Launched on November 20th 2000, today is Intel Pentium 4's 20th birthday.
Seeing CDPR recommend a 3600 (which I have) and a 3080 for ultra 4k RT, I am perfectly fine being a waitfag and getting a used 5950x+6800xt when zen4/hopper/yuge Navi comes out and consoomers can't help themselves.I know, but the 3950X is still a capable CPU
Seeing CDPR recommend a 3600 (which I have) and a 3080 for ultra 4k RT, I am perfectly fine being a waitfag and getting a used 5950x+6800xt when zen4/hopper/yuge Navi comes out and consoomers can't help themselves.
Ahh Netburst, a massive pancake of shit on Intel's face and something that makes their current 14nm conundrum look tame. The pursuit of clock speed above all else tanked the design and made it totally worthless. Also worth noting, the only reason it was any good at number crunching was because each core had two ALUs instead of the typical one in a desperate attempt to keep data flowing through it (this is also why power consumption as so horrid).I... I had one.
There I was at the Old Pigsty, trucking along nicely since 1998 with my Pentium 200MMX which, despite the memes, was a good CPU right up until the year 2000. Could play Unreal Tournament, Tiberian Sun, all the Quakes, System Shock 2, and Baldur's Gate no problem. Then, we got an upgrade! We trucked out to PC World ('member PC World?) in mid 2001 and got ourselves a lovely new prebuilt from Packard Bell in a rather swish blue case. In fact, it looked just like this. GeForce 2 GPU, 256 MB RAM, 40 GB hard drive... and a Pentium 4 at 1.5 GHZ.
So, bragged about it the next day to school friends. One of them told me he had an Athlon 900. This was a CPU that was a year older and went up against the Pentium III at the time, but he reckoned it was faster. But me, being the brainless proto-consoomer I was, say, "is not! Yours is only 900 MHz while mine's 1,500 MHz! S'there!" So we agreed to go away and benchmark it.
It was ogre. The P4 was humiliated.
Turns out that the Pentium 4 was really, really fast at number crunching and performing loads of mathematical and logical operations so long as it didn't have to rely upon other things or carry out too many if/then/else type operations. This is because it had a yuge pipeline and this was how they got it to for the time dizzying high speeds. But if it predicted the wrong branch, it had to stop, flush the pipeline, and start again.
Despite this, when I went off to university I acquired a Pentium 4 based laptop (which oddly enough had a desktop class P4 at 2.8 GHz) and so never learned. Its battery life was shit and there was a torrent of hot air permanently emerging from the side vents.
But yeah, the Pentium 4 was an architecture that started out poorly, became adequate two years too late with the Northwood core, and then took a hard turn into awfulness again with Prescott and Cedar Mill which had the added fun bonus of cooking themselves. Yet despite this, there was worse. The Pentium 4 based Celerons, for instance. In 2010 I started my training contract and the PCs at the firm were all old XP based boxes running Celeron D processors. Despite the name, these were single core and gimped versions of Prescott Pentium 4s. They are possibly the worst CPU I have ever, ever, used. Literally having Word, Excel, our case management software, and Firefox open all at once would bog them to rage-inducing levels, and having more than three Firefox tabs open at once would make them lock up totally for about two or three minutes.
EDIT: If you want to experience the agony of the Celeron D, you can buy TWO for literally less than the cost of a pint.
In my case, Dell went even cheaper, using a SINGLE CHANNEL memory controller on top of a celeron D.
They still seem to be made for those tiny Micro-ATX systems where all you need is "some sort of CPU".Do they even still make them? And if so, who buys them?
They are remarkably cheap, usually under $10. And once again I am jealous over how cheap retro hardware in the UK appears to be VS the US.View attachment 1742020
p4s are in this weird position like a lot of early 2000s hardware where they aren't ancient enough to be considered "retro", but they're too old and useless to actually be used for much anymore... i have seen them used in plenty of winxp period piece rigs, but i'm guessing they're still fairly cheap and plentiful
i've never heard of amd's xp-era motherboards being egregiously awful - it is fun to remember tho that there was once a world in which via, nvidia and ati actually fucking made mobo chipsetsThey are remarkably cheap, usually under $10. And once again I am jealous over how cheap retro hardware in the UK appears to be VS the US.
Their one big advantage is motherboard support. AMD motherboards from this era are Fucking Fucking Fucking Bad Bad Bad Bad. AMD didnt even have their own chipset at the time, instead relying on the likes of via and nvidia for that role. AMD systems never had the stability of intel systems, and if one is building a XP retro PC today and wants proper 32 bit compatibility for 16 bit hybrid games, the Pentium 4 is a LOT easier to build around with limited information today.
That and AMD never bothered to release Athlon XPs faster then 2.23 GHz when the arch could easily hit 3 GHz and at that speed crushed every Northwood Pentium 4 ever made.
I knew I had an old dusty box sitting in storage. Look at that Firewire 800.i've never heard of amd's xp-era motherboards being egregiously awful - it is fun to remember tho that there was once a world in which via, nvidia and ati actually fucking made mobo chipsets
Fellow gigabyte user as well. Though went to Asrock this time around because I couldn't pass up a great deal on an x570 Taichi.I knew I had an old dusty box sitting in storage. Look at that Firewire 800.
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nvFirewall could be a nightmare that would BSOD the system, I think torrent traffic absolutely wrecked it, but there was two ethernet ports so it was easy to switch(after some angry googling).
15 years later I'm still buying Gigabyte but now they're too cheap to put shitty donut spaceships flying into a donut space station on the box. Palit probably abandoned the happy frog as well.
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What a dismal future this turned out to be.
One thing I think I remember about nForce4 was that they had a less sketchy SATA controller and that's why I went with the nForce instead of other chipsets. nForce used a sketchy PATA controller instead.
SATA, USB and WiFi could be a nightmare and as a consumer you never knew which makes and models of chips you would get on a motherboard so a larger brand umbrella like nForce(or Intel putting their foot down with Centrino) inspired confidence. Having one driver package for everything was a relief.
i've never heard of amd's xp-era motherboards being egregiously awful - it is fun to remember tho that there was once a world in which via, nvidia and ati actually fucking made mobo chipsets
I remember having a Chaintech board that let me set CPU speed multiplier etc. in the BIOS (as opposed to jumpering) first time I've ever seen that back then. It didn't work well. That was a Pentium.
ALI chipsets where in a lot of embedded x86 and could often be pushed to the absolute limit, SiS used to be good value for the money and they also made an x86-SoC, the Vortex86. Cyrix also was pretty good value for the money in general, if you needed a cheap upgrade for a system you already had. AMD based their later SoCs on their MediaGX line. intel chipsets could be surprisingly dodgy sometimes and expensive, and often they weren't that good value for the price because intel just loved to nickel and dime features. (intel BX chipset was killer though) If you go farther in the past things get even more interesting. AMD used to be a big electronics parts supplier, programmable gate arrays for example. Western Digital used to make graphics chips, quite decent ones even. This stuff used to be very interesting and you had a plethora of hardware that all had slightly different features and shopping around and reading up on it was sometimes a science in itself. Chipset also totally could affect your computer's speed, sometimes quite dramatically, at the same specs. Today the selection just isn't that big, you buy the bigger number, you get a faster computer. More reliable but also kinda more boring. Doe VIA even still make CPUs?
Anybody remembers intels fuckery with the coppermine P3s that were actually unstable above 1 Ghz? They were also the first to implement software-readable hardware serial numbers on the P3 in 1999 which caused quite the uproar. (funny and almost quaint considering what a nightmare that stuff is now) Intel was always shady AF.
Maybe I'm a bit biased. They were not the worst thing ever, however they did suffer from a lack of definitive bottom line. Some were unstable, some had horrible drivers, some had limited CPU support, ece. There was no one board that was overall good like intel, where you could get a stable board that had good drivers and good CPU support.i've never heard of amd's xp-era motherboards being egregiously awful - it is fun to remember tho that there was once a world in which via, nvidia and ati actually fucking made mobo chipsets