Intel's Big Kick Off: 925XE Chipset and P4EE 3.46 GHz

Chipset Comparison Table

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925XE925X915P
ProcessorsPentium 4Pentium 4Pentium 4, Celeron D
FSB Speed200 MHz QDR266 MHz QDR200 MHz QDR200, 133 MHz QDR
Hyper ThreadingSupportedSupportedSupported
Max. Memory4 GB (non-ECC only)4 GB4 GB
Memory TypeDDR2-400, DDR2-533DDR2-400, DDR2-533DDR400, DDR2-400, DDR2-533
Memory ModesSingle Or Dual ChannelSingle Or Dual ChannelSingle Or Dual Channel
GraphicsPCI Express x16PCI Express x16PCI Express x16
PCI Express4 Slots PCIe x11 Slot PCIe x164 Slots PCIe x11 Slot PCIe x164 Slots PCIe x11 Slot PCIe x16
PCI Slots6 PCI 2.3 Bus Masters, 32 Bit6 PCI 2.3 Bus Masters, 32 Bit6 PCI 2.3 Bus Masters, 32 Bit
Storage Controller1 UltraATA/1004 SATA-1501 UltraATA/1004 SATA-1501 UltraATA/1004 SATA-150
USB Ports8 USB 2.0 Ports8 USB 2.0 Ports8 USB 2.0 Ports
Network Interface100 MBit MACGbE via PCIe100 MBit MACGbE via PCIe100 MBit MACGbE via PCIe
Audio SupportHD Audio 24 Bit192 kHzAC97 2.3HD Audio 24 Bit192 kHzAC97 2.3HD Audio 24 Bit192 kHzAC97 2.3

Click to enlarge !Memory Setups

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FSBRatioMemory
FSB8001:1DDRII-400
FSB8001:1.33DDRII-533
FSB8001:1.5DDRII-600
FSB10661:0.75DDRII-400
FSB10661:1DDRII-533
FSB10661:1.33DDRII-711

While many people expected the 925XE to support DDR2-667 memory, Intel has stuck to DDR2-533. Faster memory would clearly have sped up the whole system - please see the benchmark section for details - but two reasons speak against early deployment of this technology. First, DDR2-667 is still much more expensive than DDR2-533. Second, running a 333 MHz memory interface clock for DDR2-667 would require operating the RAM asynchronously, something that Intel has always tried to avoid.

Despite Intel’s decision, there is in fact a way to operate DDR2 memory far beyond DDR2-533 specs. By simply selecting the memory ratio that is required to match DDR2-533 when running FSB800, the memory will automatically run at DDR2-711 when the FSB is increased to FSB1066. In other words, when selecting the 1 to 1.33 ratio you would use to run DDR2-533 on FSB800, when you move to the 266 MHz FSB of FSB1066, you will be running the memory bus at 266 * 1.33 = 355.6 MHz, which means DDR2-711.

While you won’t be able to operate DDR2-533 modules highly overclocked at DDR2-711, any branded DDR2-667 should be able to reach that speed easily. So far, we’ve tried modules from Corsair, Crucial and GeIL and easily hit the desired speeds with tolerant timings.