My reply to someone on Disqus.

Updated: Oct 30, 2019

For some reason, disqus flagged my comment as Spam. I spent a lot of time typing that, Disqus, I don't appreciate that you consider it spam. Anyway, the comment I was replying to was pretty hilarious, so much that at first I thought it was a troll/baiting comment. But then I realised it's even worse: the person seems to actually believe what they are typing. Probably not worth my time, but I typed a response anyhow. Here it is for the record.



The person's comment I replied to.


And here is my reply in full. Apparently too much for Disqus to cope with so it just flagged it as 'spam'.

So you can read what I said:


Wow, what a load of rubbish. Well, not quite rubbish enough for me to dismiss as a troll post, but it was close. But since you seem to actually believe what you're typing, let's be realistic. Intel is behind. This is a fact, they are very much behind. Also in reply to your comment below about how "Zen2 competes with a 4 year old 14nm tech", this is not true at all. Zen2, for want of a better word, completely destroys 14nm+++ Skylake, in the area that actually matters for long-term: Performance per watt, and performance per $$. It just happens to also be very competitive in absolute performance.


Now here's the bit you won't like: The 1% of gamers who desperately 'need' 5 GHz 200W 8-cores with no upgrade path, because they 'need' those 5-10% more average FPS in competitive games at 240 Hz, those people absolutely do not matter to the CPU industry. So you might hear, and see (especially advertising from Intel) about how Intel has the 'world's best gaming processor', or how they still 'beat' AMD's Ryzen 3000 series in games - and even if you're looking past how marginal those differences are - you'll still see that "Zen2" is 'competing' with Skylake. From a gamer's perspective... Right.


In Server, ROME is not just slaughtering Xeon, in fact, I don't have words to describe just how brutal the slaughter is, when you have a 'competitor' offering 2X the performance per watt, and 2X the performance per dollar, and 2X the performance per socket, all together in one package. This is what matters for long-term, and AMD Is absolutely killing it.

What I'm trying to say is, Intel right now, their last scrap of relevance is in the "I must have the absolute best gaming performance regardless of the innate disadvantages of the platform, price, or any other metric" market. And that's why you have such strong marketing around 'World's best gaming processor' on the 9900K and now the KS.


AMD isn't done now, either. Zen3 is finalised and 7nm+ from TSMC with EUV is in the pipe and very much going to be starting volume soon if it hasn't already. This process itself is already half way the gap between Intel's defunct 10nm node and their 7nm process, but by the time Intel can build 7nm processors in volume to saturate the server market, TSMC and AMD will be shipping 5nm products. If AMD keeps their momentum: And I see no reason to suggest they won't, then Intel may have just shot itself in the foot to a point where it might struggle to recover.


My last point is about costs. Economics and cost, and unfortunately, this is often lost on people like you. Intel's absolutely enormous sunk cost of developing 10nm and failing it, and the fact that they develop their own lithography technology, means that their processors (per mm2) are significantly more expensive to manufacture (in terms of long-term profits, R&D included, not just BOM), maybe 2-3X more expensive. AMD has so much room to lower prices on Zen2 right now, and still make more of as profit than they ever did on Bulldozer, that Intel has really no way of 'competing' on value - an area where an absolutely huge chunk of marketshare hinges.


If you think Intel can put reasonably priced 7nm processors on the shelves, you are absolutely delusional ~


TLDR: Zen destroys Intel in the key areas of Perf/watt, perf/$ and cost of manufacturing, and just happens to be close if not beating already, in absolute performance. 'Leet Pro Gaming' doesn't matter for the bottom lines of these companies, funnily enough :P .. Zen2 doesn't 'only compete' with Skylake: it was built to compete with Intel's 10nm, AMD is just laughing at this point, and by the time Intel can get back on its feet, Zen3 and maybe even Zen4 will be here because AMD and TSMC are not standing still while Intel faffs about.


Thanks for taking the time to read it, if you did.

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