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Dual-core Atom may ease shortages of Atom parts in the channel

Intel is dominating the world of the netbook with its Atom single core processor. The processor running at 1.6GHz powers the vast majority of netbooks that are available to purchase right now. The tiny chip is perfect for the netbook market thanks to its low cost and low power requirements.

It's no secret that Intel is bringing new Atom processors to market for the low-cost computer segment. Intel announced via its Chip Shots blog that its dual-core Atom processor is now shipping. The part is known as the Intel Atom Processor 330. The dual-core processor cores run at 1.6GHz and have 1MB of L2 cache.

The processor has an 8W TDP and supports DDR2 667 RAM. Intel says that the new Atom is available as an integrated package and has been validated with the Intel 945GC Express chipset. The chipset features integrated Graphics Media Accelerator 950 and Intel High Definition Audio.

Microsoft has eased the restriction for manufacturers using Windows XP on netbooks to allow for larger screen sizes and more storage. However, the new more lenient restrictions form Microsoft still don’t allow for manufacturers of netbooks to use dual-core processors. That should mean that netbooks using the new dual-core Atom processor would be running some version of Linux and perhaps Windows Vista of some flavor.

DailyTech reported in mid-August that Intel was going to be releasing its dual-core Atom in September and Intel slid the processor in mere days before the end of the month. Intel is still having shortages of its single-core Atom processors in the channel. The shortage has led some makers like Asus to use older Celeron M processors.

Early in September, DailyTech reported that Intel has its next generation Atom on the roadmap for Q3 2009. The next generation Atom processor will be most notable for its integrated graphics processor.



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By omnicronx on 9/22/2008 11:23:26 AM , Rating: 3
Because it is an in-order CPU that although is low power, it is less powerful than a celeron. I just don't see Intel being able to use the same design going forward, both AMD and VIA have chips that should scale much higher with comparable power usage. Also remember part of the northbridge power must be added to the power draw as AMD chips have an onboard memory controller.


By FITCamaro on 9/22/2008 2:05:59 PM , Rating: 2
It's also worlds cheaper than a Celeron. And who's to say future Atoms won't integrate a northbridge?


By dsx724 on 9/22/2008 2:24:30 PM , Rating: 2
because that would hurt intel's chipset business. why do you think Intel kept the chipset discrete for so long? they have crappy chipsets on old fabrication technology so they can fatten their profits. thats why nvidia jumped through to hoops to make Intel chipsets in the first place. too bad nvidia doesn't remember how Intel screwed VIA and Nvidia got screwed.


By omnicronx on 9/22/2008 2:24:45 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
And who's to say future Atoms won't integrate a northbridge?
I am not saying it won't, but right now to compare power draw you need to take the northbridge into account. When/if they add it, that 8w max total power draw for the Atom is going to increase significantly. I am just saying, eventually AMD and VIA will have CPUS with a low power draw that compares to the Atom, and their chip designs will be much better for performance/watt. I just don't see them continuing to develop an in-order processor, the performance hit is just too great.


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