PC Pro’s recent test of the new dual-core Intel Atom chip showed it to be only a marginal improvement over the previous single-core model. While it gained much hype at its announcement last August, the new test may temper much of the enthusiasm about it.
Called the Intel Atom 330, it has a 533MHz FSB but runs at the same 1.6 GHz as previous iterations of the chip. While clearly faster than the now-standard Atom N270, it has not met expectations completely.
The results of the test showed the chip to be a mere 16% faster than the previous one.
It is important to note that the device tested was only a desktop version, not a netbook-ready version. As such it is as of yet impossible to determine how battery life wil be affected by the 330. Energy efficiency is obviously a crucial for netbooks, so if the 330 turns out to weigh down on the battery, manufacturers and consumers will be likely to pass it on.
Read more about the test here.
In other news, check out Larry Digman of ZDNet’s article concerning recent confusion over AMD’s announcement about the netbook market (which we covered in our November 13 article):