All Core i7 chips to have 130W thermal envelopes?


— 9:43 AM on September 11, 2008

Those who've been keeping track of the latest CPU rumors should know Intel's Core i7 (a.k.a. Bloomfield, a.k.a. Nehalem) processors are shaping up to be quite formidable. With four cores, eight threads, triple-channel DDR3 memory controllers, and significantly higher clock-for-clock performance than current Core 2 Quads, they could leave everything behind in the dust when they come out later this year.

But what about power efficiency? Surprisingly, Fudzilla claims to have perused official Intel documents that quote 130W thermal envelopes for all upcoming Core i7 chips. That includes the 2.66GHz flavor that's expected to launch at $283. For comparison, Intel's 2.66GHz Core 2 Quad Q9400 (which costs $270 today) has a much leaner 95W TDP.

One can easily speculate as to why Core i7s might not sip power so parsimoniously. For one, the Nehalem architecture sticks all cores on a single die together with the memory controller. Also, architectural enhancements like Hyper-Threading could take their toll in the form of increased transistor count. Either that or the numbers are off—it's anyone's guess right now.

With that said, Fudzilla says Core i7 chips will overclock well despite the allegedly higher TDPs. Fudo even claims to know for a fact that 2.93GHz Core i7 variants "can easily hit over 4GHz with air-cooling."

   
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