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Intel introduced six new Core 2 Duo variants today, bringing the total for notebooks and desktop PCs to 29 different models. According to TG Daily reports the Core 2 Extreme X7800 is the new flagship of the mobile CPU portfolio, new 2.66 GHz and 3 GHz quad-core desktop processors as well FSB 1333 dual-core chips extend the mainstream product line. Price cuts are also featured in today’s announcement.

The new X7800 is the first “Extreme” mobile processor that has adopted the enthusiast-aimed brand from the firm’s desktop CPUs. The CPU, clocked at 2.6 GHz, is the first of two expected versions, with an X7900 (2.8 GHz) expected to follow later on. Intel says the X7800 offers up to 28 percent more performance than their previous-generation mobile processor.

According to Intel, the power consumption of the processor climbs to 44 watts, up from the 35 watt power envelope of other Core 2 Duo T-series processors. It will be offering a “battery friendly” quad-core processor for notebooks next year.

AMD has not said whether their upcoming Griffin mobile processor will be able to challenge the performance of Intel’s 65 nm Merom cores or 45 nm Penryn cores in 2008.

Intel announced plans for Penryn in 2003, long before anyone knew how to pull it off, explains the Oregonian’s Mike Rogoway.

It gave them a deadline, too: Have the new processor ready for computers by the end of 2007.

Oregon is home to D1D, a $2 billion research factory in Hillsboro that Intel opened in 2004.

The company put it here, along with other big factories that date to the early ’90s, in large part because the cost of living and the cost of employing a work force here is much lower than places like the Silicon Valley.

Robert Scoble has a fascinating tour inside Intel’s new 45 nanometer fab in Hillsboro, Oregon. Intel Senior Fellow, Mark Bohr gave Bob a rare look inside Intel’s newest fab (inside D1D)

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