Fast, Cool Intel Chips Ahead

While AMD prepares its next set of processors--a multicore design code-named Barcelona and due this summer--Intel has already demonstrated samples of its more-advanced Penryn chip. It's manufactured in a 45nm process that uses hafnium-based high-k dielectric and metal gates to decrease current leakage--and yield faster, more energy-efficient chips. The new materials help combat problems that manufacturers start to run into as chips shrink. Intel's 45nm manufacturing process should be the first to mass-produce CPUs using these innovations. Penryn slightly refreshes the Core 2 Duo design with additional cache memory and new SSE4 instructions, and should ship in the second half of the year. AMD and IBM plan to introduce a similar manufacturing process when they transition to 45nm chips next year.

Bottom Line: Intel has built a nice performance lead with its Core 2 Duo chips. With Penryn waiting in the wings and AMD's Athlon CPUs stuck for a while on a 65nm process, Barcelona had better be one heck of a chip.

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News source: PCWorld

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Same here the last intel I used was a P2 233MHZ MMX, my first PC, then I went to AMD 2800+ which I'm on now.

Next upgrade will be to nothing less than a quad core, who ever is better in the next 4 months will be my choice, probabaly going to intel because of their 45nm.

Anybody who knows about CPUs, can they explain if 45nm will provide a significant advantage over 65nm. I'd assume it would run much cooler so it's able run faster like for example we'll able to overclock them quite alot, or is that not the case?

Intel's really getting ahead of AMD these days. I've been an AMD guy for years, but if I were to build a computer today, it would probably be Intel.

I've been a AMD guy for years too. Last Intel processor I used was a 233Mhz MMX and that was ALONG time ago. I'll keep using AMD until I absolutely have to switch to Intel.

Same here, but I just switched over to the dark side (Intel) with an E6300. That plus a $30 heatsink puts me at 2.8GHz on each core. Sure I could push it further, but I like to keep it running cool so my fans stay quiet.

I think AMD is really feeling the heat right now and they're going to quicken the pace to 45nm.

In the meanwhile, what I've read so far indicate that Barcelona is going to be one hell of a chip. They've already fixed the perfomance issues, now they just need to work out a few more kinks.

Of course, I still think Dual Core will be the sweet spot for the next year or so.

Barcelona might be a sweet chip, but it could turn out to be too little too late, even before the move to 45nm later in the year for intel, they have faster 65nm Core2D and Core2Qs they can push out if AMD starts to catch up to them. 3.33Ghz is ready and waiting last I read.

Besides, AMD just delayed the new ATi gfx cards yet again, typical amd fasion, delaying this new chip could happen again, and if so, Intel will jump all over them.

Things don't look to good for AMD in the cpu war right now but a low cost x2 is better then a more expensive C2D for 90% of buyers. I find myself building more x2 systems right now since the mobo are cheaper as well and they provide enough power to run most everything today.