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Wolfdale benchmarks emerge

Off the fabs, into machines
Tue Aug 07 2007, 10:08
WOLFDALE CORE 2 Duo processors might not be due on shelves for another few months, but engineering samples are already rolling off the fabs - and one has made its way into a benchmarking rig over at HKEPC.

The chip, designed for next-gen desktops, is built on Intel's new 45nm process, making it a smaller version of the existing Core 2 chips. It supports all the usual Intel instruction gubbins, including the new SSE4 and 64-bit instructions. The engineering sample benchmarked was running at 2.33GHz, 1333MHz FSB and stacked up 6MB of L2 cache.

Compared against an existing E6550 Conroe chip (same speeds, only 4MB cache) the Wolfdale performs impressively. Clock for clock, performance is up 19 per cent in OpenGL rendering, and 13 per cent in ScienMark's molecular dynamics test. SSE3 instructions are 15 per cent faster, whilst standard office applications appear to be between five and eight per cent faster.

Gaming-wise, there are some big gains - with a GeForce 8800 Ultra card installed, Doom 3 and Far Cry see 10 per cent performance improvements at CPU-bound resolutions, and Half-Life 2 sees a staggering 30 per cent improvement, up from 132 FPS to 181.

With performance like this, we suspect that hardware geeks are going to be clamouring to get their mitts on these bad boys. µ


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