Processor Characteristics

Here are the important characteristics of processors:

Processor make and model

The primary defining characteristic of a processor is its make—AMD or Intel—and its model. Although competing models from the two companies have similar features and performance, you cannot install an AMD processor in an Intel-compatible motherboard or vice versa.

Socket type

Another defining characteristic of a processor is the socket that it is designed to fit. If you are replacing the processor in a Socket 478 motherboard, for example, you must choose a replacement processor that is designed to fit that socket. Table 5-1 describes upgradability issues by processor socket.

Table 5-1. Upgradability by processor socket type

Socket

Upgradability

Original processor

Upgrade processors

Considerations

Slot 1

None

Pentium II/III, Celeron

None

Slot 1 systems are not economically upgradable.

Slot A

None

Athlon

None

Slot A systems are not economically upgradable.

370

Poor

Celeron, Pentium III, VIA

Celeron, Pentium III

Limited availability of new Socket 370 processors. Relatively high cost for limited improvement.

423

None

Pentium 4

None

Socket 423 processors are no longer available new. A motherboard upgrade is the best choice for a Socket 423 system.

462

Moderate

Athlon, Athlon XP, Sempron

Sempron

Limited processor choices. A BIOS upgrade may be needed, and the memory may need to be replaced. Old Socket 462 (A) motherboards may not support Sempron processors. ...

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