Questions about processors and gpu's

Discussion in 'Apple, Inc and Tech Industry' started by Soulsearcher91, Nov 2, 2014.

  1. Soulsearcher91 macrumors newbie

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    Nov 2, 2014
    #1
    I frequent the iMac forums to read what others have to say about performance related matters and I often get very lost when I hear posters talk about such things as over clocking, TWP, watts, throttling..etc.

    Would some care to enlighten me - in layman terms - as to what these things are and why they matter?

    Thanks in advance!
     
  2. Meister Suspended

    Meister

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    #2
    Before I start explaining, would you mind telling what you use your Mac for?
    For 99,99% of users overclocking and throtteling are utterly pointless.
    It's knowledge you will never need.
     
  3. Renzatic Suspended

    Renzatic

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    #3
    Throttling isn't related to overclocking exactly, at least not going by the old classic definition of it. Modern processors can dynamically increase and decrease its clock speed to either provide more battery life for lighter tasks, or hop it up for more demanding applications. CPUs are now rated at minimum and maximum (turbo mode) clock speeds. Like with the new Broadwell M processors, they're rated for 800MHz low, all the way up to 2GHz high.

    Overclocking back in the day was when people would adjust the CPU multipliers and bus speeds on the motherboard to get their chips to run faster than their rated default. This, as far as I know, isn't something you can do on a Mac, so it's not worth worrying about.

    Wattage is what it sounds like, how much power the processor requires to do its thing. I could get into die size, and stuff like that, but it's main concern is how much battery power it'll be eating, with lower wattage processors obviously providing much longer battery life.

    ...and TWP? Not sure about it. It's not something I commonly hear, or I hear it by another name.
     
  4. Soulsearcher91 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Nov 2, 2014
    #4

    Lol yeah I was beginning to think it was stuff that did not really matter to the majority and catered likely to the extreme..nerds.

    I don't have an imac but have been considering one for quite some time.

    Main concern was whether it would be suitable for some gaming - not major gaming. I never played the Diablo series and was interested in checking it out along with some other minor games. But people are always giving me different stories from what I read in the forums. Some say they are terrible for gaming and others say they are decent enough to play most games.

    ----------


    Okay cool, thanks for taking the time to explain. Yeah I kind of figured this stuff was not really much of a concern for general population and catered mainly to the super-techy people. I imagine the computers standard presets to the best "clocking & throttling" function perfectly fine for the most of us.
     
  5. Renzatic Suspended

    Renzatic

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    #5
    The lower end iMacs are alright for games. They'll play older stuff with no problems, and will be able to run something like Diablo III without breaking a sweat.

    The higher end iMacs will tear even the latest and greatest games up, but that comes at a cost (MONEH). If all you're planning on doing is playing games, they're way overpriced for the performance you're getting. You could build a Windows gaming PC for a third of the price that performs just as well, if not better.

    Yeah, it's all pretty academic nerdery really. Nice to know, but not nearly as important these days as it once was.

    Thing is, you'll get a thousand different answers depending on who you ask, and people will sometimes go down to the nth degree telling you about what's, in their opinion, the best or not. I'll keep it more generalized. Unless you're a hardcore gamer, Macs are great. But if you're worried about bang for the buck, get a Windows PC.
     
  6. chown33 macrumors 604

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    #6
  7. Renzatic Suspended

    Renzatic

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    #7
  8. chown33 macrumors 604

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    #8
    These days, TDP isn't just for watercoolers. Overclockers with otherwise stock machines care about it, because exceeding the thermal trip-point will throttle the chip. That can happen at an inopportune time in the middle of a game, and bam, you're dead. The trick is running as close to the edge as possible without falling off the cliff.

    There are also folks who are cooler fanatics. They may not feel the need to overclock anything, but they don't want their machine getting hot. They're the ones who look at TDP of the chip, the best way to apply thermal grease, the best thermal grease to use, the effects of air turbulence on heat transfer of heat sink fins, and all manner of heat-transfer erotica esoterica.

    The discussions on such topics tend to be highly focused, and it can be difficult to find introductory or simplified info that's accurate and well-written. It reminds me of the way embedded system programming used to be before the Arduino came out. It was very focused, very compartmentalized (sometimes down to the mask-rev of a given chip), and difficult to get started in without formal training in the subject matter.

    Everyone should have a hobby, even when I don't understand the appeal.
     

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