Chip giant whips out low-power quad-core CPUs
Intel cuts prices too
Intel has rolled out some new CPUs and cut the prices of old ones.
The chip giant's desktop product list now includes the Core 2 Quad Q9550s, Q9400s and Q8200s. The suffix indicates they're all low-power version of existing quad-core chips, each sporting a reduced TDP of 65W, down from 95W.
Clocked at, respectively, 2.83GHz, 2.66GHz and 2.33GHz, the CPUs all sit on a 1333MHz frontside bus. They contain 12MB, 6MB and 4MB of L2 cache, and are priced at $369, $320 and $245 when ordered in batches of 1000.
The price cuts - of between 16 per cent and 40 per cent - take the 95W Core 2 Quads down to below those prices, leaving us in the unusual situation of a 3GHz Q9650 costing less than a slower, lower-model-number part, the Q9550s.
Intel also introduced the 2.93GHz Core 2 Duo E7500 - 3MB L2, 1066MHz FSB, $133 - and the 2.8GHz Pentium Dual Core E5400 - 2MB L2, 800MHz FSB, $84.
Both the Core 2 Duo and the Pentium Dual Core lines also experience downward price adjustments, of up to 15 per cent and 24 per cent, respectively. ®
Not so unusual...
Although this might be a first of Intel on the desktop, the Xeon line has for a long time had low-power versions of chips which are slower than cheaper chips but have the benefit of lower power requiremenets, for those whose priority is either noise (workstations), lack of cooling (blades) or power bills (especially in co-location hosted environments).
I have for the last few years used these chips as they are fast enough for the jobs we need them to do, but allow us to fit more servers in an expensive-to-host rack without going over the power budget.
For a basic example, see for instance the L5420 ($380 list) versus the E5420 ($316 list) - same speed, # of cores, FSB, cache, but burns 50W versus 80W.
I haven't any experience of them, but my understanding is that AMD's Athlons have low-power versions on the desktop.