Core i7-990X arrives; cheapest Gulftown drops to $583

— 9:27 AM on February 14, 2011

With Sandy Bridge still very much in limbo, Intel has decided to freshen up its line of Gulftown six-core desktop processors. The company's price list, updated on Sunday, shows a new flagship as well as a substantially lower price tag on the cheaper, non-Extreme Gulftown offering.

The new flagship is the Core i7-990X Extreme Edition, which has the same $999 bulk-quantity price as the Core i7-980X Extreme but higher clock speeds: 3.4GHz base and a maximum of 3.73GHz when Turbo Boost kicks in, up from 3.33GHz and 3.6GHz for the 980X. Those aren't earth-shattering increases, but they could help make the top-of-the-line offering a little more attractive in light of the second change to Intel's price list...

You see, the Core i7-970 has tumbled from $885 to just $583—a 34% drop. Remember this is a full-fledged six-core Gulftown chip with a 3.2GHz base speed, a 3.46GHz Turbo speed, and an LGA1366 package. I'd probably still go with a Sandy Bridge CPU if given the chance myself, but this bad boy often outruns the Core i7-2600K in our benchmarks—and, you know, X58 motherboards that support it are actually shipping right now. (Thanks to TR reader Mister Burke for the tip.)

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