Intel Core2 Extreme QX6850 CPU Preview :: Intel Core2 Extreme Features

07-16-2007 · Category: Hardware - Processors

By Doc Overclock

Intel Core2 Extreme QX6850 CPU Preview


Key Features

  • Dual core processor for mobile with enhanced performance
  • Intel architecture with Intel® Wide Dynamic Execution
  • L1 Cache to Cache (C2C) transfer
  • On-die, primary 32-KB instruction cache and 32-KB write-back data cache in each core
  • On-die, up to 4-MB second level shared cache with advanced transfer cache architecture
  • Streaming SIMD Extensions 2 (SSE2), Streaming SIMD Extensions 3 (SSE3) and Supplemental Streaming SIMD Extensions 3 (SSSE3)
  • 1333-MHz Source-Synchronous Front Side Bus (FSB) for Intel Core 2 Extreme processors, Intel Core 2 Duo standard and low voltage processors. 533-MHz FSB for Intel Core 2 Duo ultra low voltage processors
  • Advanced power management features including Enhanced Intel SpeedStep® Technology and Dynamic FSB frequency switching.
  • Intel Enhanced Deeper Sleep state with P_LVL5 I/O support
  • Digital Thermal Sensor (DTS)
  • Intel® 64 Technology
  • Enhanced Intel® Virtualization Technology
  • Intel® Dynamic Acceleration Technology
  • Enhanced Multi Threaded Thermal Management (EMTTM)
  • PSI2 functionality
  • Standard voltage processors are offered in Micro-FCPGA and Micro-FCBGA packaging. Low voltage and Ultra low voltage processors are offered in Micro- FCBGA packaging only. Intel Core 2 Extreme processors are offered in Micro-FCPGA packaging only.
  • Execute Disable Bit support for enhanced security

The instruction set for the Core2 Extreme QX6850 includes the standard x86 instructions, Intel's SSE, SSE2, SSE3, SSE4, MMX and x86-64 instruction sets. The Core2 series of CPUs also support Intel's Advanced Digital Media Boost which accelerates the SSE instructions so that a 128-bit SSE instruction can be issued at a rate of one per clock cycle instead of the two per clock cycle in earlier Intel CPUs. This technology helps accelerate many different applications, including video, speech recognition software and image photo processing to name a few. Advanced Digital Media Boost will be something that users from many different walks will see improved system performance, as its potential covers a wide area of applications.

Intel's Wide Dynamic Execution allows each core to complete up to four full 128-bit instructions per clock cycle. This is a vast improvement over the earlier CPUs that could do at most three full instructions per clock cycle. The Core 2 CPU can also do something called Macro-Fusion instructions, this is something which allows each core to combine certain x86 instructions into a single instruction, freeing up resources for the other cores to work on and improving overall system efficiency. The more instructions per cycle technology helps alleviate performance bottlenecks by allowing more information to be sorted and processed at any given time by each CPU core.

Intel's Speedstep technology was first introduced with their mobile CPUs to conserve energy when high performance is not required; this is in instances like when the system is in idle, or when Word is being used. SpeedStep lowers the clock speed of the processor that starts conserving energy, lowering heat and improving battery life on a notebook. The Green initiative in saving the environment has taken hold on processors, meaning that SpeedStep is a good thing. This technology is not really all that important in the desktop environment as batteries are not used and power is in abundance form your wall circuit in most situations.

Execute Disable Bit is a technology that enhances the virus protection for a system running a supported operating system like Windows XP 32-bit or 64-bit. XD allows memory to be marked as executable or non-executable. If malicious code like a memory-resident virus tries to run on non-executable memory, the processor can raise an error preventing the code from infecting the system. How often this actually comes into play is unknown, but it's always better to be safe than sorry. I have never actually seen a virus in the BOOT section of any startup or seen any scan on my system reveal a memory based virus. This doesn't mean they don't exist, but that they probably are a very rare occurrence on your PC.

Intel's Smart Cache is their trademarked name for their new unified cache for each pair of processors on the Quad Core CPU. Each pair shares their 8MB L2 cache dynamically based on what processor core requires more cache at the time. This increases the probability that each core can access data from fast L2 cache, thus reducing latency and improving the systems performance, especially in the multitasking environment. Most modern motherboards support 4GB of memory or more. Unfortunately, Windows XP is a 32-bit operating system, meaning that only 4GB of memory can be addressed, even if 8GB or even 16GB of memory is installed in the system. The advent of the AMD Athlon 64 processor meant that more memory could be addressed and accessed. Intel's 64-bit processor support started with the 6xx series and can address more than 4GB of memory in systems with an appropriate OS that supports more than 4GB natively.