What’s New in Intel’s Centrino 2 Platform

This guest article was written by Emma Best from laptopical.com, an excellent site for informative laptop news and the latest reviews for laptop computers.

After an anticipated wait for the new Centrino platform, previously codenamed Montevina, Intel revealed its latest edition to the laptop computer world, the Centrino 2. In spite of the name, Centrino 2 is far from the first update to Intel’s successful Centrino platform, which consists of a number of CPUs, mainboard chipsets, integrated graphics processors and a wireless network interface. However, it was getting increasingly harder for the customer to distinguish between the different generations, and a name change was apparently overdue.

More Computing Power at a Lower Power Draw

Centrino 2 is perhaps not as revolutionary as the name would have it, but it has some new and updated features that bring more computing power to its users. It has a new Gigabit controller, DDR3 memory support, a faster front-side bus, energy-efficient CPUs and new wireless cards. The new front-side bus (FSB) is now a whopping 1066MHz, as opposed to its 800MHz in its predecessor. Intel offers integrated blue-ray friendly graphics along with various wireless chipsets.

The new IGP (integrated Graphics Processor) 4500MHD is according to Intel twice as powerful as the previous X3100, but that hardly means that it kicks ass in the latest 3D games. The important additions are enhancements to assisting in high definition video; there is full blue-ray support, such as HDMI with HDCP encryption and DisplayPort. These new upgrades come with lag-free playback, which will make the visual experience a smoother ride.

Previous incarnations of Centrino has the Intel Wi-Fi Link 5000 Series. Now it’s been upgraded to the 5100 and 5300 series. They both have a larger antenna array, but the 5100 has a throughput of 300 Mbps and the 5300 has a 450 Mbps. The 5300 also boasts two times the range of the earlier Wi-Fi link 4965.

New Energy-Efficient CPUs

Intel has brought a new line of processors that encourage energy efficiency while upholding the standard voltage. These processors have been named the “P” line. The 2.26-GHz P8400, the 2.4 GHz P8600 and the 2.53 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo P9500 are among the 25 watt processors.

The Core 2 Duos also come in a higher thermal design power (TDP). The 2.53 GHz T9400 and the 2.8 GHz T9600 are a 35W. These processors are slightly less expensive and more powerful, but at the cost of a shorter battery life and more heat.

If you want even more power, the 3.06 GHz Extreme X9100 comes in a 44W. Unfortunately with a higher TDP – the battery life is low because of the greater power and speed.


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