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[Q] Dual Core V. Single Core?

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By TJBunch1228, Senior Member on 22nd February 2011, 09:06 PM
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So with the new Dual Core phones coming out I'm wondering... What's all the hullabaloo?

I just finished reading the Moto Atrix review from Engadget and it sounds like crap. They said docking to the ridiculously priced webtop accessory was slow as shiz.

Anyone who knows better, please educate me. I'd like to know what is or will be offered that Dual Core will be capable of that our current gen phones will NOT be capable of.
22nd February 2011, 10:03 PM |#2  
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For one thing (my main interest anyway) dual core cpu's and beyond give us better battery life. If we end up having more data intensive apps and Android becomes more powerful multi-core cpu's will help a lot also. Naturally Android will need to be broken down and revamped to utilize multiple cores to their full potential though. At some point I can see Google using more or merging a large part of the desktop linux kernel to help with that process.

At the rate Android (and smart phones in general) is progressing, someday we may see a 64bit OS on a phone, we will definitely need multi-core cpu's then. I know, it's a bit of a dream but it's probably not too elaborate.
25th February 2011, 09:00 PM |#3  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KCRic

For one thing (my main interest anyway) dual core cpu's and beyond give us better battery life.

I'd really, REALLY like to know how you came to that particular conclusion. While a dual core might not eat through quite as much wattage as two single cores, one that takes less is pure snakeoil IMO. I have yet to see a dual core CPU that is rated lower than a comparable single core on the desktop. Why would this be different for phones?

Software and OSes that can handle a dual core CPU need additional CPU cycles to manage the threading this results in, so if anything, dual core CPUs will greatly, GREATLY diminish battery life.

The original posters question is valid. What the heck would one need dual core CPUs in phones for? Personally, I can't think of anything. Running several apps in parallel was a piece of cake way before dual CPUs and more power can easily be obtained through increasing the clock speed.

I'm not saying my parent poster is wrong, but I sure as heck can't imagine the physics behind his statement. So if I'm wrong, someone please enlighten me.
25th February 2011, 10:20 PM |#4  
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I can see dual cores offering a smoother user experience -- one core could be handling an audio stream while the other is doing phone crap. I don't see how it could improve battery life though....
25th February 2011, 11:13 PM |#5  
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The theory is that two cores can accomplish the same thing as a single core while only working half as hard, I've seen several articles stating that dual cores will help battery life. Whether that is true I don't know.

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28th February 2011, 12:24 AM |#6  
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Kokuyo, while you do have a point about dual cores being overkill in a phone I remember long ago people saying "why would you ever need 2gb of RAM in a PC" or "who could ever fill up a 1tb hard drive."

Thing is wouldnt the apps themselves have to be made to take advantage of dual cores as well?
28th February 2011, 11:02 AM |#7  
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JBunch1228; The short-term answer is nothing. Same answer as the average joe asking what he needs a quad-core in his desktop for. Right now it seems as much a sales gimmick as anything else, since the only Android ver that can actually make use of it is HC. Kinda like the 4G bandwagon everyone jumped on, all marketing right now.

Personally, I;d like to se what happens with the paradigm the Atrix is bringing out in a year or so. Put linux on a decent sized SSD for the laptop component, and use the handset for processing and communications exclusivley, rather than try and use the 'laptop dock' as nothing more than an external keyboard

As far as battery life, I can see how dual-cores could affect it positively, as a dual core doesnt pull as much power as two individual cores, and, if the chip is running for half as long as a single core would for the same operation, that would give you better batt life. Everyone keep in mind I said *if*. :P I don't see that happening before Q4, since the OS and apps need to be optimized for it.

My $.02 before depreciation.

Then there are the rumors of mobile quad-cores from Nvidia by Q4 as well. I'll keep my single core Vision, and see whats out there when my contract ends. We may have a whole new world.
28th February 2011, 03:15 PM |#8  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KCRic

For one thing (my main interest anyway) dual core cpu's and beyond give us better battery life. If we end up having more data intensive apps and Android becomes more powerful multi-core cpu's will help a lot also. Naturally Android will need to be broken down and revamped to utilize multiple cores to their full potential though. At some point I can see Google using more or merging a large part of the desktop linux kernel to help with that process.

Wow, that's complete nonsense.
You can't add parts and end up using less power.

Also, Android needs no additional work to support multiple cores. Android runs on the LINUX KERNEL, which is ***THE*** choice for multi-core/multi-processor supercomputers. Android applications run each in their own process, the linux kernel then takes over process swapping. Android applications also are *already* multi-threaded (unless the specific application developer was a total newb).

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At the rate Android (and smart phones in general) is progressing, someday we may see a 64bit OS on a phone, we will definitely need multi-core cpu's then. I know, it's a bit of a dream but it's probably not too elaborate.

What's the connection? Just because the desktop processor manufacturers went multi-core and 64bit at roughly the same time doesn't mean that the two are even *slightly* related. Use of a 64bit OS on a phone certainly does ***NOT*** somehow require that the processor be multi-core.
28th February 2011, 06:53 PM |#9  
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Originally Posted by dhkr234

Wow, that's complete nonsense.
You can't add parts and end up using less power.

Also, Android needs no additional work to support multiple cores. Android runs on the LINUX KERNEL, which is ***THE*** choice for multi-core/multi-processor supercomputers. Android applications run each in their own process, the linux kernel then takes over process swapping. Android applications also are *already* multi-threaded (unless the specific application developer was a total newb).


What's the connection? Just because the desktop processor manufacturers went multi-core and 64bit at roughly the same time doesn't mean that the two are even *slightly* related. Use of a 64bit OS on a phone certainly does ***NOT*** somehow require that the processor be multi-core.

The connection lies in the fact that this is technology we're talking about. It continually advances and does is at a rapid rate. No where in it did I say we'll make that jump 'at the same time'. Linux is not ***THE*** choice for multi-core computers, I use Sabayon but also Win7 seems to do just fine with multiple cores. Android doesn't utilize multi-core processors to their full potential and also uses a modified version of the linux kernel (which does fully support multi-core systems), that's whay I made the statement about merging. Being linux and being based on linux are not the same thing. Think of iOS or OSX - based on linux but tell me, how often do linux instuctions work for a Mac?

"you can't add parts and use less power", the car industry would like you clarify that, along with the computer industry. 10 years ago how much energy did electronics use? Was the speed and power vs. power consumption ratio better than it is today? No? I'll try to give an example that hopefully explains why consumes less power.

Pizza=data
People=processors
Time=heat and power consumption

1 person takes 20 minutes to eat 1 whole pizza while 4 people take only 5 minutes. That one person is going to have to work harder and longer in order to complete the same task as the 4 people. That will use more energy and generate much more heat. Heat, as we know, causes processors to become less efficient which means more energy is wasted at the higher clock cycles and less information processed per cycle.

It's not a very technical explanation of why a true multi-core system uses less power but it will have to do. Maybe ask NVidia too since they stated the Tegra processors are more power efficient.
28th February 2011, 09:20 PM |#10  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KCRic

The connection lies in the fact that this is technology we're talking about. It continually advances and does is at a rapid rate. No where in it did I say we'll make that jump 'at the same time'. Linux is not ***THE*** choice for multi-core computers, I use Sabayon but also Win7 seems to do just fine with multiple cores.

Show me ***ONE*** supercomputer that runs wondoze. I DARE YOU! They don't exist!

Quote:

Android doesn't utilize multi-core processors to their full potential and also uses a modified version of the linux kernel (which does fully support multi-core systems), that's whay I made the statement about merging. Being linux and being based on linux are not the same thing.

??? No, being LINUX and GNU/LINUX are not the same. ANDROID ***IS*** LINUX, but not GNU/LINUX. The kernel is the kernel. The modifications? Have nothing to do with ANYTHING this thread touches on. The kernel is FAR too complex for Android to have caused any drastic changes.

Quote:

Think of iOS or OSX - based on linux but tell me, how often do linux instuctions work for a Mac?

No. Fruitcakes does NOT use LINUX ***AT ALL***. They use MACH. A *TOTALLY DIFFERENT* kernel.

Quote:

"you can't add parts and use less power", the car industry would like you clarify that, along with the computer industry. 10 years ago how much energy did electronics use? Was the speed and power vs. power consumption ratio better than it is today? No? I'll try to give an example that hopefully explains why consumes less power.

Those changes are NOT RELATED to adding cores, but making transistors SMALLER.

Quote:

Pizza=data
People=processors
Time=heat and power consumption

1 person takes 20 minutes to eat 1 whole pizza while 4 people take only 5 minutes. That one person is going to have to work harder and longer in order to complete the same task as the 4 people. That will use more energy and generate much more heat. Heat, as we know, causes processors to become less efficient which means more energy is wasted at the higher clock cycles and less information processed per cycle.

It's not a very technical explanation of why a true multi-core system uses less power but it will have to do. Maybe ask NVidia too since they stated the Tegra processors are more power efficient.

You have come up with a whole lot of nonsense that has ABSOLUTELY NO relation to multiple cores.

Energy consumption is related to CPU TIME.
You take a program that takes 10 minutes of CPU time to execute on a single-core 3GHz processor, split it between TWO otherwise identical cores operating at the SAME FREQUENCY, add in some overhead to split it between two cores, and you have 6 minutes of CPU time on TWO cores, which is 20% *MORE* energy consumed on a dual-core processor.

And you want to know what NVIDIA will say about their bloatchips? It uses less power than *THEIR* older hardware because it has **SMALLER TRANSISTORS** that require less energy.


Don't quite your day job, computer engineering is NOT YOUR FORTE.
28th February 2011, 10:45 PM |#11  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dhkr234

Show me ***ONE*** supercomputer that runs wondoze. I DARE YOU! They don't exist!


??? No, being LINUX and GNU/LINUX are not the same. ANDROID ***IS*** LINUX, but not GNU/LINUX. The kernel is the kernel. The modifications? Have nothing to do with ANYTHING this thread touches on. The kernel is FAR too complex for Android to have caused any drastic changes.


No. Fruitcakes does NOT use LINUX ***AT ALL***. They use MACH. A *TOTALLY DIFFERENT* kernel.


Those changes are NOT RELATED to adding cores, but making transistors SMALLER.


You have come up with a whole lot of nonsense that has ABSOLUTELY NO relation to multiple cores.

Energy consumption is related to CPU TIME.
You take a program that takes 10 minutes of CPU time to execute on a single-core 3GHz processor, split it between TWO otherwise identical cores operating at the SAME FREQUENCY, add in some overhead to split it between two cores, and you have 6 minutes of CPU time on TWO cores, which is 20% *MORE* energy consumed on a dual-core processor.

And you want to know what NVIDIA will say about their bloatchips? It uses less power than *THEIR* older hardware because it has **SMALLER TRANSISTORS** that require less energy.


Don't quite your day job, computer engineering is NOT YOUR FORTE.

If you think that its just a gimmick or trend then why does every laptop manufacturer use dual core or more and have better battery life than the old single core? Sometimes trends do have more use than aesthetic appeal. Your know-it-all approach is nothing new around here and you're not the only person who works in IT around. Theories are one thing but without any proof when ALL current tech says otherwise... makes you sound like a idiot. Sorry...
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