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Module 3c. About the 5th generations CPUs


With Intel's Pentium from 1993, a new era began in the continued CPU development. In these pages, we will look at different variations and further development of 5th. generation CPUs.

  • The original Pentium
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  • Pentium Classic (P54C)

    This chip was developed by Intel in Haifa, Israel and was released on March the 22th 1993.

    The Pentium processor is super scalar, meaning that it can execute more than one instruction per clock tick. Typically, it handles two instructions per tick. In this respect, we can compare it to a double 486.

    At the same time, there have been big changes in the system busses. The width has doubled to 64 bit, and the speed has increased to 60 or 66 MHz.

    This has resulted in a substantial improvement from the 486 technology.

    Two versions to start with

    Originally, Pentium came in two versions: a 60 MHz and a 66 MHz. Both operated on 5 Volt. This produced a lot of heat (it was said that you could fry an egg on them!).

    The next Pentium (P54C) generation worked with an internal clock doubling of 1.5 times. These chips ran at 3½ Volt. This took care of the heat problem. However, heat coming from the CPU has been a problem ever since.

    With these the first P5 processors, Intel carried two Pentium lines; some running at 60 MHz on the system bus (The P90, P120, P150, and P180) and others with 66 MHz system bus (the P100, P133, P166 and P200).


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    Learn more


    Or continue with the 6th generation CPUs. Click for Module 3e.

    Read module 5a about expansion cards, where we evaluate the I/O buses from the port side.

    Read module 5b about AGP and module 5c about Firewire.

    Read module 7a about monitors, and 7b on graphics card.

    Read module 7c about sound cards, and 7d on digital sound and music.

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