The Chip: Pentium Extreme Edition

As we mentioned in our IDF coverage, Intel has dropped the number 4 from their naming for their dual core parts.  The new dual core desktop CPUs will simply be called the Pentium D and the Pentium Extreme Edition. 

Both the Pentium D and Pentium Extreme Edition are nothing more than two 90nm Prescott 1M dies glued together.  That means that each core has its own 1MB L2 cache, and that also means that architecturally, these chips are no different than the single core Pentium 4s that are out today - other than the obvious dual core fact. 

Contrary to what we've reported earlier, the only difference between the Pentium D and the Pentium Extreme Edition is the presence of Hyper Threading; mainly, the Pentium D doesn't have it, while the Extreme Edition does.  Both chips will only use a 800MHz FSB, they both have the same cache sizes, and they only differ in the presence of HT. 

Armed with Hyper Threading, the Pentium Extreme Edition allows the execution of 4 concurrent threads and appears as a quad processor CPU to the OS.  Without Hyper Threading, the Pentium D only allows for 2 concurrent threads and appears as a dual processor CPU to the OS.

While the Pentium D will be offered in three speed grades, from 2.8GHz up to 3.2GHz, the Extreme Edition will only be launched at 3.2GHz.  Note that the fastest single core Pentium 4s run between 3.6GHz and 3.8GHz, so there is a significant clock speed penalty paid by going to dual core. 

Index The Platform: Intel 955X
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  • Da DvD - Wednesday, April 06, 2005 - link

    Many of you are making a huge mistake. You are proposing insane multitasking tests to 'bring these processors to their knees'. This is wrong! Since when do we adjust the review to the product?
    This is similar to only running benchmarks whose working sets fit completely into the 2mb cache of a new cpu. In other words, when you review a product like this, do NOT suddenly change all your variables, keep them as you always had them. Later on, you can adjust variables (tests), and draw your conclusions accordingly.

    Also, I hope people understand that when Anand would have run these test on a dual Xeon 3.2 system, the results would have been virtually the same. You ALREADY KNOW dual cpu systems can be twice as fast as single cpu systems in certain tests, and show no improvement at all in others.

    I really appreciate the article in general, but it would have been SO much better when the PICTURE would have been complete. For this, a dual Opteron system and a dual Xeon system should have been included, AND the tests should have a reflected typical user workloads. If for some reason all cpu's would have been dualcore already, -I- still wouldn't be importing PST files while running my games. Again, when reviewing something, it's wrong to adapt the workload to the product. This is why some people now question your integrety, Anand, because quickly reading through the article DOES give the impression Dual-Core is THE thing, while there's so much it is not!

    And yes, i do realize you don't have dual Opteron/Xeon rigs at hand, but still, you choose to present this incomplete picture. It was a choice, but not necessarily the correct one ;-)

    Regards,

    DvD
    Reply
  • Zebo - Wednesday, April 06, 2005 - link

    Anand for game marks I like to see a dvdshrink deep analysis/encode, with grabit downloading 8 threads with plenty more cued, some seti at home, then run farcry and report FPS.:D

    That will bring these single procesors to thier knees obviously but I want to see if DC is really worth it since that's the type of choices I'm forced to choose between.
    Reply
  • tjahns - Wednesday, April 06, 2005 - link

    As I am not a regular reader nor familiar with the benchmarks used in this article, I am rather disappointed that the scales on the graphs in this article do not indicate what is being measured nor whether "higher is better" or "lower is better". Reply
  • Calin - Wednesday, April 06, 2005 - link

    What would be better in games (I think), especially in first person shooter games, would be to compare the lowest frames per second, and not the highest or the averaged frame rate. And I think this would represent an tremendous advantage for multiprocessors/multicore Reply
  • Calin - Wednesday, April 06, 2005 - link

    "Nice article, as always. I wonder how memory bandwidth increases/decreases will effect the performance of the already bandwidth hungry intel processors."
    The Intel processors are no longer bandwidth hungry, as the move to the 1066FSB showed. However, throw a second processor into the mix, and things might change
    Reply
  • Calin - Wednesday, April 06, 2005 - link

    The Register has a small review on it, and compare it against a dual Xeon rig
    http://www.theregister.co.uk/2005/04/05/review_int...
    Reply
  • Icehawk - Wednesday, April 06, 2005 - link

    Great article - loved the multitasking benchmarks.

    Here's what I have running all the time:

    WinAmp 5
    Outlook 2003
    Firefox 1.02
    ICQQ2003Pro
    Norton A/V2005
    drivers for audio & video :)

    How is my performance affected by multiple Word, Excel, Pshop CS windows? Can I game with them open or do I still need to shut everything down like on my current system? Could I encode a DVD and play a game? Play a DVD off one drive and encode off another?

    As mentioned some of what I want to know is can I do things that currently require me to really run two boxes? I recently moved Azareus (torrent client) and all of my DVD encoding & burning to a second rig.
    Reply
  • Macro2 - Wednesday, April 06, 2005 - link

    No games tested at all? Since when does this happen? Intel doesn't want dual core to look bad so Anandtech doesn't bench ANY games at all.

    Come on guys, judging by the article below on the Inquirer I'm not the only one who is suspicious.

    http://theinquirer.net/?article=22332

    Same ole' same ole'
    Reply
  • snorre - Wednesday, April 06, 2005 - link

    Why did you exclude dual CPU (Opteron/Xeon) systems from your comparisons?

    I recommend that you guys at Anandtech read this:
    http://theinquirer.net/?article=22332

    Well said! ;-)
    Reply
  • Bathrone - Tuesday, April 05, 2005 - link

    What about the new extreme edition and I think WinXP only supports a maximum of two cpus? Im not keen to goto 2003 Server. What are Microsoft going to do - patch XP to support 4 cpus? Reply

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