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AMD has announced what it dubs "the world's first commercially available 5GHz CPU," the FX-9590. "The new FX 5GHz processor is an emphatic performance statement to the most demanding gamers seeking ultra-high resolution experiences including AMD Eyefinity technology," wrote AMD client-products headman Bernd Lienhard in a …

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Anonymous Coward

DOH

I just bought an eight core FX-8350 for my gaming system and I can clock that to 4.8GHz (stable).

Oh well, Christmas is coming. If it's a 125 W Processor, I'll take a 5 GHz.

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Anonymous Coward

DOH

lol did the exact same thing when I built my PC a few months back. Either way I'm not gonna jump straight onto the new chip, I'd rather wait until next year and see what steamroller is like. What I have atm is more than powerful enough.

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Go

Re: DOH

I got 4.6GHz very stable from a 3.somthing i5 - one wonders what is possible from a 5gig base chip!

FSX should be wonderful on such a platform.

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Re: DOH

Tom's Hardware are reporting these will be 220W parts.

They also say the base clock of the 5Ghz chip is actually 4.8GHz. Which is not bad really.

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Re: DOH

"lol did the exact same thing when I built my PC a few months back. Either way I'm not gonna jump straight onto the new chip, I'd rather wait until next year and see what steamroller is like. What I have atm is more than powerful enough."

I've done this... don't let it get it of hand 8-). I see the next chip, wait for just that one new improvement, see the next one by then, think that one looks much better. I let it get a tad out of hand and ended up with about 8 year old computers. 8-)

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Re: DOH

If what you have is "good enough" then there's no pressure to update.

It's a lot more expensive overall to do piecemeal updates in any case - at some point you uupdate the cpu and find you suddenly need new board/ram/etc - the madness never really stops - and if you what you have is old and not good enough, it's often cheaper to replace the lot than try to find increasingly rare (and expensive) parts.

IE: On my 6 year old Xeon fileserver, 16Gb of FBRAM costs 200 quid today (it was 100 last year). Each of the 2Gb sticks draws 13W - at those prices and overall power consumption (550W, idling. Take THAT, gamebois) it's cheaper to replace the entire thing if you're planning on keeping it for another 5 years. (Just need a suitable case to hold $unfeasibly_large_number HDDs.

5GHz is a good number for shits'n'giggles, but the "base clock" only tells half the story. What REALLY matters is how fast the cpu-ram interface is, because that's what's going to have the most influence in real-world usage.

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Re: DOH @Allan Brown

Aye, CPU-ram interface is what matter most... second to CPU cache size =D

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Re: DOH

What REALLY matters is how fast the cpu-ram interface is, because that's what's going to have the most influence in real-world usage.

Depends on your application mix, obviously. In the vast majority of my "real-world usage", the bottleneck is disk I/O. (Occasionally it's network I/O, but rarely, because I have enough tasks going in parallel that waiting for the network on one doesn't adversely affect total work throughput.)

Yeah, if I replaced the conventional disks with SSDs, I might start to care about CPU-RAM speed. But in most cases, when I'm waiting for some slow I/O-bound job like a build or a test run, I just spend the time editing sources for a different project in a different vim window. (Avoiding grievously slow and greedy IDEs helps a lot in these situations.)

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Re: DOH

If you use a real OS (Any of the *nixen), then the more ram you have, more of your disk is going to end up cached in ram. This is one reason I put 16-32Gb in desktop boxes for our researchers.

Choosing the "right" filesystem for the task in hand makes a big difference too.

If you're using *nix, then consider ZFS with a suitably sized SSD out front. It makes a hell of a difference to performance on even quite modest systems (mainly because it can convert random writes to sequential ones thanks to ssd write caching)

Finally, it's worth looking at cost-benefit. A 128GB SSD costs less than 100 quid. Would that save you an equivalent labour cost if you use one for your build area? (In our experience it's worth it for developers to have this kind of snapiness - but we do force them to use standard equipment on the finished product to evaluate how real endusers will feel)

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Happy

When is 5GHz not quite 5GHz?

For a second I thought this was PC World technique of advertising a dual core 2.4GHz chip as 4.8GHz

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Re: When is 5GHz not quite 5GHz?

going by that, would this be 38.4GHz according to PCW

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"the world's first commercially available 5GHz CPU,"

IBM may have something to say about this wording.

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Facepalm

Re: "the world's first commercially available 5GHz CPU,"

I guess an IBM mainframe isn't considered "commercially available"

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K
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Re: "the world's first commercially available 5GHz CPU,"

Yeah I'd agree, but I think El Reg meant first commercially Desktop CPU..

Also its good to see some movement in this area, there a lot to be said for 4-8 Core CPUs, but lets face, Ghz grunt power has be stagnant for the past 4-5 years.. I look forward to seeing Intel's response, finally we might see the CPU finally hotting up again.

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Re: "the world's first commercially available 5GHz CPU,"

And it's not actually available, commercially or otherwise anyway

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Re: "the world's first commercially available 5GHz CPU,"

IBM indeed offered a 5 GHz CPU: the POWER6 processor in the P595 (and most likely some other) pSeries servers. See IBM redbooks and/or wikipedia about POWER6:

"It was released on June 8, 2007 at speeds of 3.5, 4.2 and 4.7 GHz,[2] but the company has noted prototypes have reached 6 GHz.[3] POWER6 reached first silicon in the middle of 2005,[4] and was bumped to 5.0 GHz in May 2008 with the introduction of the P595"

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Coat

Re: "the world's first commercially available 5GHz CPU,"

The words cpu and "hotting up again" are words I really do not want to see in the same sentence or cpu roadmap.

<<<<<<<the one with the prescott core in the burnt pocket

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Re: "the world's first commercially available 5GHz CPU,"

I was just about to say the same thing, IBM's had 5GHz clock speeds for years as has been pointed out. You'd be hard pressed to shove a POWER (not a PowerPC, but a full fat POWER) in a desktop though from what I imagine.

But, hey aren't Mainframe speeds measured in MIPS instead of clock speed? Or is the MIPS measurement for the entire system? Either way, I'll take one of these 5Ghz chips, thank you very much. I just wonder what its gonna take to cool it. My liquid helium budget is rather low.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: "the world's first commercially available 5GHz CPU,"

The current generation (zEC12) mainframe chips are 5.5GHz; 6 core/chip, 6 chips/module. Each core can be doing 6 things simultaneously (two integer units, two load-store units, one binary and one floating point/decimal unit).

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Re: "the world's first commercially available 5GHz CPU,"

Actually, bunging a full POWER chip in to a desktop wouldn't be difficult - remember IBM will cheerfully sell you POWER blades, so that's roughly ATX sized. The footprint's similar to Intel chippery - in other words most of the space has to be given over to heatsinks. They're still air-cooled, but it's fair to say the fan noise wouldn't be living-room friendly...

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Re: "the world's first commercially available 5GHz CPU,"

>I look forward to seeing Intel's response, finally we might see the CPU finally hotting up again.

http://www.digitaltrends.com/computing/report-intel-haswell-processors-prone-to-overheating/ Wish granted :)

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Re: "the world's first commercially available 5GHz CPU,"

"The current generation (zEC12) mainframe chips are 5.5GHz; 6 core/chip, 6 chips/module. Each core can be doing 6 things simultaneously (two integer units, two load-store units, one binary and one floating point/decimal unit)."

And it has a huge cache, right?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/IBM_zEC12_%28microprocessor%29

"there are 2 dedicated companion chips called the Shared Cache (SC) that each adds 192 MB off-die L4 cache for a total of 384 MB L4 cache. L4 cache is shared by all processors in the book."

So, what is a "book"? How many cpus does the zEC12 mainframe have? 24 cpus, and 4 of them are dedicated to the OS? So what is a book, then?

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Boffin

Re: "the world's first commercially available 5GHz CPU,"

A shame that POWERPC CPU based personal computers has mostly disappeared from the market really. Everyone knows that a 5GHz Power CPU will run circles around a 5GHz X86 equivalent. Because Power CPUs just have higher MIPS counts due to their RISC architecture.

Don't get me wrong. I'm an AMD fan. However I'm sold on RISC. Also I'm still sold on the idea that MIPS > clock speed. High clock speed doesn't mean anything if the processor does less instructions per second compared to a slower processor.

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Re: "the world's first commercially available 5GHz CPU,"

If you evaluate MIPS or FLOPS or whatever with processor speed you'll see there's no linear relationship unless the entire comnputational task can stay in cpu cache - which is not a real-world situation.

There are arguments for and against increasing cache size. One thing we've discovered with larger cache is increased susceptability to cosmic ray events (main ram is ECC, cache ram usually isn't). Perhaps it's time to wrap systems in a lead sheet or waterbag.

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Re: "the world's first commercially available 5GHz CPU,"

"Because Power CPUs just have higher MIPS counts due to their RISC architecture."

Intel CPUs are a RISC core with CISC translator bolted on. It'd be interesting to see what they could do if the RISC internals were directly exposed to the outside world.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: "the world's first commercially available 5GHz CPU,"

Of 120 engines, up to 101 are available for processes to use (the others are reduntant, run in lockstep with others, or used for IO or similar).

If you're interested in Z12 hardware, have a look at this, then click on "Product Demonstration" in the top right.

http://ibmtvdemo.edgesuite.net/servers/z/demos/zEnterprise_EC12_Water_Cooled_Product_Tour/index.html

C

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Re: "the world's first commercially available 5GHz CPU,"

"...Everyone knows that a 5GHz Power CPU will run circles around a 5GHz X86 equivalent...."

Well, here you see that an old Westmere-EX x86 cpu at 2.4 GHz is just ~10% slower than a 3.55 GHz POWER7 at a SAP benchmark. If you clocked the old Westmere-EX up to the same speed as a POWER7, the Westmere-EX would be 28.4 % faster.

http://www.anandtech.com/show/4285/westmereex-intels-flagship-benchmarked/3

It seems that x86 have improved very fast. Now the latest x86 is several generations newer, and faster. Whereas the POWER7 has only been upgraded one generation in the same time frame: to the POWER7+. The POWER7+ is only slightly faster than the POWER7. So, if you clocked the latest x86 up to the same speed as a POWER7+, the x86 would surely outperform the POWER cpus.

It seems that you assertion is not valid in modern times. Back then, the POWER cpus where indeed faster than x86. But today x86 has much more R&D resources than POWER has, and x86 improves faster.

(We should not mix in Oracle SPARC, because SPARC gets 100% faster for every generation. This is far better than POWER or x86. Even the four cpu T4 servers outperformed the double number of POWER7 cpus in some benches. The eight cpu T5 servers wipes the competition).

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Re: "the world's first commercially available 5GHz CPU,"

"..Of 120 engines, up to 101 are available for processes to use (the others are reduntant, run in lockstep with others, or used for IO or similar)..."

So is one "engine" equivalent to a "core"? It would be much easier if IBM talked about "cpus" and "cores" instead of "books" and "engines".

One book is one cpu? And one engine is one core? Is this true?

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Childcatcher

Inadequacy Issues

Toddling along with a Phenom II x4 945 3.0Ghz here.... /cries*

*wife_like_object objects to El Reg geek trolling...

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Def
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Joke

Re: Wife_like_object

You mean your mother?

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404
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Pint

Re: Def

Awww. That wasn't nice-> mother has been dead and gone these many years...

How do you feel now?

;)

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Re: Def

Post for Mr Bates - from Syrup & Figs, London

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Unhappy

Surely

I can't be alone in reaching for the sick-bag when I read about companies 'reaching out'?

Bleaaaarghhhhh!

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Re: Surely

retching out, then?

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Coat

You've reached out to them? Perhaps if you tried contacting them, they might reply. Sorry. I just don't like the phrase reach out in a non supportive context.

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Trollface

Reaching....................>

I read the statement having it's tongue firmly embedded in the cheek.

Troll icon for those who took the bait :-)

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Just wait until they start to "synergise" after "touching base".

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They had also better do some paradigm shifting to ensure the core base remains stabilized througout all verticles during the initial rollout. Failure to anticipate mid-market partner acquiescence could result in a hit to the Q3 below the lines and a drop in NYSE buyin.

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Happy

"Max Turbo" modes

AMD announces the return of beige box PCs with Turbo buttons on them!

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Re: "Max Turbo" modes

I had forgotten the Turbo buttons!

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Angel

Re: "Max Turbo" modes

Ah, the NEC V10!

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Re: "Max Turbo" modes

or on cheap foreign cases - the "tubro" button.

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Re: "Max Turbo" modes

Oh, I have an old Asus motherboard+AMD quad core combo here, which has "unleashed" mode.. which you can trigger by pressing the power button.

Okay so it only adds about 1% or so to the speed, but I still have a Turbo button, and this time around it actually does something (as in, makes the computer sound like it's about to go VTOL).

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Happy

Memory system

I hope they've done something to the memory subsystem to make all those GHz worthwhile... If so I'm joining the queue!

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WTF?

IBM POWER6 called?

I thought that the IBM POWER6/6+ was available in systems clocked at 5GHz? I suppose those systems didn't sell commercially...

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AMD's plan to beat Intel.

If you can't beat at IPC, throw more cores in at a higher clock?

The sad part is that some workloads that strategy would actually work, but when Intel has chips that use almost half the power and win in single threaded performance its hard to say AMD is the way to go.

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Re: AMD's plan to beat Intel.

The market segement that AMD is selling this toward really do not care about being Intel being more efficient whatever the merits of that (whether its fact or Intel marketing spin), but I don't buy Intel equipment for my PCs. Mine as in ones that I own.

Maybe its because I buy from Intel all the time at work, hell my mother-in-law even works for Intel, but Im pretty exclusive to using AMD's products at home. Their Linux support seems to be better (even though I use Fedora so using AMD's proprietary drivers is kind of asking to break X and the rest of the video subsystem, until you learn how to do it correctly, and its not exactly clear), they perform better when it comes to Windows gaming in my experience, but YMMV as always.

Also both nVidia and AMD do well with BSD and Commercial UNIX support, but most here don't care about that.

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Re: AMD's plan to beat Intel.

Hmm. Browsing NewEgg, I can roll with AMD's top of the line FX-8350 with 8-cores for $200...or Intel's "Core i7-3960X Extreme Edition Sandy Bridge-E 3.3GHz (3.9GHz Turbo) LGA 2011 130W Six-Core Desktop Processor" for only $1096, which has 6-cores. The AMD is clocked a little higher, but its thermal envelope is also slightly smaller. I wonder which I would choose....the one with slightly worse single-threaded performance, which, in a world that is pretty far into the multi-threaded stuff is almost a non-sequitur unless running an extremely poorly written application...pay out the ass for slightly better performance under certain circumstances where not having an extra two cores would be useful, or not pay out the pass, and never win the 3DMark benchmark for single-threaded performance...what to do...$896 dollars...that would be 572.89 pounds at the moment...hmm.

Is it true that putting the little blue sticker on your PC case makes it a whole 100Mhz faster? ;-)

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Re: AMD's plan to beat Intel.

so just buy a proven i5 instead. Not sure about you but I cant see many games needing 8 cores (most wont use 4 efficiently either).

surely you would be better off with an i3 and a much better GFX card in any case.

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