However, the release of Centrino 2 is likely to coincide with ATI's return to high-end CrossFire multi-GPU rendering in the mobile space, enabling high-quality gaming on desktop-replacement laptops.
Currently known by its codename of M88, ATI's Mobility Radeon HD 3870 X2 will be supported on the Centrino 2 Intel PM45 chipset, and Intel had an engineering-sample setup on display at Spring IDF 2008.
Intel will also be releasing a quad-core mobile Penryn, most likely at 2.8GHz, operating within a 45W TDP, that's said to be highly overclockable. As such, Intel's mobile division will also roll out an extreme tweaking utility, formerly known as Iron City, aimed at easy-to-use OS-based overclocking for the CPU and memory.
Speaking of memory, here we see the provision for XMP overclocking, right up to DDR3-1,334. Note, though, that an additional 0.2V has to be pushed through the SO-DIMMs to achieve the speed, and responsible ODMs will need to ensure that there's adequate ventilation through the chassis.
And here's the engineering-sample on display. Whilst the setup may not look to be indicative of a laptop's, it's a proof of the Centrino 2/CrossFire concept in action.
The MXM-based Mobility Radeon HD 3870 X2 attached to a x16 PCIe Gen 2 slot.
Just a dual-core CPU in this test-rig.
The distinction between desktop PCs and DTR notebooks is blurring to the extent that it's difficult to tell them apart. That point is reinforced with the kind of system available to buyers of a high-end Centrino 2 system. Imagine a quad-core Penryn operating at an overclocked 3.2GHz, 4GiB DDR3 memory at 1,333MHz, and a Mobility Radeon HD 3870 X2 to paint pretty pixels. How many readers' desktops are faster than that?