost anything you want with it.

Back to the subject...

Like G_lock said. You get either, you'll be happy. It's almost impossible to prove anything from benchmarks, with optimizations, and marketing gimicks, etc.. etc.. (ATI proved that)
Both products are great, both excel in different areas, it's just preference and pocketbook.
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