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TonyStill> There is *no* reason to suppose there'd be much speed advantage to an Omega with the xScale card fitted. After all it's *not* a whole new computer, all that's changed is the processor. The southbridge (and its harddisk controller) will remain the same (so no speed increase there then), yes it can be argued that the Northbridge *can* be reprogrammed - but as the RAM sockets are soldered in you're not simply going to be able to reprogram it to use *newer* RAM and get much of a boost there either (IMHO).

Where it *would* score is it would fulfill a *bullet point* feature that many people paid for nearly 4 years ago, it would probably offer some speed improvement over the existing Omega processor arrangement - but here's the catch - what impact will "ArmTwister" have (I can't really believe that it will have zero impact). Remember much of the OS is 26bit - so therefore that will either have to be "ArmTwistered" so it can run on the xScale (or more likely) it may just run on the *existing* StrongARM (therefore *No speed improvement*) while 32 bit code would be faster - as they could be run on the faster xScale but the moment they need to access the OS there'd be a speed hit (as it would have ArmTwisters overhead and/or would need to be run on the current StrongARM).

As to the assertion that's floating around here *No* Omega is *not* a newer computer than Iyonix its RAM, Processor are older to cap that the processor it uses is out of production (hence obsolete) simply plonking in a new processor does not make it a *newer* computer than Iyonix - I'd also point out that the FPGAs MD uses although reprogrammable are themselves old (by todays standards) and simply reprogramming them won't change that will it ?

The fastest xScales are at the 733MHz mark, Iyonix runs at 600MHz. For purely register based (no I/O) the speed improvement would probably be commensurate with the difference in clock rate (at best 22%). Once I/O gets involved some of that has to be piped through the OS which is still 26 bit and which *can't* run natively on the xScale (it follows that it will be *slower*). So any speed increase will depend on the proportion of code that is 26 bit and the proportion that is 32bit. 32bit code that makes no I/O or OS calls will be quickest, 32bit code that invokes 26bit OS/ or I/O code will be slower. Yes no one can be certain of what speed increase, if any, is likely but it can be *no faster* than 22% in Omegas favour - and may well be either less than this or even less than the current performance of the Iyonix (depending on the precise code run and the effectiveness of ArmTwister).

As to the notion that a faster Omega will *provoke* Castle into doing an Iyonix-II, the fact that Iyonix is *already* faster and is already here does not seem to have make Omega die-hards move over to Iyonix... if a putative IyonixII existed even if it was ten times faster than Omega some people here would still opt for Omega - Castle may well have won the intellectual case but for those who have "faith" in Omega - mere logic doesnt seem (sadly) to carry much weight.



 is a RISC OS UserAMS on 11/4/04 12:49PM
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