The Arrandale Lineup: Something For (Almost) Everyone
If you’ve already read my Clarkdale coverage, then you know the nuts and bolts of Arrandale. It’s the same dual-die package with a 32nm CPU and 45nm graphics/memory/PCIe controller. The main differences between Arrandale and Clarkdale are: frequencies (of the CPU and GPU), DDR3 memory support, power consumption, packaging, and pricing.
Alright—perhaps there are a few things to talk about here.
There are a total of 11 new mobile processors being launched (as opposed to just six desktop chips). Five are Core i7-600-series CPUs, four are Core i5s, and two are Core i3s. If you’ve read my mini-rant about Intel’s naming in the Clarkdale piece, the same applies in this piece—you’ll truly need a reference chart in order to make any sense of how model names relate to specifications.
The new Core i7s are dual-core chips with Hyper-Threading enabled, sporting 4MB of shared L3 cache, and available in power profiles ranging from 18W to 35W. Forget what you thought determined a Core i7 on the desktop—that’s out the window here, as you'll find Mobile Core i5 and Core i3 processors that run faster than the entry-level Core i7s. Why is this? Only the Core i7-620M is a standard voltage 35W part. The i7-640LM and i7-620LM are medium-voltage components with 25W TDPs. Intel’s i7-640UM and i7-620UM feature 18W TDPs, dropping dual-channel DDR3 memory support from 1,066 MT/s to 800 MT/s. And although their names all differ by just a single letter or number, the five i7s run at base clock rates of 1.06-2.66 GHz and Turbo up to 2.13 GHz to 3.33 GHz.
|Intel Mobile Core i3/5/7 Lineup For 2010|
|Base Clock||Max. Turbo Clock||Cores / Threads||DDR3 Memory||TDP||Package||Pricing||Base Graphics Freq.|
|Core i7-920XM||2 GHz||3.2 GHz||4/8||1,333 MT/s||55W||rPGA BGA||$1,054||-|
|Core i7-820QM||1.73 GHz||3.06 GHz||4/8||1,333 MT/s||45W||rPGA BGA||$546||-|
|Core i7-720QM||1.6 GHz||2.8 GHz||4/8||1,333 MT/s||45W||rPGA BGA||$364||-|
|Core i7-620M||2.66 GHz||3.33 GHz||2/4||1,066 MT/s||35W||rPGA BGA||$332||533 MHz|
|Core i7-640LM||2.13 GHz||2.93 GHz||2/4||1,066 MT/s||25W||BGA||$332||266 MHz|
|Core i7-620LM||2 GHz||2.8 GHz||2/4||1,066 MT/s||25W||BGA||$300||266 MHz|
|Core i7-640UM||1.2 GHz||2.26 GHz||2/4||800 MT/s||18W||BGA||$305||166 MHz|
|Core i7-620UM||1.06 GHz||2.13 GHz||2/4||800 MT/s||18W||BGA||$278||166 MHz|
|Core i5-540M||2.53 GHz||3.06 GHz||2/4||1,066 MT/s||35W||rPGA BGA||$257||533 MHz|
|Core i5-520M||2.4 GHz||2.93 GHz||2/4||1,066 MT/s||35W||rPGA BGA||$225||533 MHz|
|Core i5-520UM||1.06 GHz||1.86 GHz||2/4||800 MT/s||18W||BGA||$241||166 MHz|
|Core i5-430M||2.26 GHz||2.53 GHz||2/4||1,066 MT/s||35W||rPGA BGA||-||533 MHz|
|Core i3-350M||2.26 GHz||-||2/4||1,066 MT/s||35W||rPGA BGA||-||533 MHz|
|Core i3-330M||2.13 GHz||-||2/4||1,066 MT/s||35W||rPGA BGA||-||533 MHz|
The four Core i5s hardly fare better. They, too, are dual-core models with Hyper-Threading enabled. But instead of 4MB shared L3 cache, they’re armed with 3MB. Three models are 35W TDP parts, but they span the i5-500M- and i5-400M-series. Why the drop to -400? The only explanation we can see is a less-aggressive Turbo Boost implementation on the entry-level model, highlighted in the chart above. There’s a single 18W low-voltage part in the Core i5 lineup, which drops to DDR3-800 memory support and a 1.06 GHz base clock rate. With thermal headroom to spare, though, the chip can Turbo up to 1.86 GHz.
The two Core i3s are, again, dual-core, Hyper-Threading-equipped CPUs with 3MB shared L3 cache and DDR3-1066-compatible. They’re both 35W chips, which makes sense because neither supports Turbo Boost, so Intel isn’t able to set a low base clock and rely on Turbo to bring performance up when thermal headroom allows.
Pricing across the lineup is aggressive, ranging from $225 to $332 (three of the lowest-end models aren’t being listed at launch).