Sandy Bridge sample tested, shows major graphics boost

By Matthew
Aug 31, 2010
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  1. Anandtech has served up a healthy appetizer of Intel's forthcoming Sandy Bridge architecture. The site got its mitts on a sample of the Core i5 2400, which is a quad-core CPU that runs at 3.1GHz and has 6MB of L3 cache. Like this year's Clarkdale/Arrandale chips, Sandy Bridge units will also carry an integrated GPU -- and if the 2400 is any indication, the new graphics core is pretty snappy for an Intel IGP.

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  2. EXCellR8

    EXCellR8 The Conservative Posts: 2,278

    seems like a good direction to go in with notebook graphics, but otherwise it's sort of lackluster imo.
  3. princeton

    princeton TechSpot Addict Posts: 1,716

    Partially unlocked? Like how a core 2 duo E7500 can go down to x6 and up to x11?
  4. dividebyzero

    dividebyzero trainee n00b Posts: 4,785   +639

    @Princeton
    No. Partially unlocked means able to apply a multiplier over and above the nominal used at stock voltage. In the case of a E7500 266MHz FSB x 11 multi = 2.93GHz = stock frequency with a stock multiplier.
    In the case of SB a partially unlocked multi would allow for 100MHz base clock x 32 (or greater in the case of the 2400 part) multiplier. 100 x 32 = 3.2GHz etc.
    The base clock is basically limited to a maximum of 105-110, so all virtually all overclocking is via multiplier. I would assume that RAM frequency can either be set independently, or a greater range of dividers will be available in the BIOS.
    Fully unlocked CPU's (2500K and 2600K) are supposed to allow a multiplier up to 57. So theoretically 10 x 57 = 5.7GHz
  5. Adhmuz

    Adhmuz TechSpot Paladin Posts: 893   +98

    Intel = shot self in foot. Fine unlocked multiplier is nice, but for what kind of premium? What happened to buying the low end chips and overclocking the pants off them? I know thats not what Intel intends they're CPUs for but common, who hasn't tried pushing their FSB (or BCLK) to get that little bit more out of their processor?
    Okay nuff of these hypothetical questions. If AMD is smart they will try to make their Bulldozer line OC friendly to take some market share, they already are starting to look nice with the price point of their chips compared to Intel'$ offerings...
    Not like I'm going to upgrade for another year or two, or three at this point in time. 4GHz i7 is mighty fast enough for now and I don't see that changing because of Sandy Bridge.
  6. Archean

    Archean TechSpot Paladin Posts: 6,034   +70

    I am not the one from OC crowed so that doesn't bother me at all; however, the thing which I am interested in is the graphic core performance of SB line, I think if the final product delivers the performance nearer to 5500 series Radeons that will be fantastic (talking about the notebook segment here).
  7. I hope this technology replaces the current integrated GPUs amongst common/cheap notebooks.
  8. teklord

    teklord TechSpot Maniac Posts: 523

    That's pretty sweet for onboard graphics. If you don't play games at all, this is all you need.
  9. hellokitty[hk]

    hellokitty[hk] I'm a TechSpot Evangelist Posts: 4,318   +117

    Why does Anandtech always have fabulous articles?
  10. Integrating GPU with CPU it's a good thing because this sets a higher standard for crappy MB with integrated graphics and it's a good way to get rid of low end graphic cards so mainstream could go better so you have to buy a graphic card only if you're a gamer or a pro in some sort of domain that implies graphic or heavy calculations and renderings. It simplifies even more the MB layout and because these are 32 nm parts we'll have some power reduction as well.
  11. yukka

    yukka TechSpot Paladin Posts: 711   +28

    I wonder if Intel will ever get a serious graphics card out. With AMD rebranding the ATI graphics cards and already having serious support from games makers Intel have been slow on the uptake. They should have got serious about graphics years ago but having Intel graphics means "not all your games will work". Even if that isn't true anymore (and I suspect it still is) they need to work on that reputation. This looks like good news for cheap desktop builders anyway. The target market won't expect the graphics to work with all games and they can always upgrade to an ATI or Nvidia if they want. And thats the point - missed opportunity by intel.
     
  12. yukka

    yukka TechSpot Paladin Posts: 711   +28

    That cpu looks fast.
  13. TorturedChaos

    TorturedChaos TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 843   +11

    Thats rather surprising graphics performance IMO. Looks like we may be seeing a whole new direction for integrated GPU's.
  14. thatguyandrew92

    thatguyandrew92 Newcomer, in training Posts: 118

    It's good to see such good performance from these processors for games. Hopefully it will make ati and nvidia step up a bit. :)
  15. ET3D

    ET3D TechSpot Paladin Posts: 957   +30

    I think this IGP shows that Intel is getting serious about graphics, and could potentially up the stakes if it wants. Even just this low end performance will already eat into NVIDIA's and AMD's market share.
  16. LinkedKube

    LinkedKube TechSpot Project Baby Posts: 4,264   +41

    More like shot someone else in their foot and then ran off with the money. This is going to be huge for portable and slim pc devices.
  17. dividebyzero

    dividebyzero trainee n00b Posts: 4,785   +639

    @supersmashbrada
    Agreed. With the potential savings (price and power) of not having to include a discrete (MXM) graphics card, all it would take for Intel to make this product more visible is to bundle -via their vendors- a free game or two or institute pricing cuts.They already have the advantage of being able to get the silicon into customers hands ahead of the competition's APU.
  18. Vrmithrax

    Vrmithrax TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,284   +231

    So, this is what? The 3rd socket/chipset change introduced in 2 years? Motherboard manufacturers must love Intel, what a boost to sales when there's no forward compatibility! heh.

    Still, for a low end integrated graphics system, the initial numbers are pretty impressive. Should be interesting to see how the AMD competitive APU will compare - from the sparse early reports, should get much better video at the same power consumption. But, that's just speculation and rumor, not hands-on testing like this. Hurry up, AMD! Sheesh!
  19. tengeta

    tengeta TechSpot Enthusiast Posts: 632

    So whats going on now, Intel feels a right to charge an overclocking fee basically? Heres to taxes with no benefits!
  20. Archean

    Archean TechSpot Paladin Posts: 6,034   +70

    Some may not agree, but I think by casting in to stone what 'socket' you will use for many years or generations of CPU to come, you are also limiting the options for progress, IMO that is one of the reasons AMD fell behind including many other very good ones.

    Beside, how many times would one change their CPU? May be once at very best, that doesn't seems to be compelling enough reason not to change socket, if there is real need based upon whatever new technologies are being incorporated in a new generation of processors.
  21. Vrmithrax

    Vrmithrax TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,284   +231

    Heh, I was being just a tad sarcastic there... I'm kind of on the fence about the whole "locking in a socket" approach - great for consumers who like to have upgrade paths, but (as you mentioned) it can limit your advancements by forcing some throttling or compromises to keep compatibility. Still, Intel's 3 sockets/chipsets in 2 years (with zero interoperability) is a bit much, really. Seems like they could have at least planned ahead a little and pick a standard that might survive at least a few generations. I mean, it's not like they have the biggest R&D budget and largest pool of processor geniuses in the industry, right? ;)

    And I'm sure plenty of people (and every enthusiast under the sun) would LIKE to change their CPU to get the newer/faster/multicorier(tm) products, but it gets a bit daunting when it involves such an involved rebuild of your PC (not to mention it's pricier). Honestly, that's one of the reasons I've stuck with AMD for most of the PCs I've built for friends/family - I can typically upgrade their CPUs to improve performance easily if/when they need it, to eek out a little more usage before requiring a complete PC upgrade. For my gamer builds, though, I always go Intel... That mentally hardcoded preference may change with Bulldozer, but only time will tell.
  22. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 10,400   +832

    None of this enhanced graphics performance should come as a big surprise.Methinks that it's just the fact that most of the people in this discussion are hard core gamers, hence they haven't been paying attention to the Intel IGP's escalating performance. It's true they aren't likely to ever satisfy somebody that expects to run "Crysis" on a 30'"screen at full res, but for HTPC, they're already there with the i3-530. So, the moral of the story here is, that no matter at what level IGP performs, most of you won't be happy with it. Hence evolves the extended whining session.

    Since CPU HSF performance is now linked to graphics cooling as well, it would be interesting to note how CPU coolers affect gaming ability of this new line of processors. Or the graphics section of the CPU's longevity. This is, and will always be a problem with compound electronics "solutions". You buy a TV with a DVD player, and the damned DVD player always breaks first, and so it goes.

    For better or worse, for richer or poorer, we're becoming married the the Windows 7 Performance Index. That said, Intel's GMA 4500 (G41) turns in a 3.5, while the Core 1-3 530 turns in a 5.5. That's on a par with lower end discreet cards, and actually better than some.

    And well, I just know you're dying to tell me how badly your SLI GT 460s will beat them, but there really is another area of the forum that would be better utilized for disseminating that epiphany. (Plus, there's also the fact that I don't really care).
  23. Archean

    Archean TechSpot Paladin Posts: 6,034   +70

    That make me think that 'what %age of total PC users actually play graphically demanding games?' I wonder if anyone have ever bothered to do this study and came up with some tangible numbers.
  24. dividebyzero

    dividebyzero trainee n00b Posts: 4,785   +639

    @Archean
    A reasonable basis to start from would be the monthly Steam Hardware/Software survey
    I would make a few observations regarding some of the comments...
    1. Percentage of people who ever upgrade a CPU for performance purposes (as opposed to a replacement due to malfunction) probably approaches a fraction only marginally greater than 0% in terms of worldwide sales (OEM, component, mobile)
    2.
    I might agree IF SB P67 et al was a replacement for X58, which it is not- any more than an nForce 630a, GeForce 6100+ or 740G chipset on an AMD board is in the same market segment as 890FX
    3. As CC expounded, Intel (or Fusion when it arrives) will offer more than enough graphics functionality for the vast majority of computer users. As example, in the Steam survey linked to above, at least a third of all tabulated systems use graphics at or below SB performance.
    This is of course requires the assumption that Steam represents a reliable demographic for PC gaming (probably an element of faith required here) in of itself a niche market in global computer sales.
  25. Most Intel graphic chips are poor in multi-displays capable to almost non existence. I wonder if Sandy able to run on Quad monitor displays though.


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