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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm just curious as I'm putting together an HTPC and am trying to decide between 1/2/4 core processors, which apps take advantage of multiple cores?


In case you're wondering, I'll use the HTPC for internet streaming video, cd and movie storage/playback, blu-ray playback and OTA video recording/playback.


Thanks!
 

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As mentioned you should have at least a dual core. Unless you know you have an app that will use more then two cores concurently I don't suggest a quad core since the individual cores in the dual cores run at a higher frequency then the individual cores in a quad core do.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by walford /forum/post/16960059


As mentioned you should have at least a dual core. Unless you know you have an app that will use more then two cores concurently I don't suggest a quad core since the individual cores in the dual cores run at a higher frequency then the individual cores in a quad core do.

Are you saying dual cores are as fast as quad clock for clock? What clock do you recommend?


Mike
 

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I have a 2ghz core 2 duo in my HTPC and haven't had any problems with playback of HD material.


However since I have the capability of hardware acceleration I just use that.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by PanamaMike /forum/post/16960128


Are you saying dual cores are as fast as quad clock for clock? What clock do you recommend?


Mike

You need to divide the clock speed by the number of cores to find out the speed of each core.

If you have a dual core where each core can process 10 instructions per seciond that would be equal in total processing power to a quad core that can process 5 instructions per second so they would provide exactly the same perfomace but only if the work being done can concurrently be done using with all 4 cores. Other wise any work being done would always be done faster on the dual core system.

It is very hard to build systems that have 4 cores all of which run at the maximum speed of cores on a dual core system since the amount of heat generated would be doubled.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by erandmckay /forum/post/16960072


Thanks. I was wondering about dual vs quad. Makes life easier (and cheaper).

Unless you are reencoding 1080p down to 720p, I would say you would be perfectly fine with a dual. I have an E8400 and never had any problems with file playback or ripping disks.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by walford /forum/post/16961484


You need to divide the clock speed by the number of cores to find out the speed of each core.

If you have a dual core where each core can process 10 instructions per seciond that would be equal in total processing power to a quad core that can process 5 instructions per second so they would provide exactly the same perfomace but only if the work being done can concurrently be done using with all 4 cores. Other wise any work being done would always be done faster on the dual core system.

It is very hard to build systems that have 4 cores all of which run at the maximum speed of cores on a dual core system since the amount of heat generated would be doubled.

Wow....Um no.

If you take a Core2Duo at 2.6ghz and a Core2Quad at 2.6ghz and run a single threaded program, the results will be identical. If you run a program that can only take advantage of two cores the results will be identical. If you take a program that can run on 4 cores, then the quad will be faster.

A C2Q has four cores, each one identical to the cores on a Core2Duo. Infact it is essentially two Core2Duos with hardware to bridge them together.

It is true that you can acheive higher clock speeds with a dualcore due to lower heat generation, so if you take single threaded programs and run them on a 3.6ghz dual it will be faster than a 3.0ghz quad.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Thrillho /forum/post/16961706


Wow....Um no.

If you take a Core2Duo at 2.6ghz and a Core2Quad at 2.6ghz and run a single threaded program, the results will be identical. If you run a program that can only take advantage of two cores the results will be identical. If you take a program that can run on 4 cores, then the quad will be faster.

A C2Q has four cores, each one identical to the cores on a Core2Duo. Infact it is essentially two Core2Duos with hardware to bridge them together.

It is true that you can acheive higher clock speeds with a dualcore due to lower heat generation, so if you take single threaded programs and run them on a 3.6ghz dual it will be faster than a 3.0ghz quad.

That was my understanding. However, I wasn't sure if different CPU versions had different core architectures. Is an E5200 core equivalent to a Q9550 core? I don't think so because the Q has additional instructions not available to the E5200, not to mention the Q9550 has a hefty cache...but that's another matter.


Mike
 

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Thank you for correcting my misunderstanding and for confirming that a user may want a dual cores with higher clock speeds then are avalable with quad cores due to the heat generation isssue.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Yes, thanks for all the information. At this point I'm going to go with a dual core vs a quad core. I'll be posting specs to get some feedback.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by PanamaMike /forum/post/16961778


That was my understanding. However, I wasn't sure if different CPU versions had different core architectures. Is an E5200 core equivalent to a Q9550 core? I don't think so because the Q has additional instructions not available to the E5200, not to mention the Q9550 has a hefty cache...but that's another matter.


Mike

They do differ slightly in features but not really in architecture. The amount of cache and features like Virtualization acceleration do vary across lines and the older e4xxx and e/q6xxx are built using a larger die size so they produce more heat than the 5xxx, 7xxx, 8xxx, and 9xxx.
 

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I have one HTPC with a Q6600 quad at 3GHz, and one with an E5200 dual core at stock 2.5ghz.


They are both fast enough for HTPC use.


But the Quad is a really nice PC. I can convert a BD to mkv while watching a 1080p mkv.


4 cores are awesome.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Thrillho /forum/post/16962032


They do differ slightly in features but not really in architecture. The amount of cache and features like Virtualization acceleration do vary across lines and the older e4xxx and e/q6xxx are built using a larger die size so they produce more heat than the 5xxx, 7xxx, 8xxx, and 9xxx.

One distinct factor is the inclusion of the SSE4.1 instruction set in the 45nm line. This is of some significances if you are using some of the popular Avisynth scripts or some of the experimental FFDShow builds.
 

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I am debating a similar issue.


I have a C2D E6750 with the Abit IP35 Pro and I am trying to figure out the best way to use them. I currently have them as a quad clearqam tuner HTPC running Win 7 RC.


I need to build a media server running WHS and plan on using either the Norco 4020 or 4220. I can't decide if I should shift them to the media server and then buy a new board and processor like a quad core for the HTPC. Or if they are fine in the HTPC and just buy a similar setup for the media server.
 

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as for applications that use 4 cores, I found it very handy to do my CD ripping on my quad core system using DBpoweramp.

It will rip a track, encode a track, verify a track, and use whatever core is open.

I have had it use all 4 cores quite often while ripping a CD and encoding that into flac.It rips a long track, it will start ripping another track while encoding the 1st. If the 1st track is long, and the next few are short, it could be encoding 3 or even 4 tracks at the same time. On my dual core HTPC, it would only work on 2 at a time, rip one and encode another. I found many times where the disk wasnt being read because both cores were busy encoding.
 
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