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Intel I865 "Springdale" Chipset Review

By: Cameron Johnson | Intel Chipsets in CPUs, Chipsets & SoCs | Posted: May 25, 2003 4:00 am
TweakTown Rating: 9.5%Manufacturer: Intel

Intel has certainly made a good move on their support for the Pentium 4. Due to early Rambus agreements Intel were unable to take advantage of the DDR standards, and when these contracts expired, Intel fell behind in the DDR war. Chipsets from VIA, while battling law suits, certainly had a much more impressive chipset, and with SiS getting the full approval from Intel to build Pentium 4 based chipsets Intel's own solutions were somewhat outdated before then came to pass.


Intel's first real attempt to improve its DDR standings for the Pentium 4 was the E7205 chipset. This gave the first Dual Channel DDR chipset for the Pentium 4. While only supporting DDR-266 memory, it still was able to take out the I845 series easily.


Release of the Canterwood showed us that Intel was serious about DDR in supporting a memory standard that the JEDEC still haven't made any headway on approving - and from Intel that is certainly saying something. The major problem of the Canterwood was price; Springdale has been brought in to solve this problem.


Springdale's basic features are almost identical to the Canterwood, with two out of three of the variations supporting the 800MHz FSB, one with graphics and one simple for the merging the 533FSB processors in to the Dual Channel DDR realm. Springdale's performance is above what we would have expected from a cut down Canterwood, so our expectations of this chipset have been met and far exceeded.


With support for all the major Canterwood improvements at a fraction of the cost, Springdale is soon to become the weapon of choice for the mainstream users and hardcore games who don't want to spend a fortune on Canterwood boards.


- Pros


800MHz FSB on I865PE and G


Dual Channel DDR memory support


CSA Network Interface


Native Serial ATA


RAID available on ICH5R


Built In Graphics on I865G


- Cons


I865G graphics slow


Performance hit due to lack of PAT


Rating 9.5 out of 10 and TweakTown Editors Choice



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