One of the most innovative processor solutions in 2010 is the Cor i5 660. A key feature of this silicon chip was that it consisted of two crystals at once. One of them is the CPU, and the second included components such as a graphics accelerator, a north bridge and a RAM controller. It was in the transfer of the last three components to the central processor that the “trick” of this semiconductor solution was.
Capabilities of the central processing unit and its niche
The capabilities of the “Cor i5 660” chip at the time of its release were more than enough to implement any task that can be solved using the x86 platform. Moreover, its performance level even allowed it to compete with 4-core CPUs in software optimized for 1-2 data streams. And the presence of an additional 2 logical computing cores allows this central processor even now to launch the most demanding toys of the latest generation. But in the latter case, their settings will definitely not be maximum. In 2010, this CPU could be safely attributed to the premium class. Now, after 6 years from the start of sales, it belongs to mid-range devices that, albeit with some reservations, can solve any problems.
Options for this semiconductor solution
This standard CPU had two standard configuration options. "Trail" - it was a more affordable version of this chip. It included only a warranty card, a sticker with the logo of the processor family, the application manual and the CPU itself. “Boxing” - it was a more expensive modification of the configuration, in which it was possible to purchase a processor Intel Core I5 660. Photos of it indicate that, in addition to all the previously listed components, it also included a standard cooling system, box and thermal grease . Given that the multiplier was unlocked in the chip, it was preferable to buy the first option, which then allowed you to purchase a more advanced cooling system and improve the final performance of the computer system.
Socket for this CPU
The Intel Cor i5 660 chip was aimed at installing the LGA1156, an advanced processor socket at that time. And he could work in any motherboard with such a socket. But here are some sets of system logic that could not use the integrated graphics accelerator integrated into the CPU. More specifically, the Intel P55 chipset simply did not see the video card transferred to the central processor case. Such motherboards did not even have integrated ports for connecting a monitor to such a system. Therefore, in this case, this CPU model could only work as a familiar 2-core chip. Well, in order to unleash the full potential of this semiconductor solution, the Intel Al-55 Express and Intel Al-57 Express logic chipsets were needed. It was the motherboards of these series that were specially released for such central processing units.
The situation with the technological process of this model of the central processor unit turned out to be quite interesting. As noted earlier, inside the case of Kor Ai5 660 there were 2 semiconductor crystals. One of them, a computing module of 2 blocks, was manufactured using a 32-nm process. The second silicon crystal, which included a graphic accelerator, RAM controller and the north bridge of the motherboard, was manufactured using the 45-nm process technology. It was this nuance that most likely led to the fact that the manufacturer was forced to place two different crystals inside the case. The next generation of CPUs from this legendary manufacturer was deprived of this significant drawback. This chip is an intermediate solution between previous purely processor devices and subsequent hybrid chips, on a silicon chip of which, in addition to x86 modules, there was already a graphics card, and a north bridge, and a memory controller.
Fast integrated processor memory
A three-level cache was integrated into Intel Core i5 processor 660. Its technical specifications were as follows:
- The first level was divided into 2 equal parts (for instructions and for data) of 32 Kb, which were tied to a specific computing module. In total, 64 Kb was intended for each core, and 128 Kb for the CPU as a whole.
- The second level was already divided into 2 equal parts of 256 KB, each of which was tied to a specific core. In total, for the chip as a whole we get already 512 Kb.
- The last, third level was common for the entire CPU, and its size was 4 MB.
Under the use of memory standard DDR3 was oriented Intel Core i5 processor 660. The characteristics of the chip indicated that it could work with only one type of module of this standard. Their designation is DDR3-1333. Planks with lower speed generally could not be paired with this CPU. But more speed laths could theoretically be set. At the same time, their speed automatically decreased, and they turned into all the same DDR3-1333. But in this case it was impossible to guarantee stable and reliable operation of a computer system. RAM, motherboard or CPU could in such a situation at any time fail and fail.
The nominal operating temperature of this silicon crystal was in the range from 35 to 55 degrees. But such values are valid for a standard cooling system. If you put its improved modification, then even when solving the most complex problems, its temperature is unlikely to rise above 50 degrees. The thermal package in this case was 73 watts.
Depending on the level of complexity and the degree of optimization of the problem being solved, I could dynamically change my Intel processor frequency Core i5 660. The description indicates support for Intel's proprietary technology called TurboBust. Its essence is that when performing the least demanding applications, the chip operated at a frequency of 3.3 GHz. If the solution to the problem requires an improved level of performance, then the frequency of the CPU increased to 3.46 GHz. Well, in a situation where the software is optimized only for the use of one computing module, the processor could turn off the second, and the frequency of the first dynamically increased to 3.6 GHz. At the same time, the chip temperature was also monitored, and if it exceeded the values set in the BIOS, then the frequency automatically decreased to 3.3 GHz.
The code name for the architecture of the computing modules of this CPU is ClarkDale. In this processor, only 2 cores were physically implemented. But due to the support of Intel's proprietary technology at the logical level, 4 streams were already obtained. As a result, the last, most demanding toys, which check the CPU for the presence of 4 cores, will go on such a crystal without special comments.
This is one of the first chips in which the integrated graphics accelerator was transferred from the motherboard to the Intel Core i5 660 processor. The review of its specifications is not impressive, and it could work only with certain sets of system logic. The name of this graphic solution was Intel HD Graphics. His clock frequency was only 733 MHz. Of course, with such specifications about launching demanding toys, there was no question, but for playing videos, browsing the Internet or office applications, this was a great solution. It is such an engineering approach that became widespread in the future. Now even the most budget chips are equipped with integrated graphics, and this can significantly save money when collecting a budget PC configuration.
Unlike most modern CPU versions, the multiplier was not unblocked in Kor Ai5 660. As a result, it was possible to disperse a semiconductor chip not only in frequency system bus, but also in processor frequency. If you have a high-quality cooling system, an appropriate motherboard and a powerful power supply, you can increase the clock frequency of this silicon crystal to 4-4.2 GHz. Some computer enthusiasts have even been able to ensure that this chip can fully function at 4.4 GHz.
User reviews. Price
Initially, the Intel Core i5 660 processor was priced by the manufacturing company at $ 196. Reviews indicate that this is its main drawback. Otherwise, this is an excellent mid-range processor solution. He has an excellent level of performance, and energy efficiency at an acceptable level, and the number of cores is enough to run any toys on this CPU now.
Of course, 6 years ago imposes certain restrictions on the performance level of “Cor i5 660”. But, on the other hand, this chip even now without any problems cope with any application software. It is this nuance that does not allow the owners of such computer systems to start the upgrade. It simply does not make sense even now.