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Home > Hardware Reviews > PC Parts

Tuesday, June 28, 2005
Intel Pentium 4 3.73Ghz Extreme Edition

1. Introduction

In our previous review featuring Intel's products, we had compared the P4 660 3.6Ghz with the AMD 3800+ and whether it was worth upgrading your system from a P4 530 3.0Ghz to one of these two 64bit CPUs. This time round, we are back with the P4 3.73Ghz Extreme Edition.

The Intel Pentium 4 3.73Ghz Extreme Edition is different from the other 5xx and 6xx series. The L2 cache is 2MB, as in the 6xx series, but the Front Side Bus (FSB) is at 1066Mhz. The only chipsets that supports this CPU are the 955X Express and the 925XE Express. Below are some other feature of the P4 ED:

  • Execute Disable Bit : Can improve protection against malicious "buffer overflow" attacks when properly enabled with a supporting operating system.
  • EM64T : Intel Extended Memory 64 Technology (or Intel EM64T), is an enhancement to Intel's IA-32 architecture. The enhancement allows the processor to run newly written 64-bit code and access larger amounts of memory.
  • NetBurst micro-architecture : The NetBurst micro-architecture delivers a number of new and innovative features including Hyper Pipelined Technology, 400 MHz System Bus, Execution Trace Cache, and Rapid Execution Engine. It also delivers a number of enhanced features, including Advanced Transfer Cache, Advanced Dynamic Execution, Enhanced Floating Point and Multimedia Unit, and Streaming SIMD Extensions 2.
  • 2MB L2 Cache : A larger cache size can help the processor more efficiently run many popular applications in digital imaging, music, video and gaming.
  • 90nm process technology : This 90-nm process combines higher-performance, lower-power transistors, strained silicon, high-speed copper interconnects and a new low-k dielectric material.

Processor Features & Definitions

Architecture

Basic design of a microprocessor. May include process technology and/or other architectural enhancements.

Cache
(MB/KB)

A temporary storage area for frequently accessed or recently accessed data. Having certain data stored in a cache speeds up the operation of the computer. Cache size is measured in megabytes (MB) or kilobytes (KB).

Clock Speed
(GHz/MHz)

Speed of the processor's internal clock, which dictates how fast the processor can process data. Clock speed is usually measured in GHz (gigahertz, or billions of pulses per second).

Front Side Bus
(GHz/MHz)

The connecting path between the processor and other key components such as the memory controller hub. FSB speed is measured in GHz or MHz.

The test sample we received from Intel was for evaluation purposes only and not a production processor. That's the reason for the "CONFIDENTIAL" marking.

Click to enlarge

The CPU is a 775 socket, as was the Prescott series. As you can see, there are no pins on the CPU itself. Instead, these are located on the motherboard socket.

The stock cooler included in the BOX version of the P4 3.73Ghz, has nine smaller blades, same as the 660, instead of the seven bigger blades found on the 5xx series fans. The rotation speed of the fan follows the temperature, so as the heat increases, so does the fan speed making a little noise in the process.




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