Beyond dual core: 2007 desktop CPU road map


At the same time it releases the Bearlake chip set described above, Intel will also release three speedy new Core 2 processors that are compatible with the Bearlake chip set's 1,333-MHz FSB and other new features. The model numbers of these processors are the E6850, E6750 and E6650. (The "50" designator in the model number indicates a FSB speed of 1,333-MHz).

The clock speeds of the E6850, E6750 and E6650 will be ratcheted up to 3 GHz, 2.66 GHz, and 2.33 GHz, respectively. For reference's sake, 3 GHz is the current high mark for Intel's Core 2 CPUs and can currently be found in only one Core 2 processor -- the Extreme X6800. Each of these new Core 2 CPUs is a dual-core, single-die processor that utilizes 4MB of shared L2 cache.

At the same time it releases the E6850, E6750 and E6650, Intel will also release a non-Bearlake CPU -- the E6800. The E6800 will have a clock speed of 3 GHz and a 4MB shared cache, but will run at a bus speed of only 1,066 MHz.

The road to 45nm begins here

Initially, based upon statements Intel released in the middle of 2006, it appeared that Intel would be fairly conservative in terms of CPU releases in 2007. Goals for 2007, as stated by the chipmaker, were to release several new processors based upon the Core 2 architecture. But the company's technology and design priorities would be on improving its fabrication process with the aim of producing 45nm-process CPUs by 2008.