Intel Core 2

Core 2 is a brand encompassing a range of Intel's consumer 64-bit x86-64 single-, dual-, and quad-core microprocessors based on the Core microarchitecture. The single- and dual-core models are single-die, whereas the quad-core models comprise two dies, each containing two cores, packaged in a multi-chip module.[2] The introduction of Core 2 relegated the Pentium brand to the mid-range market, and reunified laptop and desktop CPU lines for marketing purposes under the same product name, which previously had been divided into the Pentium 4, Pentium D, and Pentium M brands.

Core 2
General Info
LaunchedJuly 26, 2006
DiscontinuedJune 8, 2012[1]
Common manufacturer(s)
  • Intel
Max. CPU clock rate1.06 GHz to 3.33 GHz
FSB speeds800 MT/s to 1600 MT/s
Architecture and classification
Min. feature size65 nm to 45 nm
Instruction setx86, x86-64, (SSE4.1 is for 45 nm processors only)
Physical specifications
  • 1, 2, or 4 (2x2)
Products, models, variants
Core name(s)
  • Allendale, Conroe, Conroe-L, Merom-2M, Merom, Merom-L, Kentsfield, Wolfdale, Yorkfield, Penryn
PredecessorPentium D, Pentium 4
SuccessorCore i3, i5, i7, i9

The Core 2 brand was introduced on July 27, 2006,[3] comprising the Solo (single-core), Duo (dual-core), Quad (quad-core), and in 2007, the Extreme (dual- or quad-core CPUs for enthusiasts) subbrands.[4] Intel Core 2 processors with vPro technology (designed for businesses) include the dual-core and quad-core branches.[5]

Although Woodcrest processors are also based on the Core architecture, they are available under the Xeon brand. Since December 2006, all Core 2 Duo processors are manufactured from 300 millimeter plates at Fab 12 factory in Arizona, USA and at Fab 24-2 in County Kildare, Ireland.


The Core 2-branded CPUs include: "Conroe"/"Allendale" (dual-core for desktops), "Merom" (dual-core for laptops), "Merom-L" (single-core for laptops), "Kentsfield" (quad-core for desktops), and the updated variants named "Wolfdale" (dual-core for desktops), "Penryn" (dual-core for laptops), and "Yorkfield" (quad-core for desktops). (Note: For the server and workstation "Woodcrest", "Tigerton", "Harpertown" and "Dunnington" CPUs see the Xeon brand.[6])

The Core 2 branded processors feature Virtualization Technology (with some exceptions), Execute Disable Bit, and SSE3. Their Core microarchitecture introduced SSSE3, Trusted Execution Technology, Enhanced SpeedStep, and Active Management Technology (iAMT2). With a maximum thermal design power (TDP) of 65W, the Core 2 Duo Conroe dissipates half the power of the less capable contemporary Pentium D-branded desktop chips[7] that have a max TDP of 130 W.[8]

Intel Core 2 processor family
2009 new
Desktop Laptop
Code-name Core Date released Code-name Core Date released
Dual (65 nm)
Dual (65 nm)
Dual (45 nm)
August 2006
January 2007
January 2008
Dual (65 nm)
Dual (45 nm)
July 2006
January 2008
Conroe XE
Kentsfield XE
Yorkfield XE
Dual (65 nm)
Quad (65 nm)
Quad (45 nm)
July 2006
November 2006
November 2007
Merom XE
Penryn XE
Penryn XE
Dual (65 nm)
Dual (45 nm)
Quad (45 nm)
July 2007
January 2008
August 2008
Quad (65 nm)
Quad (45 nm)
January 2007
March 2008
Penryn Quad (45 nm) August 2008
Desktop version not available
Single (65 nm)
Single (45 nm)
September 2007
May 2008
List of Intel Core 2 microprocessors

With the release of the Core 2 processor, the abbreviation C2 has come into common use, with its variants C2D (the present Core 2 Duo), and C2Q, C2E to refer to the Core 2 Quad and Core 2 Extreme processors respectively. C2QX stands for the Extreme-Editions of the Quad (QX6700, QX6800, QX6850).

The successors to the Core 2 brand are a set of Nehalem microarchitecture based processors called Core i3, i5, and i7. Core i7 was officially launched on November 17, 2008 as a family of three quad-core processor desktop models, further models started appearing throughout 2009. The last Core 2 processor to be released was the Core 2 Quad Q9500 in January 2010. The Core 2 processor line was removed from the official price lists in July 2011,[9][10] and the last processors were discontinued in June 2012.[1]

See also


  1. "Product Change Notification #110665-00" (PDF). Intel Corp. June 6, 2011. Retrieved October 14, 2019.
  2. "Intel Clovertowns step up, reduce power". TG Daily. Archived from the original on September 11, 2007. Retrieved September 5, 2007.
  3. "Intel Unveils World's Best Processor". Intel. Archived from the original on April 3, 2007. Retrieved August 14, 2007.
  4. "Intel to unify product naming scheme". TG Daily. Archived from the original on September 26, 2007. Retrieved August 6, 2007.
  5. "Intel Centrino 2 with vPro technology and Intel Core2 processor with vPro technology" (PDF). Intel. Retrieved August 7, 2008.
  6. "Intel Unleashes New Server Processors That Deliver World-Class Performance And Power Efficiency". Intel. Archived from the original on July 1, 2006. Retrieved June 26, 2006.
  7. "The 65 nm Pentium D 900's Coming Out Party: Test Setup". Tom's Hardware. Retrieved June 15, 2007.
  8. "The 65 nm Pentium D 900's Coming Out Party: Thermal Design Power Overview". Tom's Hardware. Retrieved June 15, 2007.
  9. "Intel Processor Pricing, Effective July 10, 2011" (PDF). Intel Corp. Retrieved July 17, 2011.
  10. "Intel Processor Pricing, Effective July 17, 2011" (PDF). Intel Corp. Retrieved July 17, 2011.

1st public demonstration:Anandtech discovers Core 2 Duo performance under the supervision of Francois Piednoel

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