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Intel samples 45nm 'Penryn'

Core 2 die-shrink to introduce SSE 4

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Intel has begun punching out engineering samples of next year's 45nm Core 2 die-shrink, the chip giant has claimed. The processor is codenamed 'Penryn'.

Penryn was announced in April this year as the 45nm incarnation of today's Core 2 Extreme and Core 2 Duo processors and next year's Core 2 Quad chips. It's due to ship in H2 2007, a timescale Intel is on track to meet, Mark Bohr, the company's director of process architecture and integration, told the Reuters newsagency this week.

Penryn will extend the Core 2 architecture - it's expected to play host to the fourth set of Intel's Streaming SIMD Extensions (SSE), a further 48 instructions designed to improve the processor's ability to handle multimedia applications. Penryn will also introduce two further instructions dubbed by Intel "application-targeted accelerators".

Penryn will be play a key part of 'Montevina', Intel's next-but-one generation of its Centrino mobile platform. Montevina's likely to appear in H1 2008, a year after the next Centrino, 'Santa Rosa'. In the second half of 2008, just as AMD is beginning to roll out its own 45nm CPUs, Intel is scheduled to introduce 'Nehalem', the successor architecture to Core 2. ®

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