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-   -   AMD Athlon VS Pentium III ( January 31, 2000 14:02

AMD Athlon VS Pentium III
I am going to buy a computer but not sure which one to buy. Some are telling AMD Athlon is much better and faster for Computing and Graphics intensive work compared to Pentium III chips. Again some people are telling me that AMD chips are not not suitable for JRE for windows as well as other Java applications because of Stability problems and PIII chips are better for these type of applications (more stable).

People who have used either can send me their viewpoints about the above mentioned chips. I am planning to buy either a PIII 550e machine or AMD Athlon 600 machine with about 256 MB Ram, based on what you guys tell me. Also please let me know whether windows 98 or Windows NT is a better platform for CFD applications.

Thanks a lot.


John C. Chien January 31, 2000 14:50

Re: AMD Athlon VS Pentium III
(1). If you are not limited by the budget, then buy the most expensive CPU and graphic cards and system. (2). If you are limited by the budget, buy the least expensive one. (3). If you are developing your own CFD codes, you can use either CPU. (4). If you are planning to use a commercial CFD code, you must get the recommendation from the specific vendor for the specific version of the code . (5). Normally, you buy the hardware based on the specific software you are going to run on the system. Not the other way around. Windows 98 and NT are considered a part of the system. (6). So, the problem you have is: There is something missing before " I am going to buy a computer..." That is, the specific things you are going to do with your computer will determine the type of the computer you need.

clifford bradford February 16, 2000 12:56

Re: AMD Athlon VS Pentium III
i guess this post is kinda late since i'm sure workstation clock speeds have increased significantly. to answer your second question first if you're going to use a commercial code you need to check with the manufacturer. most likely though they'll tell you NT. as for the Athlon vs. P3 question you have to ask yourself what is most important in CFD work. you cite stability in JRE and other java apps. now i don't know what JRE is but from your context i guess it's some java thing, well unless you plan to do more web surfing than CFD java performance is irrelevant because no CFD codes (other than the virtual windtunnel) are written in java. you might say that number crunching is most important in cfd but you also need to remember that a large amount of time is also spent making CAD models and pre/post processing (ie graphics intensive work). if your workstation is just for number crunching then go for the max flops if you want to do cfd from geometry right to plotting pictures (results) then you need to weigh floating point performance with graphics performance (fortunately they often go hand in hand). i'd say all thing being equal buy the chip with the most flops which i think is still the Athlon.

Philippe Traore February 17, 2000 09:17

Re: AMD Athlon VS Pentium III
About Athlon VS Pentium III, I do not have any idea about what is the best (even if I think that Athlon shoudn't be bad at all ) But about the Operating System Win98 VS WinNT and if you plan to developp your own codes I can suggest to abandon the both and use Linux ! You will have many free compilers coming with the distribution with many other tools to analyse your datas. And this OS is much more stable and powerfull than WinXX (whatever XX is !)

Good Luck


N. C. Reis February 21, 2000 12:58

Re: AMD Athlon VS Pentium III

I agree with you, when you say that you will get free compilers for Linux. However, if performance is an issue, the performance of commercial compilers is still better than the free ones. Therefore, you may end up buying a compiler, even for a Linux system.

As for stability, I believe you are right about Win XX, it is not stable. On the other hand, Windows NT (which is build around an other kernel) is much more stable and reliable. I have been using NT for CFD for a long time, and I had no problems with it.


clifford bradford February 24, 2000 20:14

Re: AMD Athlon VS Pentium III
i agree with you that NT is a good platform. i did a lot of hardcore development on it and found it was good and stable. however Linux does give you flexibility that NT doesn't (all those unix commands). i disagree with you tho about the free compilers. i was working with some guys who were developing 3d cfd codes on a linux running dec alpha. when one of the guys compiled the code with the gnu c compiler and ran it the other guy who'd written the code originally couldn't believe how well it ran. this isn't to say that all free compilers are good, but you have to remember some, like gnu's, have been around and under dewvelopment for a longer time than some commercial ones.

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