Q: When I create a VM on Azure, sometimes I get AMD processors and sometimes I get Intel processors; is the performance the same?
A: Initially, the Azure compute fabric was based on AMD processors. However, the newer compute fabric uses Intel processors. Specifically, the new A8/A9 and D-series VMs use the new Intel-based servers exclusively, whereas other VM sizes (e.g., an A2) might be deployed on an AMD-based server or might be deployed to an Intel-based server.
The Intel-based servers have higher-performing processors, which ordinarily might actually cause an issue because users want predictable performance. This wouldn't be the case if the VM were deployed to an Intel instead of AMD server. To avoid this, the regular A-series VMs (A0 to A7) run at the same performance (around 1.5Ghz) regardless of whether they're deployed to Intel- or AMD-based servers. The other VM sizes, such as A8, A9, and the D-series that exclusively run on Intel processors, run at the full clock speed.