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I would also like to point out that the default clock frequency multiplier of the Pentium Extreme Edition 955 CPU is set to 13x. It is a very remarkable thing, because Pentium 4 and Pentium D processors manufactured with 90nm technology supported clock multipliers over 14x. With the new production technology, both: Presler and Cedar Mill acquired 12x+ multipliers support. Besides the 3.46GHz CPU supporting 1066MHz bus, they have also managed to implement Intel Enhanced SpeedStep technology in all new processor models, including processors starting at 2.8GHz and up to the top solution we are testing today. As a result, when power saving technology gets activated, the CPUs with 800MHz bus drop their clock speed down to 2.4GHz, while the CPU with 1066MHz bus slows down to 3.2GHz.

The diagnostic CPU-Z tool reports the following about the Pentium Extreme Edition 955 processor:

Nothing unexpected here, the utility does recognize the CPU absolutely correctly.

I would like to say a few words about the compatibility of the Presler based processors with the contemporary mainboards, since there are a few really important things about it. First of all I would like to point out that the CPUs supporting 800MHz bus will work just fine in mainboards supporting 90nm Pentium D. As for the Pentium Extreme Edition 955 support, things are a little bit more tricky here. This processor works with a 1066MHz bus, which hasn’t been implied when they designed those chipsets for dual-core CPUs. Therefore, the launch of the new Intel Pentium Extreme Edition 955 CPU is also accompanied by the launch of the Intel 975X Express chipset.

I have to stress that there is nothing new about this chipset. There are only two features that distinguish it from the Intel 955X Express. Firstly, it officially supports Pentium Extreme Edition 955, and secondly, it allows splitting the PCI Express x16 graphics bus into two PCI Express x8 busses. As a result you can use the new mainboards based on the Intel 975X Express chipset to build multi-monitor configurations or SLI and CrossFire systems (in case there is proper video driver support, which is currently available only by ATI).

However, an i975X based mainboard is not a must for the Pentium Extreme Edition 955 CPU. According to our tests, this CPU can work perfectly fine in mainboards based on the older i955X chipset. For example, ASUS P5WD2 Premium worked with this CPU without any issues at all, so it is not always necessary to replace the mainboard if you are getting a new Pentium Extreme Edition 955 CPU.

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