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PostSubject: Intel CPU with Integrated GPU   Intel CPU with Integrated GPU Icon_minitimeThu 12 Feb 2009, 06:27

From the CPC Website:

As if the demonstration of the worldís first 32nm processor technology wasnít enough to get people excited today, Intel has also decided to announce a veritable treasure chest of new products. Some of these are based on Intelís 45nm technology, while others are based on the newly announced 32nm transistors. The latter products are all codenamed with the Westmere umbrella name for the architecture, but they come in a number of interesting flavours.

Letís kick off with the big breakthrough, which is the first CPU with an integrated GPU, codenamed Clarkdale. No specifics have been revealed about the GPU yet, but Intel told us that we could expect it to offer an improved equivalent of the integrated graphics found in Intelís current G45 chipset. Designed for the mainstream market, the CPUs will feature two cores, but will also be able to handle four threads via Hyper-Threading.

Interestingly, while the CPU core in Clarkdale will be fabricated using Intelís new 32nm technology, the chipís DDR3 memory controller and GPU will be built using 45nm transistors. The three will sit together in a multi-chip package, and communicate via a high-speed QPI (Quick Path Interconnect) link.

The chips are designed to be used with Intelís forthcoming mainstream 5-series chipsets, which will feature 16 PCI-E 2.0 lanes that can either be assigned to a single 16x slot or two 8x slots. Intel hasnít yet announced whether the chipsets will support CrossFire or SLI, but weíd expect them to support both given Intelís commitment to the two technologies when it launched the X58 chipset.

Also designed for the 5-series chipsets is Intelís new line of mainstream quad-core CPUs, which are codenamed Lynnfield. These will be produced with 45nm transistors and will be able to handle eight threads via Hyper-Threading. Meanwhile, Intel has also announced two equivalent mobile CPUs, codenamed Clarksfield and Arrandale, which will feature four 45nm cores (eight threads with Hyper-Threading) and two 32nm cores (four threads with Hyper-Threading) respectively. Like Clarkdale, Arrandale will also feature integrated graphics.

Okay, so thatís the mainstream market sorted out, but what do performance freaks stand to get out of the 32nm revolution? Well, this is where it starts to get interesting, as Intel has revealed its plans to make a top-end six-core desktop processor thatís capable of handling twelve threads with Hyper-Threading. Codenamed Gulftown, the new CPU is scheduled to be released in 2010. As well as this, Intel has also now officially revealed its plans for the first eight-core Xeon processor, codenamed Nehalem-EX, which will be built with 45nm transistors.

Intel also says that it plans to use the extra transistor budget freed up in the move to the 32nm technology to add some new features. These will probably be officially announced as a subsequent version of SSE at a later date, and Intel says that itís Ďsimilar to adding SSE 4.1 in Penryn.í The new features will include seven new instructions for accelerating encryption and decryption algorithms, which Intel says could allow full disk encryption.

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