Intel Pentium Dual Core E2180 ProcessorTo some people’s surprise, four cores are not the only game in town when it comes to overclocking. The Pentium Dual Core E2180 presents a challenge to the more cerebral overclocker. The numerous tweaks and adjustments on a sub-$100 CPU are seen as chess moves. It’s not how expensive it is, it’s the flexibility and performance potential. That is what you get with the Intel Pentium Dual Core E2180. While some pat themselves on the back for their ultra-sheik CPU flavor-of-the-month purchase, you smile away as your overclocked dual core wonder performs at the same level, for a quarter of the cost.

Intel Pentium Dual Core In the BoxThe Pentium Dual Core E2180 is an excellent choice for overclockers on a low budget. It is based on the popular Core 2 (Conroe) architecture, and supports FSB 800MHz, 1MB cache and will work at 2.0GHz, at default. Due to their low frequency and small Level 2 cache, the Pentium E2180 is extremely energy-efficient. Now, the point in budget overclocking is to avoid any type of cooling that requires more than just air. To the casual overclocker, 3.0GHz will be a breeze to accomplish – air cooled. With a standard HSF and voltage bump, you’ll see the 3.0GHz pushed further still (3.60Ghz is doable).

Mind you, this CPU has MO stepping, which is much better for overclocking than L0 stepping. Plus, Enhanced Intel SpeedStep Technology allows your system to dynamically adjust processor voltage and core frequency, enabling decreased power consumption and heat production. And since less heat means less fan noise, you’ll also experience improved acoustics – yet, another plus. Reports show very little perceivable performance difference between an identically clocked Pentium E2100-series CPU and a fully-fledged Core 2 Duo. Add support for 64-bit instructions, Execute Disable and SSE3, you have a sub-$100 chip that’s a Core 2 in disguise.

Designed from the ground up for revolutionary performance, Intel® dual-core processors enable exceptional productivity enhancing features and rich multimedia experiences. An increasing number of software applications are now designed for dual-core processors enabling the user to be more creative and productive in the home or the office. When combined with an Intel® Express Chipset based board, you enjoy exceptional audio quality and a smooth visual experience with integrated Intel High Definition Audio and Intel Graphics Media Acceleration (GMA.) The flexible platform options bring an array of new capabilities like Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) or the colorful world of digital photography.

In addition, you get the protection of built-in Execute Disable Bit designed to help keep your PC safe from viruses, worms and other malicious attacks. The need for security and virus protection often means running more than one application at a time and the Pentium dual-core processor has the power to run them simultaneously. As you can see, this chip has features comparable to pricier dual-core models.

Don’t pass this up. It’s one of the best processor deals of the moment.

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