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Only a few days after AMD officially launched its latest Athlon64 FX-53, Intel has debuted its 3.4 GHz Prescott, which is not meant to directly compete against the Athlon64 FX-53, except in cache size, but against the Athlon64.
While Intel's strategy of racing for maximum clock speeds has proven successful in the past, it is getting more and more difficult to argue for the Prescott processor that compares almost poorly to AMD's processors with integrated memory controllers.
But while Intel's processors still require the latest features such as Socket 775, PCI Express and DDR2 memory, in the end it is not all about clock speed any more. That is a lesson that Intel is learning in the server business, as AMD is seeing increasing support for its Opteron family. And the Pentium 4 Prescott is not particularly helping Intel's reputation with a TDP of over a hundred Watts and with no tangible advantages compared to its predecessor, the Northwood.
Meanwhile, Intel, of course, is not lying still, and is launching the new D0 Prescott core stepping, which Intel says will boost its processor speeds past the 4 GHz threshold. While not all 3.4 GHz Prescotts are D0, we offer a table that helps distinguish the old Prescott processors from the new.