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Should I go Athlon64 or Barton?



 
 
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Old September 8th 04, 08:02 AM
Tony Hill
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Default Should I go Athlon64 or Barton?

On Tue, 07 Sep 2004 15:41:02 +0100, Franklin
wrote:

Hi guys, after several years I have run out of power on my old 700
MHz Duron system and now want something new.

I don't play games, I am not a power user, I don't do video or audio
editing. I just surf and do some small office activities.

I had thought of upgrading my current system to a T'bred 2400+ but
the PSU is not big enough and the case is a bit small, so I will
build a new system instead.

A Barton 2500+ (with maybe an Asus A78NX mobo) is more than enough
power for me but am I buying into obsolescence?


If you buy a computer you are buying into obsolescence, regardless of
what you put in the thing.

Athlon64 is where
the growth will be and furture residual values will be higher than
for Barton.


The difference at resale time is likely to be rather negligible.

Are there any other advantages of Athlon64 for a user like me other
than that?


It will be faster, though will you notice it? Perhaps a more
important question though, is the price difference small enough that
you might as well go for the higher-end chip?

Are there particular disadvantages ... e.g. more expensive mobos
for athlon64? more expensive memory?


More expensive motherboard, yes. Memory shouldn't really be more
expensive, in some cases it might actually be cheaper. A Barton 2500+
in an nForce2 board (such as Asus' A7N8X) will use dual-channel
memory, ie buy it in pairs. An Athlon64 2800+ (regardless of
motherboard) will use single channel memory. Price shouldn't change
much though, except maybe if you want 2GB+ or more in the system.


Here's a quick breakdown of prices for you from www.newegg.com.
There's no particular need for any other component to be different
between these two systems, so I'll just list the processor,
motherboard and memory.

Barton:
AthlonXP 2500+ $93
Asus A7N8X $72
2 x 256MB PC3200 $83
-----------
Total $248

Athlon64:
Athlon64 2800+ $146
MSI K8N Neo-FSR $107
512MB PC3200 $69
-----------
Total $322


Depending on the exact config of your systems the numbers might be
skewed a bit one way or the other, but you're most likely looking at a
difference of somewhere around $75. Personally I would say that this
$75 is money well spent for pretty much anyone except those on the
tightest budget.

The extra performance isn't going to blow you away by any means, but
it'll be there, and there will probably be some application down the
line where you'll appreciate the extra performance of the Athlon64.
Add to that the potential to run 64-bit software and operation systems
should the need (or desire) arise and the tiny extra added security
afforded by the NX-bit in the Athlon64 (helps prevent buffer overflow
attacks, a la MS Blaster, Sasser, etc.) and it makes sense to me.


On the flip side, if you decide that the extra cost is not worth it
for you and opt to stick for a Barton chip, you might want to check
out the 2600+. The above mentioned Newegg prices have the AthlonXP
2600+ for $95, or only $2 more than the 2500+.

-------------
Tony Hill
hilla underscore 20 at yahoo dot ca
 




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