Penryn CPU Details Revealed

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Some of the new features of the Intel Penryn CPU have been revealed, including a mechanism for better integration with graphics, according to ExtremeTech.

The Penryn is Intelis 45 nm process CPU due by the end of 2007. It is a dual core chip with a 107 square mm die size and has 47 new SSE4 instructions.

The instruction of interest is the "streaming load instruction" which attempts to broaden the CPUis own graphics capabilities and interoperation with a GPU.

Other capabilities of the Penryn include:

  • Deep Power Down technology.
  • Dynamic Acceleration Technology. One core sits idle, saving power, when the CPU encounters a single threaded application.
  • VTX. Improves context switching speed during virtualization.
  • SSE4 enhancements including motion detection, likely related to MPEG video.

There has been some discussion about a project called "Fusion" by AMD, an attempt to merge the general purpose CPU and a graphics processor. The Intel inclusion of these enhanced graphics capabilities is likely an attempt to confront that initiative while simultaneously providing its customers with more graphics capability in its latest offering.

However, it always takes the software community some time to catch up with the hardware. "Intel will probably cite some benchmarks that show an improvement. But for the typical end user, it wonit have much immediate impact," Nathan Brookwood, an analyst with Insight64, told the magazine.

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