Deal of the week: Intel's Core 2 Quad Q9400

Intel recently reshuffled its Core 2 Quad processor lineup. The firm hasn't strayed from previous price tags, but it has effectively given the whole 45nm quad-core line a speed boost. You can now grab the 3GHz Core 2 Quad Q9650 for $559.99, the 2.83GHz Core 2 Quad Q9550 for only $329.99...

...and the 2.66GHz Q9400 model for a scant $274.99 with free shipping. Okay, maybe not scant, but that's still awfully cheap for a processor with those credentials. The Q9400 is almost the same CPU as the Q9450 that used to cost around $350, except with 6MB of L2 cache instead of 12MB.

Purists might frown on the smaller cache, but we should point out the Core 2 Quad Q9300 performs really well with 6MB of cache and a 2.5GHz clock speed. Since the Q9300 still sells for almost $270, the Q9400 looks to us like an excellent deal.

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