Celeron trashes PII in new RegMark™ tests

We publish the figures Intel is afraid of

Celeron delivers five more Bangs Per Buck than PII The Celeron is Intel's best processor right now. The embarrassment of the original Covington's lack of performance panicked Chipzilla into rushing out the far-superior Mendocino version complete with on-die L2 cache. This certainly did the trick as far as addressing the performance shortcomings of the tragic non-cached part, but also posed a serious threat to the Celeron's big brother, Pentium II. Intel blindly threw all its considerable marketing might behind Celeron in a bid to stomp on upstarts AMD and Cyrix in the sub $1,000 market, and at the same time took its eye off the ball with the cash cow Pentium II. The result is that despite Intel's continued protestations that Celeron isn't making much of an impact in corporate space, little Celeron is, in fact, blowing PII into the weeds. While this is great news for Celeron, it's not quite so clever for Chipzilla itself. The margins on PII parts are several orders of magnitude greater than on Celerons, even given that the PII is far more costly to fabricate - buying in and then soldering separate L2 cache chips onto the processor daughterboard and putting the whole thing into a shiny black cartridge all add $$$s to manufacturing costs. So how does Intel protect the PII against this onslaught and protect its margins? Terribly difficult Simple. By making it terribly difficult to compare directly the performance of the budget Celeron with the mainstream Pentium II. Corporates can continue to buy the upmarket and expensive PII and get a nice warm feeling that they're getting a premium product at a premium price. They ain't. Even though Celeron has only a quarter of the L2 cache of its big brother, because it's on the same piece of silicon, it can run at the full core speed as the CPU. And 128K running at 400MHz is more than a match for 512K running at 200MHz in all but a very few instances such as the enormous spreadsheets Chipzilla uses to calculate its profits. Intel posts pretty performance graphs for Celeron and Pentium II, but rather neatly only compares Celerons with Celerons and PIIs with PIIs in anodyne overall performance terms. In fact it took some considerable browsing to discover any numbers which could be used to compare the two ranges. The Register is the first to admit that the comparison below is far from scientific, but in the absence of Intel having the guts to publish performance figures for its entire range, on one graph, it's the best you'll get. The only other figure we could find to compare the two was the price. table1 Source: Intel benchmarks

Even more simplistically, if we take the Celerons and PIIs and divide their FPU mark score by their price, we get the new RegMark™ 99 Bangs Per Buck score.

RegMark™ Bangs Per Buck Celeron vs Pentium II

We think the figures speak for themselves. ®

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