Originally Posted by anubis44
Faithh, why don't you just accept the reality that AMD CPUs provide excellent value for the money? Even if we can agree (which I don't), that an i3 can sometimes provide equivalent performance to, say, an FX-6300 or FX-8320/FX-8350 in a number of games,
I think the big misunderstanding is that the gap in per-core performance has opened up to a wider margin with Haswell than people realize.
I'd still take the FX-6300/FX-8320/FX-8350 because I often use programmes which make use of the extra real cores (transcoding, ripping CDs, doing a database search in MusicBrains) concurrently. My FX-8350 at 4.5GHz on a cheap, quiet, closed loop water cooler kicks serious ass. Face it. Intel just doesn't provide the value proposition AMD does, unles you've already decided to spend ~$300 on a CPU.
The $330 i7 has an iGPU with a hardware encoder that would do your transcoding in a fraction of the time. But that's not the chip your FX-8350 is competing with.
Unfortunately, the FX-8350 (~$200) + HSF (~$50-70 for a little CLC or something capable of getting to 4.5ghz right?) is actually in competition with the locked discrete Xeon E3-1240V3, which sells for $250-270 depending on the ebb and flow of things. The only time the FXfirstname.lastname@example.org is as fast as the E3-1240V3 is in those total saturation conditions where the workload uses all available compute resources. In almost all other conditions, the E3 is up to
~40% faster. 80W vs ~175W+ at full load. The FXemail@example.com doesn't offer any advantages to Intel IMO.
If, on the other hand, you're approaching the system build from the perspective that you're going to spend as little as possible while still paying enough to get good performance across the board, AMD wins. I'll take that ~$150 I saved by getting an AMD CPU and put it towards a faster GPU every time.
At some price points and applications this is true, but not in the $200+ class CPUs. Intel has a more efficient solution that performs as good or better at every price point over $200.
Now, with Mantle further reducing the importance of CPUs in gaming scenarios going forward, this logic applies even more. For every ancient, single-threaded game still clinging to life support, there are two or three new, multi-core optimized games coming out. And it can only be a short matter of time before those single-threaded games receive multi-core engine upgrades anyhow. The days of Intel demanding and getting ~$300 for a CPU for decent game play are over.
Mantle is like increasing fuel economy standards or drilling for more oil. We never actually wind up "using less" oil. Higher MPGs and cheaper gas just means we'll drive further. As mentioned, this just means that game developers will find the new threshold of what hardware can do with the new API and use every last drop to fill our screens with even more realistic carnage.