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Intel Corporation has reportedly reformed its CPU roadmap once again, adding some more powerful 0.13 micron processors, but staying rather tight-lipped concerning the higher-end 90nm CPUs ramp up in early 2004.

Sources close to Intel are reporting about two new microprocessors for Socket 478 infrastructure to emerge in the first quarter 2004. The first processor will be Intel Pentium 4 Extreme Edition at 3.40GHz with 2MB of L3 cache, the second one will be the Intel Pentium 4 processor at 3.40GHz with 512KB of L2 cache. Both chips will be produced using Intel’s mature 0.13 micron technology and will feature 800MHz Quad Pumped Bus being compatible with existing i865 and i875P infrastructure.

At the same time – presumably in Q1 2004 – Intel is projected to also roll-out its Pentium 4 processor with SSE3 technology (Prescott) processor at 2.80GHz with 1MB of L2, 533MHz Quad Pumped Bus and no HT technology indicated. In the second quarter the company is very likely to unveil a version of this 90nm CPU for LGA775 platform as well.

The roadmap does not reflect general changes, but also does no longer claim about the launch of Intel Pentium 4 processors with SSE3 technology at 2.80GHz, 3.00GHz, 3.20GHz and 3.40GHz with 1MB of L2 cache and 800MHz Quad Pumped Bus before the 15th of February directly, but still has some indirect confirmations about this.

There are indications about pricing of the new chips as well. Most probably, the 3.40GHz Pentium 4 processor “Prescott” with SSE3, HT and 800MHz PSB will cost $417 at launch; the same price is effective for the Intel Pentium 4 “Northwood” at 3.40GHz with 512KB cache and HT technology. Moreover, Intel’s Pentium 4 3.20GHz with SSE3, HT, 800MHz QPB is expected to cost the same $278, as the company is projected to ask for its 3.20GHz Pentium 4 “Northwood” chip after the 15th of February, 2004. The same pricing trend is also effective for Prescott and Northwood models at 3.00GHz and 2.80GHz – both versions of chips will cost $218 and $178 respectively, in spite of more powerful specs of the Prescott CPUs. The Prescott processor 2.80GHz with 533MHz QPB, 1MB of cache and no HT technology will cost $163. All prices reflect only commercial quantities from 1000 units and above.

The launch date for 90nm Prescott parts – also known as Pentium 4 with SSE3 technology and 800MHz PSB – may be moved to a later date in the first quarter, the source said. Officials from Intel have never confirmed Prescott processor launch move into later date, though.

Intel also stayed relatively cautious with its ramp of 90nm value processors – the Celeron chips at 2.80GHz and 3.06GHz. In spite of claims from unofficial sources, the company will introduce the parts only in the Q2 2004. Furthermore, Intel is very likely to expand the family of Celeron microprocessors featuring 256KB of L2 and 533MHz QPB with models at 2.53GHz and 2.66GHz speeds in addition to models at 3.06GHz and 2.80GHz indicated earlier. LGA775 versions of revamped Intel Celeron CPUs will be available in Q3 2004 at 3.20GHz, 3.06GHz and 2.80GHz.

Intel representatives never comment on unannounced products.


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