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which AMD dual core chip please?

Discussion in 'CPUs' started by Oswald, 29 May 2006.

  1. Oswald


    Joined: 20 May 2006

    Posts: 23

    Hello :)

    I am a newby attempting to spec/build my first PC :). Budget is around £1000 total excluding monitir.

    I will be using my PC mainly for video encoding/editing and gameing. I think I would be better off with a dual core AMD CPU. Looking in the Overclockers catalog at the AMD 64 X2 4200+ (socket 939), is it really worth spending an extra £70 on a AMD 64 X2 4400+ just to get 1MB of cache compared to 512kb? Does it really make a significant difference? Looking at this comparison chart on Toms Hardware, it seems that the extra cache makes next to no difference. Yet from what I've read on these forums the 4400+ comes recommended over the 4200+.

    Sorry if this is a stupid question, but I don't know much about PC's and I'm getting confused. I don't want to waste my money as I can't afford to make a mistake.

    I would really appreciate any help.

    Many thanks in advance :)
  2. easyrider


    Joined: 24 Dec 2005

    Posts: 39,676

    Location: Autonomy

    The extra cache equates to around 200 MHz and helps with encoding.
    The two sweet spots in the x2 range are the x2 3800 and x2 4400 all the others are not worth it.

    also the opterons are worth a look.

    However I would be waiting for conroe and get a intel based system if building now or in the near future.
  3. div0


    Joined: 12 Jan 2006

    Posts: 3,581

    Location: Edinburgh

    I think the reason behind the recomendations for the 4400+ on these forums is because most people here overclock their cpu.

    The thinking is that there is little or no point in the 4200+, because you seem to be able to overclock the 3800+ quite easily.

    I guess if you want even more performance then go for the 4400+ (with the extra cache) and overclock it.

    You can't do anything to "regain" the lost cache if you go for a 3800/4200, all you can do is increase the clock speed. But with the 4400+ you already have the extra cache AND you can overclock it too!

    Thats why you see a lot of recomendations for the 3800+ and 4400+ round here. Basically because they are the bottom of their "type" and can usually be overclocked to perform as if they were equivalent higher rated, more expensive cpus.
  4. Oswald


    Joined: 20 May 2006

    Posts: 23

    Thanks for your replies :)

    I'm sorry, but I still don't understand what benefit the extra cache has. What does it do? Sorry if this is real basic stuff, but using that compariison chart on Toms Hardware there seems to be no benefit of the extra cache :confused:

    I understand why its not worth getting the 4200+ over the 3800+. I looked throught the overclocking charts on here and saw that the 3800+ could be clocked well over the standard speed of the 4200+. Its just I don't get what cache is or what it does. Again, sorry for being a numpty, but I'm at the bottom of the learning curve when it comes to Computers.

    Thanks again :)
  5. hp7909


    Joined: 8 Jun 2003

    Posts: 5,016

    True, the X2 3800+ because it overclocks 'well' and the X2 4400+ because of the cache & same reason :) Looking at the charts again, the X2 4200+ manages to be only about 3 seconds slower than the X2 4400+ in video encoding (DivX & XviD) - that’s my area of interest also. But, bear in mind those seconds can equate to minutes on larger/longer files. Also, when you look at other areas, like Multitasking II, its even faster than a X2 4600+ :eek: So the cache does come into play & really makes a difference. & if/when you overclock well, you can only imagine the possibilities :p

    That said, if your first main reason is video encoding/editing then I recommend going the Intel D route (if you can afford to wait till maybe end of July, Intel Core 2 A.K.A. Conroe should be out), if not then the X2 4400+ - also the gaming reason will 'appreciate' the extra cache.
  6. hp7909


    Joined: 8 Jun 2003

    Posts: 5,016

    Therefore more means better. Full guide here :D