Nehalem (microarchitecture)

Last updated

Intel Nehalem.jpg
Logo for Core i7 Bloomfield processors
General Info
LaunchedNovember 11, 2008;11 years ago (November 11, 2008)
Max. CPU clock rate 1.06 GHz to 3.33 GHz
L1 cache 64 KB per core
L2 cache256 KB per core
L3 cache4 MB to 24 MB shared
Architecture and classification
ArchitectureNehalem x86
Instructions MMX
Physical specifications
  • 2-6 (4-8 Xeon)
Products, models, variants
  • Pentium, Core, Core in and Xeon Series
Predecessor Core (tock)
Penryn (tick)
Successor Westmere (tick)
Sandy Bridge (tock)

Nehalem /nəˈhləm/ [1] is the codename for an Intel processor microarchitecture released in November 2008. [2] Nehalem was used in the first generation of the Intel Core processors (Core i7 and i5, with Core i3 being based on the subsequent Westmere and Sandy Bridge designs). Nehalem is the successor to the older Core microarchitecture (Intel Core 2 processors). [3]


The Intel codename "Nehalem" was taken from the Nehalem River. [4] [5] It is an architecture that differs radically from Netburst, while retaining some of the latter's minor features. Nehalem-based microprocessors use the 45 nm process, run at higher clock speeds, and are more energy-efficient than Penryn microprocessors. Hyper-threading is reintroduced, along with a reduction in L2 cache size, as well as an enlarged L3 cache that is shared among all cores.

Nehalem was replaced with the Sandy Bridge microarchitecture, released in January 2011.


Microarchitecture of a processor core in the quad-core implementation Intel Nehalem arch.svg
Microarchitecture of a processor core in the quad-core implementation
Translation lookaside buffer  sizes [12]
CachePage Size
NameLevel4 KB2 MB
ITLB1st1287 / logical core

Performance and power improvements

It has been reported that Nehalem has a focus on performance, thus the increased core size. [13] Compared to Penryn, Nehalem has:

Overclocking is possible with Bloomfield processors and the X58 chipset. Lynnfield processors use a PCH removing the need for a northbridge. [14]

Nehalem processors incorporate SSE 4.2 SIMD instructions, adding seven new instructions to the SSE 4.1 set in the Core 2 series. The Nehalem architecture reduces atomic operation latency by 50% in an attempt to eliminate overhead on atomic operations such as the LOCK CMPXCHG compare-and-swap instruction. [15]


Processing Cores (interface)ProcessDie SizeCPUIDModelSteppingMobileDesktop, UP ServerDP ServerMP Server
Eight-Core (Quad-Channel)45 nm684 mm²206E646D0 Beckton (80604)
Quad-Core (Triple-Channel)45 nm263 mm²106A4
Bloomfield (80601) Gainestown (80602)
Quad-Core (Dual-Channel, PCIe)45 nm296 mm²106E4
Clarksfield (80607) Lynnfield (80605) Jasper Forest (80612)
Dual-Core (Dual-Channel, PCIe, Graphics Core)45 nm Auburndale (80608) (canceled) Havendale (80606) (canceled)

Server and desktop processors

CodenameMarket Cores /
Socket Processor
Branding & Model
Clock rate
Turbo TDP Interfaces L3
Release DatePrice for
1k Unit
Beckton1MP Server /
DP Server
8 (16) LGA
Xeon [17] X75602.26 GHzYes130 W QPI 6.4 GT/sDDR3-800 /
(Up to 4x with
24 MB 2010-03-30 [18] $3692
X75502.0 GHz18 MB$2837
L75551.86 GHz95 W4× QPI 5.86 GT/s24 MB$3157
6 (12)E75402.0 GHz105 W4× QPI 6.4 GT/s18 MB$1980
E654012 MB$1712
E75301.86 GHz4× QPI 5.86 GT/s$1391
L754595 W18 MB$2087
6 (6)X75422.66 GHz130 W$1980
4 (8)E75201.86 GHzNo105 W4× QPI 4.8 GT/s$856
E65101.73 GHz12 MB$744
GainestownDP Server [19] 4 (8) LGA
Xeon [20] W55903.33 GHz Yes130 W2× QPI 6.4 GT/sDDR3-133318 MB2009-08-09$1600
W55803.2 GHz2009-03-29 [21] $1500
X55702.93 GHz95 W$1286
X55602.8 GHz$1072
X55502.66 GHz$858
E55402.53 GHz80 W2× 5.86 GT/s3× DDR3-10661$744
E55302.4 GHz$530
E55202.26 GHz$373
L55302.4 GHz60 W2009-08-09$744
L55202.26 GHz2009-03-30$530
L55182.13 GHz$
4 (4)E55072.26 GHzNo80 W2× 4.8 GT/s3× DDR3-80014 MB2010-03-16$266
E55062.13 GHz2009-03-29
L55062.13 GHz60 W$423
E55042.0 GHz80 W$224
2 (4)L55082.0 GHzYes38 W2× 5.86 GT/s3× DDR3-10668 MB$
2 (2)E55032.0 GHzNo80 W2× 4.8 GT/s3× DDR3-8004 MB2010-03-16$224
E55021.86 GHz2009-03-29$188
Jasper Forest4 (8)EC55492.53 GHzYes85 W1× 5.86 GT/s3× DDR3-13338 MB2010-02-11$530
LC55282.13 GHz60 W1× 4.8 GT/s3× DDR3-1066$519
LC55181.73 GHz48 W
4 (4)EC55092 GHzNo85 W$265
2 (4)EC55392.27 GHz65 W1× 5.86 GT/s3× DDR3-13334 MB$387
BloomfieldUP Server [22] 4 (8)Xeon [23] W35803.33 GHzYes130 W1× QPI 6.4 GT/s3× DDR3-13338 MB2009-08-09$999
W35703.2 GHz2009-03-29 [23]
W35653.2 GHz1× QPI 4.8 GT/s3× DDR3-10662009-11-01$562
W35503.06 GHz2009-08-09
W35402.93 GHz2009-03-29 [23]
W35302.8 GHz2010-03-16$294
W35202.66 GHz2009-03-29 [23] $284
2 (2)W35052.53 GHzNo4 MB$
W35032.4 GHz$
Jasper Forest4 (4)EC35392.13 GHz65 WDMI8 MB2010-02-11$302
2 (4)LC35281.73 GHzYes35 W3× DDR3-8004 MB
1 (1)LC3518No23 W2 MB$192
Lynnfield4 (8) LGA
X34803.06 GHzYes95 WDMI2× DDR3-13338 MB2010-05-30$612
X34702.93 GHz2009-09-08$589
X34602.8 GHz$316
X34502.66 GHz$241
X34402.53 GHz$215
L34261.86 GHz45 W$284
4 (4)X34302.4 GHz95 W$189
Desktop [24]
4 (8)LGA
Core i7
975 [25] 3.33 GHzYes130 W1× QPI 6.4 GT/s3× DDR3-10662009-05-31$999
9653.2 GHz2008-11-17
Core i7960 [26] 3.2 GHz1× QPI 4.8 GT/s2009-10-20$562
950 [25] 3.06 GHz2009-05-31
9402.93 GHz2008-11-17
9302.8 GHz2010-02-28$294
9202.66 GHz2008-11-17$284
8803.06 GHzYes95 W DMI 2× DDR3-13332010-05-30$583
875K2.93 GHz$342
870 [27] 2009-09-08$562
870S2.66 GHz82 W2010-07-19$351
8602.8 GHz95 W2009-09-08$284
860S2.53 GHz82 W2010-01-07$337
4 (4)Core i57602.8 GHz95 W2010-07-17$209
750 [28] 2.66 GHz95 W2009-09-08$196
750S2.4 GHz82 W2010-01-07$259
Jasper ForestEmbedded
1 (2)LGA
CeleronP10531.33 GHzNo30 W3× DDR3-8002 MB2010-12-02$160

Mobile processors

CodenameMarketCores /
Socket Processor
Branding & Model
Clock rate
Turbo TDP L3
InterfaceRelease DatePrice for
1k Unit
ClarksfieldExtreme /
4 (8)µPGA
Core i7
940XM2.13 GHzYes55 W8 MB* DMI
* 2x DDR3-1333
* PCIe 1 x16 / 2 x8
920XM2.0 GHz2009-09-23$1054
Core i7840QM1.86 GHz45 W2010-06-21$568
820QM1.73 GHz2009-09-23$546
740QM6 MB2010-06-21$378
720QM1.6 GHz2009-09-23$364


The successor to Nehalem and Westmere is Sandy Bridge .

See also

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Further reading