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Pentium 4 Budget Chipset Shootout - Single Channel DDR Roundup

By: Cameron Johnson | Intel CPUs in CPUs, Chipsets & SoCs | Posted: May 30, 2004 4:00 am

Intel i848P



The Intel i848P chipset is a direct descendant of the i845PE series chipsets designed by Intel. The evolution of this product has moved to the similar designs of the i865PE chipset, but with only one memory channel.


The i848P consists of two major components; the i82848P MCH and either an i82801EB (ICH5) or i82801ER (ICH5R) ICH. These two components work together through the Intel Hub Architecture 2.0 supporting a maximum of 266MB/s data transfer. The i82848P MCH comes equipped with 800MHz FSB support with the latest In-order Queue Depth setting of 12, which boosted the i845 series chipsets above the original 8 of the i850 series chipsets. The memory controller has evolved from the i845 series to include DDR-266/333/400 memory modules. Though the support has increased, the 4-bank limitations that Intel placed on the i84x series is present on the 848P. What does this mean?


As some people will remember the i845 and beyond only had support for two DIMM slots. Though three were sometimes present, you'd need to use special configurations to run the three DIMMs at once. The i848P has a maximum memory support of 2GB using 2x1GB DIMM modules.


One main feature that has been taken from the dual channel brothers is its support for the CSA or Communications Streaming Architecture bus. This bus was first introduced on the i875P to facilitate lag and bottleneck free Gigabit Ethernet. With this you can have the Intel PRO100CT series CSA Network controller on your i848P board with the full benefits i865 and i875P chipsets gain from the dedicated bus.


Though somewhat lacking is memory support, one main feature that keeps the i848P from slacking off is its compatibility with the ICH5 series Southbridge. While you won't find many i848P boards using the ICH5-R Southbridge due to its higher cost, it is fully compatible with it. This gives the i848P series boards eight USB 2.0, two Serial ATA port, two IDE ports, AC'97 2.2 audio as well as six PCI masters for all the latest add-ons you can think of.


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