Intel 925XE Chipset

But it shouldn’t be too long before we start to see all Pentium 4 chips migrate to the new Front Side Bus standard. The current top of the range Pentium 4 runs at 3.6GHz, under an 800MHz FSB – this results in an 18x clock multiplier. With that in mind, it’s unlikely that Intel will want to push the Pentium 4 much further with an 800MHz FSB, since topping 4GHz will mean a clock multiplier of 20x.

We compared the 925XE platform with the 3.46GHz Pentium 4 Extreme Edition chip, with a 925X platform running a 3.4GHz Pentium 4 Extreme Edition CPU. Running PCMark 2004 the 925XE test rig produced an overall score of 5479 compared to 5385 on the 925X test rig. The CPU score on the 925XE platform was 5224, with the 925X configuration managing 5169. The 925XE rig definitely showed an improvement in memory performance, turning in a result of 5966 compared to 5316 on the older 925X setup.

Of course, the Pentium 4 Extreme Edition is aimed at the hardcore gamer, and the ability to squeeze a few more frames per second out of a PC setup will always be appreciated. Here Intel can be pleased with its new platform, since you’ll definitely see some improvement in the latest games. Running Doom3 at 1,024 x 768 on the 925X test system produced a score of 86.4fps, while running the same test on the 925XE test rig resulted in 90.7fps. It was a similar affair with Unreal Tournament 2004 where the 925XE setup managed 119.3fps, while the 925X platform could only muster 113.6fps.

We ran 3DMark05, and threw in the CPU test as well. Strangely, the 925X system turned in a higher 3DMark score at 4622, compared with 4598 on the 925XE setup. However, the CPU test showed definite improvement on the new platform with the 925XE rig managing 5019 and the 925X platform on 4809.

It’s worth remembering that this is first generation hardware, so we’ll probably see performance gains as the technology matures and motherboard manufacturers start tweaking. Ultimately though, it looks like the 925XE is definitely a step in the right direction, and hopefully it won’t be too long before all of Intel’s processors are taking advantage of the new 1066MHz FSB.

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