Q: What is the Intel® Pentium® 4 processor?
A: The Pentium 4 processor is Intel's highest-performing desktop processor. Containing the fastest and smallest (60 namometers) CMOS transistors in the mass production and many advanced memory, graphics and processing capabilities, it maximizes the performance of current and future Web, productivity and multimedia applications.
Q: At what speeds are boxed Pentium 4 processors available?
A: Pentium 4 processors are currently available at operating frequencies from 1.40 GHz to 2.53 GHz. See all available speeds.
Q: Who is the Pentium 4 processor designed for?
A: Pentium 4 processors are designed for mainstream to high-end performance and are ideally suited for desktop users who want to be on the leading edge of technology, both today and tomorrow. Professionals, PC gamers, enthusiasts and entry-level workstation consumers alike will benefit from systems equipped with Pentium 4 processors.
Q: What new features does the Intel Pentium 4 processor offer?
A: The Pentium 4 processor offers Intel NetBurst micro-architecture, including hyper-pipelined technology, rapid-execution engine and 533-MHz system bus. The Pentium 4 processor also offers such newly improved features as execution trace cache, advanced transfer cache, enhanced floating point and multimedia unit, streaming SIMD extensions 2 and advanced dynamic execution.
Q: What makes the Pentium 4 processor different from the Pentium® III processor?
A: The Pentium 4 processor is based on Intel NetBurst micro-architecture. The Pentium III processor is based on Intel's P6 micro-architecture. The Pentium 4 processor has become the highest-volume shipping microprocessor in the world with the fastest and smallest (60 nanometers) CMOS transistors in mass production.
Q: Which software is optimized for the Pentium 4 processor?
A: For a complete list of software that has been optimized for the Pentium 4 processor, including Microsoft® Windows® XP, please go to: Optimized software.
Q: What is the difference between Pentium 4 processors based on 0.18 micron technology and 0.13 micron technology?
A: Micron technology refers to the manufacturing process of a microprocessor. Utilizing Intel's 0.13 micron manufacturing process, the new Pentium 4 processor increases the performance scalability of the Intel NetBurst micro-architecture by delivering higher clock speeds with lower thermal power and doubling the Level 2 cache to 512K. 0.13 micron technology uses the fastest circuits in the industry, ensuring further performance and speed improvements for NetBurst micro-architecture in the future.
Q: What is Intel® NetBurst" micro-architecture?
A: Intel NetBurst micro-architecture refers to Intel's newest 32-bit micro-architecture. Intel NetBurst micro-architecture includes breakthrough technological advances that deliver increased performance for a broad spectrum of emerging Internet and PC applications.
Q: What is Hyper-Pipelined Technology?
A: Hyper-pipelined technology refers to the new deeper pipeline. The Pentium 4 processor uses a 20-stage pipe that enables an industry-leading clock rate. These extended pipeline stages allow for higher frequency and headroom. By comparison, P6 micro-architecture, the foundation for the Pentium III processor, has only a ten-stage pipeline. Each processor pipeline stage performs a specific task before passing execution to the next stage of the pipeline. As in a manufacturing assembly line, each stage in the process can operate more quickly on its specific task, allowing the entire pipeline to run at higher speeds, increasing overall throughput.
Q: What is Advanced Dynamic Execution?
A: Advanced Dynamic Execution builds upon the P6 Dynamic Execution Core processing techniques, further improving the processor's ability to efficiently manipulate data. Improved branch prediction helps the processor take advantage of the deeper pipeline. A deeper instruction window permits greater out-of-order speculative execution, allowing for over 100 instructions in flight.
Q: What is Advanced Transfer Cache and how is it different from discrete cache?
A: Advanced Transfer Cache is enhanced on-die L2 cache. Discrete Cache on Intel® Pentium® II processors and earlier Intel® Pentium® III processors was on-package, half core speed L2 cache. Advanced Transfer Cache enables lower latency, full core speed data transfer, and a wider data path to the processor.
Q: What is Streaming SIMD Extensions 2?
A: Streaming SIMD Extensions 2 extends Intel® MMX" Media-enhanced technology and the Streaming SIMD Extensions. Single Instruction Multiple Data (SIMD) allows a single instruction, such as addition or subtraction, to operate on more than one data set concurrently. The 144 new cache and memory management instructions enhance performance to accelerate the most-demanding Internet and computing applications. SIMD double-precision floating point accelerates demanding content creation, 3D rendering, financial calculations and scientific applications. In addition, 64-bit MMX technology (SIMD integer) instructions have been enhanced and extended to 128-bits, accelerating video, speech, encryption, imaging and photo processing.
Q: At what speed does the data bus operate on Pentium 4 processors?
A: The data bus on all Pentium 4 processors operates at 533 MHz or 400 MHz depending on the model.
Q: What advantages does the 533-MHz system bus offer?
A: The 533 MHz system bus on the latest Pentium 4 processor has 4.2 GB/s of system bandwidth, a significant increase over previous generation Intel processors. With dedicated data paths to fully optimize the additional bandwidth, the Intel 850E chipset offers support for future Intel processors based on NetBurst micro-architecture, and improves headroom for all applications.
Q: Do Pentium 4 processors use the same chassis and power supplies as Pentium III processors?
A: No. Chassis that specifically support the Pentium 4 processor include base plates with four additional mounting locations, four additional standoffs, four additional mounting screws, more robust thermal management and an ATX 12V-power supply. The mechanical support structure mounts into the four additional mounting locations using the four additional standoffs provided with the chassis. Contact your chassis and power supply vendors for specific models that support the Pentium 4 processor. The ATX 12V power supply has an additional 2x2-power connector required on all Pentium 4 platforms.
Q: Will chassis and power supplies specifically designed to support Pentium 4 processors still work for Pentium III processor-based systems?
A: Yes. Chassis and power supplies that support Pentium 4 processors are backward compatible and support older motherboards of the same form factor.
Q: Do Pentium 4 processors support dual processing?
A: No. The Pentium 4 processor does not provide dual-processor support. Users who want multi-processing capabilities should consider the Intel Pentium III Xeon" processor.
Q: Which chipsets support the Pentium 4 processor?
A: Compare chipsets for the Pentium® 4 processor
Q: Do Pentium 4 processors use the same motherboards as Pentium III processors?
A: No. Pentium 4 processors require motherboards that have been specifically designed to support the Pentium 4 processor. The Pentium 4 processor has very specific system requirements, including a chipset that supports Intel NetBurst micro-architecture, retention pieces and proper BIOS support. The motherboard must be designed to meet the electrical current and voltage requirements for the Pentium 4 processor. Motherboards based on the Intel 850 AGP and Intel 845 set are designed to support the Pentium 4 processor. We recommend you contact your motherboard manufacturer to determine whether your motherboard has been specifically designed to support Pentium 4 processors, or use the -->.
Q: Which Intel desktop boards support the Pentium 4 processor?
A: Intel offers nine desktop boards for Pentium 4 processor-based systems. To ensure that you select the board that best meets your needs, refer to the -->.