There are just some advances that just don’t matter to overclockers.
And sometimes, being advance men gives us an insight into why a company does what it does.
Such is the announcement that AMD will have a 200MHz Barton in May.
In all likelihood, it just looks like an excuse to add a couple hundred more PR points to the current model.
It’s still early, but from initial reports, there doesn’t seem to be much headroom in the Bartons that are out there, at least under normal conditions. Maybe even a bit less than with TBredBs.
Under those circumstances, going to 200MHz at least provides a plausible reason to put out a 3200+.
The 200MHz+ pioneers want to add that this may have been a harder decision than one might think. Those with 166MHz processors have often found that having one was actually a disadvantage in FSB overclocking and found that they had to do a “lobotomy” and turn it back into a 133MHz processor in order to reach 200MHz or more. Bizarre.
Will 3200+ Be Justified?
When the 3000+ came out, some railed against AMD calling it a 3000+ because a 3.06GHz usually beat it in their benchmark tests.
While the AMD claim that the 3000+ was quite a bit quicker than the 3.06 was laughable, the likelihood of a particular website saying that was in direct proportion to the number of SSE2-enabled benchmarks used.
If you heavily use heavily SSE2-optimized applications or games, you shouldn’t even be looking at benchmarks. Just buy a PIV.
Outside of that, though, it doesn’t matter. Overclockers, of course, couldn’t care less what tag a CPU maker puts on a processor, they care about what they can make it do, but that’s not what I’m talking about.
You heard me. Performance doesn’t generally matter when it comes to the Intel/AMD divide to this audience.
All these “who’s ahead” comparisons are just silly when it comes to people making buying decisions. They just don’t think that way. It’s like expecting Yankee fans to turn into Met fans because the Mets are doing 3% better. Or a Chevy fan buying a Ford because the current Ford has an engine 10 cubic inches bigger.
Most people decide for one reason or another decide if they’re an AMD or Intel man, and precise performance comparisons are rarely the decisive reason. You buy because AMD is cheaper or you like the underdog or because Intel just sucks in your eyes. You buy Intel because you think it’s stable and reliable or because AMD just sucks in your eyes.
The only time performance matters is when one side falls grossly behind the other. Then you’ll get some defections, and even then, not all that much.
So, to this audience, whether a 3200+ should really be called a 3112+ or even a 3071+ is pretty irrelevant. For the typical AMD fan, the price tag is what matters, and when it gets low enough, those who want the Last of the Socket Aers will buy one, period.
If Intel’s 200MHz HT processors prove to be no great shakes, that won’t matter, either. The typical Intel fan will still buy Intel.