Core i3/i5, also on laptops!
>> Processors

Written by Marc Prieur
Published on January 4, 2010


The Core i5 and i3 launched for desktops today, have also been launched for laptops at the same time. Known under the name Arrandale, this series is made up of no less than 11 distinct references, to be added to the 7 for desktop:

Once again, Intel has managed to complicate the naming process. Thus in the laptop range we find the following:

- Core i7-9xx, 8xx, 7xx: quad 45nm
- Core i7-6xx: dual 32nm, 4 MB of L3
- Core i5: dual 32nm, 3 MB of L3
- Core i3: dual 32nm, 3 MB of L3, without Turbo

To give a minimum of coherence within its range as well as between desktop and laptop, it would have been much more logical not to add the Core i7 label to any of the Arrandales. Unfortunately, once again, marketing has won the day over reason.

TDPs vary between 35W (versions M), 25W (LM) and 18W (UM) and you can see that the accent has been placed on Turbo mode, particularly on the 18W versions. Of course, we’ll have to wait and see what gains it gives, given that it will be relatively limited due to the lowish TDPs.

With laptops, the Arrandale will benefit a good deal from the integration of the northbridge on the same packaging as the processor because this will allow it to reduce the space required on the motherboard. Arrandale offers two features in addition to what you find on Clarkdale:

- Intel Switchable Graphics, that allows you to switch from the IGP to an an additional GPU on the fly, in 7 or Vista
- Intelligent Power Sharing, a Turbo mode with support via a pilot that shares the increase in clock between the CPU and the GPU depending on load

Given the excellent results in terms of the performance / energy consumption ratio offered by Clarkdale in our test, there can be little doubt as to the success of Arrandale for laptops.

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