The problem is more of a function of the OS as opposed to the processor. If you have a robust kernel, it will run as nicely on an AMD processor as it does on an Intel processor. Stay away from that crappy microsoft junk. Get Solaris or Linux, they both are available for X86 architecture. If you need, modify the kernel to suit your application and you will see that both processors will work reliably.
Personally, I prefer Solaris for my OS and a SunMicrosystems Ultra-Sparc machine anyday to the X86 machines. When I need to do real work, I use Sun/Solaris. The wintel box is adequate for web surfing or gaming. The sun box is like a Z06 and the X86 is a rustang, not even close.
You know this is one thing that really pisses me off.
All these guys touting the Sun/UNIX platforms. I totally argree that they are fast as hell, dependable, and reliable but for the majority of the free world we don't want to run an OS that can't do squat (no software).
Most of what I do involves imaging and graphics and the entire world runs on Adobe/Macromedia/Microsoft software.
And Brainiac, what do you do when you need to create or edit a PowerPoint, Director File, or other windows based file?
Please, let's compare apples to apples. Sun/UNIX systems are my FIRST choice when it comes to hardcore application or web serving, but as a consumer machine Wintel systems are king and are miles ahead of any UNIX or Sun box.
You are WRONG about not being available software. Certainly you won't find it at your local mall store, but the vast majority of those things you do today on a pc have been around in the Unix evironment for years. I will grant you that they are not cheap, but when your business relies on doing it well, the cost is well worth the investment. Adobe was first done on a Sun platform. WYSYWIG pubication and documentation was around in the late 80's on a Unix plaform. It was years later before the pc even got away from the "escape" characters to print various fonts and special characters. Solid modeling and the basis for animation was done years ago in unix environment.
If you need to edit an MS doc, StarOffice works fine for the MS-Office docs. There are also many great packages for graphics, animation, publication and true multi-media.
JC, this is NOT a personal slam against you or any other wintel people. That is not what it is intended. I enjoy discussing the variants in architecture. I have had many wonderful discussions with professionals in the industry over the years. I have been in this business for 20 years now and I have seen phenominal change. I believe the pc has enabled the home users trmendously but with microsoft's vast monopoly and fortune, they could be leveraging the industry and providing products that are leaps and bounds better and cheaper. I enjoy it all, especially the ride in my Z06. Have a great weekend everyone!