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Date: October 31st, 2004
Article by: Nathan Glentworth (Owner, Head Editor & Hardware Reviewer)
Product was donated by: Intel
<--SHOP FOR A INTEL MOTHERBOARD HERE

 

INTEL CORPORATE PROFILE



For more than three decades, Intel Corporation has developed technology enabling the computer and Internet revolution that has changed the world. Founded in 1968 to build semiconductor memory products, Intel introduced the world's first microprocessor in 1971. Today, Intel supplies the computing and communications industries with chips, boards, systems, and software building blocks that are the "ingredients" of computers, servers and networking and communications products. These products are used by industry members to create advanced computing and communications systems. Intel's mission is to be the preeminent building block supplier to the Internet economy.

 

PRODUCT INTRODUCTION



Intel's newest 3.46Ghz Extreme Edition Pentium 4 and new 925XE chipset launch can be summed up easily as the simple upscaling of a portion of the Pentium 4 line from its' long standing front side bus standard speed of 800Mhz to 1066Mhz. Based on current knowledge which may change shortly, the 1066Mhz front side bus flavor is only being released in the Extreme Edition line of P4s and only time will tell whether it will spread to the newer standard LGA775 processors. To be honest, I hope it does.



The 3.46Ghz processor I was using for the testing was an Intel Engineering sample with an unlocked multiplier that could be set to 12 or 13 as you see in the above CPU-Z shot. This is a good sign that a 3.2Ghz version of this processor should be following shortly with a locked 12x multiplier.


With that being said, the new 3.46Ghz 1066Mhz Extreme Edition is practically the same as the 3.4Ghz 800Mhz Extreme Edition other than the newer model have a 266Mhz quad pumped front side bus with a 13x multiplier and the older 800Mhz version having its' respective 200Mhz quad pumped bus being multiplied to a tune of 17x . What separates both of these Gallatin core based processors from their more mainstream directed Prescott alternative is their respective 512kb Level 2 and very large 2MB L3 caches. With more memory onboard, the CPU is less inclined to rely on the slower DDR2 system memory for faster executions.


 

 

 


Seeing the new 3.46Ghz Gallatin still requires the same 1.525-1.6 volt (1.575volts usually) vcore, I was expecting to be monitoring the same relative core temperatures while benchmarking and stress testing. With the emphasis put on the "expecting", stress testing using Prime95's maximum heat torture test had Intel's Active Monitor software throwing up warning screens as it detected temperatures reaching and passing the 60c threshold and topping out at 72c (162f) using an open air setup with no case. At idle, the temperature hovered around a nominal 35c which was only six degrees Celsius over room temperature. Initializing the stressing program had the temperature practically bolt up to 62c in 10 seconds where from there is slowly crept up 72c within two minutes.


But what does this mean? Do we have another scorcher or do we have a processor heatsink and fan that is not up to the task of cooling the new Gallatin? Well, if you were to say both, you would be correct. With a full 110.7watts of total heat displacement coming forth at maximum stress levels, an aftermarket copper heatsink or even a Socket T watercooling kit should be on your short list if you plan on really pushing this processor to its' limits.



Turning our focus to the new 925XE chipset, the photo above speaks for itself. As you can see and infer, the only difference between the 925X and the 925XE is the 1066Mhz FSB and tighter 3-3-3-8 memory timing support with the newer version. And seeing that the two motherboards are practically identical, I found it a waste of time to rehash when has already been outlined in our INTEL D925XCV LGA775 PENTIUM 4 925X ALDERWOOD MOTHERBOARD REVIEW we released recently.


Unfortunately, at the time of benchmarking I did not have a sample of 3-3-3-8 capable memory for testing. But, on the other hand using the same Mushkin 4-4-4-12 memory will highlight the actual gains from the faster front side bus Extreme Edition instead of a performance increase through a mixture of the tighter memory timings and the faster CPU combined. Once a sample of 3-3-3-8 memory comes available, I will update the review with the new benchmarks combining the two faster components.


Until then, here are the 3.46Ghz Extreme Edition benchmarks.

 


 


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