Let's summarize every processor's
pros and cons:
Look at individual processors.
Note: Usually Cyrix processors carry the designation IBM. IBM just manufactures them, Cyrix designs them; Cyrix is a fab-less chip vendor.
I' Bandwidth and performance flaw
'normal' with the flaw: (best in red, second best in blue).
|rates Mb/sec||Pentium MMX-200||AMD K6-200||Cyrix 6x86MX-166 (P200)||Pentium II-233|
|Main memory read||119.04||118.34||118.34||183.48|
|L2 cache read||227.27||240.96||270.27||425.53|
|Main memory write||85.47||69.44||75.75||68.72|
|L2 cache write||85.10||128.20||157.48||210.52|
|Video memory write||79.05||51.02||81.96||25.47|
|Main memory transfer||49.50||38.53||38.91||48.19|
|L2 cache transfer||70.42||84.03||95.69||162.60|
|Video memory transfer||57.63||36.36||56.33||25.47|
'innovative' without the flaw: (best
in red, second
best in blue).
(The innovative write rates on the table are achieved using 64 bit writes, a method documented by Intel in its 1997 Optimizations manual; the 'performance flaw' revealed in this site affects the read & transfer rates).
|rates Mb/sec||Pentium MMX-200||AMD K6-200||Cyrix 6x86MX-166 (PR200)||Pentium II-233|
|Main memory read||200.00||119.76||200.00||191.64|
|L2 cache read||344.82||256.41||294.11||512.82|
|Main memory write||170.94||68.96||75.18||69.54|
|L2 cache write||170.94||116.95||170.94||210.52|
|Video memory write||92.59||92.59||92.59||51.02|
|Main memory transfer||95.23||40.24||43.85||50.28|
|L2 cache transfer||119.04||82.98||94.78||165.28|
|Video memory transfer||68.45||56.33||64.51||41.75|
(best in red, second best in blue)
|CBENCHP||Pentium MMX-200||AMD K6-200||Cyrix 6x86MX-166 (PR200)||Pentium II-233|
|64k program (µSecs)||0.58||0.53||0.45||0.53|
|transfer rate (Mb/sec)||62890||74350||79680||157480|
|video write (Mb/sec)||81300||51020||81970||25470|
|Index relative to IBM PC||291.5||284||373||340|
On Windows 95, Pentium II-233 is clearly the best,
with second Cyrix 6x86MX.
But its important to note, that a K6-233 reaches 55.3 and a 6x86MX PR233 (188 MHz) reaches 56.6 !
IV' 3D/Floating Point benchmark
On Quake, Pentium II vastly outperforms all the
other processors, while second comes Pentium MMX. The reason
for that is that Pentium II has a next generation floating point unit which
is almost twice as fast. Pentium MMX outperforms the last two because AMD
and Cyrix have simpler and slow floating point units.
From the above it is obvious that
the best processor in everything except 16 bit (DOS) is Pentium II; of
course Pentium II is also much more expensive and needs a special expensive
motherboard (slot 1) on which only Pentium II can operate.
For users with a recent motherboard who wish to upgrade, the best solution is to upgrade their processor to a Cyrix 6x86MX if they are interested in general performance or to a Pentium MMX if they are interested mainly in 3D game or calculation performance. The middle way, some general performance and some 3D, is AMD K6.
Cyrix 6x86MX: The good news for budget users is that the cheapest by far processor is also very good in general performance, as long as they can compromise on 3D/calculations. Especially the PR233 version (188 MHz) almost catches up with Pentium II-233 on Windows 95.
Finally for professional Windows NT/CAD/3D/calculation users there is no serious alternative than Pentium II at the moment. The same applies to avid gamers, especially due to Pentium II's new AGP graphic cards.
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