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Retail Buy

In order to keep the Pentium 4 to be an interesting and some how still affordable for the people with money, Intel decided to bundle 128MB of PC800 Rambus memory with their retail packs. Of course in order to support the dual Rambus channel on the 850, Intel included two 64MB modules. As already mentioned, this only applies to retail Pentium 4 processors, the OEM market will have to supply their own.

The P4/i850 requirements

A new processor architecture requires a new motherboard capable of supporting that specific processor, and that new motherboard capable of running that latest processor requires a new power supply, and the case that hosts that power supply requires to be replaced in order to fully fulfill the needs of that new Pentium 4 setup? Well, sort of.

Intel introduced a new ATX specification (ATX 2.03). This specifies the compatible cases for the Pentium 4 heat sink mechanism. It simply tells that a case has the added mounting holes for the Pentium 4 Mounting Heat sink mechanism. What this means is that current cases are not fully compatible to host a Pentium 4 setup. Of course, if you have the patient and talent, drilling through on the tray could always modify this.

But wait, that's not it. Not only the Pentium 4 requires a special case, it also needs an approved power supply. As we already know, the Pentium 4 is one hungry processor. It easily reaches the 50+ W ranges. If your remember, just a few months ago, several angry AMD users started complaining about having problems with their systems due some power problems. The reason was simple, the Athlon, known as a heavy power eater bundled with cheap power supply was not able to feed the Processor due under powered voltage. Many users, that upgraded to AMD's latest offerings had to spend the extra money and buy an AMD approved power supply to feed their systems correctly. Intel in order to avoid having a similar problem decided to take another step, and include a standard for power supplies in their ATX 2.03 specification.

What they did is added an extra +12V power connector that connects to the 850 motherboards allowing extra power to be distributed to the motherboard around the CPU. This is basically a stability measure. Although we did not have any problems running our Intel D850GB Motherboard that Intel provided, we would highly suggest having an approved ATX 2.03 power supply. After all, if you were ready to invest that 1200$+ for that Pentium 4 upgrade, what that extra 50$ worth?

Benchmarking System(s)

Intel Pentium III 1000MHz
Intel Pentium 4 1500MHz
Heatsink & Fan
Stock Intel HSF
Stock Intel HSF
Transcend ASL3 i815
Intel D850GB i850
256MB PC800 Samsung RDRAM
Hard Drive(s)


Afreey 12X DVD-ROM - IDE
Afreey 12X DVD-ROM IDE
Sound Card
Sound Blaster Live!
Sound Blaster Live!
Video Card
Nvidia GeForce 2 Ultra 64MB
Nvidia GeForce 2 Ultra 64MB

Operating System
Windows 2000
Windows 98
Video / VIA Drivers
nVidia reference drivers 6.31 ,Direct X 7.0a
Benchmarking Applications
Benchmarking Applications
Quake III 1.25 Arena - (Win98 Only)

V-Sync Disabled.

Intel Pentium 4 Application Launcher v2.1 (Win98 and Win2k)

Ejay MP3 Plus 1.3

Go Motion VIdeo Decoder

Incoming Forces

Magnitrax 1.02

Naturally Speaking Prefered 4.0

Adobe Premiere 5.1 w/LSX-MPEG

VideoStudio 4.0

Windows Media Encoder 7.0

SYSMark 2000 (Win98 and Win2K)

SysMark 2000 Office Productivity

SysMark2000 Internet Content Creation

3DMark 2000
(Win98 and Win2k)

Sandra 2001 PRO

Web Target PC


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