Would anyone have preferred AMD over Intel?

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by Zwhaler, Aug 22, 2006.

  1. Zwhaler macrumors 604


    Jun 10, 2006
    Yeah yeah the big Intel switch that started in the beginning of this year was going to be Apple's biggest move. And we all know that Steve responded while being questioned about why he chose Intel: "AMD is better in the server league", but is there any of you out there that are dissapointed that Apple chose Intel over AMD? I, personally am glad they chose Intel and favor their technology over AMD, and always have. But seriously, anybody?
  2. Chone macrumors 65816


    Aug 11, 2006
    When Intel was pushing their crappy Netburst architecture, I was very dissapointed to see Apple go with Intel but when Intel released Core processors it was all very clear to me :)

    Currently Intel>>>AMD so it was a good move, when Apple made the announcement things were AMD>>>Intel.

    Good call Apple.
  3. Eidorian macrumors Penryn


    Mar 23, 2005
    I have to agree. Netburst was terrible but Intel really changed pace with the Core Architecture. So kudos to Apple to go with Intel. I just hope Intel has something good when AMD catches up.
  4. zap2 macrumors 604


    Mar 8, 2005
    Washington D.C
    Intel... before Apple went with intel, i was an AMD, but my Intel Mac Mini changed me, Core Duo is fast, and for a laptop chip its great, now Merom and Conroe will rock the laptop/desktop world.. as far as the Mac Pro. if AMD can bet WoodCrest(i don't know if it can) why no put it in there.. AMD and Intel Macs... i'm up for it
  5. Zwhaler thread starter macrumors 604


    Jun 10, 2006
    I was thinking exactly the same thing. The Core processers really changed things, but I wonder if Apple knew they were going to release them? Imagine if we got stuck with netburst and AMD came out with something like Core Duo? That would suck, maybe even to the point of Apple switching over to AMD :p
  6. Mr. Mister macrumors 6502

    Feb 15, 2006
    Right now I definitely support Apple's decision, back when Intel meant P4, I was pretty pissed off.
  7. FredClausen macrumors regular


    Aug 7, 2006
    Been a long time since I've delved into the PC processors (or cared about them) but in the limited way I was keeping track of those changes I do question why Apple chose Intel. Seems for the 32 bit consumer grade CPUs Intel is alright, but when we look at the 64 bit level processors I believe we get a different picture. AMD, unless something has changed drastically, is the de-facto standard here. AMD has set the x64 bit processor standard that Intel uses, AMD was the first to offer full 32 bit support on the CPU without the need of emulation (something that until recently Intel didn't do AFAIK), AMD scores higher in benchmarks with their 64 bit processors (both 64 and 32 bit processing), etc.

    People are literally having physical reactions around here to the word "Merom" (I will pause while everyone cleans up the mess they made) when in fact the Merom chip seems to be bunk. Its hotter, its more power hungry, and if I had to offer advice to Apple I would tell them in the most emphatic terms that Merom (damn, gotta pause again) is not for them. The Core2Duo (what is that? No one ever uses Core2Duo to name the Mer...ahem) being hotter and less efficient than the Core Duos would be BAD to put in their products. Can you imagine a MacBook HOTTER than what you've got now? Even with the SMC update the MacBook is still pretty toasty, although now I can rest my hands on the keyboard without feeling the heat. And can you imagine a MacBook with even slightly degraded battery life? People would be up in arms decrying Apple and posting on this board that they were going to file lawsuits against Apple in hopes that the United States Attorney General would notice them.

    The underlying thing I have been laying the foundation for is that Apple may have picked the right company for RIGHT NOW (as in, the nanosecond that they released the Intel iMac AMD wasn't as good as Intel), but I think they did it at the expensive of future proofing. 64 bit computing is the future, and you think those Xeon processors will fit in your Macbook (pro)? No chance. I know AMD has been working on their mobile offerings and they're getting pretty good. I don't know if they're 64 bit yet, but if they are then I begin to question Apple's decision.

    I think its important to not get caught up in the Apple apologist / fanboi-ism surrounding the Intel move. I bought a Macbook, I love it and I'm glad I spent the money. I also had a G4 Mini and played around a few times with a G5 iMac. I know where Apple was and I know where it is now. We're so much better off with our move to x86 computing, but could we be better off with AMD? I think the answer is yes.

    I'm not claiming my impressions are right, and if anyone can correct me I'd love to hear it.
  8. tipdrill407 macrumors 6502

    May 26, 2006
    The merom chip is not that great but the AMD turion X2 is quite a dissapointment as well, they were outperformed by the 32bit core duo.
  9. Rapmastac1 macrumors 65816


    Aug 5, 2006
    In the Depths of the SLC!
    I'm just like a lot of people. Before I got my Mac, I was building my own pc. And what was the processor of choice, AMD (AMD Athlon 64 3800+ X2). But after using my Macbook for a while now, I think they made a great choice, but as time goes by, I would like to see some Apple AMD Action.
  10. milozauckerman macrumors 6502

    Jun 25, 2005
    I would prefer to have both down the line (assuming that latching onto Intel was the only way to make the switch feasible).

    AMD will come out with something better than Core and Intel will counter - the more choices available to Apple, the better it should be for we consumers.
  11. Chone macrumors 65816


    Aug 11, 2006
    Wow looks like someone hasn't taken their nap, on the mobile side of things, Intel has ALWAYS ruled supreme, during the Netburst days Intel had the Pentium M which was a great processor and the best you could get for mobile (yes that include AMD's crappy Turions), the Merom is not bad, actually, according to Anandtech it doesn't use any more power or generate more heat so Macbook will be the same, just faster and you can always underclock processors to keep temps the same and still have better performance. Merom is 64-bit so I don't know what your whole rant on 64bit is, Intel does it just as well as AMD, they just don't make such a big fuss about it, 64bit has been available in Pentiums for a LONG time and all Core 2 processors are 64bit compatible... not that 64bit even matters much currently but if future proof is a concern, Apple has nothing to worry about, I hardly see how it was a bad choice, right now the only thing looking bright in AMD's future is AM2, yay its S939 with DDR2, big deal, not to mention that from the business perspective side of things... Intel is a much bigger company than AMD and sells more processors.

    I'm not dissing on AMD processors, they are awesome and K8 ruled but Intel has the edge now and the it doesn't look like AMD is coming out with something new, all they have on store to counter Core is AM2, which like I said, is basically the same ol' K8 processorsw with a DDR2 controller.
  12. btgordon macrumors member

    Aug 7, 2006
    I think Apple made the right choice, although I am sure Steve knew of this radical shift of power between the two chip makers. Hes a smart guy.
  13. Colonel Panik macrumors regular

    Colonel Panik

    Feb 23, 2004
    Dublin, Ireland
    I think that the biggest point for Apple now is that they out perform the Windows OS, rather than the hardware, and this is what they want everyone to focus on. It's much easier for a potential non-tech buyer to see Intel is the processor, and to then to look past the iron and focus on the OS, which Apple wins hands-down.

    Also, I've read of AMD having supply problems, which is the last thing that Apple needs. The Reg reports:
    Who wants to relive that '3GHz in one year' saga? I for one delayed my purchase until the 3GHz arrived, and that never happened. Intel might not always be the processor leader, but it's never too far behind.
  14. MacsAttack macrumors 6502a

    Jul 2, 2006
    In hindsight it is clear that Intel let Apple in on the Core 2 Duo. Core Duo was a stopgap (and not a bad one), but with the announcment of full 64 bit for Leopard Core 2 is key to Apple's plans.

    Intel messed things up, but have recovered well with their new chips. However, AMD scales to beyond 4 cores far better (thanks to intigrated memory controler on the CPU). Intel's quad designs are thus less impressive, and will probably remain so until they get their act together and follow suit wih a hypertransport equivelent and on-chip memory controller.

    Of course most people don't need more than two cores becasue software continues to lag far behind the hardware and cannot make much use of multi-core architectures - so the shortcommings of intel's designs are masked by the large cach size (which is why intel built them that way).

    Bottom line is that there is currently feirce competition between AMD and intel - which drives up the rate of development and drives down the cost to the consumer (that's us).

    Which is a "good thing"
  15. mmmcheese macrumors 6502a


    Feb 17, 2006
    One thing that should be mentioned is that with an exclusive deal with Intel, they are able to take advantage of Intel's vast research and development resources....something that they wouldn't have access to as a multi-chip shop, and something that AMD just can't compete with (if they went exclusive AMD). This can change, but as it stands now, Intel is a much larger company with the available R&D resources, and can offer a complete platform (at this point, AMD can only offer processors, and small amounts of R&D).
  16. topgunn macrumors 65816


    Nov 5, 2004
    At the time the announcement that Apple was moving to Intel was made, Intel was far ahead of AMD in the mobile market and it was well known that Intel would be dropping Netburst and moving to a Dothan-like succesor for all of their lineups. Tom's Hardware had this article out 15 months ago regarding the huge advantage that the Dothan core had over Netburst and for that matter, AMD's Clawhammer. So, of course, Apple knew all of this when the decision was made.
  17. baleensavage macrumors 6502a

    Aug 2, 2005
    On an island in Maine
    I think it would have been better for Apple not to sign an exclusive deal with either. Even Dell is working with AMD now. I think Apple should just focus on getting the best chips in their machines. In my mind it would like if they chose Radeon exclusively for their graphics cards. Let the two chip makers scramble to make a better chip than the other.

    Although, on the flipside, I'm sure Apple gets some type of deal for the exclusive Intel contract, so in theory that should translate to savings for us Mac users (though with the recent bottom-line upping, you have to wonder).
  18. erikistired macrumors 6502


    Apr 21, 2006
    in a word, no. intel in my eyes is more stable, and now ahead of the game. until you can buy a rock solid amd chipset motherboard to run your amd cpu on intel will be ahead of the stability game.
  19. Dont Hurt Me macrumors 603

    Dont Hurt Me

    Dec 21, 2002
    Yahooville S.C.
  20. andrew050703 macrumors regular


    Feb 27, 2006
    Portsmouth, U.K
    Its not like one's totally useless and the other is leagues better - they're in the same order of magnitude performancewise, but it seems the intel dual cores have an edge atm. I wouldn't have turned away from macs had they had AMD chips because they wouldn't have been worse (i suspect) than the G5s; however, since AMD don't have anything revolutionary, i wonder why dell went with AMD over their longterm partner Intel?
  21. bousozoku Moderator emeritus

    Jun 25, 2002
    Gone but not forgotten.
    I still think that AMD's technology would be a better solution overall, especially considering Intel's history of distributing their broken hardware within the first 6 months. Apple couldn't afford such mistakes again, could they?

    If everyone thought that Intel was Pentium 4 only, why didn't they see the Pentium M/Centrino line? It was much better as far as performance and battery life than the G4, not to mention that a computer didn't have to be 2 inches thick like the P4 laptop machines.

    Apple obviously wouldn't have had to backtrack with the iMac away from 64-bit processors with AMD. There are quite a few portable computers out there with dual core 64-bit AMD processors in them.

    If Apple was serious about the server market, Opterons are a much better solution, as well.

    Some of AMD's processors run hotter than most Intel processors, but less hot than the G5s.
  22. CmdrLaForge macrumors 601


    Feb 26, 2003
    around the world
    To answer your question: no - not at all. Which is somehow funny because when I used to build my own PCs I always used AMD. But uhhh - that was the dark age anyway...
  23. IJ Reilly macrumors P6

    IJ Reilly

    Jul 16, 2002
    Technical reasons completely aside, for political reasons Apple didn't have much choice but to choose Intel over AMD. Apple has already got enough outsider/underdog mojo for any company. Partnering with the industry standard-bearer certainly looks stronger and safer than going with a (relative) upstart. I'm sure they must have preferred Intel's roadmap going forward. Also, I wonder if Apple would have had access to EFI if they'd gone with AMD.
  24. After G macrumors 68000

    After G

    Aug 27, 2003
    I think Apple was really looking to the future.

    Although AMD is cheap and good for desktop/server, it was the Apple laptops that were lacking in punch. We had G5 for Desktops, but nothing for laptops, so Apple would go with the laptop winners. Since more and more computers will be laptops in future, Apple decided to go that way.

    There's the fact that Core 2 > AM2. AMD is even talking about a new socket AM3. AM2 is just a stop-gap. According to Anandtech, the socket for Core 2 processors is what is limiting them currently, and more performance would be seen by having a higher-clocked bus.

    AMD also has lack of vision beyond desktops. Turion sucks right now. AMD Live is nothing like Intel VIIV. Notice that AMD had to buy out ATI for chipsets (not just graphics cards). AMD is ramping up to expand (with growing pains due to Opteron unavailability), but Intel is already going full-steam beyond computers and planning to go into such things as medical devices.

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