Better System for Folding

Discussion in 'General Hardware' started by Brad, Jan 1, 2006.

  1. Brad

    Brad Moderator Political User Folding Team

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    I don't mean this to start as an Intel vs. AMD fight, however, I have a question.

    As many of you know, I am into Folding. All other things similar (vid card, RAM, HD, everything), what would be better for folding?

    P4 with HT 3.0E

    or

    AMD 64bit 3200

    I am not much into gaming anymore, I just want a system that works for the long haul.
     
  2. dreamliner77

    dreamliner77 The Analog Kid

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    I'm not into folding but I'd guess it's very heavy computationally, so the Intel would probably be better.
     
  3. ming

    ming OSNN Advanced

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    er.. am I missing something here?

    you're not telling me that you're wanting to build/buy a system and dedicating it to folding, are you?

    not too sure which is better for number crunching since there are some graphics to it.
     
  4. Brad

    Brad Moderator Political User Folding Team

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    I am not building the system for folding per se...I have a system here that was an AMD 3200+ with everything else added in, but the mobo died (cheap psu). So I was going to upgrade while I was at it. Also, the system will be my daily user, but I will always be folding.

    And there is a text only version of the folding client, which I use. So there is virtually no graphics usage other than the console screen.
     
  5. Son Goku

    Son Goku No lover of dogma

    Not the same distributed computing projects, so not an apples to apples comparison (as, in part this depends on how their code is written). But some people over at BOINC had been noting that Athlons have tended to have a slight edge over Intel's for crunching WUs a little sooner, especially when they had an A64.

    If I may suggest though, dual core probably would be a better bet if you want more crunching power. Mise well crunch 2 WUs at a time, while you're at it :D
     
  6. Grandmaster

    Grandmaster Electronica Addict Political User Folding Team

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    Even if he wanted to...his choice right? ;)
     
  7. LeeJend

    LeeJend Moderator

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    It's neck and neck. Folding is math and memeory access so checking the sandra comparisons for dhrystones and whetstones benchmarks.

    AMD leads slightly in Dhrystones benchmark 9142 to Intels 8700 megaflops but this test does not emphasize floating point instructions which are critical to folding.

    Intel leads slightly in Whetstones benchmark 3732 to AMDs 3483 megaflops. This is the more significant test for folding systems.

    So the correct answer is go AMD and for the same money buy a faster processor & MB than you could afford for the INTEL producing better folding results.

    Why are dhrystone and whetstone different? They use a different suite of tests which exercise the processors differently.
     
  8. fitz

    fitz Just Floating Along Staff Member Political User Folding Team

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    You can get the bonus QMD units only with the intel procs though.. I had a P4 server and was consistantly getting 450 point QMD units on it. It would complete each 450 point WU in a little under 22 hours. My desktop that is folding now (2.5Ghz) folds each 450 point QMD unit in a little under 24 hours each.

    The 600 point WU are usually far and few between. I was a lot better of getting consistant 450 QMD bonus units with the Intel proc.

    just my $0.02.

    If I were to buy a machine solely for the purpose of folding, I would get a dual core Intel if possible. If I were to get a personal machine for gaming and the like, I would probably buy the AMD.
     
  9. Brad

    Brad Moderator Political User Folding Team

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    I think I might get the intel...I can't aford the dual core, however.
     
  10. Son Goku

    Son Goku No lover of dogma

    Things might have changed, but back when I was running folding, there was an option for large WU downloads and some other stuff that one could set. When I made these configuration changes, large WUs was all that I was pretty much seeing, with none of the smaller < 1 day WUs finding their way to me. Things might have changed however, dunno
     
  11. Brad

    Brad Moderator Political User Folding Team

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    They have the same options, but so many people are folding now that they have to be spread among more people.
     
  12. Perris Calderon

    Perris Calderon Moderator Staff Member Political User

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    brad, what's the differance in price between the intel64 and an amd dual core 64?
     
    Last edited: Jan 1, 2006
  13. LeeJend

    LeeJend Moderator

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    Brad

    I take back my previous post. I found this link and they compare AMD 64 to P4E in scientific applications. I was very surprised. The AMD 64 did markedly better.

    http://www.aceshardware.com/read.jsp?id=60000318

    Considering price and performance that puts AMD well out in the lead if folding type applications are important to you.
     
  14. Brad

    Brad Moderator Political User Folding Team

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    According to ZipZoomFly, there is about a $2 difference between getting the A64 3200 and the P4 3.0E.
    This is including getting the corresponding motherboard that I would get.

    I will check the dual cores now
     
  15. Brad

    Brad Moderator Political User Folding Team

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    Intel Pentium 4 531 Prescott 800MHz FSB LGA 775 EM64T Processor Model BX80547PG3000EK - Retail $185.00

    IntelĀ® PentiumĀ® 4 Processor Prescott 3EGHz, 800MHz FSB, Socket 478, 1MB Cache Retail *** Free 2nd Day *** $186.80

    AMD Athlon 64 3200+ Processor (Venice) Socket 939 Retail ***Free 2nd Day*** $173.90

    AMD Opteron 165 Dual-Core 1.8GHz Processor Retail ***Free 2nd Day*** $316.00