Coppermine vs Athlon face-offs all over the Web
The hardware sites round up
25 October 1999 The expiry of Intel's non disclosure agreement on its new .18 micron coppermine processors has led to a rash of reviews around the Web. And despite Intel's attempt to talk up coppermine through the year, most of the reviewers believe the Great Satan of Chips still can't cut it on the performance stakes. At Tom's Hardware Page, the good doktor takes a very detailed and thorough look at both architectures, including comparisons of the i820 (even though that's still not available) and the Via chipsets, the Katmai and the Coppermine cores, and an overall look at the two processors. He concludes that Coppermine is now an attractive proposition for gamers, but AMD beats Intel on the workstation front. He also points out that people will pay a premium for the Coppermine processors at launch. It's a leapfrog game at present. AMD Zone culls some reports that other investors rather than just Motorola are looking to take a slice of the state of the art sandpit AMD has in Dresden. The boys reckon Infineon (a spun off part of Siemens which has its own fab bang opposite AMD Fab 30) and Hyundai may be interested in taking a cut. At Ace's Hardware, there's another comparison of the 733MHz Intel part against the Athlon. He says that Intel has performed some miracles with the 256K cache in terms of data throughput and, that on business applications, the new processors perform well. According to Johan, that means Intel has regained its crown, although he points out that floating point performance on the Athlon continues to remain strong. JC, at JC News, reports good news for the AMD community. According to a report he has received, Asus has started advertising its K7M mobo in Japan. It can only be a matter of time before it's easier to buy them here. Lack of mobo support has been one of the issues AMD has had, with allegations of all sorts of monkey business, denied by both this company and Intel. ® 21 Oct 1999 The good Doctor Tom is not afraid to pick a fight or two -- this time he goes gunning for the eminent chip analyst Michael Slater of Microprocessor Forum fame for MISSING THE POINT. Two things get Tom's goat with Michael's presentation at last month's Microprocessor Forum: 1. "As long as we [Micro Design Resources] don't get our own lab and do our own benchmarks, you will have to live without competitive benchmark data." This statement is offensive to the well-established indenpendent benchmarking scene. 2. "Michael Slater's complete ignorance of the most ridiculous thing that's currently happening in the X86-processor scene: The cold war Intel is fighting against AMD." An analysis of AMD forms the main meat in Tom's Blurb (the first for a while). He also sinks his teeth into Intel and the i820 disaster. And he criticises the "pathetic" i810e platform. Read on here.
If you knew Suse like Bill knows Suse. William Henning, the main man at CPU Review, puts SUSE 6.2 through its paces. He likes it. No, it's not hardware but a man can't live on chips alone.
20 Oct 1999 To the Microstar site, where we look in vain for any mention of a mobo it makes which supports a microprocessor called the AMD Athlon. And from thence to Target PC where there's a very interesting piece about a twin Athlon configuration that Kryotech is cooking up, sorry cooling down. Brrr... Kryotech says it has a warmer relationship with AMD than Intel and we know why. AMD was happy to say it used Kryotech cooling technology while senior Intel VP Dr Albert "even my mum has heard of copper" Yu hushed up the matter when Intel did its 1GHz demo at a Developer Forum a while back.... Over in New York, young JC is not only talking about the Registerama, but also points to an article which suggests Rambus is in dodoland. We're kind of with JC on this one...the share price might have plummeted but Rambus Ink has got a future. That's why the mavens (what's a maven? Is it a cross between a magpie and a raven?) are advising folks to invest long in Rambus Ink. Of course, the Seven Dramurai are hedging their bets. When you produce DRAM, you got to. But six out of the Seven (the seventh is Rambus Ink) secretly loathe and fear the deals they've had to sign... A bit of argot for you from Alsatia, not too far from the site of the famous London Savoy. More trivia for you. The street leading to the Savoy, off the Strand, is the only place in Britain where cars drive on the right. In argot, to clock something is to register it in your eyes. And over at Overclockers, the girls and boys are clocking the Soyo SY6BA +IV. Branding is all important these days, and the moniker attached to this mobo takes a while to sink in... Brit site BX Boards is always chock full of nuts. The site has recently posted some info about overclocking the Athlon -- and has some interesting things to say about Asus and its mobos. Over at the Microstar site, we're finding it very difficult to find any mention of the Athlon mobo it produces.... Mr Pete Closs, at Sharky Extreme reviews groovy game Max Payne from Remedy. Future Crew members are behind this concept. These guys were dead good -- producing the most stunning graphic demonstrations four or five years back. Chipzilla has decided to post some roadmaps over at ultimate gaming site Chipzilla.COM. Presumably, the girls and boys at Satan Clara have been reading The Register again and think if you can't beat'em, join'em. There are some curious anomalies here...
19 Oct 1999 The good Dr Pabst's site over at Tom's Hardware has an interesting interview with a 113-year old Tarot card reader which is a hoot. 3DFX and its future....tealeaf reading et al. It's a little while since we look at Ars Technica, a site which always turns up interesting anagrams when you feed those letters of the alphabet into a good Anagram Server. There's a great piece about IRQs, a cunning plan by the original designers of the PC (IBM) to waste people's time and eventually money. JC reports that IBM will not be fabbing chipsets for Via. Via is a victim of its own success and has started putting some of its chipsets on allocation. JC, rather wittily, points out that IBM used to fab for Cyrix in the old days...and look where that got them then. AMD Zone points out that Kryotech has managed to produce an Athlon system that hits 900MHz. Information about the thing may be found here. Anand has started taking one of his long hard looks at technology. In this case, it's the Via Apollo Pro 133 chipset. As he points out, the chipset isn't really new, but with the Camino i820 failing to make the grade, it's become of somewhat greater importance than it would otherwise. So get this. Via designs a chipset, Intel takes legal action against Via, and then with its legions of engineers can't produce a working chipset of its own. No wonder Kicking Pat Gelsinger's paranoid about Via...®
18 Oct 1999 Time was when if you had a 5Mb hard drive, you'd feel real lucky. Time was, actually, when if you had a floppy drive rather than a tape drive for an IBM PC, you felt lucky. Times have changed. Over at 3D Spotlight, the boys and girls are taking a gander at a Western Digital drive with 27.3Gb of storage. That should be enough to store any amount of DLLs Microsoft might throw at you, shouldn't it? The site says that the performance of the drive is stunning too… Despite spoof reports that Anand was blown up last week trying to overclock a Merced-Itanium, the boy is still alive and kicking. Over here, Jason Smith reviews Klipsch Promedia V2-400 speakers, which he describes as of outstanding quality. A plug for a relatively new site called slotA.com, which the boys from AMD Zone have now got up and running. It deals with -- no, you've guessed that one already. Anything and everything you need to know about the Athlon and support for the K7 chip. Kyle, over at HardOCP has a link to a retail water cooled heatsink which is being sold in Japan. Some people will do anything to run their microprocessors that bit faster. Surely there's got to be some way to link it to an integrated system with solar panels on the roof, popular in Japan but very thin on the top of buildings in hot areas of the US like Palm Springs, the venue for the Intel Developer Forum. Finally, Jan Simon, over at Sharky Extreme, reviews the Diamond Stealth III 540 graphics card. He (she?) concludes it's a great low end card. Those big books you buy in newsagents must be wondering how they can cope with these instant reviews. As we warned at the beginning of this year, they'd better start looking to their laurels and quick. ®