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[Q] Dual Core V. Single Core?

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TJBunch1228

Senior Member
Feb 6, 2010
1,373
222
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.
 

KCRic

Senior Member
Aug 4, 2010
1,230
268
Overland Park
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.
 

Kokuyo

Member
Jun 20, 2007
20
0
Near Zurich
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.
 

burtcom

Senior Member
Apr 23, 2007
913
326
Helena
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....
 

Nospin

Senior Member
Nov 20, 2010
1,069
234
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.

Sent from my T-Mobile G2 using XDA App
 

santaclaws

Member
Feb 20, 2011
20
0
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?
 

Daughain

Senior Member
Nov 23, 2010
159
6
DFW, Tx
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.
 
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dhkr234

Senior Member
Jan 27, 2011
575
157
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).

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.
 

KCRic

Senior Member
Aug 4, 2010
1,230
268
Overland Park
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.
 

dhkr234

Senior Member
Jan 27, 2011
575
157
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!

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.

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.

"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.

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.
 

sino8r

Senior Member
Sep 7, 2006
3,551
735
Birmingham, Alabama
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...
 

Flippy125

Inactive Recognized Developer
Jan 14, 2010
1,005
308
Las Vegas
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...
+1
I was comparing speeds on the Atrix compared to the [email protected] and they matched. The Atrix was much more efficient on heat and probably with battery. The dual cores will use less power because the two cores will be better optimized for splitting the tasks and will use half the power running the same process as the single core because the single core runs at the same voltages for a single core compared to splitting it between two. Let's not start a flame war and make personal attacks on people


Sent from my HTC Vision with Habanero FAST 1.1.0
 

dhkr234

Senior Member
Jan 27, 2011
575
157
It is disturbing that there are people out there who can't understand this VERY BASIC engineering.

Voltage, by itself, has NO MEANING. You are forgetting about CURRENT. POWER = CURRENT x VOLTAGE.

Battery drain is DIRECTLY PROPORTIONAL to POWER. Not voltage. Double the voltage and half the current, power remains the same.

Dual core does NOT increase battery life. It increases PERFORMANCE by ***DOUBLING*** the physical processing units.

Battery life is increased through MINIATURIZATION and SIMPLIFICATION, which becomes *EXTREMELY* important as you increase the number of physical processing units.

It is the epitome of IGNORANCE to assume that there is some relation when there is not. The use of multiple cores relates to hard physical limitations of the silicon. You can't run the silicon at 18 GHz! Instead of racing for higher frequencies, the new competition is about how much work you can do with the SAME frequency, and the ***EASIEST*** way to do this is to bolt on more cores!

For arguments sake, take a look at a couple of processors;
Athlon II X2 240e / C3.... 45 watt TDP, 45 nm
Athlon II X4 630 / C3.... 95 watt TDP, 45 nm
Same stepping, same frequency (2.8 GHz), same voltage, same size, and the one with twice the cores eats more than twice the power. Wow, imagine that!

The X4 is, of course, FASTER, but not by double.

Now lets look at another pair of processors;
Athlon 64 X2 3800+ / E6.... 89 watt TDP, 90 nm
Athlon II X2 270u / C3.... 25 watt TDP, 45 nm
Different stepping, SAME frequency (2.0 GHz), same number of cores, different voltage, different SIZE, WAY different power consumption. JUST LOOK how much more power the older chip eats!!! 3.56 times as much. Also note that other power management features exist on the C3 that didn't exist on the E6, so the difference in MINIMUM power consumption is much greater.

Conclusion: There is no correlation between a reduction in power consumption and an increase in the number of PPUs. More PPUs = more performance. Reduction in power consumption is related to size, voltage, and other characteristics.
 

KCRic

Senior Member
Aug 4, 2010
1,230
268
Overland Park
Don't quite your day job, computer engineering is NOT YOUR FORTE.

Good job on being a douche. I didn't insult you in anything I said and if you disagree over my perspective then state it otherwise shut up. I didn't tell you english grammar isn't your forte so maybe you should keep your senile remarks to yourself.

You seem to want to argue over a few technicalities and I'll admit, I don't have a PhD in computer engineering but then again I doubt you do either. For the average person to begin to understand the inner-workings of a computer requires you to set aside the technical details and generalize everything. When they read about a Mac, they will see the word Unix which also happens to appear in things written about Linux and would inevitably make a connection about both being based off of the same thing (which they are). In that sense, I'm correct - you're wrong. The average person doesn't differentiate between 'is' and 'based off', most people take them in the same context.

So I may be wrong in some things when you get technical but when you're talking to the average person that thinks the higher the CPU core clock is = the better the processor, you end up being wrong because they won't give a damn about the FSB or anything else. Also, when you start flaming people and jumping them over insignificant things you come off as a complete douche. If I'm wrong on something then tactfully and politely correct me - don't try to act like excerebrose know-it-all. Let's not even mention completely going off track about about Windoze, servers aren't the only things that have multi-core processors.

I'm sure you'll try to multi-quote me with a slew of unintelligent looking, lame comebacks and corrections but in the end you'll just prove my point about the type of person you are. ****The End****
 

dhkr234

Senior Member
Jan 27, 2011
575
157
Good job on being a douche. I didn't insult you in anything I said and if you disagree over my perspective then state it otherwise shut up. I didn't tell you english grammar isn't your forte so maybe you should keep your senile remarks to yourself.
Agreeing or disagreeing is pointless when discussing FACTS. Perspective has nothing to do with FACTS. You can think whatever you like, but it doesn't make you right.

You seem to want to argue over a few technicalities and I'll admit, I don't have a PhD in computer engineering but then again I doubt you do either.
Common mistake, assuming that everybody is the same as you. Try not to make that assumption again.

For the average person to begin to understand the inner-workings of a computer requires you to set aside the technical details and generalize everything.
Generalizations lead to inaccuracies. You do not teach by generalizing, you teach by starting from the bottom and building a foundation of knowledge. Rene Descartes (aka Renatus Cartesius, as in Cartesian geometric system, as in the father of analytical geometry) said that the foundation of all knowledge is that doubting one's own existence is itself proof that there is someone to doubt it -- "Cogito Ergo Sum" -- "I think therefore I am". Everything must begin with this.

When they read about a Mac, they will see the word Unix which also happens to appear in things written about Linux and would inevitably make a connection about both being based off of the same thing (which they are). In that sense, I'm correct - you're wrong. The average person doesn't differentiate between 'is' and 'based off', most people take them in the same context.
... and need to be CORRECTED for it. The two kernels (the only components relevant to this discussion) are completely different! MACH is a MICRO kernel, Linux is a MONOLITHIC kernel. Superficial characteristics (which are OUTSIDE of the kernel) be damned, they are NOT the same thing and thinking that they are is invalid. The average person is irrelevant, FACTS are FACTS.

So I may be wrong in some things when you get technical but when you're talking to the average person that thinks the higher the CPU core clock is = the better the processor, you end up being wrong because they won't give a damn about the FSB or anything else.
So are you trying to tell me that IGNORANCE is BLISS? Because "giving a damn" or not has NO BEARING on reality. The sky is blue. You think that its purple and don't give a damn, does that make it purple? No, it does not.

Also, when you start flaming people and jumping them over insignificant things you come off as a complete douche. If I'm wrong on something then tactfully and politely correct me - don't try to act like excerebrose know-it-all. Let's not even mention completely going off track about about Windoze, servers aren't the only things that have multi-core processors.
Right, servers AREN'T the only thing running multi-core processors, but did you not read where I SPECIFICALLY said **SERVERS**? Wondoze is off track and UNRELATED. I brought up servers because THEY USE THE SAME KERNEL AS ANDROID. If a supercomputer uses Linux, do you not agree that Linux is CLEARLY capable of multiprocessing well enough to meet the needs of a simple phone?

I'm sure you'll try to multi-quote me with a slew of unintelligent looking, lame comebacks and corrections but in the end you'll just prove my point about the type of person you are. ****The End****
... perfectionist, intelligent, PATIENT in dealing with ignorance. And understand that ignorance is not an insult when it is true, and contrary to common "belief", does NOT mean stupid. Learn the facts and you will cease to be ignorant of them.
 

TJBunch1228

Senior Member
Feb 6, 2010
1,373
222
So hopefully this train can be put back on the tracks...

From what I am understanding from more technical minded individuals, Dual Core should help with battery life because it requires less power to run the same things as single core. It can then probably be extrapolated that when pushed, Dual Core will be able to go well above and beyond its Single Core brethren in terms of processing power.

For now, it appears the only obvious benefit will be increased battery life and less drain on the processor due to overworking. Hopefully in the near future more CPU and GPU intensive processes are introduced to the market which will fully utilize the Dual Core's potential in the smartphone world. Thanks for all the insight.

dhkr234 - *slaps air high-five*
 

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