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Processors - AMD vs Intel

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by ~tc~, Jan 10, 2011.

  1. ~tc~

    ~tc~ Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Oct 22, 2010
    Houston, TX
    For photo and video, which is the best bang for the buck - Intel i7 or AMD Phenom II X6?

    Both are 6 core, about the same mHz.
  2. stratokaster

    stratokaster Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jan 4, 2011
    Dublin, IE
    AMD Phenom II X6 is better in terms of price/performance ratio because it's much cheaper.

    Intel Core i7 is better in terms of raw processing power.
  3. Boyzo

    Boyzo Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Mar 3, 2010
    One factor would be 1st and 2nd level cache on the respective chips
    It higher the better and this is a costly item so some chips have less.
    High first and second level cache gives improved speed.
    Generally Intel run cooler (smaller die size)
    I always Prefer Intel..... also some Intel Proccessor's + a certain mother board can out perform AMD because of the MB chipset and FSB and memory buss
    You need to do some research with Google
    I built my current two desktops 2 core and 4 core and would like to build a new one
    I would tend to choose Intel :thumbup:
  4. texascbx

    texascbx Mu-43 Veteran

    Dec 30, 2009
    I just built an i5-750 system using Newegg's Cyber Monday sale. I could not believe how fast it encoded a raw Fraps file to WMV HD.

    MSI P55-GD65 with i5-750 @ 4.0Ghz
    Xigmatek Balder HS/fan, Antec EarthWatts EA750 750W
    G.SKILL Ripjaws 2x4Gb DDR3 1333
    One 1Tb Seagate 12 32Mb, two 1.5Tb LP Seagates
    Antec EarthWatts EA750 750W
    GIGABYTE GV-N460OC-1GI GTX 460 overclocked to
    within an inch of it's life. It thinks it's a 470.
    Lite-On 24X iHAS324 DVD burner
    COOLER MASTER Storm Scout
    Win 7 Pro 64
    Several big fans moving a lot of air very quietly
  5. jeb

    jeb Mu-43 Rookie

    Dec 27, 2010
    I'm new to everything about photography and photo processing. But I'm a old time user of computer as DAW (digital audio workstation) I play guitar and I do a lot of recording and mixing with the computer. Those kind of activities require a lot of processing power. I just upgraded from a intel q6600 quad core cpu to a core i5 750... I didn't had the cash for the i7. But I must say that there is plenty of power in the i5 750. Damn that thing is fast... Even for big audio project so I suspect that this kind of cpu will be just perfect for photo and video stuff. If you want to save some cash, go for a quad core i5!!

  6. ~tc~

    ~tc~ Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Oct 22, 2010
    Houston, TX
    While I'm all for saving cash if it's not necessary, there are 2 factors playing into this:

    - I just got my yearly bonus, so I have cash right now

    - I've been burned before on buying computers I "thought" would be powerful enough. This one lasted almost 10 yrs because it was the 2nd fastest thing out at the time.

    Interesting to hear that a faster clock speed i5 (most of the i7's seem to be in the 3GHz range) might be fast enough though ... I just noticed that not all i7's are 6 core ...
  7. kevinparis

    kevinparis Cantankerous Scotsman Subscribing Member

    Feb 12, 2010
    Gent, Belgium
    actually it doest really matter - the videocard is more important with modern photo software

    I will confess I am a mac guy... but my 11 inch 1.6g 2 core macbook air isn't that much slower in Aperture than my 4 year old 3 ghz 4 core desktop...which has a top of the range 2006 graphics card (Quadra 4500)

  8. Narnian

    Narnian Nobody in particular ...

    Aug 6, 2010
    Richmond, VA
    Richard Elliott
    I am inclined to agree with Kevin, plus I would add a very fast hard drive - it will pay dividends as well.
  9. Linh

    Linh Mu-43 All-Pro

    Apr 14, 2009
    Maryland, US
    yeah, i7 does not instantly mean 6 cores nor does i5 mean 4 cores. Most of intel's offereings are not more than 6 cores in the consumer market except for the extreme high end. AMD wins the core count in consumerland, and if your app is well threaded, it will perform well.

    As much as I love the underdog, it's hard to ignore the new Sandy Bridge iX line. Not to mention there isn't much that is well multi-threaded in the photoworld yet, most of it benefits more from higher clock, or slapping in some SSD-goodness for your workspace.

    Personally, I wouldn't bother with the fastest thing out there. I'd spring midrange now, and by an SSD main drive in a year or two.

    As for GPU assisted stuff, Aperture is the only thing that utilizes it right now. LR is heavy on the CPU. Photoshop uses the GPU for some calculations, so it's a safe bet LR eventually will too. Just a matter of how optimized they can get and how fast. Both that and coding for multiple cores is not likely fun.

    Kevin, your similar performance seems crazy, are you just working with small batches at a time? I'd gather the SSD helps a lot, too. But kind of amazing CUDA support differences. I'd look into upgrading your desktop, it'd probably be a cheap performance boost.
  10. kevinparis

    kevinparis Cantankerous Scotsman Subscribing Member

    Feb 12, 2010
    Gent, Belgium
    An upgrade on the Macpro is on the cards - probably to a top of the range iMac.

    Regarding GPU acceleration - I believe that the latest versions of Premiere on the PC can use the GPU.

    regarding the relative performance of my laptop to my desktop - well of course the desktop has more power - I am just not sure that it all gets used to the max when you are importing, sorting editing 50 - 100 photos at a time.

    to use old car analogies - you don't need a ferarri to do the shopping, and putting a big V8 in a toyota doesn't always get you there faster

  11. Keeper

    Keeper Mu-43 Rookie

    Dec 10, 2010
    Get out your reading glasses, hit tomshardware.com and start reading. Its like dpreview for computers.

    Any of the latest processors will do what you need. Spend some extra on SSD drives and fast memory. I am blown away by the speed an SSD drive gives.
  12. Iconindustries

    Iconindustries Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    I've just recently put a SSD in my Macbook Pro along with 8Gb DDR3 Ram and it flies. I've been told it's brought my mid 2009 2.26GHZ MBP just a little faster than the newer i5 MBP's. This is just by increasing the read and write times of the disk ( or in this case, solid state memory )

    With the new Ram I'm now getting '0' page outs.

    did a test,

    Start up=15.4 Sec
    Shut down=2.6 Sec

    So as I found, the processor may be fast enough but if you can't get information to it, it crawls.

    Does anyone know what the processor is called in my Mid 2009 Macbook Pro?

    Model Name: MacBook Pro
    Model Identifier: MacBookPro5,5
    Processor Name: Intel Core 2 Duo
    Processor Speed: 2.26 GHz
    Number Of Processors: 1
    Total Number Of Cores: 2
    L2 Cache: 3 MB
    Memory: 8 GB
    Bus Speed: 1.07 GHz
    Boot ROM Version: MBP55.00AC.B03
    SMC Version (system): 1.47f2
  13. ~tc~

    ~tc~ Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Oct 22, 2010
    Houston, TX
    Um ... Looks like Intel Core 2 Duo from the info you posted. I believe that was the predecessor to the iX series
  14. fluffmyster

    fluffmyster New to Mu-43

    Jan 19, 2011
    If you are definitely comparing 6 core vs 6 core (such as 1055t or 1090t vs 980x) then the 980x is definitely better (both clock for clock but also has hyperthreading so it has 12 logical cores / threads) but with the penalty of Intel's highest end cpu's being extortionately expensive (about 3-4 times the cost of the 1090t the last time I checked). In a similar price range you would be looking at a 4 core intel such as the i7 950 which is still faster clock for clock, I don't think 6 cores is a massive deciding point at this point in time and the i7 950 has hyperthreading anyway. This is the one I would go for.

    HOWEVER, the story could be different if you would consider overclocking your cpu (I always do but if you are new to it do some research. It doesn't have to be difficult and is safe if you have sensible targets and know your limits, but is not for everybody).

    The beauty of this is getting something for nothing and saving yourself a lot of money as you match or surpass the specifications / performance of higher end models. In this case the 1090t could be overclocked to roughly equal the performance of a standard i7 980x (bearing in mind you would not have hyperthreading so it is not totally equal grounds but the uses of that is depends on what you do). Having said that, it would require an overclock to roughly 4Ghz from what I can gather (Phenom II X6 1055T VS X6 1090T VS Core i7 980x Benchmark Review, and you can probably read up more elsewhere) so it would not be the most favourable option but it is a valid and effective option nonetheless.

    I still maintain that an i7 950 is the sweet spot (same clock for clock performance as the 980x albeit less cores) or an i5 750 / 760 on a p55 platform. Similar performance to an i7 but with no hyperthreading. Sandybridge has also just been released so you could read up on that but I think this post has been long enough :p 
  15. ~tc~

    ~tc~ Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Oct 22, 2010
    Houston, TX
    Interesting you bring that up as a way to remind me I haven't updated the post ...

    I went into Frys and they had the brand new Lenovo K330 with i7-2600 Sandybridge @ 3.4 GHz with 12GB ram, 1TB HDD, 1GB nVidia video. Got a 27" LG LED monitor.

    Sandy bridge is only 4 cores, but hyperthreaded and apparently, optimized for photo and video. I can only say this thing is smokin fast, and the CPU meter is only showing like 43%
  16. nseika

    nseika Mu-43 Veteran

    Nov 22, 2010
    Jakarta, Indonesia
    For a small notebook, I'm still split between AMD and Intel.
    I want to get the AMD model with better graphic card, but rather cautious because my last two AMD notebook died because the electric system failed or the the more recent is dead because the graphic card overheated not long after the 1 year warranty runs out.

    Anyone had experience with more recent AMD models ? Is it still very hot ?
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