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Sandy Bridge PCs arrive early at Future Shop

updated 04:40 pm EST, Mon January 3, 2011

Gateway desktops sport next-gen Intel CPUs

A sharp-eyed customer as spotted several Gatewaydesktops with Intel's next-generation Core 2011 processors at a Future Shop in Vancouver. The desktops were equipped with Core i7 2600 and Core i5 2300 processors respectively, two of the 29 new desktop and mobile CPUs in the Sandy Bridge lineup. Several manufacturers were known to be shipping notebooks with the new processors, but this is the first sighting of Core 2011 desktops.

The new CPUs from Intel offer dramatic improvements from the first generation of Core processors. Codenamed Sandy Bridge, the new Intel CPUs are the first to combine processor, graphics, and memory controller on the same die. The result is a faster chip that runs significantly cooler. The graphics processor has also been upgraded, with the new HD 2000 and 3000 cores performing up to 200 percent faster than the GMA 4500 units they replace. The Core 2011 CPUs also provide HDMI 1.4 support for 3D Blu-Ray playback and support the new WiDi 2.0 protocol for wireless displays. New power management options should also boost battery life for mobile computing.

Intel will continue to market the new processors under the Core i3/i5/i7 labels, so buyers need to be aware of which version of the CPUs they are purchasing. [via Engadget]






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