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Intel demos quad-core Nehalem at 3.2GHz

updated 04:30 pm EDT, Wed April 2, 2008

Intel Nehalem at 3.2GHz

Intel at its Developer Forum today demonstrated a 3.2GHz example of its upcoming Nehalem processor technology. Already clocked at 3.2GHz, the chip is the first public example of the successor to today's Core architecture and is the fastest x86 chip from Intel capable of handling more than four threads: the addition of Hyperthreading support allows each of the four cores in the example to run as many as two instruction threads at a time, allowing it to handle the work of eight cores in certain circumstances. Dual- and quad-processor systems will handle as many as 16 or 32 threads at once with the design.

The company has previously discussed news that Nehalem will drop its longstanding use of a front-side system bus that communicates between processors and the rest of the system. Each processor uses a QuickPath interconnect system that talks directly to each component. An on-die memory controller also eliminates the need for a large Level 2 cache, with each core only having 256KB of Level 2 cache and an 8MB Level 3 resource for information that needs to be shared between cores.

Shipments of Nehalem chips, which will receive a formal name in the future, are still anticipated to ship in late 2008 and will appear first in high-end processors such as successors to the Xeon line, with mainstream and notebook processors available in early 2009. [via DailyTech]



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