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P4 Northwood and Prescott Comparison at 4.1 GHz

Prescott Up To 4.17 GHz, Northwood With 4 GHz Maximum

The Pentium 4 Northwood reached a maximum of 4 GHz with a modicum of stability. Above this, signs of failure appeared in the form of Windows errors.

We used two conventional 3.2 GHz processors that can be bought at retail channels for this test. They thus reflect performance results that can be achieved with commercially available processors.

The following table shows the all configurations we benchmarked and tested:

CPU ClockFSB ClockCPU Voltage
P4 Northwood3,207 MHz200.5 MHz1.55 V
P4 Northwood3,535 MHz220.9 MHz1.55 V
P4 Northwood3,695 MHz230.9 MHz1.55 V
P4 Northwood3,866 MHz241.7 MHz1.575 V
P4 Northwood4,009 MHz250.6 MHz1.625 V
P4 Prescott3,207 MHz200.5 MHz1.375 V
P4 Prescott3,535 MHz220.9 MHz1.375 V
P4 Prescott3,695 MHz230.9 MHz1.375 V
P4 Prescott3,866 MHz241.7 MHz1.40 V
P4 Prescott4,009 MHz250.6 MHz1.425 V
P4 Prescott4,149 MHz259.4 MHz1.50 V

In order for the processors to remain stable at 3.8 GHz and higher clock speeds, a compressor cooling system was required. The processor cores' voltages, which increased drastically at 4 GHz, produced a clear rise in thermal power - without the VapoChill the processor could not have handled the thermal power of well over 100 watts.

The P4 Prescott gained an edge over the Northwood with a somewhat higher maximum speed: 4.175 MHz, which indicates its potential.