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Re: Large (8M) cache vs. dual-core CPUs

From: mark(at)mark(dot)mielke(dot)cc
To: Scott Marlowe <smarlowe(at)g2switchworks(dot)com>
Cc: Bill Moran <wmoran(at)collaborativefusion(dot)com>,pgsql-performance(at)postgresql(dot)org
Subject: Re: Large (8M) cache vs. dual-core CPUs
Date: 2006-04-26 01:17:01
Message-ID: (view raw, whole thread or download thread mbox)
Lists: pgsql-performance
On Tue, Apr 25, 2006 at 08:54:40PM -0400, mark(at)mark(dot)mielke(dot)cc wrote:
> I made the choice I describe based on a lot of research. I was going
> to go both Intel, until I noticed that the Intel prices were dropping
> fast. 30% price cut in 2 months. AMD didn't drop at all during the
> same time.

Errr.. big mistake. That was going to be - I was going to go both AMD.

> There are plenty of reasons to choose one over the other. Generally
> the AMD comes out on top. It is *not* 2X though. Anybody who claims
> this is being highly selective about which benchmarks they consider.

I have an Intel Pentium D 920, and an AMD X2 3800+. These are very
close in performance. The retail price difference is:

    Intel Pentium D 920     is selling for $310 CDN
    AMD X2 3800+            is selling for $347 CDN

Another benefit of Pentium D over AMD X2, at least until AMD chooses
to switch, is that Pentium D supports DDR2, whereas AMD only supports
DDR. There are a lot of technical pros and cons to each - with claims
from AMD that DDR2 can be slower than DDR - but one claim that isn't
often made, but that helped me make my choice:

    1) DDR2 supports higher transfer speeds. I'm using DDR2 5400 on
       the Intel. I think I'm at 3200 or so on the AMD X2.

    2) DDR2 is cheaper. I purchased 1 Gbyte DDR2 5400 for $147 CDN.
       1 Gbyte of DDR 3200 starts at around the same price, and
       stretches into $200 - $300 CDN.

Now, granted, the Intel 920 requires more electricity to run. Running
24/7 for a year might make the difference in cost.

It doesn't address point 1) though. I like my DDR2 5400.

So, unfortunately, I won't be able to do a good test for you to prove
that my Windows Pentium D box is not only cheaper to buy, but faster,
because the specs aren't exactly equivalent. In the mean time, I'm
quite enjoying my 3d games while doing other things at the same time.
I imagine my desktop load approaches that of a CPU-bound database
load. 3d games require significant I/O and CPU.

Anybody who claims that Intel is 2X more expensive for the same
performance, isn't considering all factors. No question at all - the
Opteron is good, and the Xeon isn't - but the original poster didn't
ask about Opeteron or Xeon, did he? For the desktop lines - X2 is not
double Pentium D. Maybe 10%. Maybe not at all. Especially now that
Intel is dropping it's prices due to overstock.


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