May 3, 2005

Intel Dual-Core Chip Aces First Test

Desktop CPU with two built-in processors does well at juggling multiple tasks.
Source: PC World
Written By Anush Yegyazarian
From the June 2005 issue of PC World magazine

Intel’s first dual-core desktop processors are ready to ship, and our tests show they’ll deliver some real benefit when you run software on them that’s designed to take advantage of the two cores, or when you’re performing multiple tasks simultaneously–running a virus check while surfing the Web, for instance.

As the name implies, dual-core processors incorporate two physical processors and two L2 memory caches into one piece of silicon, functioning, in theory, like two separate processors. Intel’s first dual-core chip, the 3.2-GHz Pentium 4 Extreme Edition 840 (which carries 1MB of L2 cache per core), goes one step further by including Intel’s Hyper-Threading technology in each core, which theoretically brings you a “virtual” second processor per core.

Intel’s chips are part of a wave of dual-core processing. AMD has already released its dual-core Opteron chips for workstations and servers, and its dual-core Athlon desktop CPUs are due at midyear. Unlike Intel’s dual-core chips, the new AMD dual-core processors will not require new chip sets or motherboards, just a BIOS upgrade.

Like AMD’s Athlon 64 chips and other new high-end Pentium 4 chips, the dual-core CPU has 64-bit support. Other dual-core desktop processors from Intel’s new Pentium D line will arrive in May; the Pentium Ds will use motherboards with the forthcoming 945 chip set. Dell has already announced its first system with the dual-core P4 EE 840 CPU: its Dell Dimension XPS Gen5 gaming and multimedia PC. Other vendors should also have systems available by the time you read this.

Read entire article

Editor’s Note: Photoshop has been able to take advantage of dual processor configurations since at least Photoshop 4.0. As a result, Dual-Core machines will also benefit Photoshop. PC World’s tests however use Photoshop 7, not CS or CS2 for their benchmark tests.

Comments are closed.