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Review: AMD 950MHz Thunderbird Athlon (Page 3/6)

Posted: December 4, 2000
Written by: Tuan "Solace" Nguyen


SYSMark 2000

With SYSMark 2000, we get a taste of how the processor will perform in real world applications. The 950MHz Thunderbird isnít very far away from its 1GHz brother at all. A 5 point difference in SYSMark 2000 isnít a major difference by any means, and with a little tweaking, you can even get the 950MHz Thunderbird to outperform the 1GHz for less money.

With a 1GHz Thunderbird, you can overclock to 1.1GHz with little effort. Just make sure you have good cooling measures, and it's a breeze. Since the 1GHz can reach 1.1GHz, I wouldnít be surprised if the 950MHz Thunderbird could do the same. Iíll take a look at this later, though. Letís take a look at some 3DMark2000 scores.


The difference here is like the final outcome of the Florida Recount! The 950MHz Thunderbird scores very closely to the 1GHz Thunderbird. There isnít much of a difference when you bump up a processor bin. At these speeds, an increase in 50MHz doesnít do very much. And if it does do something, the difference is highly unnoticeable.

As resolutions scale higher, the gap between the two processors become smaller. This is an indication of video card bottlenecks. Taking a look at 800x600 where the gap is largest, we see that there isnít much of a difference in terms of raw power. The 950MHz performs very closely. In fact, a poorly configured 1GHz system would likely perform worst than a properly configured 950MHz system. Itís not just MHz ratings that one should observe.

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