RAM vs Cache, which processor?

  gsamsa 12:19 10 Aug 2007

Hi everyone!

I'm about to buy a new computer from dell and I'm not sure how much cache go for? I'm home user and I will use mainly for downloading and office (unfortunately tools like powerpoint are far from optimal and sometimes requires a lot of memory).

So, if I get 2Gb DDR2 667 SDRAM, which cache should I choose to avoid a bottleneck? 2MB, 4 MB, 8MB?

Should I go for AMD Athlon 64 X2 Dual Core or Intel Core 2 Duo E6550 processor? I don't think the processor matters much for office or downloading, isn't it?

As anyone I want the best performance vs cost, usually there is an optimal and above that the cost increases much more than the performance.

Thanks in advance.


PS: I've been trying to find a simple answer on the web and I couldn't.

  paul€ 13:08 10 Aug 2007

It will not matter in relationship to ram V CPU cache.

What you should do is to buy the fastest ram your motherboard can support and then look to see if it supports dual channel mode. If it does match the ram for dual working.

As to the cache for a CPU, obviously the higher ammount of cache the better performance pound for pound for a simmilar cpu. A 2mb cache would usually give a dual core cpu being able to store 1Mb preload for each core. the 4Mb will be 2Mb per core. The 8Mb will be 2Mb per core for a quad core cpu.

Buy the best cpu you can afford. If you are into gaming for the AMD, for raw cpu power go for the intel.

  keef66 13:11 10 Aug 2007

you mean the amount of cache on the cpu chip? 2mb will be fine for your needs. Both AMD X2 and Core 2 duo are dual core cpu's and there's not much to choose between them.

The Athlon 64 X2 4000+ is about the best bang / buck in the AMD lineup, but the E6550 you mention would be quicker.

  keef66 13:15 10 Aug 2007

click here

compare different cpu's running a range of benchmarks

  DieSse 13:17 10 Aug 2007

You can't compare cache sizes on different processors directly - a processor from one family with a 2MB cache may be faster than a processor from a different family with a 4MB cache, for instance.

Basically you can only go with which system is best overall.

You can't directly choose how much cache there is - you can only buy one type of processor or another.

Both you mention will be far more powerful than you need for office work and downloading, so stop agonising about processor type and look for overall good value.

  gsamsa 13:14 13 Aug 2007

Thanks a lot, I got it clear now, especially with those benchmarks.

Sorry if I'm agonising about something unimportant, I guess it's because I come from old times when the used to sell processors with 128k cache and supposingly more speed (233MHz).

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