Intel Atom microprocessors

Intel Atom is family of ultra-low power microprocessors designed for Mobile Internet Devices and ultra mobile PCs. First members of this family, Z5xx CPUs, were introduced in April 2008. These, as well as all subsequently released Atom microprocessors, have the following features:
  • single or dual superscalar core with "in order" instruction execution. For reference, all Intel x86 processors, starting from Pentium Pro/Pentium II, support "out of order" execution.
  • 32 KB instruction cache and 24 KB data caches.
  • 512 KB level 2 cache.
  • Quad-pumped Front Side Bus, running effectively at 400 or 533 MHz.
  • Support for all SIMD extensions up to SSE3 and Supplemental SSE3.

Some Atom processors also include Virtualization and HyperThreading technologies. Only two processors at this time (September 2008) can work in 64-bit mode.

Designed for very low power consumption, the Atom processors incorporate many low-power features used in Core 2 microprocessors, such as C1, C2, C4 and C6 states, Enhanced SpeedStep technology and dynamic cache sizing. The processors also utilize many new power-saving features and techniques - CMOS Front Side Bus, clock gating (turning off system clock to idle logic blocks), split I/O power, and others. As the result, the Atom CPUs have much lower Thermal Design Power (TDP) than previous generation of ultra-low power microprocessors. As an example, Atom Z500 CPU runs at the same core and FSB frequency, and has the same L2 cache size as Intel A110 microprocessor, but the Z500 has 0.65 Watt TDP as opposed to 3 Watt TDP for the A110.

All Atom microprocessors are manufactured in small form factor micro-FCBGA package - 13mm x 14mm for Z5xx series, and 22mm x 22mm for all others.

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At a glance

32, 64-bit microprocessor
April 2, 2008
Technology (micron):
0.022 - 0.045
The number of cores:
1 - 8
Frequency (GHz):
0.6 - 2.4
L2 cache size (MB):
0.5 - 4