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ShauwnBlue

Question about dual core processors

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ShauwnBlue    122
I'm somewhat unclear about dual core processors. If both of the processors are 1.4 GHz, does that mean my computer will qualify for 2.8 GHz requirements? In other words, do the GHz of both the processors add to each other, resulting in your computer's overall GHz? A game that I want to play requires 3.0 GHz to play, and I was wondering if I would need a computer with two 3 GHz processors, or just two 1.5 GHz processors. Thanks for any help.

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Kaze    948
yes and no, the comparative cpu power you get is probably somewhere between 1.5 and 3.0 but this will depend on how well multi-threaded the game you want to play is

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Ravuya    135
I think there are four big problems with your understanding (probably pushed by greedy hardware vendors, performance-tweaking framerate obsessives and Best Buy employees).
  1. Clock speed doesn't mean jack. There are so many other factors that affect the performance of a CPU than the number of cycles it can do a second -- CPUs like the PowerPC do more heft per cycle, so they can get better performance at a lower clock speed for some tasks. That's part of the reason the Core Duo chips generally have a lower clockspeed than the equivalent P4 (the other part being that the P4 architecture was nearly completely designed for the marketing tool of getting the highest clockspeed possible). If raising the clockspeed were a magic "go faster machine" we'd just slap a couple 5.4GHz oscillators on there and try to get it to be stable.
  2. SMP doesn't mean "double the performance". Both CPUs won't be saturated, and even if there were, there's synchronization and access issues that add a significant amount of overhead. Most games now are single-threaded anyway, so you will see zip improvement from adding an extra CPU. As developers wrestle with multithreading, it'll get better, but at the moment you're unlikely to wring much benefit from it for playing games. We've had multiple CPUs in computers for almost twenty years now; if they were a guaranteed double-speed benefit you'd certainly have seen them in consumer hardware before we started rubbing up against Moore's Law and we'd have fixed a lot of this multithreaded-game-engine crap a long time ago.
  3. Run the game's demo before you waste the money on it. If you're not sure it's going to run fine on your hardware, try it out before you buy the game.
  4. Game requirements are usually made up. I pull them out of my ass, personally. I've had varied experiences with "minimum" requirements being way better than the real minimum, and experiences where "recommended" hardware produced abysmal performance.

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nullsquared    126
One more thing - most games out there right now rate their cpu speed requirements as pentium 4s. That is, a pentium 4 at 3GHz. Now, pentium 4s do not do as much each cycle as Athlon64s or Core2s. And thus, for example, an Athlon64 at 2GHz will most likely be FASTER than a 3GHz pentium 4.

Multi-core CPUs are like a couple of single-core CPUs slapped together (well, sort of, not exactly, but it's easy to visualize it that way). They can do more work faster, but a single piece of work as fast as a single-core CPU. This "work" is a thread. If the game is multi-threaded, each core of the CPU will take some threads for itself, and leave other threads for other cores. This will be faster than if your CPU has only one core, and that one core did all of the threads. On the other hand, if the game used only ONE thread, then multi-core CPUs wouldn't really do much as only one core will be used - the same thing as if you're using a single-core CPU.

Also, see if the game in question is in the System Requirements Lab. If it is, you can do an online check of your computer and it'll supposedly tell you if you pass minimum or recommended requirements, and it can tell you what fields your PC is lacking in.

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UknowsI    132
I have personally had great experience with the dual core prosessors, both AMDs and Intels. There are in particular two main advantages in my opinion:

1. The extra core adds more speed. This is very noticable when you're doing number crunching algorithms and such. The performance have been very close to doubled in parallelizible algorithms with little communication. On games and such I haven't done any experiments though.

2. When one program messes up you can still work with the computer. Quite often I get problems with one prosess maximising it's CPU use, often MSN messanger, explorer or Opera. When this happens on a dual core you will usually be able to work unaffected with the other core. This is of course also important when you have an important program running in the background.

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tstrimp    1798
I believe at this point, any core 2 duo cpu will out preform the fasted P4, even the so called Extreme Edition. A Core 2 Duo E6300 is fast enough to play any game out there.

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nullsquared    126
Quote:
Original post by tstrimp
I believe at this point, any core 2 duo cpu will out preform the fasted P4, even the so called Extreme Edition. A Core 2 Duo E6300 is fast enough to play any game out there.


Not exactly, the fastest P4 was run at 8001MHz (linky), and according to what I've read it was faster than a Core2 Extreme.

A P4/PD Extreme should be faster than a stock E6300.

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lethalhamster    156
The only game I know of that requires 3.0Ghz of processing power is Supreme Commander. What I think the issue with that game is (as far as whether you really need the 3.0Ghz) is its mostly the AI that requires that. I have been in 3v3 online games(thats 3v3 human players) and also been on 3v3 computer players. The game runs much slower against computer players. I think the limit on my 2.0Ghz Athlon 64 X2 is 3 computer players before it get unplayable.

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cavemanbob    152
Quote:
Original post by agi_shi
Quote:
Original post by tstrimp
I believe at this point, any core 2 duo cpu will out preform the fasted P4, even the so called Extreme Edition. A Core 2 Duo E6300 is fast enough to play any game out there.


Not exactly, the fastest P4 was run at 8001MHz (linky), and according to what I've read it was faster than a Core2 Extreme.

A P4/PD Extreme should be faster than a stock E6300.


Too bad it requires liquid nitrogen cooling for that...

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I_Smell_Tuna    96
Basically you have the combined power of both processors, so if you have a 2Ghz dual core processor you basically have a 4Ghz processor. However the game needs to be multi-threaded in order to utilize both cores if it's not you'll only have the power of one core. Keep in mind that there is some overhead when using multiple cores so you'll never get 100% utilization of both processors.

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daviangel    604
Quote:
Original post by lethalhamster
The only game I know of that requires 3.0Ghz of processing power is Supreme Commander. What I think the issue with that game is (as far as whether you really need the 3.0Ghz) is its mostly the AI that requires that. I have been in 3v3 online games(thats 3v3 human players) and also been on 3v3 computer players. The game runs much slower against computer players. I think the limit on my 2.0Ghz Athlon 64 X2 is 3 computer players before it get unplayable.


Don't forget Flight Simulator X! It will make even a 3Ghz dualcore pc cry!
And to answer the original question no they don't add up to speed of an equivalent single core cpu although some programs will make it sound that way like when they test my 2.4Ghz dualcore cpu they say it's performance rating is 4.8ghz which isn't true.
On the other hand I remeber when i got my first opteron 1.4Ghz cpu which wasn't even dualcore it's peformance was on par with a much faster pentium at around 3ghz and I remeber some games defaulting to low quality setting since they were just measuring the cpu speed and not necessarily it's performance.
Later patches for alot of games if they noticed you were running an opteron cpu would bump up your video settings or consider it a highend cpu.

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tstrimp    1798
Quote:
Original post by agi_shi
Not exactly, the fastest P4 was run at 8001MHz (linky), and according to what I've read it was faster than a Core2 Extreme.

A P4/PD Extreme should be faster than a stock E6300.


So an extremely overclocked CPU is faster then a stock one? Brilliant! Now, why don't you start comparing stock CPU's from each generation? Check out the Tom's Hardware interactive CPU charts. The lowest Core 2 Duo they have is the E6400 but it smokes the P4EE in all the tests I looked at. And by quite a healthy margin.

The P4EE was running at 3.7Ghz. The Core 2 Duo was running at 2.13Ghz. The Core 2 Duo beat the P4EE on every test I looked at except the 3dMark CPU benchmark and the PCMark CPU benchmark.

Call of Duty had a 16FPS increase.
FEAR had a 8FPS increase.
DIVX Encoding performed 30 seconds faster.
MP3 Encoding was over 30 seconds faster.
Quake 4 had a 19FPS increase.

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nullsquared    126
Quote:
Original post by tstrimp
Quote:
Original post by agi_shi
Not exactly, the fastest P4 was run at 8001MHz (linky), and according to what I've read it was faster than a Core2 Extreme.

A P4/PD Extreme should be faster than a stock E6300.


So an extremely overclocked CPU is faster then a stock one? Brilliant! Now, why don't you start comparing stock CPU's from each generation? Check out the Tom's Hardware interactive CPU charts. The lowest Core 2 Duo they have is the E6400 but it smokes the P4EE in all the tests I looked at. And by quite a healthy margin.

The P4EE was running at 3.7Ghz. The Core 2 Duo was running at 2.13Ghz. The Core 2 Duo beat the P4EE on every test I looked at except the 3dMark CPU benchmark and the PCMark CPU benchmark.

Call of Duty had a 16FPS increase.
FEAR had a 8FPS increase.
DIVX Encoding performed 30 seconds faster.
MP3 Encoding was over 30 seconds faster.
Quake 4 had a 19FPS increase.


Quote:

any core 2 duo cpu will out preform the fasted P4

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tstrimp    1798
Stop being obtuse. They may have been able to overclock it to that rate but there is no indication that the machine is stable. I didn't see any benchmarks. You're comparing apples to oranges here. If you applied the same cooling system to an E6300 the the E6300 would be able to outperform the P4EE.

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nullsquared    126
Quote:
Original post by tstrimp
Stop being obtuse. They may have been able to overclock it to that rate but there is no indication that the machine is stable. I didn't see any benchmarks. You're comparing apples to oranges here. If you applied the same cooling system to an E6300 the the E6300 would be able to outperform the P4EE.


Obtuse? Excuse my vocab., but htf (think wtf, but with a "how" instead of "what") does obtuse apply to a person? Fat?

... anyways... Adding liquid nitrogen to any processor won't help in performance. See, as long as it runs at a reasonable temp, then performance won't really differ. Only time it WILL differ is when you're running at above normal temps. and the CPU is throttling down to not melt.

Besides, I don't really think we need benchmarks. I'm 120% sure practically any 8000MHz processor will be faster than most stock C2Ds.

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OrangyTang    1298
Quote:
Original post by agi_shi
Quote:
Original post by tstrimp
Stop being obtuse. They may have been able to overclock it to that rate but there is no indication that the machine is stable. I didn't see any benchmarks. You're comparing apples to oranges here. If you applied the same cooling system to an E6300 the the E6300 would be able to outperform the P4EE.


Obtuse? Excuse my vocab., but htf (think wtf, but with a "how" instead of "what") does obtuse apply to a person? Fat?

Obtuse -> blunt -> not sharp -> stupid.

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Torrente    229
Quote:

Obtuse? Excuse my vocab., but htf (think wtf, but with a "how" instead of "what") does obtuse apply to a person? Fat?


Obtuse can often mean dull, or not alert; slow to perceive.

Edit: oops, didn't see that OrangyTang got to it before me.

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Ezbez    1164
Quote:
Original post by Ravuya
Most games now are single-threaded anyway, so you will see zip improvement from adding an extra CPU.


Really? I've never used a dual core computer extensively (and certainly not benchmarked it), but that's not the impression I had gotten from articles. My computer is doing a lot of other tasks while I'm playing a game (386 threads right now). Surely having that task load partially on another processor could benefit a game's performance, even just marginally?

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longjumper    127
Quote:
Original post by agi_shi
Obtuse? Excuse my vocab., but htf (think wtf, but with a "how" instead of "what") does obtuse apply to a person? Fat?


Oh my god, the irony is killing me.

obtuse |?b?t(y)o?s; äb-| adjective
1 annoyingly insensitive or slow to understand : he wondered if the doctor was being deliberately obtuse. See note at stupid .
• difficult to understand : some of the lyrics are a bit obtuse.

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wodinoneeye    1689
Quote:
Original post by I_Smell_Tuna
Basically you have the combined power of both processors, so if you have a 2Ghz dual core processor you basically have a 4Ghz processor. However the game needs to be multi-threaded in order to utilize both cores if it's not you'll only have the power of one core. Keep in mind that there is some overhead when using multiple cores so you'll never get 100% utilization of both processors.



Usually there are problems due to comminications overhead and task mismatching that leads to the second CPU executing at much less than the 100% (when used for the same App). Hopefully the gaming companies will be learning to maximize that (wont be too long before the QUADs are common). Smarter AI sucks up incredible amounts of CPU capacity and we will be needing all that the processors can produce.

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tstrimp    1798
Quote:
Original post by agi_shi
Adding liquid nitrogen to any processor won't help in performance. See, as long as it runs at a reasonable temp, then performance won't really differ. Only time it WILL differ is when you're running at above normal temps. and the CPU is throttling down to not melt.


There you go again. Do you understand the concept of overclocking? Do you understand the need for increased cooling while overclocking? Do you understand how much more you could overclock a processor if it's being cooled by something ridiculous like liquid nitrogen? If you don't understand any of the previous questions then please excuse yourself from this thread as you obviously have no idea what you're talking about.

Quote:
Besides, I don't really think we need benchmarks. I'm 120% sure practically any 8000MHz processor will be faster than most stock C2Ds.


Of course you need benchmarks! If for nothing else to show that the computer doesn't crash after running for 5 minutes! Massive overclocking tends to make things unstable and the fact that they didn't show any tests would seem to indicate that they couldn't keep the computer running long enough to run any.

Quote:
Original post by Ezbez
Quote:
Original post by Ravuya
Most games now are single-threaded anyway, so you will see zip improvement from adding an extra CPU.


Really? I've never used a dual core computer extensively (and certainly not benchmarked it), but that's not the impression I had gotten from articles. My computer is doing a lot of other tasks while I'm playing a game (386 threads right now). Surely having that task load partially on another processor could benefit a game's performance, even just marginally?


This is true to some extent but background processes usually aren't enough to hinder game performance on a single cpu, unless you're running something stupid like Norton. The new dual-core cpus run games faster because the architecture is better, not necessarily because it has two cores. What you could do with a dual-core though is encode mp3s or something while playing F.E.A.R without a noticeable performance difference.

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nullsquared    126
Actually, you're the one being obtuse here. Here is what you said:
Quote:

You're comparing apples to oranges here. If you applied the same cooling system to an E6300 the the E6300 would be able to outperform the P4EE.

How the f*ck does that imply any sort of overclocking whatsoever?

Quote:
Original post by tstrimp
Quote:
Original post by agi_shi
Adding liquid nitrogen to any processor won't help in performance. See, as long as it runs at a reasonable temp, then performance won't really differ. Only time it WILL differ is when you're running at above normal temps. and the CPU is throttling down to not melt.


There you go again. Do you understand the concept of overclocking? Do you understand the need for increased cooling while overclocking? Do you understand how much more you could overclock a processor if it's being cooled by something ridiculous like liquid nitrogen? If you don't understand any of the previous questions then please excuse yourself from this thread as you obviously have no idea what you're talking about.

Yeah, I do. I see you do, too. What you DON'T understand, though, is the fact that I'm only quoting EXACTLY what you said.

In fact, this machine I'm running right now I built and overclocked myself. X2 3800+ (lowest of the line) is running at X2 5600+ speed (2.8GHz vs. 2.0GHz). Stable as hell, never busts 53C.
Quote:

Quote:
Besides, I don't really think we need benchmarks. I'm 120% sure practically any 8000MHz processor will be faster than most stock C2Ds.


Of course you need benchmarks! If for nothing else to show that the computer doesn't crash after running for 5 minutes! Massive overclocking tends to make things unstable and the fact that they didn't show any tests would seem to indicate that they couldn't keep the computer running long enough to run any.

Sure, it's probably unstable there. My X2 3800+ was unstable at 2.9GHz. But it's not - if you digged you'd come to the thread with the guy explaining stuff. The reason they didn't do any benchmarks is because they ran out of LN2.
Quote:

Quote:
Original post by Ezbez
Quote:
Original post by Ravuya
Most games now are single-threaded anyway, so you will see zip improvement from adding an extra CPU.


Really? I've never used a dual core computer extensively (and certainly not benchmarked it), but that's not the impression I had gotten from articles. My computer is doing a lot of other tasks while I'm playing a game (386 threads right now). Surely having that task load partially on another processor could benefit a game's performance, even just marginally?


This is true to some extent but background processes usually aren't enough to hinder game performance on a single cpu, unless you're running something stupid like Norton. The new dual-core cpus run games faster because the architecture is better, not necessarily because it has two cores. What you could do with a dual-core though is encode mp3s or something while playing F.E.A.R without a noticeable performance difference.

Don't forget, some games ARE multi-threaded. Crysis, for example, will dynamically branch threads as much as it feels your processor can handle. Technically I'll be able to run Crysis at all high/max once I get an X1950XT. X1950XT is just about as fast as a 8800GTS, except it's got more ram, faster ram, and is only ~210$ (cheaper than even the 320MB 8800GTS).

Maybe you're the one who needs to excuse yourself? [grin]

j/k

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_the_phantom_    11250
Quote:
Original post by agi_shi
Actually, you're the one being obtuse here. Here is what you said:
Quote:

You're comparing apples to oranges here. If you applied the same cooling system to an E6300 the the E6300 would be able to outperform the P4EE.

How the f*ck does that imply any sort of overclocking whatsoever?


Sorry, but no, there is such a thing as 'context'. You were talking about a massively OC'd CPU vs a stock CPU, from this context it can be inferred that tstrimp's comment was directed at OCing a C2D using the same cooling to keep it in context with the discussion.

End of the day, when people make statements such as 'X will out perform Y' they mean with stock cooling OR compartive OCing of the hardware; not massive and ultimately useless (yes, running out of Liq. Nit. is useless) OCs which are done just to see how far you can push a chip.

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nullsquared    126
Quote:
Original post by phantom
Quote:
Original post by agi_shi
Actually, you're the one being obtuse here. Here is what you said:
Quote:

You're comparing apples to oranges here. If you applied the same cooling system to an E6300 the the E6300 would be able to outperform the P4EE.

How the f*ck does that imply any sort of overclocking whatsoever?


Sorry, but no, there is such a thing as 'context'. You were talking about a massively OC'd CPU vs a stock CPU, from this context it can be inferred that tstrimp's comment was directed at OCing a C2D using the same cooling to keep it in context with the discussion.

End of the day, when people make statements such as 'X will out perform Y' they mean with stock cooling OR compartive OCing of the hardware; not massive and ultimately useless (yes, running out of Liq. Nit. is useless) OCs which are done just to see how far you can push a chip.


No, see, "out-perform" does NOT mean "out-overclock". "out-perform in overclocking", yes - but just "out-perform" in no way suggests overclocking.

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