Spare a thought for this feeble, emaciated little chip. The E2180 potters along at just 2GHz, packs just 1MB of cache and suffers a comparatively glacial 800MHz bus. Glacial, that is, compared to the 3.2GHz of Intel's own Core 2 Extreme QX9770.

Surprisingly capable

Funny thing is, however, even at stock clocks, this processor delivers a decent experience. Thank the fact that it's based on Intel's Core 2 architecture for that, despite the 'Pentium' branding.

Consequently, it has just enough juice for gaming and hi-def video. But the way this beastie overclocks is something else. How about over 3GHz using an air cooler and stock voltages? This chip cranks out performance comparable to any of Intel's pricier dual-core models. And all for a whiff over £50. Impressive.