Intel adds Sandy Bridge-based Pentium CPUs

Well, it's finally happened: Sandy Bridge has trickled down into the bargain bin. I'm not talking about discounted refurbs or limited-time rebates, either. Without fanfare yesterday, Intel updated its price list with four new processors featuring the Pentium name, three-digit model numbers, and prices under $100.

The chips aren't listed on Intel's ARK site yet, so the price list contains all the information publicly available right now:

Processor Cores Threads Clock speed Cache Price
Pentium G620T 2 2 2.2 GHz 3 MB $70
Pentium G620 2 2 2.6 GHz 3 MB $64
Pentium G840 2 2 2.8 GHz 3 MB $75
Pentium G850 2 2 2.9 GHz 3 MB $86

Hungry for more details, I poked around and eventually came across this PDF document on Shuttle's website. The document, a product spec sheet for Shuttle's XPC SH67H3 barebone mini-PC, has a list of supported processors—and that list happens to include complete specifications for the four newcomers.

Apparently, the new Pentiums CPUs are based on the Sandy Bridge architecture, fit into LGA1155 sockets, and feature Intel HD 2000 integrated graphics. The G620T has a 35W thermal envelope and runs its graphics at 650-1100MHz, while its three siblings have 65W TDPs and graphics clock speeds in the 850-1100MHz range. Two channels of DDR3-1333 memory are supported across the board... and, as you might expect, Turbo Boost is a no-show.

If those chips have any kind of overclocking potential at all, they could be tantalizing deals for enterprising enthusiasts with tight purse strings. It'll also be interesting to see how the new Pentiums match up against the competition from AMD, which is currently limited to dual- and triple-core Athlon II processors. (The rumor mill suggests we'll be seeing sub-$100 Llano CPUs before too long, though.)

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