AMD 64 X2 4200 or 4400?


D

Don Burnette

Hi all,

I plan on ordering either the AMD X2 4200 or the 4400.

There is about a 100 dollar difference in the price at Newegg, obviously due
to the 4400 having the larger L2 cache ( 1mb per core versus 512 kb per core
on the 4200).
Both are listed as 2.2 ghz processors.

I use my computer mainly for regular home processing, ie quicken, word docs,
etc, and do a good bit of gaming. I do some video encoding as well, not a
lot, I might encode 1-2 dvd's per month.

In y'all's opinion, is the extra L2 cache worth the 100 bucks difference in
price?

I also like to overclock my system, so would be interestested in whether one
might overclock better than the other.


Thanks for any feedback,


Don
 
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G

General Schvantzkoph

Hi all,

I plan on ordering either the AMD X2 4200 or the 4400.

There is about a 100 dollar difference in the price at Newegg, obviously
due to the 4400 having the larger L2 cache ( 1mb per core versus 512 kb
per core on the 4200).
Both are listed as 2.2 ghz processors.

I use my computer mainly for regular home processing, ie quicken, word
docs, etc, and do a good bit of gaming. I do some video encoding as
well, not a lot, I might encode 1-2 dvd's per month.

In y'all's opinion, is the extra L2 cache worth the 100 bucks
difference in price?

I also like to overclock my system, so would be interestested in whether
one might overclock better than the other.


Thanks for any feedback,


Don

It depends on the application. I have a number of A64 systems including a
4400+. In the case of NCVerilog I see a two to one difference in
performance between my 1M cache machines and my 1/2M cache machine.
However for all of the other applications that I've looked at the
difference is much smaller, about 10%. You aren't doing anything that's
very demanding so you'll probably be happy with any A64. If price is a
concern then get the X2 3800+, it's the cheapest of the dual cores and the
performance difference between it and the higher priced 1/2M cache parts
is negligible. If you aren't price sensitive and you think that you might
be doing some computationally intensive work then get the X2 4400+.
 
L

Leeb18509

The choice should be 4400 or 3800. But for what you state you want to
do,
get the 3800 and run it at 2.4Ghz. It will easily overcome the
difference
between having the extra cache and not.
My 3800+ X2 running at 240x10 idles at 37C with 1.36v on stock cooling.
 
S

Scotter

Since you "do a good bit of gaming" and "video encoding" I recommend getting
the 4400.
Another way to think of this is once you have the CPU, which one would you
be more likely to regret not buying the other?
I think any time you are trying to decide between a lower end and a higher
end model, regret occurs more often when you bought the lower end model.
Unless the $100 means you don't eat for a week :)
 
E

EdG

I also like to overclock my system, so would be interestested in whether one
might overclock better than the other.


Thanks for any feedback,


Don

FWIW, I have a (week 37,2005) 4200+ on a Asus A8N-E, it OCs 300MHz at
default vcore, bumping up the voltage from 1.35 to 1.375 gets me a nice
stable 400MHz OC. (236x11)

EdG
 
W

Wes Newell

I plan on ordering either the AMD X2 4200 or the 4400.
There is about a 100 dollar difference in the price at Newegg, obviously due
to the 4400 having the larger L2 cache ( 1mb per core versus 512 kb per core
on the 4200). Both are listed as 2.2 ghz processors.
I use my computer mainly for regular home processing, ie quicken, word docs,
etc, and do a good bit of gaming. I do some video encoding as well, not a
lot, I might encode 1-2 dvd's per month.
In y'all's opinion, is the extra L2 cache worth the 100 bucks difference in
price?
It's not IMO. You be the judge.

http://www23.tomshardware.com/cpu.html?modelx=33&model1=236&model2=235&chart=74
I also like to overclock my system, so would be interestested in whether
one might overclock better than the other.
There shouldn't be much difference in OC potential.
 
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V

VanShania

According to AMD's website, there is only a 2.5% difference in performance
between a 4200 and a 4400. So is the $100 worth it? I guess you'll have to
decide.

Go to www.amd.com then "Processors", "AMD Athlon X2 Dual-Core" and then
"Benchmarks" and see for yourself.
 
S

sacrum

VanShania said:
According to AMD's website, there is only a 2.5% difference in performance
between a 4200 and a 4400. So is the $100 worth it? I guess you'll have to
decide.

Go to www.amd.com then "Processors", "AMD Athlon X2 Dual-Core" and then
"Benchmarks" and see for yourself.
I've got the 4400x2 @ 2.6 stable at 1.4v - great CPU with the Toledo
core....
 
G

gimp

FYI - a 4400+ will get you ZERO performance increase in overall usage,
3d rendering and encoding. gaming, a small increase... i havn't tested
games with this though but from what i've read its around 5% average, as
others have said i guess its up to you if its worth it :)

i have a 4200+ and wouldn't trade it for anything else, its got a nice
multiplier to work with and its closer to the 3800+ price-wise.
 
G

gimp

Don said:
Hi all,

I plan on ordering either the AMD X2 4200 or the 4400.

oh - something i forgot to add when doing the hard sell for the 4200+,
its the fast stock cpu at 89W, all higher models are 110W, heh probably
doesn't mean a lot but i like lower powered cpus :)
 
F

Fishface

Don said:
In y'all's opinion, is the extra L2 cache worth the 100 bucks difference
in price?

Another thing to consider is when and if you upgrade to a 64 bit operating
system, will the 512MB cache then be equivalent to what is not 256MB?!

How about an Opteron CPU that runs on Socket 939? The 170 has 1MB
L2, a 10 multiplier (2GHz), and sells for about the same price as the X2
4200+. It is said among the "enthusiasts" that the Opterons overclock better.
 
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B

Bill

Fishface said:
Another thing to consider is when and if you upgrade to a 64 bit operating
system, will the 512MB cache then be equivalent to what is not 256MB?!

How about an Opteron CPU that runs on Socket 939? The 170 has 1MB
L2, a 10 multiplier (2GHz), and sells for about the same price as the X2
4200+. It is said among the "enthusiasts" that the Opterons overclock better.

But then what of the new AMD Superion 9708 processor?

Yes, you've heard about it...it's the next super-duper CPU with 708
cores and FTL front side bus - the penultimate central processing unit.

I also heard that a better processor is in development following that
CPU as well...
..
..
..
..
seriously...
..
..
..
......... the above is obviously a big joke, well sort of...but the point
is that no matter what you buy today, tomorrow something better will be
available.

It's all relative to ones own needs.

Personally, I bought an x2 3800+ and overclocked it to 2.5 GHz with
2225-1t memory, and it blows most higher clocked stock systems out of
the water for a lot less cash. Sure some are better than others, but
where do you draw the line? If you have a big wallet, who cares, right?
You can afford to buy the fastest, biggest, platinum system you can get
and be happy. And you wouldn't be here asking what to buy.

So...if you actually work for a living, you probably want the best bang
for your buck. For my money, the x2 3800+ is the best price/performance
ratio.

Going back to the original question, is the 4400 worth the extra cash.
Personally I don't think so...that money can be better spent on hard
drive space, RAM, or whatever.

Then again...YMMV.
 
G

gimp

Fishface said:
Another thing to consider is when and if you upgrade to a 64 bit operating
system, will the 512MB cache then be equivalent to what is not 256MB?!

....? in terms of cpu performance cache has nothing whatsoever to do with
the operating system, cache doesn't make a cpu faster in general, its
application specific. very few applications will use it at all (games
are one of them though).

939 opterons are cool, but getting pretty hard to find now...
 
F

Fishface

gimp said:
...? in terms of cpu performance cache has nothing whatsoever to do
with the operating system, cache doesn't make a cpu faster in general,
its application specific. very few applications will use it at all (games
are one of them though).

I was thinking in terms of integers being 64 bit instead of 32 bit. The
same amount of cache might only hold half as many. I suppose the
L1 instruction/data cache holds half as much as well.

I mention this since Don is not a stranger to the 64 bit windows groups.
 
F

Fishface

Bill said:
Going back to the original question, is the 4400 worth the extra cash.
Personally I don't think so...that money can be better spent on hard
drive space, RAM, or whatever.

Compared to the price of the rest of a new X2 system, an extra hundred
or so is nothing. The link posted yesterday mentions prices dropping a
notch for X2s (and raising a notch for 939 Opterons):
http://www.theinquirer.net/?article=29095
 
D

Don Burnette

Fishface said:
I was thinking in terms of integers being 64 bit instead of 32 bit.
The same amount of cache might only hold half as many. I suppose the
L1 instruction/data cache holds half as much as well.

I mention this since Don is not a stranger to the 64 bit windows
groups.


Many thanks for the great feeback all, much appreciated!!

I am still a little torn, but will probably go ahead and get the 4400 as I
do have the money right now. That way I won't be wondering " what if"...
and I do dual boot with XP Pro 64. This will be a big upgrade for me, as I
am currently running an XP64 3500+ on an Nforce3 mb with AGP video card, so
will be going to Nforce4, with PCIe video card, XP2 64, 2 gb of ram instead
of my current 1gb, and a new Sata hard drive. I will also plan on
overclocking both the system and the video card, will be getting good
coolers for both ( have been overclocking since the ole Celeron 300A and
every system since). I generally upgrade my components in January of each
year. I will be putting together a system for my fiance with my current
parts.

Thanks again for the great information.
 
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B

Bill

Fishface said:
Compared to the price of the rest of a new X2 system, an extra hundred
or so is nothing.

But it's not "nothing"...it's a hundred bucks. That's another half a gig
of fast memory, another 100gigs of hard drive space, much better PSU and
case, better overall cooling, a 19" instead of a 17" LCD monitor, etc.

When you compare the performance level of the two, the 4400 isn't really
any faster in actual use. Too often people get hung up on the miniscule
benchmark differences. Heck, my lowly 3800 would "feel" just as fast
under most circumstances. It's a lot faster than my old Pentium 4, but a
big chunk of that performance difference came from a much faster video
card.

Oh sure, Sandra benchmarks would say the 4400 is faster, and you'll get
a few more FPS in Half Life, but is it WORTH the $100 to get that tiny
bit more speed when you can spend it on other parts of the system and
get a better experience.

You may think it's worth it. I don't. The buyer has to make that final
determination though.
The link posted yesterday mentions prices dropping a
notch for X2s (and raising a notch for 939 Opterons):
http://www.theinquirer.net/?article=29095

That's nice...but since all of the x2 processors are dropping in price,
the net result is the same - savings on the lower speed chip can be put
towards other parts of the system.

Having said all that, if the goal is a top-end high speed CPU with a
specific purpose in mind, then get the 4400 or even the 4800. Or perhaps
the single core FX models, or even getting an Intel chip may be the
better option.

But again, only the buyer can make that final determination.
 
S

Scotter

Hey Don -

I think you made the most intelligent choice for YOU. Especially if you are
not into taking the risk (or time involved researching, trying different
multiplier & voltage combos, even going with more expensive RAM, etc.) of
overclocking. Some people prefer to save a bit of money up front and
overclock up to the speed your chip will be running default. I say "up
front" because they may end up paying more later when/if their chip burns
out and even if it doesn't burn out, they may even pay more up front in time
and $ trying to keep that chip cool. I'm not knocking overclocking, heh. I
even understand how it can be kinda fun to see how far you can push a
processor while keeping it stable. What I'm wanting to point out is that
nothing is for free. If someone can overclock a 3800 by 10% or 15% then
theoretically, so can you do the same with your 4400 if you cared to do
that. And a year from now (or whenever), when you decide to sell the chip,
you are selling a 4400 and not a 3800. Of course, the difference in sell
price won't be $100 but hey, you'll enjoy a faster chip with more cache for
that year. And even in those apps where the difference is only 10% in speed,
hey, a second here and a second there, over the course of a year can mean
something. AND, all along the way you can *easily* and stabily run that
2.4ghz where a 3800 is going to put out more effort to do so. Finally, a lot
of people, when they buy a CPU, talk and think about what applications
(games, etc.) are supported well RIGHT NOW and make their choice
accordingly. You probably understand a bit better than them how at some
point every processor becomes obsolete or unable to play a certain game at
comfy FPS and by purchasing the higher end model you put that day off just a
bit longer for your system. And one last reason, heh, that I'm thinking of:
Not a perfect analogy but one that comes to mind right now: When you fill
your gas tank, is it more efficient to fill it full or 3/4 full? I say
"full", the number one reason being it costs you in time every time you have
to go to the gas station so less trips to the gas station save you time and
gas. Less trips to upgradeland...
 
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T

Toshi1873

According to AMD's website, there is only a 2.5% difference in performance
between a 4200 and a 4400. So is the $100 worth it? I guess you'll have to
decide.

Yeah, I'd save the $100 on the CPU and spend it on more RAM (unless
you're already planning on putting 2GB in the system...)

Minimum RAM for a new system... 1GB, but 2GB isn't that much of a
stretch anymore.
 

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