Intel claims that its new desktop chip, the illustrious Conroe, will increase performance by 40 per cent and will also decrease power guzzling by 40 per cent compared to previous chips. The chip giant has also provided benchmarks which not only support those views but suggest that Intel's new line will outperform the best AMD has to offer, even in gaming.
The Intel developer forum has hosted statements by Intel execs which have admitted that the current line of Intel CPUs may be running too hot but have been quick to add that the new range of processors will address that issue and will provide a sizeable performance boost. During Intel chief technology officer Justin Rattner's IDF opening speech, attendants were informed that Intel will fight hard for every inch of market share it surrenders to rival AMD until the next range of chips are out. Analysts seem to agree and Nathan Brookwood, head of semiconductor consultancy Insight64, claims AMD's performance advantage is going to narrow in the next 6 months, and it may even reverse...
AMD has taken advantage of some recent Intel shortcomings and has seen its dual core CPUs thrive, especially in the server market. As a result AMD has snatched a significant part of Intel's market share even though Intel still outsells AMD by about 4 to 1.
The main purpose of IDF is to demonstrate how active Intel has been in research and development and how unique the new CPU range will be. It also seems that Intel PR has been working hard too as benchmark comparisons of the new Conroe core, running at 2.67GHz, and the AMD FX60, overclocked at 2.8 GHz in order to simulate an FX62, have seen the light of day.
The results indicate that the Conroe should outperform its rival on all tests, including gaming. There are some reservations however, as the systems used for the comparison were setup by Intel and the tests were carried out on an Intel site by the journalists. The parts used were also Intel choices and the AMD overclocking was, lovingly, carried out by Intel staff.
The take home message from the news however, seems to be that the company that created the micro processor has adopted a more up and at 'em approach and that the Conroe core will be a worthy adversary to its AMD rival. The use of DDR2 may also mature into an Intel advantage but we have to remember that the Conroe based chips will not be out until Q3, 2006 and AMD may well have something new to show us by then.