I think it's interesting that, when discussing AMD/ATi, the products most focused on are graphics cards. I agree with Murder She Wrote's statement of "Every arch can't be a winner and both companies have made notable stinkers in the past."
The FX5800 and its noise level come to mind from Nvidia.
However, what I mostly focus on is CPUs and AMD hasn't released a decent CPU that is competitive in power consumption, performance, and heat generation with Intel in a very, very long time. The closest thing that comes to mind is the Athlon XP (Palomino) way back in 2000. Yes, AMD is less expensive than Intel's offerings but, then, they have to be as that is the only area that they can be competitive with Intel in.
My own anecdotal experience with AMD is not a very particularly positive one. I had an Athlon XP (Thunderbird) with an Asus A7V board. The CPU dropped dead within 11 months. The next AMD procs I had were the Athlon MPs in a cluster of servers that were running off of Tyan Tiger S2460 motherboards. Every second core dropped dead within 3 months of deployment, all within about the span of two weeks. After working with Tyan and AMD, it was discovered that the problem was not with the Tyan motherboards, but a voltage regulation problem with the SMP of the Athlon MPs. The AMD engineer promised it would be fixed with a microcode update but I had a business to run. Swapped them out for Xeons and different motherboards and never had another problem.
Just for grins, I went to CPUBoss and pitted the Xeon E3-1275v2 that I have in my current gaming machine against an Opteron of the same vintage with double the cores. The E3 won rather handily. You can see it here
. Before any AMD fanboy whines that it's just single core performance comparison with no multicore sampling, I'd point out that in every day use, most of what you run is single threaded.
Is my Xeon a bit of an overkill for home use? For most people, probably so, but then most people don't have 6 to 8 VMs running in the backround while playing Dying Light, either.
"No matter where you go, there you are." Buckaroo Banzai
There are two types of computer users: Masochists and Linux users.
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