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Intel's 15 Most Unforgettable x86 CPUs

Celeron and Xeon: Intel Aims At The High/Low End

At the end of the 1990s, Intel launched two of its best-known processor brands: Celeron and Xeon. The former was aimed at the budget market and the latter at servers, and sometimes workstations. The first Celeron (Covington) was a Pentium II without a Level 2 cache, and suffered extremely poor performance, whereas the Pentium II Xeon had a large cache. Even now, both brands still exist—Celeron for the entry-level market (generally with a reduced cache and a slower FSB) and Xeon for servers (with a fast FSB, sometimes more cache, and high clock speeds).

Intel quickly added a cache to the Celeron with the Mendocino model (128 KB). The Celeron 300A is famous for its overclocking capacities, able to go 50% or more above its rated clock speed much of the time.

Code nameCovington, MendocinoDrake
Date released19981998
Architecture32 bits32 bits
Data bus64 bits64 bits
Address bus32 bits36 bits
Maximum memory4 GB64 GB
L1 cache16 KB + 16 KB16 KB + 16 KB
L2 cache0 KB/128 KB (internal, CPU frequency)external, 512 KB-2,408 KB (CPU frequency)
Clock frequency266-300 MHz/300-533 MHz400-450 MHz
FSB66 MHz100 MHz
FPUbuilt inbuilt in
SIMDMMXMMX
Fabrication process250 nm250 nm
Number of transistors7,500,000/19,000,0007,500,000 + cache
Power consumption16–28 W30-46 W
Voltage2 V2 V
Die surface area131 mm²/154 mm²131 mm² + cache
ConnectorSlot1/Socket 370 PPGASlot 2

Like the Pentium II, Xeon had an external L2 cache inside the processor cartridge. Its capacity was between 512 KB and 2 MB, and the number of transistors between 31 million and 124 million.

  • Arkz
    great article with only a few slight errors (like saying the core2duo has 1-4 cores... i don't think there's a 1 cored version lol)

    Looking forward to the AMD article.
    Reply
  • aleluja
    To correct you. Core 2 Duo has ONLY 2 cores, not more, not less.
    Core 2 Quad, has 4 cores and Core Solo has 1 core.
    Reply
  • @Arkz

    Yes there is a singal core,

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Intel_Core_2_microprocessors#Single-Core_Mobile_processors
    Ok it is not under the same branding but it is part of the same microarchitecture
    Reply
  • Yuka
    I might be wrong, but i resemble that the Pentium 166 (32bits adress bus and all) had support for 4Gb of memory. I remember IBM sold it's top line (at that time) with 64Mb support (even with SDR PC100/66 support). Correct me if i'm wrong please.
    Reply
  • neiroatopelcc
    The core 2 does supply 1-4 cores - 2 cores per die, where one might be disabled, and one or two dies on a socket. It's no less right to call a core2duo a cpu with 1-4 cores, than it is to put the pentium d on the same page as a single core prescot, as it's the very same principle.
    Reply
  • cangelini
    Arkzgreat article with only a few slight errors (like saying the core2duo has 1-4 cores http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Coree ... i don't think there's a 1 cored version lol)Looking forward to the AMD article.
    Thanks for the heads-up! I tweaked that passage to better represent the Core 2 architecture's available configurations!
    Reply
  • randomizer
    vosesterOk it is not under the same branding but it is part of the same microarchitecture Exactly. The article says:

    ArticleThere are many versions of the architecture, resulting in configurations with a different number of cores
    There is no mention of the branding, so there is no actual error there, just misinterpretation.
    Reply
  • ImSpartacus
    Arkzgreat article with only a few slight errors (like saying the core2duo has 1-4 cores... i don't think there's a 1 cored version lol)Looking forward to the AMD article.
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819116039
    Yes, it isn't called a "Core 2 Duo," but it uses the Core architecture and only has a single core enabled.

    But I will have to say, there aren't any 3 core models...
    Reply
  • magicandy
    Good to hear you're not only doing an AMD article, but an ATI one as well (in response to the Nvidia article you did earlier, assuming). A sign of class from the new Tom's is a welcome one.
    Reply
  • harrycat88
    I wish they would get rid of those stupid SNAP Linkbubless and Inteltex misguiding links. Who ever invented those stupid annoying double lined text popups should have been burned at the stake
    Reply