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Intel's New Pentium 4 Processor


Many of the overclockers of this world were afraid that Pentium 4's quad-pumped 100 MHz bus would make bus overclocking of this processor as difficult and restrictive as with Athlon and its dual-pumped 133/100 MHz-bus. I can bring you the surprisingly positive news that Pentium 4 is as overclockable as Intel processors always have been. You can imagine that the multiplier of official Pentium 4 processors will be locked, but with a good P4-motherboard you won't have any problems overclocking the bus.

I took advantage of the jumperless-mode of the Asus P4T-motherboard and managed to let two different Pentium 4 processors run at up to 125 MHz bus clock. I even included a 1.4 GHz Pentium 4 overclocked to 14 x 115 MHz = 1610 MHz as well as the evaluation 1.5 GHz Pentium 4 overclocked to 16 x 108 MHz = 1728 MHz in the benchmark results. I only had to raise the voltage from 1.7 to 1.8 V. There was no thermal issue, as Pentium 4 heat sinks are already designed for much higher heat dissipation than what current Pentium 4 processors are actually able to produce.

Benchmark Considerations

Due to time constraints we were only able to do run full benchmark suite under Windows 98, but I also added the Linux Kernel Compilation. We have already done a major part of the Windows 2000 benchmarks and will supply them shortly. Intel supplied a lot of special benchmarking software for Pentium 4, which we will evaluate, run and publish in the next few days.

After what we have learned in the architectural part of this article, we should expect Pentium 4 to show excellent performance in all benchmarks that are heavily integer based and the ones that take great advantage of the new high-speed bus between processor, system and memory. SSE2-optimized software should obviously run very fast on Pentium 4 as well. Although Intel claims that Pentium 4 has the worlds best floating point performance we know that in reality the normal FPU of Pentium 4 is hardly even able to live up to Pentium III standards. Only floating point applications that use SSE2 could possibly support Intel's bold claim. Today's standard software is obviously not yet SSE2-optimized, so that standard FPU-intensive software will probably run rather slow on Pentium 4 systems.

Benchmark Setup

To enable Pentium 4's SSE2 we installed DirectX 8 on all the test platforms. We were using our standard NVIDIA GeForce 2 GTS graphics card, but had to find out that the latest available and DX8-enabled driver rev. 7.17 is performing very poorly in 3D as well as 2D applications on all of the test systems. Therefore we decided to use the reliable 6.31 driver.

Hardware Setup
I850 Socket423 Pentium 4 PlatformASUS P4T, BIOS
Rambus Memory2 128 MB Samsung PC800 RDRAM RIMMS
SDRAM Socket A platform for AMD Athlon and Duron ProcessorsASUS A7V, BIOS 1004D final
SDRAM Socket 370 platform for Intel Pentium III and Celeron processorsASUS CUSL2, BIOS 1004.003
SDRAM Memory128 MB Wichmann Workx PC133 SDRAM CL2, setting 2-2-2-5/7
DDR Socket A platform for AMD Athlon processors at 133 MHz Front Side BusGigabyte GA-7DX Rev.1.3, BIOS Rev.
DDR Memory256 MB Micron CL2
Hard Drive for Windows 98 TestsIBM DTLA-307030 ATA100 IDE, 30 GB, FAT32
Hard Drive for Linux TestSeagate ST320430A ATA66 IDE, 19 GB, ext2
Graphics card for Sysmark2000, Quake 3 Arena, Unreal Tornament and 3D Studio Max 2NVIDIA Geforce 2 GTS Reference CardCore Clock 200 MHzMemory Clock 333 MHzDriver 6.34
Graphics Card for SPECviewperfNVIDIA Quadro2 Reference CardCore Clock 230 MHzMemory Clock 400 MHzDriver 6.31
Software Setup
Windows VersionWindows98SE, 4.10.2222A
Windows Resolution for Sysmark20001024x768x16x85
Windows Resolution for SPECviewperf1280x1024x32x85
Linux VersionSuSE Linux 6.4, Kernel 2.2.14, THG benchmarking kernel, gcc 2.95.2
Quake 3 ArenaRetail VersionSetting Normal, 640x480x16 bit color, no sound
DirectX Version8.0
Unreal TournamentVersion 4.28 (patched)Setting 640x480x16, no sound
SPECviewperfRev. 6.1.2
MemtimeIntel Memory Transfer Timing Utility
MPEG4 Encoding SoftwareFlasK MPEG, ver. 0.594DivX ;-) 3.11alpha
  • utahraptor
    I just don't see this Rambus lasting that long. I think the future lies in DDR.
  • ta152h
    utahraptorI just don't see this Rambus lasting that long. I think the future lies in DDR.
    I think the Pentium 4 will not last past 2006.