Intel's 'Woodcrest' Xeon makes its debut

— 3:59 PM on June 26, 2006

After months of hyping up its Core microarchitecture, Intel has finally kicked off its summer CPU refresh with the new Xeon 5100 series "Woodcrest" processors. The chips are being introduced in seven denominations as follows:

Speed Cache FSB TDP
Xeon 5160 3.00 GHz 4 MB 1333 MHz 80 W
Xeon 5150 2.67 GHz 4 MB 1333 MHz 65 W
Xeon 5148 2.33 GHz 4 MB 1333 MHz 40 W
Xeon 5140 2.33 GHz 4 MB 1333 MHz 65 W
Xeon 5130 2.00 GHz 4 MB 1333 MHz 65 W
Xeon 5120 1.86 GHz 4 MB 1066 MHz 65 W
Xeon 5110 1.60 GHz 4 MB 1066 MHz 65 W

We've already seen what Woodcrest is capable of as far as performance goes, so it's no surprise to see Intel make boastful performance leadership claims about the Xeon 5100 family. The company says the new processors bring speed improvements of up to 135% over previous-generation Netburst-based Xeons. Intel also claims big strides in power efficiency, with a reduction in power draw of up to 40% with the new chips. The basic design of the Core architecture gets most of the credit for the improvement, but Intel has also implemented Enhanced SpeedStep support in 5100 chips from the 2.33 GHz 5140 model up, providing clock and voltage throttling support to further cut power consumption.

These new Xeons are compatible with Intel's existing Bensley server platform that launched over a month ago. Making the new chips a drop-in upgrade has likely played a part in their widespread initial adoption: Dell, IBM, and HP today introduced more than half a dozen new Xeon 5100-powered machines each. On top of that, Intel says a total of 200 workstation and server machines from over 150 manufacturers are planned.

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