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An excerpt from Intel's most recent processor foil
Believe it or not, there's still more "Conroe" madness

The official embargo for most things Conroe came and went, but it appears there is still one more card Intel hasn't played yet.  The newest Intel roadmap has added a bin-5 Conroe processor, the Core 2 Duo E4300. 

E4300 is clocked at 1.8GHz and has two megabytes of L2 cache.  Unfortunately, the processor lacks VT and vPro extensions, and also runs at an 800MHz front-side bus.  Intel has not revealed pricing for the new processor yet since it is not to be announced until Q1'07, but considering the fact that the 1.86GHz E6300 is slated for $183, the E4300 may be one of the greatest bargains yet.

Intel's addition of a bin-5 processor is not totally surprising, as virtually every Intel processor architecture before has had at least five bins.  However, with the news of a 2x256KB L2 Athlon 64 X2 3600+, a low-bin Conroe makes even more sense than ever before.  The Athlon 64 X2 3600+ is slated to become an OEM component only, but the E4300 appears to be a retail-ready processor, meaning we should see it in store shelves come Q1'07.


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Way to round out the lineup
By Penth on 7/17/2006 10:43:18 PM , Rating: 5
High-End: Intel
Mid-Range: Intel
Budget: Intel

I've got an X2 3800+ and haven't built an intel machine since before the K6, but Intel sure is doing something right.




RE: Way to round out the lineup
By Tsuwamono on 7/17/2006 11:33:29 PM , Rating: 2
I wouldnt quite give intel everything yet, read the article on the AMD price cuts.


RE: Way to round out the lineup
By RMSistight on 7/18/2006 2:37:44 AM , Rating: 2
Even with the price cuts, I'd rather get a Conroe E6600 for $316 rather than an FX-62 at $799. Benchmarks don't lie and I only read gaming benchmarks. I don't care about the rest....haha.


RE: Way to round out the lineup
By Knish on 7/18/2006 6:55:53 AM , Rating: 1
quote:
Benchmarks don't lie

Of course not, just the people writing the articles do. But it wouldn't be fair for me to just single out Kyle Bennett.


RE: Way to round out the lineup
By masher2 (blog) on 7/18/2006 9:17:11 AM , Rating: 1
Ah, thank you for revealing this vast conspiracy to the rest of us.

::rolleyes::


RE: Way to round out the lineup
By Hare on 7/18/2006 3:37:50 PM , Rating: 2
Once again Masher-know-it-all-2 to the rescue. Do you even know what this was about?


RE: Way to round out the lineup
By TomZ on 7/18/2006 10:23:22 PM , Rating: 1
quote:
Once again Masher-know-it-all-2 to the rescue. Do you even know what this was about?

Wow, I haven't heard "know-it-all" used as an insult since I was a kid. Most adults think that being knowledgeable to be a good thing.


RE: Way to round out the lineup
By Hare on 7/19/2006 3:55:40 AM , Rating: 3
Most adults also recognise sarcasm. Masher2 just has to post a reply doesn't he. I bet he knew nothing about the issues with Kyle B. The man is a joke. He basically tested the new conroes with bottleneck GPUs and claims that there is no reason to get a conroe since you don't get any additional speed. Just go check out the forum messages where he defends his article...

His defense is calling other articles BS, banning users that have a different opinion, and blaiming Intel for tampering with benchmarks etc. He's just the biggest AMD fanboy ever conceived. Masher2 seems to think that this is some kind of a conspiracy? Fine...


RE: Way to round out the lineup
By smitty3268 on 7/18/2006 3:27:11 PM , Rating: 2
That's the high end, though, which Intel owns. Midrange is much more competitive, although I'd still probably go with Intel. The low end may still favor AMD a bit after the price cuts happen.


RE: Way to round out the lineup
By KCjoker on 7/18/2006 4:42:15 PM , Rating: 2
Yea but add in how much higher Intel motherboards are and AMD looks pretty good again.


RE: Way to round out the lineup
By TomZ on 7/18/2006 10:24:56 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Yea but add in how much higher Intel motherboards are and AMD looks pretty good again.

Not to me. I've had really good experience with Intel motherboard reliability, that I'm willing to pay a small premium for them if required.


By epsilonparadox on 7/18/2006 11:54:02 AM , Rating: 2
Actually this chip was supposed to compete with the x2 3800 but intel realized that it would fail miserably and decided to re-classify it as budget chip to compete with the sempron x2.


Yeah, but when can I get one?
By MonkeyPaw on 7/17/2006 10:49:32 PM , Rating: 2
It all looks great, but I hear C2Ds will only make it into OEM machines this year. We system builders might not have a shot at them until 2007. Not sure about the truth of those rumors, but considering P-Ds are still going to exist for a while, there's likely some truth to the scarcity. I'd be happy to be wrong though!

The only snag I see about the 5th bin is that Intel disabled some of the extensions. Intel has always liked disabling thier some of thier best features on cheaper models. I could understand it if these features were disabled because of defect, but I highly doubt it. Oh well, I don't think most end users will need VT anyway.




By cheapguys1 on 7/17/2006 11:26:56 PM , Rating: 4
Don't know what rumors you are hearing? I am also a system builder and we have received 8 C2D parts from out Intel rep including 2 retail boxed 6800's. Our orders are already placed with distribution and parts are scheduled to start arriving next week with the full assortment due to hit by mid-August.


RE: Yeah, but when can I get one?
By Phynaz on 7/18/2006 9:47:23 AM , Rating: 2
Quit listening to Viditor about availability and you'll be fine.


RE: Yeah, but when can I get one?
By TomZ on 7/18/2006 11:11:16 AM , Rating: 2
Conroe availability problems are just AMD fanboy dreams.

With previous newly-released Intel offerings, I've been able to pick them up from retail channels typically 2-4 weeks after the "official" release date.

Also, all the talk of price gouging is pretty silly, too. Reputable retailers don't go much above market ever, unlike what you might see at eBay auctions, for example. Retailers don't want to develop such a reputation.


By andrewrocks on 7/19/2006 3:15:44 AM , Rating: 2
newegg was asking for $1359 for the X6800...


Upgrade Path is important too.
By ic144 on 7/18/2006 10:03:11 AM , Rating: 2
Have you guys forgotten about the upgrade path? Just because AMD is making huge price cuts doesn't mean it's going to pay off in the future. When you buy a computer, you should also choose the platform that's suits best for you when you want to upgrade in the future.




RE: Upgrade Path is important too.
By trooper11 on 7/18/2006 10:52:38 AM , Rating: 2
well since AMD announced that K8L will work on AM2 or thier next socket, AM3, I would say that they have a pretty tempting upgrade path.

i found HardOCP's gmaing review interesting becuase it showed how little difference there really is between say an FX-62 and Core2 Extreme, just check out what they did.

Of course, in most applications, Core 2 is a real improvment over AMD's stuff, just not in gaming.

But I may end up with a Core 2 system , probably in an htpc, depending on the power numbers between it and the 65nm AMD parts when Im ready to buy.


By epsilonparadox on 7/18/2006 11:51:34 AM , Rating: 2
HardOCP's gaming benchmark is a joke. They maxed the grafx settings in the games which caused the benchmark to be more gpu bound than cpu bound. At max settings, today's games are more gpu bound so it wouldn't matter which cpu you had whether it be the FX or C2E.


RE: Upgrade Path is important too.
By TomZ on 7/18/2006 11:03:43 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
Have you guys forgotten about the upgrade path? Just because AMD is making huge price cuts doesn't mean it's going to pay off in the future. When you buy a computer, you should also choose the platform that's suits best for you when you want to upgrade in the future.

I haven't found this to be true in my experience. When I buy/build a new machine, I don't usually have any desire to upgrade for maybe 2-3 years, except for maybe adding some more RAM. In 2-3 years, enough of the architecture has changed, and newer stuff available, that I find at that point that instead of just upgrading the CPU, it makes more sense to also get a new motherboard and RAM. Therefore, the notion of an "upgrade path" has been kind of a myth, at least in my experience.


RE: Upgrade Path is important too.
By Helbore on 7/18/2006 1:13:30 PM , Rating: 2
I'd agree with that entirely. I have NEVER upgradeda processor, aside from one time where I got hold of a better unit for free. Other then that, its always been RAm and graphics, with the occasional new HDD. If its time for a new CPU, then chances are you are wasting your time unless you upgrade the mobo and RAM, too.


By customcoms on 7/18/2006 2:35:52 PM , Rating: 2
I tend to agree with that. However, the current situation is a little different. We have 2 AMD platforms (AM2 and S939) that have virtually IDENTICAL performance, but with more mature boards for S939. People who already have a decent-great S939 system don't have any reason to buy an AM2 setup and replace the ram and board if all they need is a dual core processor, for example. If you wanted to upgrade, from say a single core S939 system, you have 2 options: buy a dual core S939 processor at a relativly cheap price in about a week, or spend that money plus $400 for a new board and ram on a conroe system. The X2


By irev210 on 7/17/2006 10:43:50 PM , Rating: 2
I have been trying very hard to get my hands on a E4XXX series core 2 duo.

With the 800FSB, the mult is 9, the same as the E6700, offering people the same overclocking headroom to reach 4+ghz, at a BARGIN of a price.


THIS will be the processor the budget minded overclocker is going to get.

160 USD for a E4300 that will reach 4ghz on air will take the industry by storm.


A 160 dollar CPU will outperform the best of AMD, and the best of Intel netburst.


The problem with the E6300 is the FSB wall that we are hitting. Even on E6600, FSB wall tends to stop us. The E6700 starts to limit us.

I really hope intel takes the E4XXX line up, to over overclockers higher mults!!!


Anyway, /end rant.

Enjoy guys, its going to be a crazy 3 months.




By randomlinh on 7/17/2006 10:46:47 PM , Rating: 3
I wouldn't say it'll take everything by storm... how many ppl overclock? not enough to really make a difference.

what it will take by storm is intel will have something across the board, eating away at the value aspect AMD has/had. Very very interesting.

My next system will still most likely be an AM2 system (still on socket A....), but I dunno, I don't have the money for upgrading now, more likely I'll delay another year... by then conroe's supply will be plentiful (in theory) and my wallet might have the last say in things...


By jkresh on 7/17/2006 11:25:29 PM , Rating: 2
9 is the multiplier for 6600 (6700 is 10), and it looks like unless you are running some pretty impressive cooling (or get lucky) even with the 6600 your processor will top out before your board (board hitting 450 is about the same chance as processor hitting 4ghz, at least for now).


By ChronoReverse on 7/18/2006 12:45:56 AM , Rating: 2
Well, 9x300 sounds fairly reasonable and that's 2.7GHz right there. Isn't that equivalent to a FX62 or more already?

This war is really picking up. I'm actually see-sawing between Intel and AMD so far. It's good that Intel is finally back in the game.


By defter on 7/18/2006 4:09:05 AM , Rating: 2
Even 9x400 = 3.6GHz should be possible, at least with a better air cooling. 9x333=3GHz (clockspeed of the top end Woodcrest) should be given.

The problem with current low end Conroes is very low multiplier. Xbitlabs was able to overclock E6300 "only" to 2.9GHz because motherboard was the limiting factor. Thus 800MHz FSB is definitely welcome.


Not that secret
By Lonyo on 7/18/2006 6:59:46 AM , Rating: 2
This chip has been floating around for a while (on roadmaps which Dailytech has posted, even!)
Although it's good to see it hasn't gone away, especially with the chance that the X2 3800+ could be almost $15 cheaper than the cheapest 6xxx chip.
This gives another option (assuming it performs) to people who want performance without heat (i.e. not a PD).
And if it can go up to 1066MHZ FSB then it would be a dream, since that's not much of an ask, and should put it more level with the 6xxx chips.




RE: Not that secret
By muziqaz on 7/18/2006 8:08:53 AM , Rating: 2
those people who expect to buy conroe at a cheap after it's release are dreaming. Conroe at a cheap will be availabke to you in only 2-3 months, then everyone will have enought of them to sell at nice prices.
Intel can say any price tag, but end user won't get thoise chips for the same amount of money, because of the high demand.
Besides, let's think about the whole system. I doubt anyone will buy conroe(with the overclocking inmind) and place it in some cheapo motherboard. And high end mobos cost quite much.


Exciting times
By akimboberetta on 7/18/2006 9:04:22 AM , Rating: 2
I was originally going to go with an AM2 chip, but the benchmarks (which I take with a grain of salt) are pretty impressive on the Intel side. I'm also becoming increasingly concerned about power consumption. If these chips are pretty even performance-wise, wattage might end up being my deciding factor.




RE: Exciting times
By obeseotron on 7/18/2006 1:07:53 PM , Rating: 2
Stop taking the benchmarks with a grain of salt. Every hardware site on the planet has a review up, and not one of them say that they are about even.

-Athlon64 owner


E4xxx mean lower power consumption.
By nizanh on 7/18/2006 5:14:07 AM , Rating: 2
The new Intel naming give the first digit to mark the power consumption of the processor. I think the E4xxx should be 40watt (on typical usage). which make it much more attractive (though, it could be that we are talking on mobile processor).




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