Intel Pentium 4 1.7GHz. Processor

The Intel Pentium 4 1.7GHz. Processor - Page 2

The Intel Pentium 4 1.7GHz. Processor
The "Hyper Pipelined" CPU takes it up a notch

By Dave Altavilla - April 24 2001

The Pentium 4 architecture and platform in general, has been maturing nicely since our initial look at the CPU last year.  In fact, third party vendors in the motherboard and cooling markets, have made working with the P4 much more efficient and just plain "tweakable" (yes that's a word).  So let's have a look at our test rigs and the gear that we used to set things up properly.

Hot Hardware's Test System
New cooling from Thermaltake and motherboard from Abit

Test System 1

- Abit TH7-RAID Pentium 4 Motherboard

- 256MB of Samsung PC800 RAMBUS DRDRAM,

- Thermaltake Indigo Orb P4 CPU Cooler - Thanks Plycon!

- IBM DTLA307030 30Gig ATA100 7200 RPM Hard Drive - Supplied by Outside Loop!

- nVidia GeForce 2 Ultra 64MB AGP Graphics Card,

- Sound Blaster Live Sound Card,

- Pioneer 10X DVD

- WindowsME 

- Direct X 8.0 and nVidia reference drivers version 11.01

- Intel chipset drivers version 2.80


Test System #2
- Soyo K7ADA (AliMAGiK 1)
- 256 Crucial PC2100 CAS 2.5
- 1.33GHz AMD Athlon Processor (T-Bird)
- IBM 30 Gig ATA100 7200 RPM Drive
- 10X DVD
- SB Live!
- WinMe

- DX8 ,  GF2 Ultra and Detonator 11.01 Version Drivers

Our motherboard of choice, for the Pentium 4 machine is a beauty, Abit's TH7-RAID.  We'll have a full review on this little gem in the weeks ahead but here is a preview of our test system in action.


Other than our high tech testing rack (a no longer needed "in bucket"), you'll notice some niceties about the TH7-RAID.  There are three USB ports on this motherboard for added expandability and of course the integrated High Point RAID controller.  All told, this is an excellent base to build a P4 system on.

You'll also notice our choice of coolers in this test, the Thermaltake Indigo Orb.  Our good friends at Plycon set us up with this space age looking cooler and it really delivers.

This HSF might be a little noisier than our stock Intel supplied Pentium 4 cooler that you saw here but it certainly takes the core temperature down a few notches and ultimately allowed us to overclock this processor to a level we never thought we would see anytime soon.

Overclocking The Pentium 4 1.7GHz.
Clock speed is not an issue for Intel

WCPUID @ 1.7 and 1.9GHz.

Good lord, it sure does warm our hearts to see 1.9GHz. come up fairly stable on a processor.  After a few hours of rigorous testing, we did experience a couple of lock-ups at the 1.9 mark.  However, that did not stop us from running all the benchmarks at that speed, so you can an get idea of things to come from the P4.  You'll also note at that speed, the memory is over-clocked to 448MHz. which doesn't hurt of course.  Our fully stable speed for this P4 1.7GHz. chip was in fact 1.87GHz. or 110MHz. times a 17X multiplier with the RAM "Quad Pumped" to 440MHz.

So, here's my take on clock speed for the Pentium 4 and this is mostly speculative on my part.  Intel is pretty much "sneezing" this kind of speed out of the P4 right now.  They are most likely realizing high yields on the P4 at 1.3 to 1.5GHz. and 1.7 is pretty much a walk in the park as well.  This allows them to achieve excellent economies of scale in manufacturing and thus lower price points, which we will cover in our final assessment, later in this article.  In addition, I think it is fair to say that they are releasing next generation clock speeds on this specific P4 design, almost at will.  When the time is right in the market for them to turn things up a notch again, you'll see the 1.8G and 1.9G versions, we have no doubt.  In processors as in most things in life, timing is everything.    


Benchmarks!  Sandra, Winstone, Quake 3, SPEC viewperf and more!


Visit Plycon, pick up the Indigo Orb and other "cool" products!


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