Monday, January 24th 2011

Bulldozer Shines in 3D Gaming and Rendering: AMD

Close to two weeks ago, reports surfaced about AMD claiming that its upcoming "Zambezi" 8-core desktop processor based on the company's new Bulldozer architecture is expected to perform 50% faster than Intel's Core i7 and its own Phenom II X6 processors. The slide forming the basis for the older report surfaced, and it's a little more than a cumulative performance estimate.

Slide #14 from AMD's Desktop Client Solutions presentation to its industry partners reveals that the company went ahead and provided a breakdown on which kinds of applications exactly does its new 8-core chip perform better compared to present-generation processors. The breakdown provides an interesting insight on the architecture itself. To begin with, AMD's 8-core Bulldozer "Zambezi" processor is 1.5X (50%) faster overall compared to Intel Core i7 "Bloomfield" 950, and AMD Phenom II X6 1100T. Breaking down that graph, the processor performs similar to the other chips in media applications, but features huge gains in gaming and 3D rendering, which is where most of its gains are coming from.
To put this into perspective, games and 3D graphics applications, which still favour processors with higher clock speeds with lesser number of cores/threads to processors with lesser clock speeds and higher number of cores/threads, performing well on Bulldozer indicates that AMD is concentrating on higher performance per core, in other words, higher instructions per clock (IPC). The modular design of Bulldozer, perhaps, is contributing to high inter-core bandwidth, which helps 3D games that can do with lesser number of cores.

AMD described the Zambezi-powered "Scorpius" enthusiast desktop platform to have "the best graphics features and performance". A comparative table also reminds us that apart from the radical design, Bulldozer might benefit from a vastly upgraded SIMD instruction set compared to the previous generation. Bulldozer packs SSE 4.1, SSE 4.2, and AVX (Advanced Vector Extensions). With socket AM3+ motherboards already seeing the light of the day in pre-release photo shoots, AMD's new processor doesn't seem too far.Source: DonanimHaber
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122 Comments on Bulldozer Shines in 3D Gaming and Rendering: AMD

#1
Tiltentei
ivicagmc said:
Can't wait to see some benchmarks... Great thing for me is that I don't have to bye a new processor right away. First I bye a AM3+ mob and put my current AM3 processor on it, and latter, when I had money to spare, get some nice Bulldozer...
Do you think that you can use current phenom II on the new board am3+? I was thinking that this was a completely new architechture that wouldnt be compatible with any older amd cpu's. Would be nice if it were possible, but i doubht it. Hope i am mistaking. :toast:
Posted on Reply
#2
OBR
heheheh, look at bottom of screen: Render performance is based on Cinebench R11, 3D gaming performance is based on 3D Mark 06 CPU test!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! this is fail
Posted on Reply
#3
.Tk
toyo said:
They compared their future octo core with last year quad core from Intel and they're proud of winning?
AMD, wake the hell up, guys!!!
You forgot to considere two things:

First: The Core i7 processors have HyperThreading, which doubles the number of "threads" seen by the OS.

Second: Orochi processors feature 4 Bulldozer-based modules (I considere a module as an entire core, mainly 'cause it doesn't have its own dedicated L3 Cache). Each module contains two cores along with 2MB of dedicated L2 Cache.
Four modules result in eight logical cores and 8MB of L2 Cache.

Final considerations: AMD opted not go with a SMT arrangement like Intel. Instead, they decided to go with real cores which are less complex, occupy a smaller die size but offer less performance per core when compared to Intel cores, that basically allowed them to cranck up the core count to eight.
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#4
Hotel
Something is going on here.. I think we all know it

The 6 core release from AMD earlier didn't really set the market alight. I mean the chip was better at some "boring" things.. but in general use.. wasn't really faster (it was slower) than the standard comeptition i5 750/760

Onboard GPU is rubbish, anyone getting a chip that strong will have a graphics card. The onboard GPU is just stupid consumers and for companies like hp, compaq, etc to sell "monster" machines that can actually play a game with 3d capabilities of an ATI 5670 without actually having to fork out for the graphics card. Its just a niche selling point, it makes zero logical sense for the normal knowledgable buyer/gamer

Dell/HP/whoever are allergic to buying graphics cards (beause of cost vs consumer knowledge) but will often spec their pcs with very high spec processors, this is the case for 90% or higher of consumer pcs

I feel that this chip will just be an AMD X8 955.. a little faster.. but with 8 cores

Unfortunately I am sure the 2500K will be faster in the gaming/usual benchmarks and the 8core will be faster, in anything, that literally takes advantage of physically having 8 cores

The only competitive point will be price and if they can slip it into the budget market - this will be key

Of course I am rooting for AMD, if we didnt have them, then we'd have slow overpriced intel chips.. but its not looking like this chip will blow intel away at all
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#5
ROad86
Tiltentei said:
Do you think that you can use current phenom II on the new board am3 ? I was thinking that this was a completely new architechture that wouldnt be compatible with any older amd cpu's. Would be nice if it were possible, but i doubht it. Hope i am mistaking
Amd said it would be compatible am3 cpu's will work at am3+ socket mobo's:toast:
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#6
SlayerJC
Intel processor Core i7 950 but the package 1156? Mistake or fake?
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#7
ROad86
SlayerJC said:
Intel processor Core i7 950 but the package 1156? Mistake or fake?
Maybe both! But I hope that means; we will have the prices of lga 1156 mobo's(I wish this is!!!)
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#8
Mindweaver
Moderato®™
I think if bulldozer is at least 20% faster than i7 950 amd has a winner. Hell i'd be happy with 10% faster at half the price! I like Intel too, but hell they are still selling Q9650 for over 330 bucks.. Great processor but really still worth 330?
Posted on Reply
#9
spynoodle
1.5x speed of the i7 950 = ~Core i7 2600k.

So you could chose to buy:
a. A quad-core i7 2600k that can overclock like crazy and works well with highly-threaded and low-threaded games
b. A flagship AMD Zambezi that only performs well with highly threaded programs and is most likely going to be more expensive

Hmmm....:wtf:

This is AMD's problem. You can't throw 8 slow half-cores (essentially de-hyperthreaded) onto a die and expect people to buy it over a quad-core that performs just as well. Same thing with the Phenom II X6. Yeah, it's just as fast as the i7s, but only for some applications.
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#10
FordGT90Concept
"I go fast!1!11!1!"
ROad86 said:
We have all seen reviews about Sandybridge. How much faster is the new cpu's? Because your are all talking like the 950 is something very slow. 950 is faster than i5 2500k in most tasks and lacks only from i7 2600K.
Core i7 950 has hyperthreading, QPI, 8 MiB L3, and 3.06 GHz clock.
Core i5 2500K does not have hypthreading, no external QPI, only 6 MiB L3, and 3.3 GHz clock.

Hyperthreading makes a significant difference in mulithreading. The larger cache makes a significant difference no matter the task.


I'm comparing apples (Core i7 Sandy Bridge) to apples (Bulldozer) here.


ROad86 said:
And something else everyone are comparing 4 cores(intel) vs 6/8 cores(amd). What matter's is the price. If a processor with 4 cores cost more than one with 6 or 8 why I should buy the 4 core? So the important thing is the price of the cpu's.
Intel and AMD always position their processors prices more or less according to price/performance of their respective competition. My guess is Intel's octo-core will be $999 while Intel's hexa-core and AMD's octo-core will be around $400-500, quickly falling to ~$300 each. Intel has always positioned their processors to cost about $20-40 more than AMD for equal performance because they can since people know the brand.
Posted on Reply
#11
ROad86
spynoodle said:
1.5x speed of the i7 950 = ~Core i7 2600k.

So you could chose to buy:
a. A quad-core i7 2600k that can overclock like crazy and works well with highly-threaded and low-threaded games
b. A flagship AMD Zambezi that only performs well with highly threaded programs and is most likely going to be more expensive

Hmmm....

This is AMD's problem. You can't throw 8 slow half-cores (essentially de-hyperthreaded) onto a die and expect people to buy it over a quad-core that performs just as well. Same thing with the Phenom II X6. Yeah, it's just as fast as the i7s, but only for some applications.
a. Buy a 150$ mobo and a 330$ cpu and overclock it like hell. Hmmm 480$ maybe will vanish instantly.
b. Low threaded games, high threaded games at 1650x1080 and above needs gpu power not cpu. With sandybridge you gain what from 150 fps at 1024x768 you go 200 fps. Not a big deal.
c. The most cpu demanding programms became multi-thread. So 8 real cores maybe (we will see at the reviews) will give an advantage.
Now about the price is all that matters. If zambezi will be priced nicely tell me one reason not to buy it? As for the perfomance I don't now if these numbers are real and surely we have to wait until the release.
Posted on Reply
#12
ROad86
FordGT90Concept said:
I'm comparing apples (Core i7 Sandy Bridge) to apples (Bulldozer) here.
Completely agree with you! I said this because in some post 950 was said like it was something very slow.
Posted on Reply
#13
KRONOSFX
spynoodle said:
1.5x speed of the i7 950 = ~Core i7 2600k.
Its true we don't know how fast BD will be, but can you link me some tests where 2600k is about 50%-er on average than 950, the last time I checked it was more like around 20%, if you can't then your post is just BS.
Posted on Reply
#14
KRONOSFX
FordGT90Concept said:
Core i7 950 has hyperthreading, QPI, 8 MiB L3, and 3.06 GHz clock.
Core i5 2500K does not have hypthreading, no external QPI, only 6 MiB L3, and 3.3 GHz clock.

Hyperthreading makes a significant difference in mulithreading. The larger cache makes a significant difference no matter the task.


I'm comparing apples (Core i7 Sandy Bridge) to apples (Bulldozer) here.
Its enough if you just make a performance increase of Sandy 2600K against i7 950 and it should be enough, last time I checked it was about +15-20% for 2600K on average.
Posted on Reply
#15
spynoodle
KRONOSFX said:
Its true we don't know how fast BD will be, but can you link me some tests where 2600k is about 50%-er on average than 950, the last time I checked it was more like around 20%, if you can't then your post is just BS.
Here:
http://www.cpubenchmark.net/cpu_list.php
It's roughly 50% faster, which puts it almost in line with the 980x (except that the benchmark used is highly multithreaded, so it gives the 980x a bit better of a score).
Granted, in real-world applications it's less of a blowout:
http://www.anandtech.com/show/4083/the-sandy-bridge-review-intel-core-i7-2600k-i5-2500k-core-i3-2100-tested/20
Still, the AMD comparison test doesn't use real-world applications, so I would place Zambezi around the same mark as the 2600k. ;)
Posted on Reply
#16
Arrakis+9
SlayerJC said:
Intel processor Core i7 950 but the package 1156? Mistake or fake?
wondering the same, maybe the person that put together the slide didn't do his research very well
Posted on Reply
#18
the54thvoid
Get it out in the real world and perform unbiased real world benchmarks. Its competition will be the relative price point it occupies (thats is what dictates market conditions - If A is priced similar to B but B performs better, B wins, as opposed to B costs more than A and performs better, not competitive).

It's why the core i7 980x is so expensive - it had no peers (overclocking aside) and could be priced as such.

All being said, it would be excellent for AMD to produce a proficient Intel competitor. But if it really is, it won't be budget - thats just unrealistic.
Posted on Reply
#19
KRONOSFX
spynoodle: it could be around 2600k although I wish for a healthy increase, but from just 3 test anticipating performance is pointless.

What you linked were just some cases but its not on average thats my point.
Posted on Reply
#20
OneCool
We can sit here and assume everything.

Its all going to come down to... price and overclock :toast:



We shall see..... :pimp:
Posted on Reply
#21
spynoodle
KRONOSFX said:
spynoodle: it could be around 2600k although I wish for a healthy increase, but from just 3 test anticipating performance is pointless.

What you linked were just some cases but its not on average thats my point.
I see. It's possible that Zambezi will be a valid competitor, but from the one bench so far, it's not looking too good IMO.
OneCool said:
We can sit here and assume everything.

Its all going to come down to... price and overclock :toast:



We shall see..... :pimp:
^ I guess this is really what it comes down to. We won't know anything for sure until it comes out, right? :ohwell:
Posted on Reply
#22
crow1001
heh, 3Dmark06 represents gaming performance does it AMD...GTFO.:shadedshu
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#23
KRONOSFX
spynoodle: It will probably depend on what you are using it. At another forum we are already discussing this and it looks like BD will be fastest CPU in multi thread based on CineBench at least untill 6 core Sandy is released.
Posted on Reply
#24
FordGT90Concept
"I go fast!1!11!1!"
KRONOSFX said:
Its enough if you just make a performance increase of Sandy 2600K against i7 950 and it should be enough, last time I checked it was about +15-20% for 2600K on average.
And Core i7 2600K is still behind the Core i7 950 in many regards (namely QPI and memory channels). X68 based Core i7s should be even faster (at least where lots of graphics and memory bandwidth are concerned).

LGA 1156 -> LGA 1155 = no QPI
LGA 1366 -> LGA 2011 = QPI
Posted on Reply
#25
spynoodle
KRONOSFX said:
spynoodle: It will probably depend on what you are using it. At another forum we are already discussing this and it looks like BD will be fastest CPU in multi thread based on CineBench at least untill 6 core Sandy is released.
Agreed. It'll probably only just barely edge out the 2600k, though, and LGA2011 will probably come out only a short while after BD, considering the delays that AMD's going through.

Also, we still don't know how biased AMD's benches are. They don't seem very detailed as of yet.
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