Intel VIIV vs. AMD LIVE!

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System Comparison

For our testing purposes, we selected two nearly identical systems from HP which were designed to be general household multimedia PCs that an average consumer would typically purchase. For those who know little about the innerr-workings of a PC, we wanted to compare the two competing platforms to see which offered the higher performance and more compelling experience. In order to depict a real-world scenario for this case, we used each system with no modification out of the box aside from a graphics card driver update. Surely, someone who was not keen on configuring a PC would be using the system as it shipped so we made every effort to do the same.

Despite being designed around two separate platforms, the two HP systems used the same exact chassis and general hardware. As a result, we were able to truly decipher the strengths and weaknesses of each platform with no worries of different hardware skewing the results.

HotHardware's HP Test Systems
Similar, but dramatically different...

HP Pavilion a1630n

  • 2.2GHz AMD Athlon 64 X2 4600+
  • NVIDIA GeForce 6150LE + nForce 430 MCP
  • 2 x 1GB DDR2 533MHz memory
  • 16x DVD+/-RW with dual-layer support
  • 250GB 7200RPM Hard Drive (SATA/150)
  • Microsoft Media Center 2005
  • NVIDIA Forceware 93.71 drivers
  • NVIDIA nForce 11.09 drivers

HP Pavilion a1640n

  • 1.86GHz Intel Core 2 Duo E6300
  • Intel G965 Chipset
  • 2 x 1GB DDR2 533MHz memory
  • 16x DVD+/-RW with dual-layer support
  • 250GB 7200RPM Hard Drive
  • Microsoft Media Center 2005
  • Intel drivers


For the AMD LIVE! system, we chose the HP Pavilion a1630n which is built around an AMD Athlon 64 X2 4600+ processor running at 2.2GHz. This processor is paired with an OEM motherboard from ASUS which uses NVIDIA's GeForce 6150LE IGP and nForce 430 MCP chipsets. From this point on, the system uses the same exact components which will be found in the Intel Viiv system. This includes 2GB of DDR2 memory running at 533MHz along with a 250GB SATA hard drive, 16X dual layer DVD+/-RW, and a copy of Windows Media Center 2005.

The Intel Viiv system we chose was the HP Pavilion a1640n which is based on the Intel Core 2 Duo E6300 running at 1.86GHz. Again, we find an OEM motherboard from ASUS, though this board uses Intel's latest G965 IGP chipset with the ICH7-DH southbridge. The G965 houses Intel's latest GMA 3000 IGP technology and should offer a significant jump in performance over previous Intel IGP offerings. As previously stated, the remaining hardware is identical to the AMD-based system with the same 2GB of memory, 16x DVD+/-RW, and Windows Media Center 2005 operating system.

Tags:  AMD, Intel, live, Ive, AM

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