Intel vs AMD 2011


Tech Monkey
Looking at Intels specs for their sandy bridge CPUs vs AMDs bulldozer architecture it seems AMD may actually catch up OR even surpass Intel coming in 2011 I mean according to info I can find on the sandy bridge CPUs they look to be essentially the same as the current i7s but with a basic Intel GPU in em, whereas the AMD bulldozer series has not 4 cores, not 4 cores and a Hyper-threading like implementation like Intel but 8 physical cores and L2 memory shared in each module (4 modules in a chip, 2 cores per module) and fully shared L3 cache as well as supporting many new instructions that should result in at least a 30% increase in performance, its also supposed to be a 32 nm process chip. Bulldozer will feature two 128-bit FMA-capable FPUs which can be combined into one 256-bit FPU. This design is accompanied with two integer cores each with 4 pipelines (the fetch/decode stage is shared). Bulldozer will also introduce shared L2 cache in the new architecture. AMD calls this design a "Bulldozer module". The operating system will see each module as two physical cores and the chips will support between 8MB to 16MB of L3 cache shared among all Modules on the same silicon die. The only thing that I see as a downside is Socket AM3+ (AM3r2)
- 938pin(?), DDR3 support
- will retain only backwards compatibility with previous Socket AM3/AM2 processors
meaning you can get a new board and keep all your old parts and later upgrade your CPU unlike a lot of Intel's upgradesso I suppose it technically could be a lot worse on your budget but its too bad they cant be dropped into current motherboards at reduced speed. It also has a new revision of the HT bus, Hyper Transport Technology rev.3.1 (3.20 GHz, 6.4 GT/s, 51.6 GB/s, 16-bit uplink/16-bit downlink) and hopefully these will be amazing for power usage since Min-Max Power Usage is 10-100 watts. Anyways what do you guys think?

Wow on top of that Intel seems to be taking a disliking to OCers since overclocking is limited to only 2-3% over the factory clock speed due to Intel locking the speed of every bus to the base clock. Of course they will release EE editions and probably K editions but no doubt that those will cost quite a bit more when I see a lot of people getting lower end Intel CPUs and OCing the hell out of em since that can sometimes be a better deal but I cant see someone spending $100 extra for an unlocked edition if they can get one at the speed they want for less, unless they are a hardcore OCer in which case they would usually go for the EE editions anyways.


Senior Editor
Staff member
While I don't like linking to other articles, can't avoid it this time, but Anandtech got their hands on a Sandy Bridge test chip 5 months early.... it's not what you would call a production sample, but the performance numbers are definitely something to ponder over, a good 20%+ performance increase with a lower TDP and integrated graphics on par with a discrete graphics card. The whole overclocking thing does seem extremely messy though, since they prevent you from clocking memory as well, you have to use ratio's to clock memory.... maybe motherboard manufacturers will find a way round.... maybe. But there will be more K versions of chips, just depends on pricing, will they charge 5% or 30%..... Though I know one thing that'll annoy people, two new sockets (yay!...), 1155 and 2011, 1155 for integrated graphics (not to be confused with the current 1156), and 2011 is for their high end quad memory controller.... (does that mean 8 memory slots for 32GB of ram?)

AMD may increase the points at which they can take Intel on, but i'm still not sure if they could take the overall performance crown, clock for clock, but if you compare fusion, they'd have a much clearer advantage over Intel regarding graphics (most likely anyway). But hey, we're not likely to get any real performance numbers on AMD's chips for a long time.


Basket Chassis
Staff member
I want to see the budget version of the new Bulldozers. While I'd probably be shot for even bringing up the idea of another upgrade it will be nice to see what is out there for folks like me who would rather save their money for the future than blow it all on CPU that costs about half of what I pay for rent each month.

Rob Williams

Staff member
What's upcoming from AMD is much more exciting than Intel, because AMD is virtually rebuilding their architecture from the ground up and trying out some very unique things. Whether it's going to be enough to compete with Intel on a 1:1 clock speed basis, it remains to be seen, but chances are good that it can, even if not at the same 1:1 ratio.

The backwards (or at least, mostly backwards) compatibility on AMD's side is amazing, because Intel will have three different socket-types for current-gen desktop processors, and AMD will have one. That's incredible to me, because it takes out the fuss of people having to worry about proper socket mounts for their CPU cooler. Of course, all those coolers are still going to ship with the whole kit and kaboodle regardless.

Sandy Bridge will primarily have an improved GPU, and to be honest, those don't intrigue me at all. I like the fact that they offer good HD playback, but current-gen IGPs do as well, and to be honest, I truly can't picture many people literally gaming on these things. Just seeing the numbers "1024x768" induces the desire for me to vomit.

If there's anything to look forward to, it'd be the AVX (advanced vector extensions) instruction sets, which are essentially SSE instructions amped up to handle twice as much throughput at once. What concerns me though is that it's meant to drastically improve multi-media encoding, but I haven't seen much support for SSE4 in the encoders I use (DivX was an exception, but I no longer use it). So just how AVX will be used remains to be seen. I believe Bulldozer is supposed to launch with AVX as well, so unlike SSE4, both AMD and Intel will have that option available to their customers.

Tharic-Nar said:
While I don't like linking to other articles

I have no problem at all with people linking to articles from other websites here. We're not the only ones who write such content on the Web! :D It doesn't mean I'll agree with the article or even like the website that's being linked to, though, but that's just a matter of personal opinion.