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Intel's Sandy Bridge II: HD Gfx and AVX
Written by Michael Schuette   
Jan 16, 2011 at 06:38 PM

The biggest market segment in the PC industry can be quite simply be described as the one that does not use any discrete graphics and instead relies on an integrated display or graphics processing unit. Whether it is Atom or Ion or any other mainstream platform including laptops, the growing trend has been to consolidate the graphics with the chipset. At the same time, the chipset has more and more become part of the CPU by integrating the memory controllers and even at least some lanes of the PCie interface on the central processor. With the introduction of the Core i5 Lynnfield hybrid designs featuring two different dies on a single CPU package, Intel has taken this kind of integration to the next level by adding a GPU to the CPU, at least to the point where the two units were on the same package .

Last Updated ( Feb 21, 2011 at 05:08 AM )
Intel's Sandy Bridge I. Architecture & CPU Performance
Written by Michael Schuette   
Jan 02, 2011 at 12:37 AM

Sometimes the unveiling of a new CPU is exciting. Sometimes it is not. And then, sometimes, it is like fasten your seatbelt, close your eyes and hope you’ll withstand the G-force from the sheer acceleration of workloads. AMD had a few of those in the past, Intel, more recently with the Nehalem architecture and particularly that one seemed a tough act to follow, even though Lynnfield at least did not drop off the cliff with respect of upping the ante. Gulftown, well, that one is somewhat in a league of its own, courtesy of the 12 logical cores and also the price tag. Even Gulftown, though, has to yield in more than one application in comparison to today’s new kid on the block: Welcome Sandy Bridge and no, unlike Rocky Roads, Sandy is not a porn star.

Last Updated ( Jan 17, 2011 at 01:16 PM )
3DMark 11 Physics Test - A CPU Test?
Written by Michael Schuette   
Dec 18, 2010 at 09:29 AM

A few weeks back, we brought you a sneak preview of 3DMark 11, named aptly after DX11 while coinciding with the (upcoming) year of 2011. Sort of, at least. Since then, we have been using 3DMark 11 on a variety of platforms and a slew of graphics cards with and without overclocking, CrossfireX and SLI. For the record, current nVidia drivers do not support SLI for 3DMark 11, and nor does the standard procedure of creating an application-specific SLI profile work. However, it is straightforward to get SLI in 3DMark 11 to work if you follow these instructions using nVidia-Inspector posted by LethalRise750 on and it does work like a charm. This is not really the core part of this article but at the same time it is necessary for reproducing some of the results so we’ll briefly cover the procedure. Moreover, we have some interesting findings about how the choice of graphics card can hugely impact the Physics benchmark results - which supposedly is a CPU test.

Last Updated ( Jan 02, 2011 at 02:50 PM )
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