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Re: Should I go Dual Core or Quad Core? Intel C2 DUO E6850 vs. Quad-Core Q6600

 
 
Brian Cryer
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      01-03-2008, 04:32 PM

"Matt" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
news:(E-Mail Removed)...
>Hey guys. I'm looking at upgrading my PC and I've come across an
>interesting problem:
>
>- Pay 165 for a Intel Dual Core E6850 (clocked @ 3.0GHz)
>
>- Pay 160 for a Quad Core Q6600 (clocked @ 2.4GHz)
>
>Now to my untrained eye, the quad-core seems like an easy choice. Am I
>correct, or is the performance benefit from the 2 additional cores
>completely lost by the low bandwidth connection between the 2 dies, as
>mentioned in a Wikipedia article below:
>
>"A quad-core CPU (as a two-die set in particular), however, can rarely
>double the processing ability of each of its constituent halves (e.g.
>the Kentsfield rarely doubles the ability of the Conroe), due to a
>loss
>of performance resulting from connecting them (i.e. sharing the narrow
>memory bandwidth, and operating system overhead of handling twice as
>many cores and threads)."
>
>Will all applications for Windows eventually become multi-threaded and
>fully utilise a quad core setup? Because if so then surely the 2.4GHz
>quad core would outperform the 3.0GHz dual core in the future?
>
>Basically this comes down to dual core vs. quad core, and I'm hoping
>there's a clear consensus about which to buy!


http://www.codinghorror.com/blog/archives/000942.html seems to provide an
interesting view on this - just one that stood out when I did a google just
now.

Most of the time my pc (single core) is idle, and waiting for me to do
something. I do run some cpu intensive applications where I'm left waiting
for my pc, but most of the time my pc is idle. To be honest most
applications can't even take advantage of dual core. Its only those
applications that are inherently multi-threaded (or which can be made so)
like databases, webservers, some games, that will be able to truly take
advantage of the move from two to four cores. Whilst the number of
applications that will be able to make use of multiple cores will inevitably
increase, is it something that you need?

Despite all this, my plans are for my next pc to be quad core, and given the
choice that's what I'd go for even if the clock speed is slower. Whatever
you do be sure to chock it full of as much RAM as you can, ie 4GB if you are
using a 32bit OS.

Hope this is useful.
--
Brian Cryer
www.cryer.co.uk/brian


 
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~misfit~
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Posts: n/a
 
      01-04-2008, 09:13 AM
Somewhere on teh intarweb "Brian Cryer" typed:
> "Matt" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
> news:(E-Mail Removed)...
>> Hey guys. I'm looking at upgrading my PC and I've come across an
>> interesting problem:
>>
>> - Pay 165 for a Intel Dual Core E6850 (clocked @ 3.0GHz)
>>
>> - Pay 160 for a Quad Core Q6600 (clocked @ 2.4GHz)
>>
>> Now to my untrained eye, the quad-core seems like an easy choice. Am
>> I correct, or is the performance benefit from the 2 additional cores
>> completely lost by the low bandwidth connection between the 2 dies,
>> as mentioned in a Wikipedia article below:
>>
>> "A quad-core CPU (as a two-die set in particular), however, can
>> rarely double the processing ability of each of its constituent
>> halves (e.g. the Kentsfield rarely doubles the ability of the
>> Conroe), due to a loss
>> of performance resulting from connecting them (i.e. sharing the
>> narrow memory bandwidth, and operating system overhead of handling
>> twice as many cores and threads)."
>>
>> Will all applications for Windows eventually become multi-threaded
>> and fully utilise a quad core setup? Because if so then surely the
>> 2.4GHz quad core would outperform the 3.0GHz dual core in the future?
>>
>> Basically this comes down to dual core vs. quad core, and I'm hoping
>> there's a clear consensus about which to buy!

>
> http://www.codinghorror.com/blog/archives/000942.html seems to
> provide an interesting view on this - just one that stood out when I
> did a google just now.
>
> Most of the time my pc (single core) is idle, and waiting for me to do
> something. I do run some cpu intensive applications where I'm left
> waiting for my pc, but most of the time my pc is idle. To be honest
> most applications can't even take advantage of dual core.


Maybe so but I do like the fact that I can have my dual-core PC doing
something heavy-duty like encoding and still have it responsive and snappy
if I want to check email etc. Encoding on my old single-core was an
overnight job as the PC was useless for anything else once I hit "start".
--
Shaun.

> Its only
> those applications that are inherently multi-threaded (or which can
> be made so) like databases, webservers, some games, that will be able
> to truly take advantage of the move from two to four cores. Whilst
> the number of applications that will be able to make use of multiple
> cores will inevitably increase, is it something that you need?
>
> Despite all this, my plans are for my next pc to be quad core, and
> given the choice that's what I'd go for even if the clock speed is
> slower. Whatever you do be sure to chock it full of as much RAM as
> you can, ie 4GB if you are using a 32bit OS.
>
> Hope this is useful.




 
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Matthew
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      01-16-2008, 04:37 PM
>> waiting for my pc, but most of the time my pc is idle. To be honest
>> most applications can't even take advantage of dual core.

>
> Maybe so but I do like the fact that I can have my dual-core PC doing
> something heavy-duty like encoding and still have it responsive and snappy
> if I want to check email etc. Encoding on my old single-core was an
> overnight job as the PC was useless for anything else once I hit "start".


I find myself in exactly the same position as the original poster.

I've found the same problem with single-core video encoding, but how to
decide between dual and quad core? With quad would I be able to do some
dvd compression, burn a dvd, encode some wavs to mp3, and still have a
responsive pc to do some text editing, web browsing, etc.? In other words
would each of the processor intensive tasks get assigned a core and stick
with it?

What about the OS, do I need 64bit xp or vista with dual/quad processing?
I've heard that if you get 4GB RAM, a 64bit OS is recommended - is that true.

Thanks all.
 
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Sir-Les-MP
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Posts: n/a
 
      01-16-2008, 07:59 PM
Matthew wrote:
>>> waiting for my pc, but most of the time my pc is idle. To be honest
>>> most applications can't even take advantage of dual core.

>>
>> Maybe so but I do like the fact that I can have my dual-core PC doing
>> something heavy-duty like encoding and still have it responsive and
>> snappy if I want to check email etc. Encoding on my old single-core
>> was an overnight job as the PC was useless for anything else once I
>> hit "start".

>
> I find myself in exactly the same position as the original poster.
>
> I've found the same problem with single-core video encoding, but how to
> decide between dual and quad core? With quad would I be able to do some
> dvd compression, burn a dvd, encode some wavs to mp3, and still have a
> responsive pc to do some text editing, web browsing, etc.? In other
> words would each of the processor intensive tasks get assigned a core
> and stick with it?
>
> What about the OS, do I need 64bit xp or vista with dual/quad
> processing? I've heard that if you get 4GB RAM, a 64bit OS is
> recommended - is that true.
>
> Thanks all.

you don't need a 64bit O/S to use either a dual core ore Quad core cpu
however you are correct if you intend to use 4gb or more Ram then a
64bit O/S is recommended as it will be able to address all the memory
available where as 32bit xp/vista will have some issues past 3gb
depending on the motherboard and memory set-up you may see just over
3.5Gb using a 32bit O/S
 
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kony
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Posts: n/a
 
      01-16-2008, 10:23 PM
On Wed, 16 Jan 2008 16:37:45 GMT, Matthew
<(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:

>>> waiting for my pc, but most of the time my pc is idle. To be honest
>>> most applications can't even take advantage of dual core.

>>
>> Maybe so but I do like the fact that I can have my dual-core PC doing
>> something heavy-duty like encoding and still have it responsive and snappy
>> if I want to check email etc. Encoding on my old single-core was an
>> overnight job as the PC was useless for anything else once I hit "start".

>
>I find myself in exactly the same position as the original poster.
>
>I've found the same problem with single-core video encoding, but how to
>decide between dual and quad core?


You don't need either, just go into Task Manager,
right-click on the list item using the processor time, and
set it's priority to "low". It's largely a myth that
anything that isn't realtime needs more than one processor
(core). In some cases the application doing the encoding
even lets you set it's process priority ahead of time so
it's always what you want... and IMO most people will want
"low", even if they had a dual core or quad system.


>With quad would I be able to do some
>dvd compression, burn a dvd, encode some wavs to mp3, and still have a
>responsive pc to do some text editing, web browsing, etc.? In other words
>would each of the processor intensive tasks get assigned a core and stick
>with it?


The answer is that you will have more processes running than
cores even with a quad core. Seldom do people want to
consider this truth. Adding more cores does give the system
more processing power in general when more than one process
is linearlly bound instead of just idling away most of the
time. Yes once a process is assigned to a core it will
continue using it. What remains is as mentioned above, that
with more than 4 processes whether your system remains
responsive for what you are doing in the foreground depends
on that task running at higher priority than what is running
in the background. Merely putting the app in focus by using
it does elevate the priority but not necessarily enough in
some cases.

I'm not trying to talk you out of a faster new dual or quad
core system, I'm just saying for years I had no problem
using a single core to do video encoding or the other things
you list in the background while the system was fully
responsive for text editing or web, email, etc in the
foreground. With a good dual or quad core what you get is
the background linear processor consumer jobs get done a lot
faster.



>
>What about the OS, do I need 64bit xp or vista with dual/quad processing?
>I've heard that if you get 4GB RAM, a 64bit OS is recommended - is that true.


Your applications and drivers are the other factor to
consider, 64bit OS is not needed for dual or quad core
processors.
 
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