Specifications continued In order to truly understand the CPU, we'll also need to understand the chipset that it utilizes. Here is just a quick bit of information regarding Canterwood.
"The 875P chipset-based platform integrates Intel® Communication Streaming Architecture (CSA) featuring a Dedicated Networking Bus interface, Hi-Speed USB 2.0, and Serial ATA. An enhanced AC '97 audio implementation with dual independent DMA audio engines delivers improved sound quality and new audio usage models. The 875P chipset helps to ensure that tomorrow's most demanding applications will run optimally on Pentium 4 processor-based platforms."
Supports Dolby* Digital 5.1 surround sound(1), delivering six channels of enhanced sound quality.
Intel® Communication Streaming Architecture
Wire-speed GbE with the Dedicated Network Bus for performance network connectivity.
Intel Hyper-Threading Intel's Hyper-Threading technology more or less gives your system the appearance as if it is running two processors within one. Obvious performance increases are readily apparent in almost all applications unlike previous Intel standards such as SSE and SSE 2. Once we start to see applications take advantage of HT support things should only get better. Here is a quick briefing on Intel's website regarding HT Techonlogy.
"A PC based on the Intel® Pentium® 4 Processor with HT Technology† consists of an Intel® Pentium® 4 processor, at operating frequencies from 1.40 GHz to 3.06 GHz, including the new 3 GHz, and other components that enable Hyper-Threading Technology. This groundbreaking technology from Intel enables the processor to execute two threads (a part of a program) in parallel. So your software can run more efficiently and you can multitask more effectively than ever before.
Hyper-Threading Technology also improves processor performance and responsiveness, giving you the power to do more tasks on your PC at once‡ such as playing a game while encoding digital music or editing digital video while encoding digital music.
By utilizing the multitasking features of Microsoft Windows XP*, a Pentium 4 processor with HT Technology-based PC can enhance content creation. When editing digital pictures or home movies, it can manage more filters, transitions, special effects, and media types at once, making the experience easier and more enjoyable.
You can also turn your PC into a recording studio by simultaneously, recording, mixing and copying original instrumental analog input, which can be saved in CD, DVD or MP3 audio formats faster than ever before. "
Here is another quick briefing on the benefits of Intel HT Technology.
"Hyper-Threading Technology is a state-of-the-art microprocessor architecture developed by an expert team of Intel Fellows, researchers, and engineers who have been investigating and refining simultaneous multithreading (SMT). Optimized for Intel architecture, HT Technology makes a single processor look like multiple processors to the operating system.
In its current implementation, HT Technology delivers two logical processors that can execute different tasks simultaneously using shared hardware resources."
And a quick quote below in reference to Moore's Law which has survived the test of time so far.
*Moore's Law Moore's Law states that the transistor density on integrated circuits doubles every couple of years. This exponential growth and ever-shrinking transistor size result in increased performance and decreased cost.
Out of the Box I was fairly impressed after opening the box and pulling out the CPU and HSF. Intel has a new heatsink design and it is quite a bit more radical than previous heatsinks for Pentium 4 processors. This particular HSF had a fat copper plate at the bottom and utilized the "thin fin" type design. The entire unit itself was quite beefy and my initial assessment was that this cooler would do a good job in keeping the CPU cool. Another item of interest was the inclusion of a small tube of Shin-Etsu thermal paste. Arguably one of the better thermal compounds on the market, although it can be a real pain to spread on the CPU due to it's thick peanut butter like consistency.
You can see the packaged box above and opened with the HSF and CPU in place. Also directly above is a shot of the box sticker. Note the "C" designator in the version and recent packing date. Ok, lets open this up and take a closer look.
We've used the stock cooler throughout both the ABIT IC7-G review and this review and it has been a great performer. I chose not to use the Shin-Etsu thermal paste since there appears to be only enough for 1 application, and instead used some standard white thermal paste using the tried and true "OCA Application Process" which consists of a business card and a dash of patience. The trick is to just get a thin evenly spread coating on the heatcap of the CPU. Once you get the HSF mounted on top, it should push the excess out to the sides and leave you with a very small layer between your CPU and HSF. This will make sure you have good heat transfer from your CPU to the HSF.
Lets move on to the benchmarking section to see what this CPU is capable of.
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