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Intel announces dual-core processors for embedded apps

Posted: 28 Sep 2006     Print Version  Bookmark and Share

Keywords:Intel  E6400  T7400  Conroe  Merom 

Intel Corp. has announced expanded life-cycle support for its newly enhanced dual-core E6400 and T7400 for embedded applications, ranging from bank ATMs to PoS cash registers.

The announcement heralds not only the enhancements to its cores, but also an accelerated redeployment of its latest architectures from the desktop and mobile markets into embedded.

That cycle has shrunk from one to two years to only a matter of months, said Phil Ames, segment marketing manager at Intel's Infrastructure Processor Division. The E6400 (code named "Conroe") was announced in July and the T7400 ("Merom") was announced in August.

"The acceleration is a response to huge customer demand for these high-performance processors," said Ames. The embedded market is becoming increasingly important to Intel, he added, and there will be a series of large customer announcements over the next five months.

With the launch comes a number of enhancements to the baseline dual-core microarchitecture. These include: a move from three- to four-way execution; a shift from a maximum of 2- to 4MB of shared L2 cache—rival AMD has 1MB dedicated for each core, said Ames—prefetch capability; and a dynamic clocking feature that saves power by turning off memory and I/O blocks that are not in use.

"We've optimised for performance, power and efficiency," said Ames, adding that full OS, I/O and graphics validation has been performed and support will extend out to from five to seven years. "The longest lifecycle support in the industry," he claimed.

All told, Ames said the enhancements improve performance on the E6400 by 40 per cent and by 20 per cent on the T7400. The T7400 costs Rs.19,656.81 ($423) and the E6400 costs Rs.10,083.99 ($217), each per 1,000.

- Patrick Mannion
EE Times

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