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  #1  
08-07-2005, 06:25 AM
nicksteel nicksteel is offline
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My old HP P4 2.53 is beginning to show its age and I need to replace it. I want something not too exotic, but dependable and fast.

Need some expert comments and/or advice concerning a good replacement machine from someone who has recently gone through the throes of computer replacement. I'm trying to keep cost at $1000 or so. I'm not committed to HP machines, of course.

I use mainly with PVR250 for TV captures and encoding.

Following are specs for another HP from Best Buy as reference.

Quote:
AMD Athlon™ 64 processor 3500+* with 64-bit platform; 2000MHz system bus with Enhanced Virus Protection for Windows XP SP2, and HyperTransport™ Technology

1GB PC3200 DDR SDRAM for multitasking power, expandable to 4GB

Multiformat DVD±RW/CD-RW drive with double-layer support records up to 8.5GB of data or 4 hours of video using compatible DVD+R DL media; also supports LightScribe direct-disc labels using compatible LightScribe media; 16x max. DVD-ROM drive

512KB L2 cache memory for efficient system processing
250GB Serial ATA hard drive (7200 rpm)
ATI RADEON XPRESS 200 graphics with 128MB shared video memory

Front-mounted 9-in-1 digital media reader supports CompactFlash Type I/II, SmartMedia, Memory Stick, Memory Stick PRO, Secure Digital, MultiMediaCard, xD-Picture Card and Microdrive

2 IEEE 1394 (FireWire) ports and 7 high-speed USB 2.0 ports, both front and rear accessible, for fast digital data transfer and easy peripheral connectivity

Built-in 10/100Base-T Ethernet networking interface; 56 Kbps high-speed modem

Microsoft Windows XP Media Center Edition 2005 operating system preinstalled
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  #2  
08-07-2005, 06:35 AM
Zyphon Zyphon is offline
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I want one of those AMD Dual core X264 CPU's they are supposed to rock and from what I have read outperform there Intel equivilents.
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  #3  
08-07-2005, 07:23 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zyphon
I want one of those AMD Dual core X264 CPU's they are supposed to rock and from what I have read outperform there Intel equivilents.
Yeah the Athlon 64 X2 is a nice bit of silicon, the new budget end of the range is being released atm 3800+ and 4000+ which should clock in around £100 cheaper than the current 4200 model. You only really gain an advantage in multi-cpu aware applications though, if the programs your using are aimed at a single cpu then only one core will take the strain (prime examples being games) in which case they end up slower than a single core model (a 3800+ X2 being basically two 3200+ bolted together).

Anyway AMD are supposed to be revamping the line, adding DDR2 support and changing the socket again to a 940 pin layout called M2 rather than 939 but it wont be pin-for-pin compatible with the current Opteron 940 pin socket. I would personally suggest a stock single core Athlon 64 (3500 or 3700) on a 939 and wait till the xmas period, X2 prices should drop considerably around then and you can upgrade the CPU and sell the old one on ebay.

Quote:
Originally Posted by nicksteel
Need some expert comments and/or advice concerning a good replacement machine from someone who has recently gone through the throes of computer replacement.
Have you considered building it yourself? You could probably salvage parts from your current system (hard disk, dvd drives etc) thus only really require a motherboard, cpu and possibly case and ram. Make it a lot cheaper than buying a whole new pc. Go with AMD Athlon 64 for the cpu, motherboard wise if you want AGP get an nForce3 board from DFI (socket 939) and if you want PCI-e then get a nForce4 board, Asus do some really nice ones.
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  #4  
08-07-2005, 07:23 AM
nicksteel nicksteel is offline
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Have 4 candidates so far, HP's with:

AMD Athlon 64 3500+ $680
P4 630 $800
P4 540 $980
Pentium D 820 $1000

Which is faster, more bang for buck?
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  #5  
08-07-2005, 07:47 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nicksteel
Have 4 candidates so far, HP's with:

AMD Athlon 64 3500+ $680
P4 630 $800
P4 540 $980
Pentium D 820 $1000

Which is faster, more bang for buck?
The Athlon 64's generally outperform Intel parts by a considerable margin except media encoding, Intel's with Hyper-Threading generally come out on top in that war, but not by much. The Pentium D is a dual core model btw, so you're really getting two cpu's rather than one, both clocked at 2.8ghz, the 540 is a 3.2ghz model and the 630 is a 3.0ghz model both single core. The same thing that applies to the AMD X2 about multi-cpu aware programs also applies to the Pentium D.

In a head to head the Athlon 64 3500+ will outperform the 630 and 540 Intel parts quite easily, it will be closer with a Pentium D especially if your software can make use of both cores. But in general terms I would still say the AMD part has the edge.

Have a look here they put an Athlon 64 3500+, Pentium 4 630 and a Pentium D 820 in a head to head, should give you the info you want.
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08-07-2005, 08:22 AM
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My greatest demand on the machine is multi processing. For example, I often run a video editor, encoder, tv capture and authoring programs at the same time. I know memory size is very important, but need processer best suited to this. The dual core is interesting, but will it handle well with windowsxp or do I need another operating system, say windows 64?
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08-07-2005, 09:17 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nicksteel
My greatest demand on the machine is multi processing. For example, I often run a video editor, encoder, tv capture and authoring programs at the same time. I know memory size is very important, but need processer best suited to this. The dual core is interesting, but will it handle well with windowsxp or do I need another operating system, say windows 64?
You will need at minimum Windows XP Professional or Windows 2000 Professional as these support multiple cpu's. The 64bit edition of Windows XP should also support multiple cpu's correctly.

If you use XP Home edition then it will utilise only a single core as it's only uni-processor aware which defeats the point in having a dual core cpu

On a side note, Windows 64bit edition is not fully mature, and driver support for most peices of hardware is lacking, a lot is still in beta if it exists at all. So I would stick with the stock 32bit XP Pro, 64bit Linux is a different story though
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  #8  
08-07-2005, 09:58 AM
nicksteel nicksteel is offline
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Are you saying that

Microsoft Windows XP Professional Pro 64

will work with both processors, or that

Microsoft Windows XP Professional Pro (32)

will also?

I am leaning towards the Gateway 835GM with Pentium D 820. They have a package with a 17" LCD for $999. Will probably pick up something today.
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  #9  
08-07-2005, 10:12 AM
scrappy scrappy is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nicksteel
Are you saying that

Microsoft Windows XP Professional Pro 64

will work with both processors, or that

Microsoft Windows XP Professional Pro (32)

will also?

I am leaning towards the Gateway 835GM with Pentium D 820. They have a package with a 17" LCD for $999. Will probably pick up something today.
The professional version of Windows XP (both 32bit and 64bit) will work with both processor cores in the Pentium D 820.
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  #10  
08-08-2005, 08:08 AM
nicksteel nicksteel is offline
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Went with the Gateway 835GM with Pentium D 820. Bought with printer and 17" LCD for $999.

Like it so far - it is faster than my P4 2.53. Need to install XP Pro later, as it came with XP Media. Had to remove a scad of trash software (like Office 2003 student with 60 day trial, NERO OEM, etc) and reload with full versions. The usual stuff.

It is always nice to start up a new clean machine, but a headache with loading. Am still in the throes of loading tmpgenc, dvd2avi, etc. and getting tmpgenc to recognize everything. It's been several years since I installed everything on the old machine.

Is there any software that will show information about both processors while they are running? Just curious, as I will be loading it down as soon as I get my software transferred.

Thanks for the advice.
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  #11  
08-08-2005, 09:59 AM
scrappy scrappy is offline
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If you just want a graph and some details hit ctrl+alt+delete and bring up XP's task manager. On the performance tab each cpu core should have it's own usage graph. If you want a third party tool you could try PowwwerSoft CPU Monitor which is dual core aware >> download <<
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  #12  
08-08-2005, 10:17 AM
Prodater64 Prodater64 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by scrappy
... ctrl+alt+delete and bring up XP's task manager.
OT
It seems that you know a little bit about XP, so, some time ago my task manager "lost" all its windows menu and options. Now only popups the process window. I cant change to programs or cpu use, etc.
Do you know how can I to repair it?

http://www.kvcd.net/forum/viewtopic....asc&highlight=

END OT
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08-08-2005, 10:31 AM
scrappy scrappy is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Prodater64
Quote:
Originally Posted by scrappy
... ctrl+alt+delete and bring up XP's task manager.
OT
It seems that you know a little bit about XP, so, some time ago my task manager "lost" all its windows menu and options. Now only popups the process window. I cant change to programs or cpu use, etc.
Do you know how can I to repair it?

http://www.kvcd.net/forum/viewtopic....asc&highlight=

END OT
Yes it's in whats called Tiny Footprint mode. Double click in the border area just outside the list and it will return to normal.
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08-08-2005, 10:33 AM
Dialhot Dialhot is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by scrappy
Yes it's in whats called Tiny Footprint mode. Double click in the border area just outside the list and it will return to normal.
Oh my god ! I never saw that before Pro will be happy to see learn that !

My turn now
I'm looking for a tiny app to monitor the actual freq that my processor is running. I have a laptop and the CPU can slow down (from 1.6 Ghz to 600 Mhz) to reduce the power used but also to prevent some heat problem. And recently I suspect it to go too often to a lower speed. I want to control that.

Anyone knows ?
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08-08-2005, 10:35 AM
scrappy scrappy is offline
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Have to admit it is a somewhat daft feature imho, anyways glad I could help
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08-08-2005, 11:14 AM
Prodater64 Prodater64 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dialhot
Oh my god ! I never saw that before Pro will be happy to see learn that
Llike me.
Thanks scrappy.
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08-08-2005, 11:14 AM
scrappy scrappy is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dialhot
I'm looking for a tiny app to monitor the actual freq that my processor is running. I have a laptop and the CPU can slow down (from 1.6 Ghz to 600 Mhz) to reduce the power used but also to prevent some heat problem. And recently I suspect it to go too often to a lower speed. I want to control that.

Anyone knows ?
If you right click on My Computer and select properties, it will display the cpu's current speed.. Along the lines of

Intel Pentium M Processor 1.6Ghz
599Mhz, 1.00 GB of RAM

The cpu's top speed being 1.6Ghz and the current speed being 599Mhz. You have limited control over this feature with Windows via the Power Options applet in control panel, change the scheme from laptop to something else and the cpu wont step down. For more fine grained control you will require a tool from the laptop manufacturer, to let you specify min and max operating speeds, I don't believe there is a general tool available to let you do that though. The cpu should step up though the more strain you put on it.

If you want this graphed and some extra information run 'perfmon' via start -> run. Right click on the graph and select Add Counter, under performance object select ProcessorPerformance, the list below will update and an option for '% of maximum frequency' will be shown, select it and hit add, you can add 'processor frequency' too. Highlight it again in the list below the graph and it will show the last speed that was used, the current speed, and the maximum speed as a percentage. ProcessorFrequency will show the info as Mhz rather than a percentage.

If ProcessorPerformance isn't listed, choose WMI Objects and add HiPerf Classes, then close the Add Counters window. Right click the graph again and add counters, and the ProcessorPerformance option should be listed now.

Note that this only really works with cpu's that have speed throttling ability, if you try it on a normal desktop cpu the options wont be available.
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  #18  
08-08-2005, 11:22 AM
Prodater64 Prodater64 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dialhot
I'm looking for a tiny app to monitor the actual freq that my processor is running
What kind of processor?

http://www.softpedia.com/progScreens...hot-16122.html

http://www.softpedia.com/get/System/...-Utility.shtml
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  #19  
08-08-2005, 11:45 AM
Dialhot Dialhot is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Prodater64
What kind of processor?
The problem is more in the system than the processor. I forgot to tell that this is under win2000, and not winXP.
Tricks like the first one given by scrappy :
Quote:
If you right click on My Computer and select properties, it will display the cpu's current speed.. Along the lines of

Intel Pentium M Processor 1.6Ghz
599Mhz, 1.00 GB of RAM
.. do not work.

Quote:
Originally Posted by scrappy
You have limited control over this feature with Windows via the Power Options applet in control panel, change the scheme from laptop to something else and the cpu wont step down.
Unfortunally this is not the case when the low speed of for overheat protection (when the fan/cooler is too dirty). When my encoding takes 2x the time they use to take, I can't suspect over thing than CPU speed.

But I will look into all the remainder of both of your post. Thanks.

Edit: the last update (for P4) of intel's tool was what I needed. I knew it before but did not remember what it was . Thanks Pro ans scrappy.
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  #20  
08-09-2005, 07:13 AM
nicksteel nicksteel is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by scrappy
Quote:
Originally Posted by nicksteel
Are you saying that

Microsoft Windows XP Professional Pro 64

will work with both processors, or that

Microsoft Windows XP Professional Pro (32)

will also?

I am leaning towards the Gateway 835GM with Pentium D 820. They have a package with a 17" LCD for $999. Will probably pick up something today.
The professional version of Windows XP (both 32bit and 64bit) will work with both processor cores in the Pentium D 820.
I've ordered XP Pro (32). Right now (with XP Home that came pre-installed), when I look at task mgr, it shows 2 CPU's running, as does PowwwerSoft CPU Monitor.
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