Penryn Arrives: Moving to 45 Nanometers

Review: Intel launches its Yorkfield desktop processor. Will a bigger cache and SSE4 instruction help it run faster than the current crop of CPUs?

The last time Intel moved an existing CPU line to a new manufacturing process was with the ill-fated Prescott CPU. Prescott was a derivative of the Pentium 4 architecture. Those were in the bad old days, where clock frequency was king and real men ran processors that generated blast furnace heat levels.

Moving to 65nm was supposed to mitigate the Pentium 4s tendency to eat power like a pig in a slop trough. Alas, Prescott proved even hotter than its predecessor.

It wasnt until Intel shipped the Core 2 processor line that the company redeemed itself in the eyes of consumers and performance enthusiasts. And what a redemption: faster performance and lower power, albeit at lower clock rates.

The Core 2 CPUs havent officially hit the rarified clock rates of the old Pentium Extreme Edition 965, which ran at 3.73GHz and could fry eggs. Core 2 didnt need to run at those clock rates. Even at one gigahertz or less, Core 2 Duo proved faster and more efficient.

/zimages/1/28571.gifRead the full story on ExtremeTech: Penryn Arrives: Core 2 Extreme QX9650 Review

/zimages/1/28571.gifCheck out eWEEK.coms for the latest news, views and analysis on servers, switches and networking protocols for the enterprise and small businesses.