Which is Better - AMD or Intel

This discussion is a decade old and will continue on for years to come. Both sides have a list of very convincing things to offer, it's up to you to decide which one is better, but here are the differences that can help you decide.
Techspirited Staff
Last Updated: Jul 2, 2018
You may get the most fanciest of all laptops, with great features and looks. But then, what really matters is the real machine which lies beneath. And what I am talking about is the processor.
Today, the market is flooded with quite a few processors, and amongst them, the most popular are Intel and AMD processors. Both of these just makes the buyer more confused and difficult for one to decide which is better, AMD or Intel. Well, let us find that out.
I still remember a few years back, I had invested a huge amount of money to get my PC, and this was about six or seven years back. It was huge and I had to clear quite a bit of space in my room to accommodate it. I am sure, if you must have seen them you must be knowing what I am talking about. They had huge CPU cabinets.
Today, they would be hard to find even at the scrap dealer. Nowadays, what we have around is the laptops and notebook PCs. With more and more laptop manufacturers coming up with each unique feature in their respective machines, it really becomes a tough job to choose a laptop from AMD or Intel.
Amd Vs. Intel
For Laptops
Most laptop users are concerned with simple mobility and the use of regular computer tools, like listening to music or watching a movie, using basic software like Microsoft Word or for the Internet. For these users, the main concern is the price. And that's why most would prefer to buy AMD; it will always be cheaper than an equally rated Intel counterpart.
The next tier of laptop buyers will always look for two major aspects when deciding to purchase a laptop, and that is the laptop performance and the price. They want a fast laptop that doesn't cost much and can be used to play decent single-player games. Again, I'd suggest the AMD because of the price.
For Desktops
A desktop enthusiast can get a lot better configuration on their computer because a desktop is cheaper than a laptop. Most desktop users today require at least some amount of gaming compatibility. This is where it gets a little tough to choose. There are some basic differences between AMD and Intel.
The Main Differences Between AMD and Intel
Outer Pin Structure
The reason you cannot use either processor on a single motherboard is the pins on the outside each processor. If you're buying an entire computer, you get to choose between the two, because both processors need a compatible motherboard.
If you own a computer with an Intel chip inside it, you cannot use the same motherboard for an AMD chip. You will have to replace the motherboard along with the processor. This can be a problem as motherboards are quite expensive, therefore some users tend to stick to one brand.
Clocking Speed
If clocking speed was still a sole criteria for superiority (as it used to be in the old days), Intel would win hands down. But that's not the case anymore. Intel processors give you a higher clocking, which means they have a higher frequency of work done per second.
That's just how it is built- Intel divides the total work down to the smallest possible divisions for simplicity and goes through it a high frequency. AMD, on the other hand, goes through data at a slower rate, but processes a lot more data per cycle. In the end, the amount of data processed by the AMD can be quite significant.
This is the reason why the processing frequency cannot be taken into consideration while selecting between the two brands. I only added this point to help you understand this, so you won't be confused by a dealer when he says Intel is better because it has more speed, just to make a sale.
Overall Performance
This is a rather tricky area. If you compare versions with the same ratings, you'll find that Intel beats AMD in most areas when it comes to performance. But, ever since AMD got hold of ATI, the AMD processor has a much higher compatibility with any ATI graphics cards.
AMD started reworking their strategy at that time and integrated both systems quite well. So, if you're a gamer and want to buy an ATI graphics card, you'd be better off with an AMD processor.
There are, however, a few Intel processors that have integrated graphics support have turned out quite good for gaming purposes.
As the market currently stands, the high-end AMD processors can give you only so much processing capability as the first generation Intel processors. Which keeps the performance market quite an open ground for the high-end Intel processors.
If you're not really into gaming and want good performance for something like virtualizing your machine or video encoding, you can go with Intel.
Another category for gauging performance is multitasking abilities. For a software or an application, multitasking refers to its ability to divide its work into smaller pieces for faster computing.
If you are using such software that allow multitasking, choose Intel, because of Hyper-Threading, a technique in Intel that allows faster, efficient multitasking.
Pricing
This is where the debate takes a huge detour. For all the numbers that Intel shows you to be better than AMD, there is one figure that most don't want to appreciate to be larger- the price.
Current Intel processors may be better than AMD, but AMD processors are cheaper than Intel by 20% to 60%. Yes, that much. Most gamers will be under 30 years of age and they will agree that current-gen Intel is a little out of their reach. Which is why they prefer to stick to AMD.
You can assemble your own computer with singular parts and AMD processor with a compatible graphics card for a price much, much lower than what Intel can go down to.
In conclusion, if you got the money, you can choose Intel. If not, AMD is just as good. Again, the type of computer or laptop you buy will heavily depend on what you're going to do with it. If it's just HD movies and stuff, you can buy a low-end configuration and save up on a lot of cash.