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Home » CPU
Inside the Intel Sandy Bridge Microarchitecture
Author: Gabriel Torres
Type: Tutorials Last Updated: December 30, 2010
Page: 5 of 6
Next Generation Turbo Boost

Turbo Boost is a technology that automatically overclocks the CPU when the CPU “asks” for more processing power. In the Sandy Bridge microarchitecture this technology was revised in order to allow the CPU to exceed its TDP (Thermal Design Power) for up to 25 seconds – i.e., to dissipate more heat than officially allowed. This is possible because the heatsink and components are still cold. See Figure 6.

Sandy Bridge
click to enlarge
Figure 6: Next generation Turbo Boost

Also, the CPU cores and graphics controller “share” TDP between them. For example, if the graphics core isn’t dissipating a lot of heat, this gives extra TDP to the CPU cores to use, allowing them to run at a higher clock rate and at a TDP higher than the official rating (labeled “Specified Core Power” in Figure 7), if applications are demanding more processing power, of course. See Figure 7.

Sandy Bridge
click to enlarge
Figure 7: TDP can be balanced between CPU cores and graphics processor

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