Intel Atom Z530 vs. Atom N270

After trying out the Sony Vaio P, I was curious whether there’s any performance difference between the Intel Atom Z530 and the Atom N270. Both chips run at 1.6GHz so I thought they’d have similar results with Super Pi.

Turns out my assumptions were wrong. Clock for clock, the Atom N270 beats the Z530 in Super Pi by as much as 35%. See chart below for the Super Pi results from 16k to 2M.

Yugatech 728x90 Reno7 Series

atom z530 vs n270
Numbers are in seconds so the lower the number, the faster the processor.

I can’t really account for the discrepancy in the results. Almost everything is similar between the Silverthorne and the Diamondville CPUs  except maybe for the TDP (2.5W vs. 2W) and the package size (22x22mm vs. 13×14mm). I’m still trying to figure this one out.

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Avatar for Abe Olandres

Abe is the founder and Editor-in-Chief of YugaTech with over 20 years of experience in the technology industry. He is one of the pioneers of blogging in the country and considered by many as the Father of Tech Blogging in the Philippines. He is also a technology consultant, a tech columnist with several national publications, resource speaker and mentor/advisor to several start-up companies.

17 Responses

  1. Avatar for global mobility global mobility says:

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  3. Avatar for Jett Tayer Jett Tayer says:

    Abe, what about Z550 vs N450 ?

  4. Avatar for Pabitra Baro Pabitra Baro says:

    So which one is better recently launched Z550 and N450?

  5. Avatar for Andy Andy says:

    One difference is wattage. According to Intel’s website, the N270 draws .5 more wattage at 2.5W, where the Z530 runs at 2.0W. More power = better performance, correct?

    But the clock speed and cache size remain the same. That’s strange there’s such a difference.

  6. Avatar for Itai Itai says:

    So should i go with Z530?

  7. Avatar for myvaiop myvaiop says:

    The problem when running benchmarks on the Sony VAIO P is it’s passive cooling (no fan for the CPU). When you put some heavy load onto the machine, e.g. running benchmarks over a longer period of time, the CPU Core temperature rises over a critical level (90° C) and the processor begins to throttle. Then it runs only with 800MHz instead of 1600Mhz.

    See also page 21 of the Atom Z5xx datasheet:

    Improved Intel® Thermal Monitor mode:
    -When the on-die thermal sensor indicates that the die temperature is too high, the processor can automatically perform a transition to a lower frequency and voltage specified in a software programmable MSR.
    -The processor waits for a fixed time period. If the die temperature is down to acceptable levels, an up transition to the previous frequency and voltage point occurs.
    -An interrupt is generated for the up and down Intel Thermal Monitor transitions enabling better system level thermal management.

    I got the same problem when running benchmarks on the VAIO P (SuperPI, CrystalMark09 etc.). Sometimes the results fluctuate more than 10% or more, so i searched for the problem. I observed the CPU-Speed during benchmarks and after some time the CPU throttles to 800MHz.

    If you keep this in mind, you get nearly the same results in SuperPI as Atom N270 and N280 CPU. Here are my results:

    16K – 0.828s
    32K – 1.719s
    64K – 3.703s
    128K – 8.109s
    256K – 19.046s
    512K – 43.609s
    1M – 97.438s
    2M – 224.782s

    Greetings from Thailand!

  8. Avatar for TechPinas TechPinas says:

    Interesting. Up to 128k, the difference isn’t much actually.

    I read in NotebookReview that Dell chose Z to run its netbooks because the chipset runs A LOT cooler than N (so they claim) and hence, works even with minimal fan speed.

    Apparently and moreso in netbooks, laptop heat and fan noise are primary concerns. This graph shows that the compromise wasn’t much.


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