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In the wake of our Athlon X2 BE-2350 review, the folks at Intel contacted me with a challenge. We had tested AMD's new low-power processor with a motherboard based on the AMD 690G chipset and found the combination to be exceptionally power efficient. We had not, however, tested Core 2 Duo E4300 alongside Intel's G965 Express chipset, which also packs integrated graphics and a low power footprint.
We'd neglected to test this config in part because, honestly, we didn't expect the G965/E4300 combo to deliver results in the same class as the X2 BE-2350/690G pairing. Some of our previous tests had suggested that motherboards based on the G965 chipset drew more power than AMD 690G boards.
Intel confidently claimed its solution was competitive, though, and suggested we test and see for ourselves. That only seemed fair to me, so I decided to give it a shot.
The results are below. We tested the E4300 on an Intel DG965WH motherboard with the same basic configurations and methods used in our Athlon X2 BE-2350 review, logging power over time while the system rendered a scene in Cinebench using multiple threads. I suggest looking over that review for complete info on how we tested.
I've included results from several different Core 2 Duo E4300 configs, including:
* Our stock Core 2 system based on the 975X chipset with a GeForce 7900 GTX graphics card
* A system based on the G965 mobo with this same graphics card
* The G965 system using its integrated graphics processor (IGP) instead of discrete graphics