No doubt that we can expect a lot from the new processors on Core Microarchitecture. However, in order to get at least some idea of what the performance level of the new Core 2 Duo processors could be, we need some practical results. Unfortunately, we cannot share with you any results from our own lab, because we are working on the review under an NDA with Intel. However, it is no obstacle for the curious readers who are willing to dig out the first data about the actual performance of the Core 2 Duo processors.
A lot of online sites have already published the first performance tests of the Core 2 Duo engineering samples coming from unofficial sources. Even Intel themselves have many times given the media the opportunity to test the new promising processor in their own camp.
For example, we would highly recommend to check out the results of a test session like that from the Computex 2006 show in Taipei that has been conducted by a respectful Anandtech site. In this article you can see a side-by-side comparison of the top-of-the-line desktop processors from AMD and Intel: AMD Athlon 64 FX-62 (2.8GHz0 and Intel Core 2 Extreme X6800 (2.93GHz).
The results obtained during this test session indicate that Core 2 Extreme X6800 processor is on average 22% faster than the competitor in office applications, 17% faster in digital content creation and processing applications, and 21% faster in games.
Frankly speaking, no comment is necessary here. Practical performance results prove all our theoretical conclusions made above. Core 2 Duo processors definitely question the competitiveness of the CPUs with K8 architecture. Of course, there are a lot of aspects that make this or that CPU attractive for the user. Performance is certainly not everything today. We still need to find out more about the overclocking potential of the Core 2 Duo processor, their practical heat dissipation, etc. However, the preliminary performance results we have just seen are not very optimistic for AMD. Until AMD engineers introduce a fresh update to their K8 architecture, Athlon 64 processors will not be able to settle in high-performance platforms.
In fact, it is too early for any definite conclusions. All the statements we make in this article are based only on theoretical data and on preliminary test results of early engineering samples that were posted on the web. However, it looks like the days when Intel processors were falling behind their rivals from AMD are over. The CPUs with Core Microarchitecture will certainly change the situation in the processor market, and it is most likely to be not in AMD’s favor.
So far, I would like to wind up our discussion, because we will be able to go into more detail about this promising Intel solution only on the official launch day. So, stay tuned!