The TR Podcast 79: A Sandy Bridge to CES

The Tech Report Podcast Date: January 17, 2011

Time: 1:49:40

Hosted by Jordan Drake

Co-Hosts: Scott Wasson, Cyril Kowaliski, Geoff Gasior

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Show notes

This is a monster episode. Between a detailed look at Intel’s new Sandy Bridge processors (not to mention the slew of motherboards that come along with them) and all the news from CES to discuss, we’ve recorded one of our longest episodes in a while. Along the duration, you’ll hear some listener questions answered, some industry news discussed, some product announcements considered, and future tech prognosticated. Simply put, there’s a lot to love about this episode of The Tech Report Podcast.

Send in listener mail, and we’ll answer on the podcast. – jdrake@techreport.com

Follow us on Twitter – ScottJordanGeoffCyrilThe Tech Report

Listener mail:

Sandy Bridge for thin and light? – from Mike – (0:01:27):

“I’m interested in getting another laptop this tax return since my wife basically stole mine. I had a Asus (however you say that) UL30VT (C2D SU7300, and G210 graphics, pretty bare bones, but the power was sufficient, and battery life was a dream). Shy of buying another one, I’m not sure that AMDs E350 APU (Zecate) measures up to even its outdated performance. It looks like I’m taking a 10% to 20% cut in capability, for less run time, etc, that said, it’s cheap and I don’t know if SandyBridge based processors are coming out for Thin and Lights any time soon.

So basically I wanted to know what the group thinks will happen in the $500-$750 laptop range in the next few months, and if it’s worth buying something like a ThinkPad x120e, or (gasp) and HP DM1, since it’s pretty close to what I’m used to having and met most of my needs? Is it worth waiting to see what SandyBridge comes to market in? Or should I just jump on one of the screaming deals while everyone is trying to dump last year’s systems?”

Sandy Bridge, Bulldozer, Arm, and X86 – from Philip:

“Sandy Bridge processors (and what this means for Bulldozer). These processors seem so good that I am tempted not to wait (even to compare or for the price drops when Bulldozer is released). The upcoming ARM vs. x86 wars – how long until an ARM processor can compete with an x86? Will they ever* be able to compete as a mainstream product? (*ever in processor terms, so about the next 2 to 3 real life years) What do you think of nvidia’s strategy? How is this impacted by the firing of Dirk Meyer from AMD? Is it a coincidence that the firing is so close to the nvidia CES presentation?”

Tech discussion:

    Intel’s ‘Sandy Bridge’ Core processors (0:14:20)- Read more

    Sandy Bridge motherboards from Asus, Gigabyte, Intel, and MSI (0:50:08)- Read more

    Nvidia unveils ‘Project Denver’: an ARM-compatible CPU for desktops and servers (1:08:40)- Read more

    Intel and Nvidia hug it out, announce new cross-licensing deal (1:19:56)- Read more

    AMD board ousts Dirk Meyer, will seek new CEO (1:23:42)- Read more

    New Asus tablets (1:29:45)- Read moreand more

    Brazos ultraportables come out swinging (1:34:23)- Read more

    Razer shows handheld concept gaming PC (1:39:12)- Read more

That’s all, folks! We’ll see you on the next episode.

Comments closed
    • demalion
    • 9 years ago

    I was puzzled by the tablet discussion not mentioning the Notion Ink Adam, using Android with a custom interface, which AFAIK was shown at CES along with other tablets. It is something I was keeping an eye on due to its promise of the low power/sunlight readable PixelQi display, for one thing, as well as an announced plan for supporting an upgrade to Honeycomb later in the year.

    Am I out of the loop as far as there needing to be quotation marks around the “promise” and “announced” in the above, missing something about why it isn’t a potential “iPad killer”, or was it just overlooked?

    Been wondering ever since the podcast, but no one else brought it up so I figured I might as well ask.

      • sweatshopking
      • 9 years ago

      Engadget has a review: [url<]http://www.engadget.com/2011/01/05/notion-ink-adam-hands-on-preview-video/[/url<] Sounds like the software needs a bit more work, but the hardware seems good. Some people are complaining that it's not the best, but IDK.

        • demalion
        • 9 years ago

        Oh, thanks, I somehow missed that video though I’m pretty sure I’ve seen some other coverage from there.

        Was hoping someone on the staff here had a peek and some impressions, but I guess not.

    • sweatshopking
    • 9 years ago

    hmmmmm seems once again a question that was put to the team was left out of the mailbag…. Geez jordan, what does a guy have to do to get an answer from you guys?

      • sweatshopking
      • 9 years ago

      why did you down vote that? i’ve asked a question on the last 2 podcasts, and they refuse to read/answer them.

      • jdrake
      • 9 years ago

      Emailed. Sorry for the radio silence!

        • sweatshopking
        • 9 years ago

        Thanks bro! I ♥ you! seriously. i have a camera in your house. (joke)

    • ssidbroadcast
    • 9 years ago

    Funny flub by Cyril at the end, when he was talking about that portable PC made by Razor. He listed games that were able to play on it, including Starcraft [i<]three[/i<]. That made me chuckle. It's /[so]/ new, it can run games /[that don't even exist yet!]/

    • mi1stormilst
    • 9 years ago

    Hate new sockets with much hate, seems like I just went 1366 with my i920!

    • marvelous
    • 9 years ago

    Scott seems to be infatuated that Sandy Bridge is that much faster than the current i7 but it’s not.

    Sandy is 10% faster clock for clock at best than the older i7.

    Power consumption isn’t all that much better than I7 8xx series. 10 watt difference clock for clock.

      • DancinJack
      • 9 years ago

      So, if we use your estimations here, 10% performance gain with a decrease of 10 watts and decreasing the die size from 296mm^2 to 216mm^2 isn’t that much better? pfffttt. what do you want them to do?

      Task energy in the review is down 25% from the 875k on the 2500k. 2.93ghz for the 875k and 3.3ghz for the 2500k. 300mhz clock increase for 25% less power? yes please.

        • marvelous
        • 9 years ago

        So you agree SB isn’t all that much faster.

      • travbrad
      • 9 years ago

      It may only be 10% faster clock for clock, but they are also clocked a bit higher, AND use less power.

      More importantly (IMO), these SB CPUs are around $200-300, instead of the $1000 range of the high-end i7s. $1000 performance for $300 is kind of a big deal, and creates a giant shift in the value equation.

        • marvelous
        • 9 years ago

        Why are you comparing $1000 high end i7’s with $300 Sandy Bridge? Sandy Bridge doesn’t perform fast as $1000 CPU’s.

        Sandy Bridge hang in less threaded applications because of faster turbo and stock clocks..

        i7 level of performance has been out for a long time now. Many hitting over 4ghz. Sandy Bridge bring nothing to the other than incorporating GPU on die.

        I just don’t buy it.

          • travbrad
          • 9 years ago

          It does perform as fast or better in a lot of key applications. Those applications don’t always use 12 threads or even 8, but they are real applications. Tech sites often actually search for programs that will use lots of threads too, so if anything it tips the scales in the favor of more cores. And as for the overclocking thing, SB is overclockable too, and most people seem to be able to reach over 4.5ghz

          If you want to compare similarly priced products you could look at the 2600K and i7 875K (which is/was around $350, still more than the 2600K). The 2600K is much faster overall, cheaper, and uses less power. That’s what’s known as a WIN-WIN-WIN.

          Now if you are talking about upgrading from an i7 to a SB, I agree it’s probably not worth it (at least with this initial “mainstream” version), but for anyone upgrading or building a new system, I don’t know why you’d get an i7 (unless you are are using it for a niche application like ray tracing).

          P.S. I’m sticking with an E8400 (@4ghz) for now, so I’m not “buying it” either, in the literal sense. Although I may eventually.

            • marvelous
            • 9 years ago

            Better in “lot” of key applications? Like bunch of non threaded applications that doesn’t take advantage of more cores? Sandy is faster clock for clock no doubt you will see slightly better performance in single threaded applications but in reality SB loses to all applications where it’s threaded. It’s like comparing an E8400 with Q9550. Ridiculous.

            • travbrad
            • 9 years ago

            Why do you feel those applications aren’t a valid test? Are they not used by people? Anandtech (OMG competitor site) showed the 2600K ahead of the 980X in more than half of the tests. That’s a “lot” to me, especially considering it’s 1/3rd the price.

    • NarwhaleAu
    • 9 years ago

    That Philip had some great questions.

    Oh wait, that was me. 😀

    • BoBzeBuilder
    • 9 years ago

    Great podcast as usual.

    • DrDillyBar
    • 9 years ago

    Yay

    • DancinJack
    • 9 years ago

    I’m pumped to hear the SB discussion along with the Project Denver stuff. Wooohooo! I always enjoy the podcast.

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