Penryn's Launch Schedule

The launch will work like this: late this year (Q4), Intel will introduce a a new Extreme Edition processor based on Yorkfield (quad-core Penryn). Given that most Extreme Edition chips start out with a $999 price tag, that's where we'd expect the first quad-core Penryn to fall as well.

More affordable Penryn won't arrive until Q1 2008, which is great news for AMD. In the beginning of next year, Intel will introduce both mainstream Yorkfield and Wolfdale (dual-core Penryn) parts. We'd expect Wolfdale based chips to run at between 2.33GHz and 3.00GHz, while Yorkfield will probably top out at 3.33GHz.

In Q2 2008, Intel will push Penryn even further down the line and introduce a Wolfdale based E4xxx successor. This version of Wolfdale will have a 1066MHz FSB and drops support for Intel Virtualization Technology and TXT.

The Chip

Intel is keeping its few remaining cards close at hand, and thus it is only sampling lowly 2.33GHz Wolfdale/Yorkfield chips. It's not an issue of getting the 45nm process to clock high enough (as you'll see from our overclocking tests), so we'd guess that Intel doesn't want to have the performance of its top of the line 3.33GHz Yorkfield leaked until after Phenom hits.

Wolfdale's underside - we have to hide the other side so Intel doesn't murder our mole in its sleep

Conroe's belly for comparison

The 2.33GHz Wolfdale we're looking at today is best compared to the Core 2 Duo E6550 (2.33GHz Conroe), and that's exactly what we're doing.

Our Wolfdale is also not the final stepping that will be shipping next year; we've got A0 silicon and A1 should be ready in the coming weeks. Despite the not-final state of the silicon, we had absolutely no problems with the chip in our test bed. We tossed it in our Gigabyte GA-P35C-DS3R test bed and ran through a subset of our test suite without so much as a BIOS update. We are waiting on the first Penryn-tuned motherboards and BIOSes to arrive, so performance may increase from where we're at today.

The Test

CPU: Intel Core 2 Duo E6550 (2.33GHz/1333MHz)
Intel Wolfdale 2.33GHz/1333MHz
Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-P35C-DS3R (Intel P35)
Chipset: Intel P35
Chipset Drivers: Intel (Intel)
Hard Disk: Seagate 7200.9 300GB SATA
Memory: Corsair XMS2 DDR2-800 4-4-4-12 (1GB x 2)
Video Card: NVIDIA GeForce 8800 GTX
Video Drivers: NVIDIA ForceWare 158.18
Desktop Resolution: 1600 x 1200
OS: Windows Vista Ultimate 32-bit

Index Wolfdale vs. Conroe Performance


View All Comments

  • Sunrise089 - Tuesday, August 21, 2007 - link

    agree w/ 1+2 Reply
  • vailr - Tuesday, August 21, 2007 - link

    How long will the socket 775 (for desktop machines) be around?
    Has Intel given a timeline forecast for replacing 775 with some other CPU socket? Any idea whether current P35 boards will support the 32 nm. Gesher CPU (assuming those will still be socket 775 form factor)?
  • zsdersw - Tuesday, August 21, 2007 - link

    Socket 775 will likely disappear with the introduction of Nehalem, so no.. P35 boards will almost certainly *not* support Gesher. Reply
  • RamarC - Tuesday, August 21, 2007 - link

    it's too bad that an upgrade now probably won't be able to handle anything beyond penryn. still a 3ghz quad core for $300 is fantastic considering that i've got 3.4ghz dual core space heater now. Reply
  • zsdersw - Tuesday, August 21, 2007 - link

    Well, I mean, seriously.. socket 775 has been around for a long time. The same people who complain about having to buy a different motherboard are probably the same people who would complain that they aren't getting any new features if motherboards didn't have to be changed as often. It makes no sense, but then again, that's never stopped anyone from complaining.. to be sure.

    I'm not saying you're one of those people, though.
  • vailr - Tuesday, August 21, 2007 - link

    Also, the price you have listed of $569.99 for the "Intel Core 2 Quad Q6600 Processor" is off.
    It's at $289.99 here:">
  • kleinwl - Tuesday, August 21, 2007 - link

    Why did you not post the benches for the OC of 3.22? or better yet, jack up the voltage to get a 3.33 and benchmark that? Then we could figure what the EXTREME EDITION cpu is going to do. Reply
  • Roy2001 - Tuesday, August 21, 2007 - link

    I guess Intel does not allow him to do that. Reply
  • retrospooty - Wednesday, August 22, 2007 - link

    Thats a good point. To release benchies at this time must have intel's OK to do so. I am sure if they let him, he would have published. And here we are all complaining LOL . Reply
  • gigahertz20 - Tuesday, August 21, 2007 - link

    What a tease, Anand didn't even raise the CPU core voltage. I figured you would change the CPU core voltage to see how far you could overclock this beast, right after you found 3.22GHz was your max overclock at stock voltage. I want to know how far you can push this. No soup for you! Reply

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