IntroductionIntel Pentium 4 570J 3.8GHz LGA775 CPU
I reckon it's fair to say that Intel is really up against it in the high-end enthusiast sector right now. The fabled Prescott-based Pentium 4 promised much but has been something of a performance letdown, if we're completely honest. Intel started of 2004 with the launch of a 3.4GHz Northwood processor that kept reasonable performance parity with AMD's Athlon 64 3xxx line. We're now at the end of '04 and Intel's fastest P4 clock speed is only 3.6GHz, and that's only available in Prescott LGA775 flavour. Meanwhile, in the same time, AMD has launched a succession of S939 processors that are currently headed by the impressive FX-55.
To make matters worse for Intel, its Extreme Edition line, which is in direct competition with AMD's FX, seems to be floundering at around 3.4GHz. A recent chipset move to 1066MHz FSB did little to appease enthusiasts' desire for better all-around performance. To continue this maelstrom of discontent, plans for a 4GHz LGA775 Pentium 4 were dashed as Intel decided that its future desktop processors should provide more performance per clock cycle, most likely achieved by using dual cores and higher levels of on-chip cache. The excellent Dothan-based Pentium M has also been put forward as a likely performance CPU. In short, Intel's realised that the present single-core Pentium 4 doesn't have a great deal of clock headroom left in it.
A 4GHz single-core model will never see the light of day but that hasn't stopped Intel from quietly slipping in a 3.8GHz model today. We were fortunate enough to take a Pentium 4 570J for a review spin. It's evidently Intel's last hurrah to clock speed as the single most advertised factor in evaluating processor performance. That's precisely why the company has already moved on to a an AMD-like numbering system. Even at this early juncture, I can tell you that the 3.8GHz CPU ships with a couple of new features that are being introduced to the rest of the 5xx range. Read on to find out just what they are and how it performs.