AMD's architecture is more efficient. Intel's architecture isn't efficient, but it allows for better clock ramping which makes up for the inefficacy.
AMD's architecture allows for a processor to complete ~11 instructions per clock cycle (AMD64). Intel's architecture allows for a processor to complete ~4-5 instructions per clock cycle.
Since, AMD's architecture doesn't allow for extreme scalability like Intel's it is forced to run at low speeds where as Intel's can run at very high speeds. That is why a Pentium 4 520/2.8 GHz can perform equally to an Athlon 64 2800+/1.8 GHz.
Think of it this way:
An AMD car running at 18 MPh making only 12 stops for gas completing an 180 mile trip in 10 hours.
An Intel car running at 28 MPh making 31 stops for gas completing a 180 mile trip in 10 hours.
beedubaya, your a moron. I'm simply stating from my experiences. People have advised never to go for more than 512 MB because current applications do not need more than 512 MB. And I'm only stating from my purposes too. I do a lot of photo editing, video editing, animation, and web design. I can honestly say for my purposes, Intel is better.
AMD is better for gaming and only that. For power apps, I'd always recommend Intel.
As far as memory goes, nothing more than 512 MB. And shouldn't get any of that trash high performance stuff. It is just altered memory that is the same chip as value ram except the alterations are done by a company and not a user. Go on Newegg and check the voltages and timings of that stuff. Get some value ram and apply the same settings. End of story, you have some performance stuff without paying $100-400 more.