« on: January 05, 2010, 08:52:25 PM »
Tntel has just announced their latest lineup of Nehalem technology based processors. Clarkdale, as the new processor is called by engineers, is the first commercially available 32 nm based processor. It is also the first processor that features a graphics processing core which is located inside the processor's package - something that was first heard about when AMD talked about their Fusion project. It should be noted however that Intel did not put both CPU and GPU onto the same die of silicon.
Instead they took the 32 nm processor core and the 45 nm GPU core, and crammed them into a single processor package, as pictured above. This approach is called Multi-Chip module (MCM).
Intel's graphics core is based on 45 nm technology and features 177 million transistors on a die size of 114 mm². You could imagine it as an improved G45 chipset (including the memory controller) with some magic sauce to make everything work in the CPU package. The GPU is clocked at 533, 733 or 900 MHz depending on the processor model. Our tested i5 661 features the highest GPU clock speed available, without overclocking, of 900 MHz. Intel also increased the number of execution units (shaders) from 10 to 12 and the HD video decoder is now able to decode two streams at the same time for picture-in-picture like you find on some Blu-Rays to show the director's commentary. HD audio via HDMI is supported as well, which will make setup of a media PC more easy, putting this solution on the same level as the latest offerings from AMD and NVIDIA. Whereas the mobile GPU version features advanced power saving techniques like dynamic clock scaling (think: EIST for GPUs) and overheat downclocking, the feature is not available on the desktop part.