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Intel launches Sandy Bridge-based Pentiums

Intel's Sandy Bridge architecture is now available in a Pentium flavour, with four new processors designed for bargain-basement office machines added to the company's price list today.

You'd be forgiven for thinking that Intel had abandoned the Pentium branding - introduced to prevent companies like Cyrix and AMD from 'stealing' the untrademarkable numbered naming system that ended with the 486 - when it introduced the Core, Core 2, and Core i3/5/7 ranges. The brand is alive and kicking, however - but at the lower end of the market.

To prove it, Intel has added four new 'Pentium' chips to its partner price list: the Pentium G620T, G620, G840, and G850. All three are listed with wholesale prices below $100, and are based on the company's new Sandy Bridge architecture - hopefully including the integrated Intel HD graphics.

While technical details are not yet available, the pricing and speed information is: the G620T is a dual-core 2.2GHz part with 3MB of cache priced at $70, and will likely ship with a significantly lower TDP than its cheaper counterpart; the G620 boosts the clock speed to 2.6GHz while maintaining the same cache and dropping the price to $64, suggesting a higher power draw.

The G840 pushes the clock speed to 2.8GHz and the price to $75, while the flagship Pentium G850 hits 2.9GHz and $86. All four models are dual-core, but do not include Intel's HyperThreading technology - nor the Turbo Boost function for automated overclocking when running single-core applications.

If the company does choose to include integrated Intel HD graphics across the range, Intel could well have a tempting chip for budget-conscious OEMs on its hands. It's not yet known when the parts will start to appear in the channel.