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i915 Express, i925 Express and 5 x P4 LGA775: official pre-announcement

Whether you like it or not, Intel pre-announced Intel 915 Express and Intel 925 Express chipsets along with new Pentium 4 processors (that are actually to be announced, according to CNET, Reuters, ExtremeTech, eWeek, EE Times, on the nearest Monday).

First, it´s worth saying that Grantsdale-based PCs initially won´t provide access point features. According to Intel, these will be offered not before Q4 2004 in the form of a special PCI card that Grantsdale requires to work as an access point. OEM vendors wishing to ship Wi-Fi desktops "here and now" will have to purchase components themselves. But they will not work with Intel chipsets (according to eWeek, that is).

Analysts give this situation a rather interesting estimate claiming that Wi-Fi is not that important for Grantsdale as it is for Centrino.

As far back as in May Intel informed that Grantsdale will have Wi-Fi features disabled by default to prevent mass tries of unauthorized AP access. Systems with ICH6W Southbridge will have AP functionality, but the chipset will offer only the control circuitry while the actual receiver/transmitter will be located in respective add-in cards. In his interview to eWeek Dan Snyder hasn´t stressed whether these add-in cards are to be PCI, or some other.

Most desktops on the new chipset will be traditionally tower-like, though Intel is working on so-called "lifestyle PCs" with a clear turn for multimedia entertainment. Systems on 900 series of chipsets will be positioned as high-end and priced $1200 and over. Their primary differences from the older solutions are:

  • DDR2 support
  • PCI-Express interface (2.5Gbps)
  • High-performance graphics (915G will have Intel Graphics Media Accelerator 900)

Together with 900 series the company will announce 5 new LGA775 processors: 2.8GHz Pentium 4 520, 3GHz Pentium 4 530, 3.2GHz Pentium 4 540, 3.4GHz Pentium 4 550 and 3.6GHz Pentium 4 560. Later the 3.4GHz P4 Extreme Edition and several Celerons will be added as well.

According to EE Times, 5 new Pentium 4 Prescott processors will have 1MB L2 cache, Extreme Edition will have 2MB L3 cache and 512KB L2 cache. The former 5 will cost $178 to $637 in over 1,000-unit quantities, while Extreme Edition will cost $999.

Summing up the information we have, we can add that Grantsdale (915) and Alderwood (925) will be used in desktops and workstations, respectively. According to the sources, 915 will support DDR and DDR2 and will cost $41 (with int. graphics) and $37 (without it). 925 ($50) won´t have graphics onboard and will support DDR2 only. According to Intel, in the graphics field new processors will perform 1.7 times faster than i865G.

The new chipsets will be the first to support the standard formerly codenamed Azalia. And we´ve already mentioned that LGA775 will also be used by dual-core processors. For now it´s related to 64-bit products as well.

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