Those Pretty Pictures
Here we will give you a look at the different pictures of the Pentium 4 CPU and show our test platform for the review.
Willamette and Northwood, similar in looks but can you spot the difference
Below is a picture of the Northwood and Willamette core CPU's. They are labeled for you to know which is which, but can you spot the difference?
Look closely at the bottom right corner of the Northwood core picture. You will see a white dotty square image. Notice on the Willamette core it is on the other side; this is how you identify Willamette and Northwood. The Northwood core CPU at 2.0Ghz is also called the 2.0A GHz CPU, the A being the Northwood class. This is another way to tell if you have Northwood.
The Test Board
While we have a plethora of motherboards to choose from, including SiS, VIA and ALi, we choose Intel's i850 motherboard produced by EPoX; the 4T2A3. We reviewed this motherboard earlier and decided to use it for one reason alone. While DDR-266 and even DDR-333 provide scores that equal the i850 in most benchmarks, there are still some it can't outperform the RDRAM in due to its 3.2GB/s bandwidth. This bandwidth is the optimal memory config for the P4's 3.2GB/s bus.
Heatsink still the same
Using the Northwood core allows Intel to use the same heatsinks on the P4 2.4GHz that were used to effectively cool 1.6GHz CPU's. The heatsink area itself if massive and even at this size the cooler gets quite warm, this is due to the Intel Stock fan that revs around 2200-RPM and produces very little noise and very little air flow, but more than enough to cool the P4 beast. If you want overclocking, try something else though.
The Pentium 4 2.4GHz based on the Northwood core is one of the best overclocking CPU's that Intel has ever produced. Displayed below are pictures taken from our 2.4GHz Northwood running 3.0GHz using a 125MHz FSB. Due to a limited chipset overhead (i850 and RDRAM are the worst overclocking combo ever), we were unable to push past 125MHz, and even this required the RDRAM to be pushed well out of specs and needing active cooling on the modules.
First, Windows XP and its Info display with WCPUID
Next SiSoft Sandra 2002 CPU Benchmark
Lastly, SiSoft Sandra 2002 Multimedia Benchmark