Intel preps P4 core update

To step from D-0 to E-0 next October

Intel's 775-pin Pentium 4 will indeed support the company's AMD64-like EM64 technology, a recently released company product-change announcement has revealed.

And the chips will launch at 3.6GHz, the document confirms.

The document details the 90nm P4's core change from version D-0 to E-0, an update that applies not only to the upcmoming 775-pin Land Grid Array version of the chip, but also to 90nm 478-pin parts.

Intel will begin sampling chips with the E-0 core in July ahead of customer product availability in early October. The new version of the core will "incorporate power optimizations to enable speed enhancements", according to documents seen by The Register.

Those changes will require a BIOS update, the chip giant warns. But "no significant changes are expected in electrical and thermal specifications relative to the D-0 stepping", the document claims.

Chips getting the core upgrade inlcude 2.8GHz, 3GHz, 3.2GHz and 3.4GHz 478-pin 90nm P4s, the former in both its 533MHz and 800MHz frontside bus versions. So too will the upcoming 2.8GHz, 3GHz, 3.2GHz, 3.4GHz and 3.6GHz 775-pin P4s, all with an 800MHz FSB and to be branded as the Pentium 4 520, 530, 540, 550 and 560, respectively.

These are the EM64T-less desktop CPUs Intel is expected to announce on 21 June when it also formally ships its 'Grantsdale' and 'Alderwood' chipsets as the i915 and i925.

On 1 August, Intel is expected to announce 775-pin P4s with EM64T support - Intel's 64-bit x86 technology. The product-change notice confirms 3.2GHz, 3.4GHz and 3.6GHz availability. Pitched at the workstation market as a kind of 'Xeon Jr.', these chips will not be offered without a processor model number. ®

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