The Bulldozer core doesn't look so hot, the same way that the virtual CPU of a Core i7 doesn't look so hot in some benchmarks. But for entirely different reasons.
The virtual CPU of a Core i7 (that is, the Hyperthreaded instance) sometimes does absolutely nothing. That's because it shares execution hardware with the physical instance, i.e. it waits for one thread to stall, then the CPU will switch to the thread held by the virtual CPU.
On Bulldozer, it won't stall, simply because there's no virtual instance. There actually is actual hardware behind each thread, it's just that compared to Stars, AMD decided to slim it down a bit, so now it has 2 ALUs per core instead of 3. But in the end, you get 4 ALUs, because you can't buy a BD core, you can only buy a module, which has two cores. Like buying a Pentium 4, you buy a CPU, which has two virtual CPUs. Thus, throughput should overall be higher, even if per-core output is lower.
For normal usage I wouldn't dare draw a conclusion from the data available now. I think it's imperative that when TR publishes its CPU review of Bulldozer, they emphasize that the module is meant to replace a traditional core, and the "core" inside a BD is a dispatch unit with some ALUs behind it, outsourcing FP instructions to a shared, externalized, blackboxed FPU. Too many people think that a BD core has to outperform a SB core, how on earth can it do that when it's got less execution units than Stars? Why is this even necessary when you cannot buy a core from AMD, only modules? This is exactly why AMD coined the term "modules"'.
EDIT: On further thought, the last paragraph is the job of the marketing team at AMD. What the hell are they doing? Look at IBM: Synergistic Processing Elements, Power Processor Element. Look at Intel: Hyperthreading, Pentium, and god knows what they have these days. The least they could do at AMD to reduce disappointment when people realize that BD core aren't traditional cores is call them "thread paths", or "Hydra", or is that already taken? Nobody uses Hydravision anymore anyway. Instead they take the one thing that hasn't been split into two and call it "Flex FP", when FPU would suffice perfectly. I think this is maybe why AMD hasn't had such a great market share...
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