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Is it possible to do a straight swap of a 2.8 Ghz Pentium 4 with a 3.4 Ghz Pentium 4 on an Intel motherboard? Do each of these chips have the same socket, or are they different?

How do I find out what specific processor (besides the speed, of course) that I have in my computer? How do I find out what socket it uses? If I have to look up the motherboard model information, where do I get the motherboard model from?

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If you're more specific in your questions, it will be easier to to answer it. Which P4 2.8 GHz? Which P4 3.4 GHz? Which motherboard? – Dennis Jun 2 '12 at 14:36
Understood. Next time, I'll do a little more research. However, I did run CPU-Z on the computer, and it determined the sockets are different. I highly recommend running CPU-Z to find info on your processor. It can also find out a bunch of info on other things, like RAM and your video card. – mike Jun 4 '12 at 15:01

Generally speaking: yes, it is possible.


  1. Check if the socket if the same. The P4 2.8GHZ probably uses socket 478. There are 3.4GHz P4's for the same socket 478 and for socket 775. So make sure you got the right CPU.
  2. Check the motherboard manual. The faster CPU might draw more power. The board needs to be able to supply this.
  3. Check the BIOS and optionally update the BIOS. An old BIOS might not recognize the new CPU
  4. Do you have sufficient cooling for a CPU which might run hotter.
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0. Check the CPU Support List for your motherboard before you start thinking about the next steps. – Robert Niestroj Jun 2 '12 at 14:41
@RobertNiestroj While I agree that these 4 steps are not in the best order, what you suggest is covered under step 3. Any particular reason why you choose to be redundant? Or is it just that you don't understand that checking/updating a BIOS covers CPU compatibility... assuming the processors use the same socket of course. – Bon Gart Jun 2 '12 at 15:04
@Bon Gart which BIOS guarantees you compatibility with all processors made for a specific socket? Especially on P4 class boards i found a few times that BIOS update is not enough. Sometimes if you got a Rev. 1.0 board i just does not support some newer processors, no matter what BIOS you have. Then processor support is added in following revisions of the motherboard. Last time i had this issue 3 months ago with a ECS P4S5A Rev 1.0 or sth like that. – Robert Niestroj Jun 2 '12 at 15:19
@RobertNiestroj That's kind of silly. No BIOS guarantees you compatibility. But when you go to update the BIOS, and the update lists no additional CPU support added, and your CPU was the fastest one supported as per the description of what was included in your current BIOS revision... then you know whether or not your current BIOS or an update will add support for a faster processor. Don't you read the details on BIOS revisions? Who just blindly updates a BIOS without reading what the update does? – Bon Gart Jun 2 '12 at 15:28
@BonGart i always read BIOS descriptions before even downloading. The question was if he can uprgrade his CPU straight. If the upgrade CPU is not supported by any BIOS you can put in your Mobo then upgrading the BIOS is pointless. – Robert Niestroj Jun 2 '12 at 15:53

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