Overclocked Celerons. [was:Re: seti@home]

dan (dan@Clemmensen.ShireNet.com)
Mon, 12 Jul 1999 20:19:57 -0400

"Michael S. Lorrey" wrote:
> dan wrote:
> >
> > Eugene Leitl wrote:
> > >
> > > Michael S. Lorrey writes:
> > >
> > > > A Celeron, put quite plainly, is a POS. It has a really pissy small
> > > > cache. A dual PII 450 actually is faster than just a 900 equivalence.
> > >
> > > Not so. An overclocked 300A (if you can get'em) is actually almost
> > > always faster than equivalent PII/450 (size doesn't always matter ;).
> > > Nota bene, there are also dual-CPU Celerons boards out there.
> > > Currently the best deal for the money by far.
> >
> > I've been using my new Linux box for about a week. It's a dual
> > celeron300A, overclocked to 466Mhz.
> Ouch! You don't plan on owning those chips for very long?
> Mike Lorrey

Celerons and other modern CPU chips have on-board temperature sensors, and modern motherboards have ways to monitor them. My Celerons operate at or below 34 degrees C, mostly because I paid careful attention to cooling, with a big tower case, fans on each processor, and an extra case exhaust fan. The cost of all the fans, etc., is very low, and I would in fact dissipate the same power and thus generate the same heat and need the same fans if I were running PIIs. Celerons are rated for operation (admittedly at 300Mhz) at as high as 60 degrees C.

The real heat generator is the Voodoo 3 3000. Mine runs cool enough to touch with my finger, which is not true in a standard implementation for that board: I do this with a slot-mounted exhaust fan in the adjacent slot.

I'm not a real overclocker: those folks do crazy things like immersing the entire motherboard in mineral oil and using refrigeration equipment to cool the oil. I merely took advantage of Intel's mistake with the
Celeron 300A, certain of which are really capable of 466Mhz operation. Check out some of the weird overclocking stuff on slashdot.

CPUs are not the only chunk of hardware caught in the inexorable march of Moore's Law. Disk drives are still keeping up, which never ceases to amaze me. Disk drive have motors! What does that have to do with Moore's Law?!! Nothing, but lithographic and related technologies have driven up the magnetic recording density at roughly the
same rate as the DRAM bit density. Here's an interesting result:
the retail cost of hard disk storage has fallen below $10.00 (US) per gigabyte. This means that the cost of storing an MP3-compressed CD (50 megabytes for the typical 50-minute audio CD) is now $.50 US. To calibrate this, The database at www.cddb.com knows about more than 325,000 unique audio CDs. This must be a high percentage of all the CDs aver released. An MP3 copy of the entire collection (about 16 Terabytes)
would require $160,000 worth of disk this year, and will require $16,000 of disk in three years. It would currently fit in about 8 boxes the size of a desktop PC enclosure, and will fit in one
such box in three years. As a point of reference, Microsoft claims their 1-terabyte geological image database is the biggest commercial database in the world.