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How A Raspberry Pi 4 Performs Against Intel's Latest Celeron, Pentium CPUs

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  • How A Raspberry Pi 4 Performs Against Intel's Latest Celeron, Pentium CPUs

    Phoronix: How A Raspberry Pi 4 Performs Against Intel's Latest Celeron, Pentium CPUs

    Following the recent Intel Comet Lake Celeron and Pentium CPU benchmarking against other x86_64 Intel/AMD CPUs, here was a bit of fun... Seeing how these budget Intel CPUs compare to a Raspberry Pi 4 in various processor benchmarks, all tested on Debian Linux...

    http://www.phoronix.com/scan.php?pag...m&px=Raspberry

  • #2
    I would have expected a bigger divide.

    RPi has made great strides over the years. Love seeing the chasm closing. I'd love to see a graph over time of generally how the performance gap has closed. Certainly we'd see that ARM is improving at a much faster rate than x86.

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    • #3
      Unfortunately the microarchitecture of the RPi4 is still a bit of a joke.

      I've had a lengthy (and peppered with the occasional insults, of course) discussion earlier on phoronix forums.

      It's not just the clock speed. The IPC of the RPi4 is mediocre.

      The RPi4 chip (Cortex A72) doesn't have a proper Load Store Queue, to allow it to issue loads out-of-order with respect to earlier stores (so all prior stores need to complete before issuing a load). This would require machinery to detect and correct potential misspeculations, of course.

      It can only decode 3 instructions per cycle, and issue 5.

      Actually the venerable Alpha 21264 from 1996 had better microarchitecture. Granted, that was a trailblazer chip, but still ... 1996!

      So, this is not about nm. It's about a toy microarchitecture.
      Last edited by vladpetric; 08-07-2020, 01:55 PM.

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      • #4
        Interesting that the pi was faster at exporting to PDF. For the rest it looks to be about 1/4 the speed of the Intel chip. I wonder if the price is matched at that level for general use.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by vladpetric View Post
          Unfortunately the microarchitecture of the RPi4 is still a bit of a joke.

          I've had a lengthy (and peppered with the occasional insults, of course) discussion earlier on phoronix forums.

          It's not just the clock speed. The IPC of the RPi4 is mediocre.

          The RPi4 chip (Cortex A72) doesn't have a proper Load Store Queue, to allow it to issue loads out-of-order with respect to earlier stores (so all prior stores need to complete before issuing a load). This would require machinery to detect and correct potential misspeculations, of course.

          It can only decode 3 instructions per cycle, and issue 5.

          Actually the venerable Alpha 21264 from 1996 had better microarchitecture. Granted, that was a trailblazer chip, but still ... 1996!

          So, this is not about nm. It's about a toy microarchitecture.
          Had the Alpha architecture not died, then we would have processors 4x faster than x86.

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          • #6
            I'd be curious to see how it does vs. a 5 or 7 watt Lakefield. Or to be really unfair, a Tiger Lake mobile system.
            A GPU comparison could also be helpful although I don't know how easy that is to do.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by phoronix View Post
              Phoronix: How A Raspberry Pi 4 Performs Against Intel's Latest Celeron, Pentium CPUs

              Following the recent Intel Comet Lake Celeron and Pentium CPU benchmarking against other x86_64 Intel/AMD CPUs, here was a bit of fun... Seeing how these budget Intel CPUs compare to a Raspberry Pi 4 in various processor benchmarks, all tested on Debian Linux...

              http://www.phoronix.com/scan.php?pag...m&px=Raspberry
              How about pitting the pi up against a 6W Pentium N5000 (basically a slightly better atom) or Cherry trail chip

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              • #8
                Originally posted by tildearrow View Post

                Had the Alpha architecture not died, then we would have processors 4x faster than x86.
                A very trite cliche that's disproven by two major facts:
                1. Alpha got all of its performance from deep pipelines and high clocks. Cool back in the mid-90s, but how did that turn out for the Pentium 4 again? Hell, there wasn't even any Alpha chip that was ever produced that had a vector unit in it and it was only on the roadmap for the generation AFTER the EV8 that never made it to market.
                2. We already did see what Alpha would have turned into in the original Athlon since it was basically made by Digital designers that AMD hired. So by any useful definition, the processors that we have now *are* the distant ancestors of Alpha, and there's no way some magical extrapolation of 1990's era high-clock deep-pipeline processing was ever going to work with the laws of physics to be 4x faster than a 10nm Atom much less a high-end modern x86 device.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by tildearrow View Post

                  Had the Alpha architecture not died, then we would have processors 4x faster than x86.
                  I agree with the general attitude . Maybe not 4x though . There are fundamental limitations to getting higher IPC, and power consumption limits clock frequency.

                  Anyway, you can always count on smart and sophisticated, pointy-hairy MBAs to kill a great product line.

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                  • #10
                    A Pi 4 is not a serious desktop replacement, but for a budget SOC, it's actually coming close enough to Intel that we benchmark it. The real test will be Apple's silicon. If that can get competitive performance, then it will only be a matter of time before other manufacturers switch to ARM-based products.

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