"With the "Pineview" N280, Intel is apparently set to integrate
northbridge functionality onto the CPU itself, though it has said
little officially. Last month, we found a document on the
chipmaker's website that confirmed the N280's name, clock speed,
and use of the GN40 companion chip, but revealed little else. Now,
that document has been taken down, leaving Asus and other netbook
manufacturers as the only source of information leaks.
"On its own, the N280's miniscule clock speed increase compared
to the N270 will do little to cheer those who were hoping for
faster netbook performance. However, both Asus and Digitimes claim
the N280 will ramp DDR2 memory speed up to 667MHz, compared to the
N270's 533MHz. Additionally, some northbridge processing, such as
graphics, could benefit from the move to smaller process
technology. The effective "front-side bus" speed between CPU and
northbridge components should also increase significantly, because
on-chip interconnects are typically much faster than off-. However,
highly integrated designs sometimes use the main CPU for on-chip
peripheral processing functions, resulting in a performance wash or
even a slow-down."
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