Vital Signs and BIOS Showcase
As we mentioned earlier, thermal characteristics of the new Pentium 4, in its new LGA775 package, have improved significantly. We took some quick readings with Intel's Desktop Control Center utility, on the D925XCV Alderwood board, under full load with an instance of the Folding at Home client running. Here's what we saw.
Pentium 4 560 3.6GHz - LGA775 at idle and load
At idle, the new Pentium 4 560 is running at a relaxing 42C at 3.6GHz. This is somewhere in the neighborhood of 8-12C cooler than the socket 478 version of the 3.4GHz Prescott CPU we looked at not long ago. Under load, the new 3.6GHz LGA775 P4 560 hangs tough at 55C, which again is in the area of about 8 - 10C cooler versus its 3.4GHz S478 sibling. This is more than encouraging performance and as you'll see in the pages ahead, it will prove to be a big asset in possible overclocking efforts.
Pentium 4 Extreme Edition 3.4GHz - LGA775 at ideal and load
The P4 Extreme Edition 3.4GHz CPU, in it's new LGA775 home, put up downright unbelievable thermals, 30C idle and 42C under load to be exact. We're not completely confident that the health monitoring function on the motherboard was reporting accurate temperatures but for now, we'll take these temperatures at face value. In any event, the new Pentium 4 LGA775 package is most definitely a thing of engineering beauty, when it comes to thermal power dissipation and overall thermal signature at these high clock speeds.
Intel's motherboards aren't really known to be enthusiast friendly, offering no real options for overclocking beyond "burn-in mode", a small percentage bump in clock speeds to test for stability. Regardless, we're friendly types around here anyway, so we took a look at the menu screens available to us, with Intel's D925XCV and D915DUX motherboards.
DDR2 is noted to be set at its standard 533MHz but look at those memory timings. The Crucial modules we tested were configured via SPD detect at 4-4-4-12 timings. Unfortunately, with its increased clock speeds, right now DDR2 also brings with it a fair amount of latency. We're hoping the folks at Kingston, Corsair and other module houses targeting the enthusiast, will deliver better timings in future products, as the months roll on with Alderwood and Grantsdale.
There are a few new settings for PCI Express bus and chipset tweaking, that we didn't have much time to play with but we're hopeful to learn more in the months ahead and we'll be sure to pass on our findings to you here.