Subject: Re: A little birdy told me this about the SPARCstation 5/200
To: None <earle@isolar.Tujunga.CA.US, port-sparc@NetBSD.ORG>
From: George Robbins <>
List: port-sparc
Date: 07/02/1997 05:49:43
> Subject: A little birdy told me this about the SPARCstation 5/200
> From: Greg Earle <earle@isolar.Tujunga.CA.US>
> From: (A little birdy)
> Subject: Re: Anyone running a Sparc5/170 ??
> 	I believe the 5/200 was what was supposed to be released instead of
> 	the 170.  I guess it was too fast at the time.
> 	So they "detuned" it.
> I have to wonder about this, given that the Cycle 5 folks have had a 200 MHz
> upgrade card (listed as "coming soon" for the last several months) on their
> Web pages for a long time.  Also, the notion that a 200 MHz TurboSPARC was
> "too fast at the time" is, I suppose, dependant on the context ("too fast"
> for what?  The motherboard, case, heat sink, ???  Certainly not "too fast"
> in terms of CPU speed, since projected SPECint95 figures are still something
> like less than half the speed of a decent Pentium Pro 200)
> Maybe I shouldn't hold my breath any longer.  I *was* hoping for a 5/200 w/ a
> decent "entry color" 17" monitor and a 12x CD-ROM for $2870 (thank goodness
> I work for the Category "A" discount-eligible US Govahmint).  Sigh ...

Well, Fujitsu initially identeified their upgrade board as a 200 MHz board.
Perhaps they just couldn't get their chip or the board to work reliably at
that speed.

It probably doesn't matter much 200/170 is only like a 20% difference where it
seems like only doubling speed makes a big difference.  Also the speed of this
approach is severly limited by the bandwidth of the CPU<->on-board memory
interace, with is still whatever was fine for the original SS5 implementation.
Putting a bigger/faster cache on the CPU module helps, but doesn't cure the
problem - you either need a wider memory bus or a differnt technology such
as SDRAM to back up the cache.