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jmke 5th April 2005 14:24

Intel Ignites Desktop Dual-Core Era as First Dual-Core Chips Previewed
Intel Corp. is yet to release its central processing units with two cores in the late Q2 2005, but today the company decided to give the world a preview on performance of its first chip with two processing engine, the Intel Pentium Processor Extreme Edition 840. With the ability to simultaneously execute up to four threads, the microprocessor may have the capability to deliver unmatched performance to desktop computing, nevertheless, its relatively low clock-speed of 3.20GHz may not allow it to score really high performance in applications like games.

“Whether supporting digital media creation, multi-threaded gaming applications or the convergence of digital entertainment, the Intel Pentium Processor Extreme Edition 840 is an excellent fit for advanced users seeking exceptional performance from their platform,” claims Intel Corp., but what do the professional media think?

“Despite our best efforts, some of the best characterization of the impact of dual core is done with words. The best way to put it is like this: if an application is eating up all of your CPU time, with dual core, you still have one core left to make the rest of your system just as responsive as before,” Anand Lal Shimpi of AnandTech has written in his preview of Intel’s dual-core chip performance.

“There are already many environments where a dual-core processor will outclass a non-threaded chip, such as media encoding, rendering, and the everyday multi-tasking in which you engage, behavior that’s very hard to quantify. Intel tells the tale of a “perfect storm”--instances during your work day where several tasks execute simultaneously, both in the background and foreground, taxing your system. Although you might be idling 90 percent of the time, those perfect storms can be debilitating. Without a processor capable of addressing multiple threads simultaneously, you’re left waiting. And that’s where dual-core comes into play,” writes FiringSquad.

“The Intel Pentium Processor Extreme Edition 840 and its dual core technology will be a boon for content creation professionals and video enthusiasts currently lacking a dual CPU system. The pricing we have seen will start with the 840 processors at over a thousand dollars, but the entire dual core line is set to scale easily into mainstream over the next 18 months. As this happens, more and more applications will be written to exploit the power of dual core processors and they will surely come into their own. You may not need a dual core CPU today, but you certainly will want one by 2007, and by then they will be an affordable mainstream common part. The Intel Pentium Processor Extreme Edition 840 is simply a small glimpse of the world’s computing future,” concludes [H]ardOCP.

“Intel’s decision to amalgamate a second Pentium 4 Prescott core on to a single piece of silicon is a bold move, and it’s here to stay. Having used a dual-core system for the first time over this last weekend, one major advantage of running what effectively amounts to two independent processors is difficult to reflect in benchmark graphs. It's utter system smoothness when running two or more CPU-intensive applications at one time. In pure application benchmark terms, single-instance performance is largely dictated by just how well-threaded and well-scheduled an application is.” concludes

“The new 840 Processor/955X Express chipset will eventually enhance consumers computing capabilities thanks to dual core processors. The ability to run four threads really shows when running multiple applications and processor intensive software that is designed for multiple threaded processors. Hopefully our readers have noticed that dual core doesn’t do much when it comes to single threaded applications. Intel is not positioning these first dual-core units as the highest-performing Intel parts for single-threaded applications/usages. Since the initial dual cores are running at 3.2GHz, they will trail some of the higher-clock speed Intel CPUs on single-threaded usages. But, as with all new releases, expect better performance as the technology matures.” concludes Legit Reviews.

“Taken at the most basic level a dual core processor works much like a dual processor computer, except that it only has one processor socket. The big difference is that in a dual Xeon workstation or server the two processors have to communicate with each other, as well as with the system memory, so there’s inevitably a performance hit as the processors negotiate which data they will each work on.” writes TrustedReviews.

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