This means that we have to subtract about 13% of the performance figures if we want to keep the TDP the same, and in that case some of the “compelling gains” are no longer really tangible. So we can conclude that CRM, Financial analysis, ERP and Java applications are the best applications for our Clovertown Xeon. For rendering, transaction processing, and especially structural simulation (LS Dyna) and flow modeling (fluent) the picture is a lot less clear.
To the financial analysts, CRM, ERP and Java server people, the new quad core Xeon E53xx is close to irresistible. You can get four cores for the price of two, or up to eight (!) cores in a relatively cheap dual socket server. We observed at least a 40% performance increase compared to probably the best dual core CPU of today: the Xeon 5160.
For the people looking for a 3D rendering workstation, your usage model will determine whether the Xeon 5160 or the Xeon E5345 is the best solution. You get better animation and 3D manipulation performance (mostly single threaded) and better rendering performance at resolutions lower than High Definition with the Xeon 5160. 3D render servers are better off with the Quad Xeon E53xx but only if they have to render at 720p or full HD (1080p) resolutions.
The past 6 months have been excellent for Intel: after regaining the performance crown in the dual socket server market, there is also now a very viable and lowly priced alternative for the more expensive quad Opteron based systems. However, it is not all bad news for AMD. The current quad core might be good for Intel’s yields, time to market, and production costs, but it does have a weakness. The quad core Xeon scaling is very mediocre, and this despite a high performance chipset. The current 5000p chipset has a large 16MB snoop filter, reads speculatively to decrease memory latency, and has a whole other bag of clever tricks to get more performance out of the platform. Despite all this and a 2x4MB L2 cache setup, the quad core Xeon scales worse than the relatively old quad Opteron platform.