tibasnatch wrote:How does this compare to a dell xps 8700 with a 4th gen i7? I know the dell is better but alot better?
I would say yes, allot better, at least processing power wise.
At this point, the only consumer series that AMD offers that can really come close to challenging Intel's I7's, weather it be 4th, 3rd, or occasionally even second generation models, is the FX series processors, notably the higher end 6 and 8 core versions.
Much of this has to do with cash and thread count.
Historicly, Intel has almost always beat out AMD on this front, especially when it comes to the consumer desktop area of things.
To put it simply, a processors cash is where it stores it's instructions on what it's supposed to be doing at any given moment, a larger cash means more instructions.
The very lage majority of processors that have more than 1 core these days has a shared cash that gets used by all the cores, but each core can only access so much of this one big cash.
AMD usually has less cash for each core to share, and a higher clock rate to make up for it, but when it comes to real world performance, doing 1 or 2 large tasks really well, and a bunch of little tasks not so well just isn't cutting it any more, especially considering the complexity of today's software.
This is why, on average, AMD processors are more suited to things like netbooks and low end laptops, because they are usually very good at doing 1 or 2 things at once instead of a bunch of little things at once, like video encoding, file compression, highly intensive gaming, etc.
The other problem that AMD processors struggle with is the lack of available threads.
Just as cash is like a persons short term memory, and holds the instructions for the processor, the number of threads is like the amount of directions you can think in at once.
It doesn't matter if you have plenty of space for remembering what you need to do if there aren't enough hands to carry it out.
The less threads, the less power you can either devote to one task, like zipping up a large folder, and the less power you can devote to many small tasks, like running several programs at once with out noticeable delay.
The average rather expensive high end quad core I7 4th generation processor has either 1.5 or 2mb of cash to spare for each core, and 2 threads to spare for each core, making a total of 8 threads to devote to any task.
The average quad core AMD desktop processor, will usually have only 1mb of cash per core, and 1 thread per core.
while of a lower quality, and performance is much less expensive, and will make your dollar go much farther than anything you could buy for the same price from Intel, it will also provide you with much newer and more up to date technology at that price point than Intel will.
Also with AMD, you will most likely end up with a noticeably more powerful graphics card for the price you pay than what you would find on Intel processor of the same price.