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64 bit processor vs 32 bit. What is the real difference?

Old 08-08-05, 02:01 PM
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64 bit processor vs 32 bit. What is the real difference?

I just got an Athlon 64 3000+ to replace my XP 1700+. I overclocked it to 2ghz. I ran a benchmark and it's about even with a Pentium 4 3ghz processor. Is this because it is a 64 bit processor?

My main question is do 64 bit processors run 32 bit applications like Windows and games faster than 32 bit processors or does the application have to be 64 bit as well to see a difference?
Old 08-08-05, 02:04 PM
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I'd imagine they'd have to be 64-bit applications to take advantage of that. But I'm interested in hearing the answer as well, specifically concerning XP 64. I was pondering getting a new computer soon and was curious what the benefits were.
Old 08-08-05, 02:10 PM
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Originally Posted by PixyJunket
I'd imagine they'd have to be 64-bit applications to take advantage of that.
Yes, although there are a few advantages to 64-bit, such as the internal data handling speed.

I believe 64-bit processors can even be slower running some 32-bit applications since they're optimized for 64-bit software.
Old 08-08-05, 02:16 PM
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Originally Posted by Mopower
I just got an Athlon 64 3000+ to replace my XP 1700+. I overclocked it to 2ghz. I ran a benchmark and it's about even with a Pentium 4 3ghz processor.
Oooh. I just got the same proc. Venice-core?

How'd you do it? I'd love to do the same. I've fot a VNF4 Ultra Mobo.
Old 08-08-05, 02:17 PM
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Why did AMD release a 64 bit processor when there aren't any 64 bit apps? (besides XP 64) Just to get the jump on Intel?
Old 08-08-05, 02:20 PM
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Originally Posted by Nazgul
Oooh. I just got the same proc. Venice-core?

How'd you do it? I'd love to do the same. I've fot a VNF4 Ultra Mobo.
Yes it is the Venice. I have a Chaintech NF4 Ultra mobo. I just raised the FSB. I'm not quite sure yet what else to do because overclocking a 64 bit is a little more complicated than a 32. Settings wise. I have my 1700+ oc'd to 1.9ghz. A lot of people can get 2.4 out of the 3000+ Venice but I can't get mine to load windows after 2.1. I think I'm missing a setting though. I think it's called HTT?? I'm not sure though.
Old 08-08-05, 02:50 PM
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Originally Posted by Mopower
Why did AMD release a 64 bit processor when there aren't any 64 bit apps? (besides XP 64) Just to get the jump on Intel?
Why not? Most 32 bit programs run fine on 64 bit processors and and I guess AMD is trying to show that they can compete and even outdo Intel. I bet there is a high demand for 64 bit processing in the server world and larger businesses and their demand would definitely drive the market.
Old 08-08-05, 03:29 PM
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Originally Posted by Mopower
I just got an Athlon 64 3000+ to replace my XP 1700+. I overclocked it to 2ghz. I ran a benchmark and it's about even with a Pentium 4 3ghz processor. Is this because it is a 64 bit processor?
No, it's because Athlons have a shorter pipeline and are just generally faster than P4's at identical clockrates. Of course, there's a tradeoff, and Athlons are slower at some particular tasks than P4's, but in general, that "3000" number is an accurate comparison to a P4 equivalent. Doesn't really have anything to do with 64/32 bit.

My main question is do 64 bit processors run 32 bit applications like Windows and games faster than 32 bit processors or does the application have to be 64 bit as well to see a difference?
The application has to be 64 bit as well to see any difference due to the 64/32 bit thing.

Originally Posted by Mopower
Why did AMD release a 64 bit processor when there aren't any 64 bit apps? (besides XP 64) Just to get the jump on Intel?
Why would anybody write any 64 bit apps when there's no 64 bit processors to run them on? It's a chicken-egg problem. When we made the jump to 32 bit processors, people asked the same question as you asked.

The short version of "why 64 bit?" is that 32 bit is only capable of addressing 4 gigabytes of RAM. To go beyond, you need a wider register space. There's other advantages too, but that's the main one. As apps require an ever increasing ability to deal with larger and larger numbers, increasing the size of the numbers is can handle is useful in a lot of ways. As always, it'll take time for those advantages to become appearant.
Old 08-08-05, 04:40 PM
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Originally Posted by Otto
Why would anybody write any 64 bit apps when there's no 64 bit processors to run them on? It's a chicken-egg problem. When we made the jump to 32 bit processors, people asked the same question as you asked.
Well I agree, that was kind of a stupid question. I'm sure in a few years the majority of apps will be 64 bit.

I have noticed the computer I have at work which is a brand new 3.2ghz P4 is quite a bit faster than my A64 at certain things. Web browsing is one of them oddly enough. Same internet speed but the P4 seems to open up sites faster. Both use Firefox.
Old 08-08-05, 05:56 PM
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Originally Posted by Mopower
Why did AMD release a 64 bit processor when there aren't any 64 bit apps? (besides XP 64) Just to get the jump on Intel?

same reason both amd and intel have released dual core processors.. and will be releasing much higher multi core processors.. despite their not being many applications out there that will take advantage of them..

because people want the newest most innovative hardware.. whether its really being used by their machine or not

although, this also pushes along application development
Old 08-08-05, 07:07 PM
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My Venice 3000+ at home is around 2.5 GHz at the moment. I tested Windows XP 64 Bit edition and didn't find it worthwhile, mostly due to a few issues with particular programs and the lack of drivers for my Lexmark all in one printer. Right now, there really isn't any benefit for "64 bit" for the casual user, as far as I know.

Overclocking on the A64 is a bit more difficult, because you need to worry about the HTT multiplier, the actual HTT speed, and the use of a memory divider.

Last edited by fumanstan; 08-08-05 at 07:09 PM.

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