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Intel’s cheapest CPU is a dark horse – E1200 tested

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Posted August 14, 2008 by admin in CPU & Motherboards

While it is clear that Intel was not necessarily aiming for the Moon with the creation of the E1200, the advantages that the Core architecture offers are clear as day. Being Intel’s cheapest processor on the market (at a typical selling for $50), the Celeron E1200 offers quite a lot of performance for its low asking price. In our testing environments, we sought to find how the reductions made with the E1200 have impacted the chip’s performance when compared to a high-end processor of the same lineage. At its stock speed of 1.6GHz, the E1200 was unable close the gap between it and the E6400, but it certainly gave the Pentium D 940 a run for its money — doing so at half the clock speed and consuming almost 170 watts less. When taken as a whole, these results are just another nail in the Pentium D coffin. Meaning anyone that is still using an Intel Pentium 4 should consider the E1200 as one of the cheapest, yet still quite effective, upgrades.

Despite the praise we’ve heaped onto the E1200, it shouldn’t be considered the best option for everyone. With the Pentium E2000 series offering both a higher clock speed and twice the L2 cache of the E1200, it’s hard to pin-down a ninche that really suits the E1200. As our tests indicate, one may even be better off trying to dig up an older product such as the E6400. Even with drasticly increased clock speeds the E1200 was only able to match the E6400 for most of the tests; and in doing so, had to sacrifice its lower power consumption and operating temperatures.

When reflecting on the E1200’s performance, the results point to what many people are seeking in a dual core upgrade (especially for their aging Pentium 4 based systems). By offering both incredible performance per-watt and exceptional performance ‘per-dollar-spent’, the E1200 is an easy chip to recommend to those budget conscious consumers out there. For use at home, in the family computer that sees typical office work loads and some light gaming, the E1200 recieves our Upgrader’s Recommendation.

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