Intel Penryn processors with up to 4 GHz?

Posted by Wolfgang Gruener

Taiwan (Taipei) – Intel plans to initially release nine desktop processors with the 45 nm Penryn core, with clock speeds eventually scaling up to 4 GHz, according to a report published by Digitimes today.  

Citing industry sources, the publication said that Intel will be rolling out five dual-core ("Wolfdale") 45 nm processors with clock speeds of 2.66, 2.83, 3.0 and 3.16 GHz – as well as one more CPU with an unknown clock speed. All dual-core CPUs will sport a 6 MB L2 cache.

There also will be four quad-core processors ("Yorkfield"). Three of these processors will be clocked at 2.5 GHz, 2.66 GHz and 2.83 GHz, with the fourth number being unknown at this time. The low-end 2.5 GHz quad-core will be running on a 6 MB L2 cache, while all other quad-cores will be equipped with 12 MB.

Digitimes' sources stated that Penryn processor will offer the ability to increase the clock multiplier in steps of 0.5, opening the door to a greater variety of processors with different performance capabilities. The publication said that Penryn eventually may top out at 4.0 GHz, with at least four Penryn processors topping 3.16 GHz during the lifetime of the product family.

It will be interesting to see, if Intel actually will be offering such a processor between the end of this year and the release of the new Nehalem micro-architecture, which is expected to debut in the second half of next year. According to our sources, Core 2 Duo processors have been running at 4.0 GHz in Intel's labs for some time, while the company apparently never felt the competitive pressure to actually release such a processor to the public.