Intel will usher in the age of its NetBurst micro-architecture with the introduction of the Pentium 4 processor, according to sources for the chip giant.
Announced last August at the company's developer forum, NetBurst represents the first significant redesign of Intel's desktop processors since the Pentium Pro chip in 1995.
Expected to run somewhere near 1.5GHz, the Pentium 4 processor will initially find a home in high-end desktop PCs and workstations, sources said. Intel will not announce pricing for the chip until the official announcement takes place next week.
Following market demand for better graphics, Internet browsing, multi-media, and multi-tasking performance, the NetBurst micro-architecture on the Pentium 4 has several features not found in Intel's Pentium III family of chips.
A few of those features include a rapid execution engine that executes basic math instructions at twice the speed of the rest of the processor. The chip has a 400MHz system bus, more than twice the speed of the Pentium III's average 133MHz bus, as well as an advanced 256KB Transfer Cache and added streaming audio and video technology, according to Intel officials.