Pentium or K6-3+ for low-end box

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Pentium or K6-3+ for low-end box

Postby squiggly » 2017-12-05 @ 09:51

I am building a low-end SS7 machine. It will be my first pure DOS6.2 machine (why not). I would like it to scale from 386SX through to at least P100 speeds.

I have a few old S7 Pentiums lying around: P100, 133, 166MMX.

I originally thought I needed a K6-3+ as only it allowed the multiplier to be changed with setmul (apart from C3 on s370).

But then I read that setmul does in fact have options and switches to control the mult on at least some s7 pentiums, maybe all of them.

Is it worth shelling out for a K6-3+? It will allow me to reach higher top speeds (maybe up to 400mhz), but not sure it it can scale down quite as far.

Thoughts?
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Re: Pentium or K6-3+ for low-end box

Postby oerk » 2017-12-05 @ 10:36

The K6-3+ certainly is more flexible.

L1D works on my K5, for instance, and brings it down to slow 486 level. This works on Intel Pentiums too, IIRC. And if you don't mind rebooting, you can disable L2 in BIOS too for more range.

Try the ones you have first before deciding.
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Re: Pentium or K6-3+ for low-end box

Postby clueless1 » 2017-12-05 @ 11:49

What's more important for you: playing old DOS games that require a slow 386, or new DOS games (1996-1997) that need lots of horsepower? You should test your 166MMX. If it supports Intel Test Registers through Setmul, it should do quite nicely.

There's lots of results from different cpus in the cachebench thread. You can see how K6-3+, K6-2, P233MMX, P200MMX etc do. If an MMX chip supports the test registers, it becomes an extremely flexible option.
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Re: Pentium or K6-3+ for low-end box

Postby F2bnp » 2017-12-05 @ 12:17

K6-III+ is really nice because it is so flexible. You can go all the way down to 386 and all the way up to Pentium 2 performance :).
If you have difficulty sourcing a K6-III+ or it is a little too expensive, then definitely look for a K6-2+, they are usually very cheap and have almost negligible performance difference in Windows games. In your case where you'll be disabling caches and such, performance will be identical.

What motherboard are you using by the way?
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Re: Pentium or K6-3+ for low-end box

Postby appiah4 » 2017-12-05 @ 14:56

Is a K6-2 400 equally controllable with setmul?
1989:A500|+512K|ACA500+|C1084S
1992:HIPPO-VL+|DX2-66|8M|GD5428|CT2290
1995:PCI597-1|P133|32M|Trio64|V1|CT3980/2M|S2
1998:S1573S|K6-2/400|64M|RagePro|V2/SLI|CT4500/32M
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Re: Pentium or K6-3+ for low-end box

Postby squiggly » 2017-12-05 @ 21:47

F2bnp wrote: What motherboard are you using by the way?


Probably either a ASUA p5a or pa2012. Haven't built it yet so haven't had a chance to test setmul against the Pentiums.
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Re: Pentium or K6-3+ for low-end box

Postby squiggly » 2017-12-05 @ 22:08

clueless1 wrote:What's more important for you: playing old DOS games that require a slow 386, or new DOS games (1996-1997) that need lots of horsepower?


Good question. I have another box, my "Win95 build" (even though it is Win98SE) which I use for all *Windows* games from 95-98 (think s370-c3, V2SLI, SBLive). As for post-95 DOS games...hmm...it would be nice if this low-end box could handle them, but obviously a p100 would choke at that point. Like you said the 166MMX would be a nice fit if it works with setmul and can scale down.
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Re: Pentium or K6-3+ for low-end box

Postby clueless1 » 2017-12-05 @ 22:36

squiggly wrote:
clueless1 wrote:What's more important for you: playing old DOS games that require a slow 386, or new DOS games (1996-1997) that need lots of horsepower?


Good question. I have another box, my "Win95 build" (even though it is Win98SE) which I use for all *Windows* games from 95-98 (think s370-c3, V2SLI, SBLive). As for post-95 DOS games...hmm...it would be nice if this low-end box could handle them, but obviously a p100 would choke at that point. Like you said the 166MMX would be a nice fit if it works with setmul and can scale down.

If I'm not mistaken, your 166MMX should be unlocked and may run fine at 200Mhz or higher. Try it out when you've got it installed.
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