What Happened Last Time AMD Beat Intel?

Bullwinkle M

Posts: 551   +439
AMD cannot beat Intel OR NVidia at the same process node

check out the horrible performance of their top graphics card compared to an 8nm NVidia

It's crap

They only have an advantage over Intel on core count and process

Try comparing the same core count at the same manufacturing process

Intel still kicks AMD to the curb

Do a fair comparison and see what happens

5nm EUV is even making Apple's M1 look good, but like Apple, AMD's advantage is temporary

Credit should go to the process
 
Last edited:

veLa

Posts: 1,117   +753
AMD cannot beat Intel OR NVidia at the same process node

check out the horrible performance of their top graphics card compared to an 8nm NVidia

It's crap

They only have an advantage over Intel on core count and process

Try comparing the same core count at the same manufacturing process

Intel still kicks AMD to the curb

Do a fair comparison and see what happens

5nm EUV is even making Apple's M1 look good, but like Apple, AMD's advantage is temporary

Credit should go to the process

I don't even know where to begin, so I won't feed the troll.

Solid use of punctuation btw.
 

DZillaXx

Posts: 334   +452
AMD cannot beat Intel OR NVidia at the same process node

check out the horrible performance of their top graphics card compared to an 8nm NVidia

It's crap

They only have an advantage over Intel on core count and process

Try comparing the same core count at the same manufacturing process

Intel still kicks AMD to the curb

Do a fair comparison and see what happens

5nm EUV is even making Apple's M1 look good, but like Apple, AMD's advantage is temporary

Credit should go to the process


Don't expect Alder Lake to catch Intel back up. At best it will bring them back to being equal with Zen 3, while Zen 4 @ 5nm with a whole new chipset and IO complex is getting ready to enter the market.

Honestly don't expect Intel to catch back up for a few years, hell maybe not until 2025+. Intel's biggest issue is their fabs are behind the likes of TSMC, and that won't change in the next few years. Their other problem is that their Core arch is falling behind, even their 10nm laptop chips that uses the arch that rocket lake will be based on (Tiger Lake) they just don't pack the same performance/watt that the Ryzen chips do. This is a huge contributor to Apple moving away from intel.

The only saving grace Intel had was with Gaming, primarily because of how their chips are configured. While IPC plays a big role, Intel has been behind in IPC since the Zen2 days. Latency is a area intel's designs do well in, with all cores sharing the same L3 cache. AMD's chiplet and CCX designs have their limitations. The last area where intel still has an advantage is clock speed, which was never an important number to begin with.

And no, Even if Ryzen was built on Intel's 14nm Fab. It would still destroy Intel on a performance/watt basis. Intel's 10nm Process is actually pretty competitive to the 7nm Process that TSMC uses, and Intel's 10nm chips have been hot garbage performance per watt compared to Zen 2.
 

poohbear

Posts: 643   +557
Don't expect Alder Lake to catch Intel back up. At best it will bring them back to being equal with Zen 3, while Zen 4 @ 5nm with a whole new chipset and IO complex is getting ready to enter the market.

Honestly don't expect Intel to catch back up for a few years, hell maybe not until 2025+. Intel's biggest issue is their fabs are behind the likes of TSMC, and that won't change in the next few years. Their other problem is that their Core arch is falling behind, even their 10nm laptop chips that uses the arch that rocket lake will be based on (Tiger Lake) they just don't pack the same performance/watt that the Ryzen chips do. This is a huge contributor to Apple moving away from intel.

The only saving grace Intel had was with Gaming, primarily because of how their chips are configured. While IPC plays a big role, Intel has been behind in IPC since the Zen2 days. Latency is a area intel's designs do well in, with all cores sharing the same L3 cache. AMD's chiplet and CCX designs have their limitations. The last area where intel still has an advantage is clock speed, which was never an important number to begin with.

And no, Even if Ryzen was built on Intel's 14nm Fab. It would still destroy Intel on a performance/watt basis. Intel's 10nm Process is actually pretty competitive to the 7nm Process that TSMC uses, and Intel's 10nm chips have been hot garbage performance per watt compared to Zen 2.
I agree, but it's also an issue of leadership & management. Lisa Su (an engineer & phenomenal manager) turned AMD around, Bob Swan (an accountant) hampered Intel's progress.

In my opinion, the biggest threat to Intel & the entire X86 ecosystem is Apple's ARM CPUs. Their recent M1 CPU was shocking in its performance and efficiency, and there's talk of a 32 core desktop version coming in 2021! If their ARM CPUs do to the desktop what they did with their laptops...it might be game over for both AMD & Intel's X86 CPUs.
 

NeoMorpheus

Posts: 883   +1,677
Funny how Intel illegal tactics weren't mentioned, like bribing Dell and others to do not sell AMD powered systems.

Hell, some say that they are doing that exact thing today, given how Dell refuses to add Ryzen to their lucrative business lines, like the Optiplex and Precision lines.
 

Manuel Diego

Posts: 87   +160
In my opinion, the biggest threat to Intel & the entire X86 ecosystem is Apple's ARM CPUs. Their recent M1 CPU was shocking in its performance and efficiency, and there's talk of a 32 core desktop version coming in 2021! If their ARM CPUs do to the desktop what they did with their laptops...it might be game over for both AMD & Intel's X86 CPUs.
Let's suppose the new Apple silicon is better than anything x86 (which is still to be proven). Then what? Will games be ported to MacOS, so that the gaming community switches to Apple? Will we all throw our much more affordable PCs to buy uberexpensive Macs? Experience proves that it won't be the case: yes, the iPhone's CPUs are faster than anything from the Android camp, but most people don't have the money to buy stupidly expensive Apple products, and never will (which is part of Apple's policy: being somewhat exclusive via absurd pricing that flatters the buyers ego). I don't think that Apple silicon, no matter how good it is, will threaten x86, at least not in the short/medium term.
 

Avro Arrow

Posts: 1,727   +2,043
TechSpot Elite
One of the biggest mistakes that AMD did back in the Athlon days is the same mistake that they're making now. They think that the market is all about price/performance when it's not. Sure, AMD is completely on top now but their biggest mistake is that they're pricing themselves higher which is EXACTLY what they did with the Athlon 64 FX.

Sure, from a price/performance perspective it makes sense but only for enthusiasts. To date, most people have never used an AMD CPU, let alone owned one. To the knowledgeable enthusiasts like (most of) us who know that the brand name on our CPUs isn't what makes them perform, this strategy can can work.

The problem arises when the average person is asked to pay more for a brand that they're unfamiliar with. To them, it's an off-brand and they won't want to do it because it's an expensive item and people get peace of mind from things that are familiar (which is why advertising works, it makes something familiar). AMD was doing spectacularly well because the promise of saving money is sometimes enough to make people take (what is to them) the "risk" of using an unfamiliar brand.

Now, of course, what REALLY almost killed AMD was Intel's criminal conduct but AMD wasn't exactly doing itself any favours:

"In late 2006, they purchased graphics card manufacturer ATI for an eye-watering $5.4 billion."
People often wonder why AMD ended up paying this much money for ATi. The simple answer is that ATi didn't want to be bought. They basically said "Ok AMD, if you want to buy us out, you're going to be paying through the nose!" and AMD did just that. It was one of those "Stupid at the time but it turned out well" situations. Paying that much for ATi was galactically stupid but it was ironically ATi and their GCN architecture that kept AMD alive during the dark FX years. If AMD hadn't bought ATi back then, it might have been ATi buying out AMD eight years later or there might be no AMD today.

We've all seen the Steam survey charts and sure, AMD's market growth is Phenomenal (see what I did there?) but AMD still only commands about ¼ of the market and that's only among gamers that use Steam. That doesn't count all of the Intel-based computers used in the commercial and industrial sectors (like the one that I'm typing on now) or all of the Intel-based "crappy" computers that are owned by Baby Boomers.

Whether Lisa Su likes it or not, AMD is still the "off-brand" in both CPUs AND GPUs, regardless of AMD's popularity among enthusiasts. AMD cannot afford to price their products as if they're market leaders because they're not even close to holding that position. Hell, from a brand-recognition standpoint, they were better off keeping the ATi branding because ATi had been the dominant video card maker in the world for decades before nVidia overtook them.

People recognised ATi as a maker of video cards and wouldn't have considered them an "off-brand" the way they do AMD. I'm willing to bet that most people in the world have no idea that AMD GPUs are ATi GPUs because why would they?

AMD's rather arrogant and stupid decision to remove the ATi branding has really worked against them. Not among enthusiasts, but among people who really don't follow the computer industry like we do. To them, a computer is just another home appliance like a washer, dryer, stove or fridge. The computer industry is as obscure to them as the home appliance industry is to most of us, perhaps even more so because baby boomers often hate computers but they sure like their washers, dryers, stoves and fridges.

How many people here know that Whirlpool owns Maytag, Amana, Inglis and makes Kenmore washers and dryers? How many people here know that Hotpoint appliances sold in Europe are made by Whirlpool but Hotpoint appliances sold in the Americas are actually made by Haier because Haier bought GE Appliances in 2016? Who here has never heard of Haier? Exactly.

AMD shouldn't be raising their prices because that would be like going to an appliance store and being asked to choose between a Whirlpool laundry set and a Haier laundry set for the same price. Even if the Haier set is better, I can guarantee you that the Whirlpool set will outsell it by at least 20 to 1 as long as the availability remains good. That's just how humans are.
 

quadibloc

Posts: 307   +194
When the Ryzen 3000 series came out, I was expecting Intel to get back on top after quickly surmounting its 10nm issues. Although it's finally got its 10nm process going, apparently there is a speed issue limiting it to use for laptop chips at the moment. Will they have their 7nm node ready by the time AMD goes to 5nm?
The cost of making chips on up-to-date process nodes are enormous, and so the time for Intel to get back in the game could run out.
When Intel recovered by switching from the Pentium 4 to the Core, it just did what AMD later did, when it switched from Bulldozer to Ryzen - it corrected a mistaken design decision. This time, it has to win a battle against the fundamental physical limits that make fabricating parts on smaller nodes more difficult and challenging, therefore the time it takes to achieve this is not really under its control. So the situation this time is not really comparable to the last time Intel was behind.
Maybe Intel should consider becoming a fab in addition to a chipmaker so that it can, like TSMC, bring in more money to keep its fab up to date. But spinning of their fab did not work that well for AMD in at least one respect - GlobalFoundries gave up on going past 14nm, thus basically leaving its purchasers holding the bag.
 

quadibloc

Posts: 307   +194
Let's suppose the new Apple silicon is better than anything x86 (which is still to be proven). Then what? Will games be ported to MacOS, so that the gaming community switches to Apple? Will we all throw our much more affordable PCs to buy uberexpensive Macs? Experience proves that it won't be the case:
Oh, absolutely.
However, that doesn't mean that there wouldn't be consequences if indeed this turned out to be true of Apple Silicon.
Once Apple showed it could be done, other ARM licensees would be encouraged to make more powerful chips. Microsoft would be encouraged to advance the transition to Windows-on-ARM.
So a few years down the road, a non-Apple ARM option would be offered to consumers. Unlike Apple customers, though, Windows customers would have a choice - and a platform change for a slight performance improvement is not all that appealing.
But while it isn't a slam dunk, eventually ARM could displace x86 if enough software becomes available for the ARM version of Windows.
 

Stoly

Posts: 91   +56
I agree, but it's also an issue of leadership & management. Lisa Su (an engineer & phenomenal manager) turned AMD around, Bob Swan (an accountant) hampered Intel's progress.

In my opinion, the biggest threat to Intel & the entire X86 ecosystem is Apple's ARM CPUs. Their recent M1 CPU was shocking in its performance and efficiency, and there's talk of a 32 core desktop version coming in 2021! If their ARM CPUs do to the desktop what they did with their laptops...it might be game over for both AMD & Intel's X86 CPUs.
Gameover how? its not like anyone else can use apple SoC.
It could be game over if nvidia managed to do the same on ARM and let everyone else have it.
 

mbrowne5061

Posts: 1,910   +1,109
Nobody is forcing Intel or nVidia to use inferior nodes.
Honestly? I wouldn't be surprised if that was the case. If you have a stubborn lead engineer who has made up their mind, and "has not been wrong before", management may indulge them, letting them keep an old node, process, or product around for longer than it should be kept.
 

zamroni111

Posts: 200   +138
AMD cannot beat Intel OR NVidia at the same process node

check out the horrible performance of their top graphics card compared to an 8nm NVidia

It's crap

They only have an advantage over Intel on core count and process

Try comparing the same core count at the same manufacturing process

Intel still kicks AMD to the curb

Do a fair comparison and see what happens

5nm EUV is even making Apple's M1 look good, but like Apple, AMD's advantage is temporary

Credit should go to the process
Rdna2 is more efficient than ampere. Just look at performance per watt in techspot reviews
 

zamroni111

Posts: 200   +138
One of the biggest mistakes that AMD did back in the Athlon days is the same mistake that they're making now. They think that the market is all about price/performance when it's not. Sure, AMD is completely on top now but their biggest mistake is that they're pricing themselves higher which is EXACTLY what they did with the Athlon 64 FX.

Sure, from a price/performance perspective it makes sense but only for enthusiasts. To date, most people have never used an AMD CPU, let alone owned one. To the knowledgeable enthusiasts like (most of) us who know that the brand name on our CPUs isn't what makes them perform, this strategy can can work.

The problem arises when the average person is asked to pay more for a brand that they're unfamiliar with. To them, it's an off-brand and they won't want to do it because it's an expensive item and people get peace of mind from things that are familiar (which is why advertising works, it makes something familiar). AMD was doing spectacularly well because the promise of saving money is sometimes enough to make people take (what is to them) the "risk" of using an unfamiliar brand.

Now, of course, what REALLY almost killed AMD was Intel's criminal conduct but AMD wasn't exactly doing itself any favours:

"In late 2006, they purchased graphics card manufacturer ATI for an eye-watering $5.4 billion."
People often wonder why AMD ended up paying this much money for ATi. The simple answer is that ATi didn't want to be bought. They basically said "Ok AMD, if you want to buy us out, you're going to be paying through the nose!" and AMD did just that. It was one of those "Stupid at the time but it turned out well" situations. Paying that much for ATi was galactically stupid but it was ironically ATi and their GCN architecture that kept AMD alive during the dark FX years. If AMD hadn't bought ATi back then, it might have been ATi buying out AMD eight years later or there might be no AMD today.

We've all seen the Steam survey charts and sure, AMD's market growth is Phenomenal (see what I did there?) but AMD still only commands about ¼ of the market and that's only among gamers that use Steam. That doesn't count all of the Intel-based computers used in the commercial and industrial sectors (like the one that I'm typing on now) or all of the Intel-based "crappy" computers that are owned by Baby Boomers.

Whether Lisa Su likes it or not, AMD is still the "off-brand" in both CPUs AND GPUs, regardless of AMD's popularity among enthusiasts. AMD cannot afford to price their products as if they're market leaders because they're not even close to holding that position. Hell, from a brand-recognition standpoint, they were better off keeping the ATi branding because ATi had been the dominant video card maker in the world for decades before nVidia overtook them.

People recognised ATi as a maker of video cards and wouldn't have considered them an "off-brand" the way they do AMD. I'm willing to bet that most people in the world have no idea that AMD GPUs are ATi GPUs because why would they?

AMD's rather arrogant and stupid decision to remove the ATi branding has really worked against them. Not among enthusiasts, but among people who really don't follow the computer industry like we do. To them, a computer is just another home appliance like a washer, dryer, stove or fridge. The computer industry is as obscure to them as the home appliance industry is to most of us, perhaps even more so because baby boomers often hate computers but they sure like their washers, dryers, stoves and fridges.

How many people here know that Whirlpool owns Maytag, Amana, Inglis and makes Kenmore washers and dryers? How many people here know that Hotpoint appliances sold in Europe are made by Whirlpool but Hotpoint appliances sold in the Americas are actually made by Haier because Haier bought GE Appliances in 2016? Who here has never heard of Haier? Exactly.

AMD shouldn't be raising their prices because that would be like going to an appliance store and being asked to choose between a Whirlpool laundry set and a Haier laundry set for the same price. Even if the Haier set is better, I can guarantee you that the Whirlpool set will outsell it by at least 20 to 1 as long as the availability remains good. That's just how humans are.
Zen 3 price will eventually go down when stocks overcome demands.
When stocks sold out quickly like what happens now, amd indeed don't need to reduce price
 

NeoMorpheus

Posts: 883   +1,677
One of the biggest mistakes that AMD did back in the Athlon days is the same mistake that they're making now. They think that the market is all about price/performance when it's not. Sure, AMD is completely on top now but their biggest mistake is that they're pricing themselves higher which is EXACTLY what they did with the Athlon 64 FX.

Sure, from a price/performance perspective it makes sense but only for enthusiasts. To date, most people have never used an AMD CPU, let alone owned one. To the knowledgeable enthusiasts like (most of) us who know that the brand name on our CPUs isn't what makes them perform, this strategy can can work.

The problem arises when the average person is asked to pay more for a brand that they're unfamiliar with. To them, it's an off-brand and they won't want to do it because it's an expensive item and people get peace of mind from things that are familiar (which is why advertising works, it makes something familiar). AMD was doing spectacularly well because the promise of saving money is sometimes enough to make people take (what is to them) the "risk" of using an unfamiliar brand.

Now, of course, what REALLY almost killed AMD was Intel's criminal conduct but AMD wasn't exactly doing itself any favours:

"In late 2006, they purchased graphics card manufacturer ATI for an eye-watering $5.4 billion."
People often wonder why AMD ended up paying this much money for ATi. The simple answer is that ATi didn't want to be bought. They basically said "Ok AMD, if you want to buy us out, you're going to be paying through the nose!" and AMD did just that. It was one of those "Stupid at the time but it turned out well" situations. Paying that much for ATi was galactically stupid but it was ironically ATi and their GCN architecture that kept AMD alive during the dark FX years. If AMD hadn't bought ATi back then, it might have been ATi buying out AMD eight years later or there might be no AMD today.

We've all seen the Steam survey charts and sure, AMD's market growth is Phenomenal (see what I did there?) but AMD still only commands about ¼ of the market and that's only among gamers that use Steam. That doesn't count all of the Intel-based computers used in the commercial and industrial sectors (like the one that I'm typing on now) or all of the Intel-based "crappy" computers that are owned by Baby Boomers.

Whether Lisa Su likes it or not, AMD is still the "off-brand" in both CPUs AND GPUs, regardless of AMD's popularity among enthusiasts. AMD cannot afford to price their products as if they're market leaders because they're not even close to holding that position. Hell, from a brand-recognition standpoint, they were better off keeping the ATi branding because ATi had been the dominant video card maker in the world for decades before nVidia overtook them.

People recognised ATi as a maker of video cards and wouldn't have considered them an "off-brand" the way they do AMD. I'm willing to bet that most people in the world have no idea that AMD GPUs are ATi GPUs because why would they?

AMD's rather arrogant and stupid decision to remove the ATi branding has really worked against them. Not among enthusiasts, but among people who really don't follow the computer industry like we do. To them, a computer is just another home appliance like a washer, dryer, stove or fridge. The computer industry is as obscure to them as the home appliance industry is to most of us, perhaps even more so because baby boomers often hate computers but they sure like their washers, dryers, stoves and fridges.

How many people here know that Whirlpool owns Maytag, Amana, Inglis and makes Kenmore washers and dryers? How many people here know that Hotpoint appliances sold in Europe are made by Whirlpool but Hotpoint appliances sold in the Americas are actually made by Haier because Haier bought GE Appliances in 2016? Who here has never heard of Haier? Exactly.

AMD shouldn't be raising their prices because that would be like going to an appliance store and being asked to choose between a Whirlpool laundry set and a Haier laundry set for the same price. Even if the Haier set is better, I can guarantee you that the Whirlpool set will outsell it by at least 20 to 1 as long as the availability remains good. That's just how humans are.

Spot on!

I remember those days.

I had my Athlon 64 and was dying to get a X2, but AMD was actually charging per core!

They charged exactly double the price for a X2 CPU, compared to the one core CPU.

I just watched the reviews of the 6900XT and shake my head in disbelief and said to my self, "not again, AMD, not again".

They need to cut prices on all of their new products (ZEN3 and RDN2), instead of going greedy like now.

Then again, given that TMSC cannot produce anything more right now, AMD is simply gouging the desperate ones.

Hopefully down the line, but soon, they will cut prices.
 

Tom Yum

Posts: 114   +250
Spot on!

I remember those days.

I had my Athlon 64 and was dying to get a X2, but AMD was actually charging per core!

They charged exactly double the price for a X2 CPU, compared to the one core CPU.

I just watched the reviews of the 6900XT and shake my head in disbelief and said to my self, "not again, AMD, not again".

They need to cut prices on all of their new products (ZEN3 and RDN2), instead of going greedy like now.

Then again, given that TMSC cannot produce anything more right now, AMD is simply gouging the desperate ones.

Hopefully down the line, but soon, they will cut prices.
I just don't understand this position that AMD must be the budget champ regardless of performance for the end of time, but NVIDIA and Intel can keep charging how they like. AMD is currently capacity constrained, they are selling basically everything they can get out of TSMC. Cutting prices now would do nothing other than reduce revenue and profit at a time they need every single $ they can get to fund R&D to keep ahead of the Intel/Nvidia juggernauts who are many times AMD's size.

The other thing, you can't write a reasonable article about 'the last time AMD was ahead of intel' without mentioning Intel's illegal practises to shut AMD out from the lucrative OEM business. That was rife during the P4/early Core era and it significantly impacted AMDs ability to grow revenue and profit at a time they were more competitive. I remember in 2008 you could buy a home server from Dell with a Q6600 that was cheaper than buying just the Q6600 from a store, that was how large the subsidies intel was giving Dell in exchange for not using AMD processors. Effectively people were shucking Dell PC's to get the Intel processors because it was cheaper.

That then took away from their ability to keep up R&D spend and basically guaranteed that Intel would be able to muscle past. Remember, we are talking about a company (Intel) that until recently was making more profit in a quarter than AMD made revenue in a year, that is how lobsided the market was (and still is to an extent). Getting mad at AMD for trying to increase margin on higher performing parts in that context seems irrational and short sighted.
 
Last edited:

Bullwinkle M

Posts: 551   +439
Gameover how? its not like anyone else can use apple SoC.
It could be game over if nvidia managed to do the same on ARM and let everyone else have it.

Anyone can do what Apple did with the M1

Here is what Apple did to make the M1 run X86 code so fast >

Start the video @ 1:03:20

 

Michael7

Posts: 68   +56
Well, things are different now. Firstly, Apple has entered the market with its very efficient ARM M1 chip, which will only get better as this is their first design, but more importantly AMD is also working on their own ARM chip, which is rumoured to be in advanced development stage.
Secondly Nvdia might also enter the market once they buy ARM so at there will be soon very competitive ARM design offering running Windows.
And lastly Intel has been unable to catch up to TSMC for a long time now and it does not look like it's going to change soon.
Intel will surely step up their game but in the short term things will not turn better for them as next Zen will come out at 5nm node while intel will release its next 2 chips at 10nm node.
 

SixTymes

Posts: 155   +102
"every time Intel looked inferior, it responded swiftly and effectively." and that is what makes this time different, it has no recourse to respond "swiftly." I for one don't hate Intel like many weird people do, amd "fan boys" or "fan boi" are a bit over the top with rage over computer chips these days, acting un-civilized over it, that's gotta tell you something different is going on, and it isn't good. Besides that, long term, if we lose Intel, or they become unable to keep up, then amd will be the new Intel, and consumers will suffer, again, there wont be proper competition. Hey Intel, forget 7nm, plan to go right for 5nm if possible.
 

Stoly

Posts: 91   +56
"every time Intel looked inferior, it responded swiftly and effectively." and that is what makes this time different, it has no recourse to respond "swiftly." I for one don't hate Intel like many weird people do, amd "fan boys" or "fan boi" are a bit over the top with rage over computer chips these days, acting un-civilized over it, that's gotta tell you something different is going on, and it isn't good. Besides that, long term, if we lose Intel, or they become unable to keep up, then amd will be the new Intel, and consumers will suffer, again, there wont be proper competition. Hey Intel, forget 7nm, plan to go right for 5nm if possible.
remember when the plan was to skip 10nm and go straight to 7nm? :p:p
 

Bullwinkle M

Posts: 551   +439
What would happen if Intel keeps it's desktop roadmap as it is but starts manufacturing notebooks with custom ARM chips using TSMC's latest and greatest node ?

What happens when NVidia competes against Apple's M1 ?

There is nothing stopping ANYONE (including INTEL) from competing with Apple's M1

Razer could even compete "successfuly" against the M1 by licensing NVidia platforms and adding RGB to everything