Difference between Hyperthreading and Hypertransport?

By tinku ยท 9 replies
Oct 24, 2005
  1. I tried searching for this and didn't get any good hits - can someone please explain it to me in simple lay terms? Nothing high-tech plz.

    One's by Intel and the other's by AMD - I know that much.

    My buddy asked me to get Intel HT and I got AMD HT (just because it was a 64-bit processor and it has 1600 FSB)...but I don't know if I did the right thing. He says HT by Intel does some cool things that HT by AMD cannot do. So, what are the differences from the end-user point of view? Someone please give me a 101 one this. It'd be great.

    thanks, guys.
  2. vnf4ultra

    vnf4ultra TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,388

    Ok, some intel cpus have "ht" which is hyperthreading technology, which makes one cpu act like it's two, and lets the cpu work on two things at a time, as opposed to just one thing. If you do a lot of multitasking it can help speed things up somewhat.

    Amd's "ht" is hypertransport, which is the 1600 you refer to. Amd a64 cpus don't have a fsb(front side bus) like intel cpus do, they have a more efficient arrangement called the hypertransport tunnel, which usually runs at 1600 or 2000mt/s. The difference between 1600 and 2000 is very small, if any.

    So the intel might multitask better, but is also more expensive. Amd64 cpus are excellent for gaming on the other hand, and have 64bit capability, so they are ready for future operating systems like Windows Vista. If you want to do serious multitasking, a dual core cpu is for you, it has 2 processors built into one chip. Amd's X2 cpus are dual core, intels pentium "D" are dual core as well.

    I doubt most users would notice a difference between an amd and an intel cpu if they are comparable models.

    I hope that made sense and cleared that up.
  3. pkroks

    pkroks TS Rookie Posts: 259

    I was told and actually read that: (this is what i understand)

    Hyperthreading Technology (by intel) is where the intel processors make a virtual processor, much like how daemon tools or alcohol makes a virtual dvd rom drive. It makes the computer act as though there is an extra processor and that helps with handling some of the data being processed. You can read the defition here at WikiPedia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hyperthreading. that is the best and easiest to understand that i have found..

    HyperTransport (AMD) is where the processor reduces the number of buses in a system by improving communication and data transfer between components of the motherboard and CPU etc. It helps to reduce bottlenecks which reduce system performance. Wikipedia has a definition here http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hypertransport and Alienware has an easier definition here http://4help.alienware.com/cgi-bin/...F90ZXh0PWh5cGVydHJhbnNwb3J0&p_li=&p_topview=1

    If i am wrong, please correct me because that it was i understand by the two... :grinthumb:

    Too slow... darn! :unch:
  4. tinku

    tinku TS Rookie Topic Starter

    hey - thanks for the response.
    So, what you're telling me is that they are not about the same thing? AMD's HT has nothing to do with multi-tasking? Although it is related to processor speed?
    And Intel HT has something to do with multi-tasking? Hence has an indirect positive impact on processor performance? (2 questions each on each HT, if someone could respond "yes" and "no" right after each other, it'd be great!!).

    I asked my buddy what to get, and he said "get Intel HT". I want to run at least 2 virtual PCs, each with a different type of web server/app server on it and then connect them and do clustering, load-balancing, etc etc on them. He said the computer would be much faster with "Intel HT". The guy I spoke to on the phone (customer support) said "well AMD Sempron has 64 bit processor with HT, which is much faster!", etc etc. So, I want to clear this up.

    I guess what I want to know is, from an end-user point of view, how would my applications look under these 2 technologies? Would my task manager be the same with Intel HT and AMD HT? Is the bottom line about these 2 technologies only about performance or are there any other options for me to play with under each HT? If there are any additional options under each HT, what are they? And which one would you recommend for my needs?

    Just want to get your opinions so next time onwards I'll be more informed. I don't think I can return my box right now (and it works fine for now), but I wanna know if my applications/tasks will have more features to play with under either of these technologies.

    Thanks again!! I appreciate the response!
    tinku :bounce:
  5. vnf4ultra

    vnf4ultra TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,388

    You're correct, they're totally different.

    Correct, the amd cpu still acts like one cpu, but the efficiency of the HT helps make it fast.

    Yes in apps that are multithreaded, or if you run several cpu intensive tasks at once. It won't amount to much if you only run one non-multithreaded app at a time.

    If you run multithreaded apps, or multiple cpu intensive apps, you should get either an intel cpu with ht, or an intel or amd dual core cpu. A dual core cpu is much better than just a single cpu with intel's ht.

    An intel cpu w/ ht will show two cpu usage boxes in task manager, while an amd cpu(that's not a dual core) will not.
  6. Merc14

    Merc14 TS Rookie Posts: 171

    Hyperthreading becomes very effective when you run a program that is specifically designed to take advantage of the technology. Video editing folks are one of the groups that benefit from hyperthreading as the majority of video editing software is written to take advantage of hyperthreading and the nature of video editing lends itself to hyperthreading. I couldn't tell you if your specific needs would be better served by a hyperthreaded CPU as it sounds like you're running a fairly specialized task. Gamers see no benefit from hyperthreading at all as no games are coded for it. Everyday users see little or no benefit from hyperthreading and neither do most office app users. In a word, hyperthreading was/is a bust because most programmers didn't bother to code for it.

    Hypertransport is explained right here http://www.amd.com/us-en/Processors/ProductInformation/0,,30_118_4699_7981^2353,00.html but in a nutshell it provides a high speed link between the CPU and the memory without an intervening bus. It is transparent to the system and therefore works on all programs and software. Intel advertises a maximum front side bus speed of 800mhz. AMD64 systems run at 1000mhz minimum.
  7. tinku

    tinku TS Rookie Topic Starter

    wow! thanks for the responses, guys. really appreciate the straight-forward answers. been a headache trying to figure out what the heck the big deal with HT is.

    "which HT is better?" - that's a whole diff argument.

    quick question about AMD HT though. I have ecs motherboard (http://www.ecs.com.tw/ECSWeb/Products/ProductsDetail.aspx?DetailID=502&MenuID=21&LanID=9)

    It says 1.8GHz but again talks about 1600 FSB - what does that mean, if AMD HT actually does not use FSB?

    I can tell you this: the performance is awesome (with 1GB RAM). I don't know if I should credit the 64-bit processor or the AMD HT technology. And from what you guys say, Intel HT does really matter to me as most applications are not written in HT format to make use of Intel HT.

    I tried to upgrade to 2GB and had trouble. I posted that somewhere else...let's see what I can do with it.

    thanks again guys!! This really was helpful. :giddy:
  8. vnf4ultra

    vnf4ultra TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,388

    This will probably be confusing, but here goes.

    A amd socket 754 processor has a htt speed of 800mhz, and a transfer rate of 1600MT/s.

    (Edit: Here's a defintion of MT/s if you wondered.
    It basically means that the bus can do two things per cycle, so it is like a bus that's twice as fast but that can do only one thing per cycle, like a 800mhz bus that does 2 things per cycle would be as fast as a bus at 1600mhz that only did one thing per cycle.)

    It doesn't have a 1600fsb, or a 800fsb, since it has no fsb at all, it has a hypertransport tunnel. Many mfg's do mistakenly call it a 800 or 1600fsb however.

    The reference clock in this type system is 200mhz, which is multiplied by your cpu's "cpu multiplier"(which is a specification of your cpu). So a 1.8ghz cpu has a multiplier of 9x( 9 x 200 = 1.8ghz, 1800mhz). The htt bus speed is derived from the reference clock(200mhz) times the "htt multi", which is 4x in a socket 754 system, this yields 800mhz as your htt bus speed.

    Hopefully that makes sense, I tried anyway.
  9. AtK SpAdE

    AtK SpAdE TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 1,495

    NIcely Done vnf4ultra
  10. tinku

    tinku TS Rookie Topic Starter

    vnf4ultra - thanks for that info.

    although some of it went over my head, i am in a much better position today than i was yesterday regarding these 2 technologies. Intel HT w/o the dual processor really isn't that worth it. that much, i'm convinced. and with a 500-600 budget, i guess i got a pretty decent config. would have been nice if the mobo took 2x1GB w/o complaining tho' - i got stuck with 2x512MB.

    thanks again guys! been a pleasure. :wave:
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