Intel today announced its next generation Santa Rosa Centrino platform. Over the
past years, details of various aspects of the platform have leaked out such as
the processors used, Robson NAND flash technology and the
new Draft-N wireless
"When we introduced Intel Centrino 4 years ago, Intel
changed the computing landscape with our mobile innovations," said Intel Mobile
Products Group VP and general manager Mooly Eden. "Now, simply said, we
have improved virtually all aspects of Intel-based notebooks, the most popular
and fastest growing computing market segment in the world."
Merom-based Core 2 Duo processors are still based on a 65nm manufacturing
process but now feature an 800MHz front side bus (up from 667MHz). Intel has also
introduced Super Low Frequency Mode (Super LFM) and Enhanced Intel Deeper Sleep
to reduce power consumption when idle.
The chipset used with Santa
Rosa is the Intel Mobile 965 Express (PM965). It is essentially a rejigged
version of the 965
Express Broadwater chipset
introduced for desktop last year. The PM965 northbridge is paired with the
ICH8M southbridge. It supports 10 USB 2.0 connections, three 3Gbps SATA ports,
GbE and six PCIe x1 lanes. ICH8M also supports Intel Active Management
Technology 2.5 (AMT 2.5).
Another welcome update is in the area of graphics. For
notebooks not using discrete graphics solutions from ATI or NVIDIA, there is
the new GMA X3100 IGP.
The GPU is clocked at 500MHz and supports Windows Vista Aero
Although notebook manufacturers still have the option of
using the Intel PRO/Wireless 3945ABG wireless network adapter, most will opt
for the new Intel
Wireless Wi-Fi Link 4965AGN Draft-N network adapter. The adapter supports
802.11a, 802.11b/g and 802.11 Draft-N standards. When operating in 802.11n
mode, the adapter offers theoretical transfer speeds of up to 300Mbps while
giving twice the range of 802.11g solutions.
Another new feature included with Santa Rosa is Intel Turbo Memory
(formerly known as Robson). We first saw Intel Turbo
Memory in operation at last year's Computex, but today the technology is
actually ready for prime time. As previously detailed on DailyTech, notebook manufacturers will be able to install 512MB or
1GB of dedicated NAND memory in systems to improve application load times,
reduce Windows Vista boot times and increase battery life due to less reliance
on the physical HDD.
As you may have noticed, Santa Rosa-based notebooks have
been popping up all over from Sony, Lenovo, Fujitsu, Asus and HP.
The announcements continue to pour in with new Santa Rosa notebooks from HP
and two more from Dell.