AMD Athlon Vs. Intel Core 2 Duo

Since 2000 both Intel Corporation and Advanced Micro Devices, Inc have been leaders in developing new technologies for the personal computer (PC). Fierce rivalry and competition have been good for the consumer, resulting in constant innovation and lower prices. The Athlon and Core 2 Duo are both multi-core processors developed primarily for the personal computer (PC) in the North American market.

  1. Athlon Features

    • The Athlon features many new technological advances including AMD PowerNow!™ Technology (Cool'n'Quiet™ Technology) which greatly enhances power savings and provides additional processing power for intensive applications. In addition to a 64 bit architecture and 45 nanometer construction process, Enhanced Virus Protection (EVP) is integrated right into the chip helping prevent intrusive viruses and spyware.

    Core 2 Duo Features

    • Also featuring 32 and 64 bit architecture, the Intel Core 2 Duo product line features 25 different chips with integrated technology for multiple cores. Intel® Wide Dynamic Execution improves the use of individual cycle times, getting much more efficiency from slower processors. Intel® Intelligent Power helps compensate for the increased power draw draw of the older manufacturing process of the 60 nanometer (nm) process in first generation chips, but is less important with second generation models that use a 45 nm process.

    Core Clock Speed

    • Probably the most important factor to consider when comparing processors is the raw processing power that comes from core clock speed. The Intel Core 2 line runs from a fairly quick 1.8 gigahertz (GHz) in their first generation chips, to a blazing 3.33 GHz in their second generation. AMD fires back with models starting at 2.0 GHz all the way up to 3.0 GHz.

    Front Side Bus

    • Front side bus is the second largest limiting factor that you want to consider when comparing speeds of current generation processors. The Intel Core 2 line initially was handicapped with slow clock speeds at 400 megahertz, but with the second generation you can buy them as fast as 1.333 GHz. AMD started with 800 MHz and ranges up to the same 1.333 GHz target.

    Conclusions

    • Since early 2005, Intel has been playing catch up because of its more expensive 45 nm manufacturing process that AMD perfected earlier. Comparative generation products are very similar, with a slight technological advantage going to AMD. The AMD Athlon is slightly cheaper then similar Core 2 models. However, the Core 2 is slightly faster in raw processing power as well as the capability of up to eight independent cores.

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References

  • Photo Credit Intel Corporation

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