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Intel's New Family of 800 MHz FSB Processors

Review by Michael Tran on 6.05.03
Managing Editor: Harry Lam
CPU Provided by Intel



The Intel Pentium 4 3.00GHz CPU is one of the newest CPUs out on the market, sporting Intel's new 800MHz FSB and Intel's Hyperthreading technology.  We are going to take a look at the Intel's new line of 800MHz P4s that have just hit the market, from the affordable 2.4C to the top of the line 3.0.

New Chipsets:

With these new CPUs, Intel also has recently released two new families of chipsets, the Intel 865 (Springdale) and the Intel 875 (Canterwood).  The primary difference between the two chipsets is that the Canterwood features PAT, which is touted to improve performance. The Springdale will be the cheaper of the two chipsets, focused towards the mainstream market.  Canterwood is aimed for performance enthusiasts, and as a result is is slightly more aggressive than the Springdale, however both chipsets offer the same fundamental features, most notably support for DDR400 and 800MHz FSB. The Springdale is based off the same core as the Canterwood, but lacks PAT.  PAT (Performance Acceleration Technology) allows the chipset to perform slightly more aggressively and decreases the latency times between the CPU and RAM.


The innovative feature of Hyperthreading was first introduced to the mainstream consumer in late 2002 on the Pentium4 3.06GHz 533MHz FSB CPU.  If you have not heard of Hyperthreading, it basically creates two virtual processors, allowing the processor to track multiple software threads simultaneously.   This increases the efficiency of the CPU when using multithreaded applications, but for single-threaded applications the CPU may run a tad slower.

800MHz FSB:

Intel's 800MHz FSB is actually a 200MHz FSB that is quad pumped.  A double pumped CPU can be thought as similar to DDR, which is able to access the memory two times per clock cycle.  Similarly, a quad pumped CPU is able to access the front-side bus four times per clock cycle.  Theoretically, the performance of using a quad-pumped bus should be four times that of a normal bus, but when other variables like latency are taken in account, the performance increase does not even reach double the theoretical speed.

This review will go further in depth about theoretical vs. actual speeds, and how it applies to the four CPUs in Intel's newest line of CPUs, the 2.4C, 2.6C, 2.8C, and the 3.0.

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