Feeds

Intel mobile graphics in 3x boost

If only briefly

Application security programs and practises

Intel uncloaked a few more details on Wednesday about its line of consumer-level 32nm Westmere processors, which were previewed late last year and formally announced at last month's Consumer Electronics Show.

While most details of the Westmere consumer processors - known in marketing parlance as the Core i3/i5/i7 line - were already known, one nugget discussed today caught our interest: There's a speed boost available to the on-package HD Graphics cores in the mobile versions of the Core i3/i5/i7 parts that's similar to the Intel Turbo Boost Technology available in the Core i5 and i7 compute cores.

Intel Dynamic Frequency graphics boost

Dynamic Frequency's graphics goose - mobile processors only

Turbo Boost allows a chip to both boost a core's clock speed when an app needs some help and also save power by shutting down unneeded cores when an app isn't taking advantage of them. The graphics equivalent, called Dynamic Frequency, performs the same boost mojo for Westmere's integrated 45nm graphics die.

Turbo Boost is incremented in 133MHz "bins," with a maximum increase of eight bins, provided that the chip stays within its power and thermal specs. Dynamic Frequency, according to Intel, can provide the HD Graphics core with an up-to-3X frequency increase in graphics-intensive bursts.

These details were revealed in a conference call with reporters in preparation for Intel's participation in next week's International Solid-State Circuits Conference, to be held in San Francisco. An Intel rep told The Reg that the Dynamic Frequency feature had been discussed with certain product reviewers at CES, but this is the first time it has been highlighted in a company presentation.

In addition to the graphics-boosting oomph of the mobile line's Dynamic Frequency capabiliaty, Intel engineer Nasser Kurd also emphasized two of the Westmere processors' new power-saving features. First, the chips' L3 cache and queues - elements of what chip folks call a processor's "uncore" - can also be powered down when the cores are idling. Second, and unlike the previous Nehalem architecture, the chips now now include SRAM that's dedicated to saving a core's state, which removes the need for keeping the last-level cache powered up when the core is idle.

More details are certain to emerge during the ISSCC deep-geek presentations and discussions next week. ®

The Power of One Infographic

More from The Register

next story
iPad? More like iFAD: We reveal why Apple fell into IBM's arms
But never fear fanbois, you're still lapping up iPhones, Macs
You didn't get the MeMO? Asus Pad 7 Android tab is ... not bad
Really, er, stands out among cheapie 7-inchers
Sonos AXES support for Apple's iOS4 and 5
Want to use your iThing? You can't - it's too old
BEST BATTERY EVER: All lithium, all the time, plus a dash of carbon nano-stuff
We have found the Holy Grail (of batteries) - boffins
Cheer up, Nokia fans. It can start making mobes again in 18 months
The real winner of the Nokia sale is *drumroll* ... Nokia
Microsoft confirms secret Surface will never see the light of day
Microsoft's form 8-K records decision 'not to ship a new form factor'
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
Application security programs and practises
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
Securing Web Applications Made Simple and Scalable
Learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.