New CPU advice please

Posted on 2006-05-24
Last Modified: 2012-05-05
Hi All,

Hi All,

Just to fill you in here, at the moment my Intel D865GLC motherboard has an Intel 2.4GHz P4 socket 478 processor with a 512Kb cache. Also my BIOS is updated to the latest .P25 release. Now after buying 2Gb of Ram for my system, I wondering if I should bung a newer CPU in too. Here's the query  ....

I'm wondering if this board will take 3Ghz P4 with a 1MB cache ??

My mainboard has a number AAC28906 - 403 but on the intel site here

The notes on the right hand side imply that due to MY mobo's last three AA digits being .... 403 it does not support the 1Mb cache CPU's.

It seems the only difference here is the Level 2 cache being 512Kb's larger at 1MB.

Will my mobo actualy take the 3 Gig CPU with the 1MB cache or will I waste my money or blow something up?

Or have I got to stick to P4 CPU's using a 512Kb cache?

Many thanks for your help
Question by:orbiter5
    LVL 69

    Expert Comment

    Your motherboard is designed to work with Northwood P4 cpus, which have 512K cache.  The ones you are looking at are Prescott variants, which have 1MB cache, an "E" or "2.80A" or "2.40A" designation and a different manufacturing process.  You can still go with the other P4's listed below them, up to 3.4GHz.
    LVL 4

    Expert Comment

    The list indicates that with a bios version of p13 or above your board can support it.
    LVL 69

    Expert Comment

    I would say the lack of a 403 in the notes column means it does not support Prescotts, regardless of the BIOS version - otherwise, they would have included it.  It was a well-known phenomenon that not all socket 478 motherboards worked with Prescotts:
    LVL 1

    Author Comment


    Thanks for the fast responses, just a couple of things to clarify before my money leaves the bank :)

    I could chose to upgrade the cpu to a faster one as long as it was any Northwood P4 with a 512K cache?

    Will it just swap straight over (with the thermal paste ofcourse) and be recognised straight away?

    And finaly.. Do you think I would see much benefit over the processor I have now in exchange to say a 3.2Gig CPU?

    Many Thanks
    LVL 69

    Accepted Solution

    >I could chose to upgrade the cpu to a faster one as long as it was any Northwood P4 with a 512K cache?

    Yes, any socket478 Northwood, with the caveat that if your RAM is not PC3200, you will not be able to run an 800 FSB cpu at full speed.  A straight swap should be all you need, but if you changed a lot of hardware in the past, Windows may ask for reactivation.

    >And finaly.. Do you think I would see much benefit over the processor I have now in exchange to say a 3.2Gig CPU?

    That is only a 33% increase in speed, so it depends on whether you are fully utilizing your cpu now at or near 100%.  I personally do not upgrade unless the price has dropped significantly or I get at least a 50% increase in speed.  You may see your needs differently.
    LVL 1

    Author Comment


    Thanks for your time and great answers on this one, I appreciate it.

    Yes my RAM is DDR400 PC2300 so running the FSB at 800Mhz would be ok.

    I think at the moment my 2.4Gig CPU is only really loaded up to 70-80% when editing huge image files in Photoshop CS2 and having many other things running at the same time. I think i've only ever seen it top out when benchmarking.

    I'm now starting to reconsider this possible waste of money :) In fact the main reason for the question was that Photoshop CS2 takes so long to load.. 28 seconds. I just wondered if a jump in CPU's would help it along. But I guess even a 33% CPU speed difference only relates to a possible 9 second increase here. It seems like ages when you count it out loud though :)

    Thanks again

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