Linked by David Adams on Mon 19th Sep 2011 16:51 UTC, submitted by estherschindler
Intel With the Xeon 7600 line, Intel is finally using the 'R' word: RISC. It's targeting the mission-critical market dominated by Sun SPARC and IBM Power with the new chips, a first. Can the Xeon E7 processor deliver Intel's final blow to the RISC market, which includes its own Itanium?
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RISC dominates where no BC needed
by JLF65 on Mon 19th Sep 2011 18:45 UTC
JLF65
Member since:
2005-07-06

x86/x86-64 only dominates the PC market due to the backwards compatibility pressure of the market. In fields where such an issue isn't present, x86/x86-64 is just another processor, and not as good as many other competitors. See phones/tablets/netbooks as an example - x86/x86-64 doesn't hold a candle to ARM. Look at consoles - all three major consoles are PowerPC based. Look at handheld consoles - they are MIPS or ARM.

Reply Score: 2

JAlexoid Member since:
2009-05-19

It's the price. Commodity hardware servers are the norm today and x86 is a commodity architecture.

Prices for System p or SPARC are just plain ridiculous...

Reply Parent Score: 7

tylerdurden Member since:
2009-03-17

No, it is many things, backwards compatibility being one of them.

The principal reason why x86 dominates in the middle and high performance spaces is that it simply has the best price/performance ration in that segment.

A POWER or SPARC processor may cost an order of magnitude more than the comparable x86 part. So unless the POWER or SPARC system brings a significant value added, most business tend to go for the cheaper price. Which is exactly what has happened.

Reply Parent Score: 5

JLF65 Member since:
2005-07-06

A POWER or SPARC may cost more, but not the PowerPC, ARM, SuperH, or MIPS. All are either very competitive, or actually much less expensive. And that goes back to my point that if an x86 is NEEDED for some reason, like BC, it's not used; instead, the PowerPC, ARM, SuperH, or MIPS is used.

Reply Parent Score: 1

zima Member since:
2005-07-06

x86/x86-64 only dominates the PC market due to the backwards compatibility pressure of the market. In fields where such an issue isn't present, x86/x86-64 is just another processor, and not as good as many other competitors

Curious how Apple switched to x86 a few years back, against their BC concerns.

Or how Linux enthusiasts, who can mostly compile to anything, are almost virtually on desktop / laptop x86 machines.

Reply Parent Score: 2