[Geeks are Sexy] technology news

Friday, October 13, 2006

The Future of CPU's: To Quad or Not to Quad.

Today, I'll be posting more of an observation based on a conversation that Kiltak and I had last night. I was bragging about my new toy:

Samsung SyncMaster 225BW 22" Wide-Screen
Res: 1680x1050
RT: 5ms
Contrast Ratio: 700:1

However, this is not what I wanted to touch on. What Kiltak and I were discussing was that his next big purchase (for the sake of being the total geek that he is) would be a Quad-Core machine. Now, when I saw that, I honestly thought to myself: Why? But why did I buy a 22'' widescreen monitor when I had a, still, very good working 20'' Mitsubishi CRT monitor? Well because!! Isn't that good enough?

What the question came down to was the fact that, sure, quad-core cpu's will be mass shipped soon, but will the applications out there support it? And I came across a great article which asked the very same questions that I was asking myself.

This is what I found out: Yes, there are many applications out there that support the kind of multithreading that the Quad-Cores are designed for. For example: Video Edition, DVD writing, Video Streaming, Background multitasking (specifically Vistas and OSx's Indexing services) .. All of these, just to name a few will multithread in Quad-Core machines.

But the apps aren't there yet, right? Quad-core could come late next year, you say. No, the apps are there. Ever encode video? All the video encoders are heavily multithreaded, and video encoding is extremely parallelizable: You get huge speedups. Oh, but the average user doesn't encode video…only they do. iDVD is an extremely popular Mac app (Intel fuels Apple's machines now, remember?) and next year, literally tens of millions of new Vista owners will have bundled DVD creation software, too. All that MPEG2 encoding can take a long time. Many portable devices require video to be in a particular format or resolution, so the re-encoding of all that stuff is another big time sink. When it comes to HD-DVD and Blu-ray, even the decoding can suck the life out of a high-end CPU. ~ Jason Cross: extremetech.com

Gaming would benefit alot already from a Quad-Core machine. And so, I learned a little something through my conversation with Kiltak. So my advice, to reiterate his desires is : GO GET ONE, DUDE!! Geek-Out on a Quad!

Read the full ExtremeTech article by Jason Cross.

This article touches alot on how important Quad-Core CPU's will be with OSx and the release of Vista. To summarize Mr. Cross's feelings on Quad-Core: The More; The Better!


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