Pentium 4 v Athlon XP: gaming performance

3DMark 2001 SEWhen it comes to 3D games, Intel’s Pentium 4 delivers the best results. The fastest Athlon processor (Athlon XP/2100+) give way to the Pentium 4/ 2400 and P4/2533 on MadOnion’s 3DMark 2001 SE.

3DMark 2001 SE When it comes to 3D games, Intel’s Pentium 4 delivers the best results. The fastest Athlon processor (Athlon XP/2100+) give way to the Pentium 4/ 2400 and P4/2533 on MadOnion’s 3DMark 2001 SE. However, there’s only a 3 per cent difference in performance between the P4/2533 and the Athlon XP/2100+, which most users will hardly notice.


Aquanox Aquamark 2.3 With the DirectX 8 game Aquanox, Intel and AMD processors achieve almost identical performance ratings -- there’s only a 3.9 per cent difference between the fastest and slowest processors in this test. Obviously, the graphics card -- a GeForce3 Ti 500 -- is the limiting factor here.

Vulpine GLMark 1.1p The Vulpine test also fails to bring out any significant differences in performance between the Athlon XP and the Northwood (512KB L2 cache) Pentium 4. Only the Pentium 4/2000 with 256KB of Level 2 cache lags behind – there’s a relatively large 15.2 percent difference between this processor and the identically-clocked P4/2000A with 512KB.

Quake 3 (NV15 demo) With Intel’s favourite benchmark, Quake 3, and the memory-intensive NV15 demo, the Northwood Pentium 4 with 512KB of Level 2 cache performs well. The impact of memory type on this benchmark is of great importance: whereas the P4/2200 with Rambus is towards the top of the rankings, the same chip with DDR memory falls behind the Athlon XP/1800+.

Comanche 4 With the up-to-date Comanche 4, the P4/2533 wins the performance duel with a 7 percent advantage over the Athlon/XP2100+.

DroneZ The action game DroneZ is a very good example of a successful Pentium 4 optimisation. Here, even the Pentium 4/2200 with DDR memory is 5 percent faster than the fastest Athlon XP processor, the 2100+. With Rambus memory, the advantage mounts to a remarkable 21.5 percent.