Intel has been known for (and by) their marketing terms and there is probably no other company which has brought out so many. Every year, around this time, Intel offers something new and this time round, they have unleashed the Intel Centrino 2, a new mobile platform. Well, it is not really new; it is the Montevina about which we have been talking about for the past year. Intel has used Centrino 2 as the marketing name, so that consumers may relate better. But most people, who want to buy a laptop, are bemused by these terms, and in this article, we shall try to simplify and explain to you what the new platform, Centrino 2 is all about as well as what makes it better.
Intel states that the new Centrino 2 platform comprises a few new Core 2 Duo processors, new chipset with a faster FSB, new graphics solution supporting HD content and switchable graphics, and an updated wireless and wired connectivity. This platform promises to deliver blazing performance, superior battery life (up to twice as much) as compared to the previous generation Centrinos and five times the bandwidth for wireless. In addition to this, it also claims to deliver an intensive high definition multimedia and gaming experience. Let us get down to these one by one.
Processors: The six new processors initially introduced in this platform are built on the 45nm fabrication process with Hafnium Hi-K and Metal Gate transistor technology, also known as the Penryn micro-architecture. These support a faster FSB of 1066 MHz, the fastest in laptops. They also support Intel Deep Power Down Technology, which is a low-power state in which the cores and L2 cache can be powered down when the processor is idle to save precious battery charge.
Of these processors, three are in the energy-efficient class and are designated with a part number Pxxxx and will carry a TDP rating of 25 W. They use less battery, and run at lower temperatures as compared to other. The rest of the processors are designated by part number Txxxx with TDP rating of 35 W and Xxxxx with TDP rating of 44 W and these focus more on performance, rather than saving power.
Of the processors introduced initially, the P8400 runs at 2.26GHz, while the P8600 runs at 2.4 GHz and each has a 3MB L2 cache. The former is priced at $209 (INR 9,500 approx), while the latter costs $241 (INR 10,900 approx). The other Pxxxx series processor is the P9500, which runs at 2.53GHz and is priced higher at $348 (INR 15,800 approx).
The Txxxx series processors consist of T9400 and T9600 running at 2.53GHz and 2.8GHz respectively and are priced at $316 (INR 14,300 approx) and $530 (INR 24,000 approx) respectively.
The Xxxxx series consists of an extreme performance processor X9100 clocking at 3.06GHz and a 6MB L2 cache. It is priced a lot higher as expected at a whopping $851 (INR 38,700 approx).
Please note that the prices quoted above are on a per 1000 units base.
In addition to the above, there will also be 10W, 17W and 25W CPUs for Small Form Factor laptops and this series will be designated by Sxxxxx. There are currently the 25 W TDP SP9400 (2.4 GHz) and SP9300 (2.26 GHz), 17 W TDP SL9400 (1.86 GHz) and SL9300 (1.6 GHz), and the 10 W TDP SU9400 (1.40 GHz) and SU9300 (1.20 GHz), all with 6 MB cache. Additionally, there is also a quad core Q9100 running at 2.26 GHz and with 12 MB cache. It will have a TDP of 45W.