Clarkdale drops into the same LGA1156 sockets used with Lynnfield Core i5 and i7 processors. The motherboards are largely interoperable: one may, for instance, install a Core i5-750 in an H57 motherboard and use it, so long as a discrete graphics card is available. Similarly, we installed our Core i5-661 in a P55 board with discrete graphics, and it worked effortlessly. Just don't expect that H57 motherboard's VGA port to do anything when you have a Lynnfield processor installed, and don't expect to make use of a Clarkdale IGP on a P55 board.
Key match-ups to watch
We're about to dive into our performance results, but before we do, let's talk about some competitive scenarios for the various CPUs.
Incidentally, those match-ups reveal our thinking in processor selection for this review. We've also thrown in the cheapest Core i7-900-series processor, the i7-920, just for comparison's sake.
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