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Intel Pentium U5400 Dual-Core Processor review

November 3rd, 2010 Leave a comment Go to comments

The Intel Pentium U5400 is a low power Dual-Core Processor clocked at 1.2 GHz. It low power enables the design of thin and slim notebooks with high battery life.

The  Pentium U5400 has 3 MB of L3 cache that intel calls smart cache.  Instead of providing dedicated cache memory to the individual cores, intel provides a shared pool of cache which the two processors can share depending upon the demand. Advantage ? – If a single threaded application demand a large amount of cache it can get almost all of the 3 MB cache, if it needs. This improves the single threaded applications needing more cache.

The Pentium U5400 processor has  integrated DDR3 memory controller. The the brand name “Pentium” is old, the architecture of the Pentium U5400 resembles more like newer core i3 and core i5 processor, with integrated memory controller and DMI bus. It has very less similarity to the earlier Pentium 4 architecture. It looks like Intel wanted to retain and utilize its older Pentium Brand name.

Essentially, remove the hyperthreading , turbo boost, AES  functionality and intel virtualization and few more features from the core-i5 architecture and you get a Pentium U5400 – off course U5400 is a low performance, low frequency part for thin notebooks.

The integrated memory controller reduces the memory latency, and increases the overall performance of the processor. The max speed grade of the DDR3 bus is DDR3-800. You may like to note that even when the DDR3 module is populated with DDR-1066, it will work at DDR-800 speed grade, as the processor support speed grade only upto DDR3-800.

The communication with the chipset is using high speed differential DMI bus.  The DMI bus is similar in architecture to the AMD’s HyperTransport bus.  The DMI bus is a high bandwidth bus with huge bandwidth that removes the bottleneck of processor to chipset communication.

Other features of the U5400 include integrated graphics, which helps keeps the system cost low by not requiring additional discrete component for graphics. Basically the Pentium U5400 is based upon the Arrandale architecture – the same architecture, that powers the Core i3, core i5 processors.

Since the processor is launched only recently, we do not have much benchmark data available. The Super Pi 1M and 2M scores for U5400 are 36 seconds and 84 seconds respectively. The 3D Mark06 score is 1126.  The windows 7 experience index for U5400 is at 4 – pretty low but not unexpected for 1.2 GHz processor.

We do not find many notebooks powered by Pentium U5400. The only ones that we could see on internet was

-TOSHIBA Satellite T235-S1350

Manufacturer Link :http://ark.intel.com/Product.aspx?id=49156

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  1. aiman
    November 15th, 2010 at 18:38 | #1

    wondering how the U5400 will fare with my kind of usage – opening 2 word processing windows , using music player, downloading torrents, several explorer windows.
    basically i hate to see the hourglass indicating a delay in processing time.
    right now i use an old toshiba A200 with core duo 2 GHz and 1 GB RAM and i am fine with its speed.
    how will the T235 equipped with U5400 compare?

  2. jsmith
    December 26th, 2010 at 22:35 | #2

    I believe it will compare similarly to the Intel E3300 Celeron Dual core if we were to examine the LGA 775 desktop family.

  3. usne
    January 7th, 2011 at 19:43 | #3

    I have the new HP DM3 that uses this chip. Using CPU-Z it seems to go anywhere from 665MHz to 1197MHz (but this is probably due to the SpeedStep technology that Intel uses). So far it doesn’t seem to have a negative impact on performance.