Intel’s Core i7-875K and i5-655K processors

In CPUs, it’s good to be king, because the king gets to decide things. If you’re not king, you may be able to get away with all sorts of shenanigans, but you ultimately serve at the king’s pleasure.

Take, for instance, AMD’s recent resurgence in desktop processors. Although Intel has held the overall performance crown in an unbroken run since the introduction of the first Core 2 Duo, AMD has been able to stay on the radar of PC enthusiasts through cunning and guile. When it had no hope of catching up to the fastest Intel chip in a given price range, AMD cooked up its Black Edition processors that removed clock speed caps and made overclocking dead simple—without the huge price premium traditionally commanded by Extreme Edition and FX processors. Even though Intel’s CPUs were more attractive by most conventional standards, folks wanting value and performance suddenly had to weigh another variable. When it couldn’t keep pace with Intel’s quad-core processors using four cores of its own, AMD uncorked the Phenom II X6 and priced it directly opposite Intel’s Lynnfield quads. You were quite literally getting more chip for your money from AMD, and the X6’s strong value proposition was enough to earn it positive reviews.

Smart strategy will only take you so far, though, when you’re not the king. Intel’s chips extract more computational throughput from a smaller silicon area while consuming less power. From manufacturing to design and architecture, it has every advantage. Intel is king. As a result, Intel gets to decide how much performance it will deliver to customers and at what price. And now it appears, the king is a little miffed—cheesed, peeved, horked off, if you will—about the Phenom II X6’s critical success.

Thus, the king has lifted his hand from the armrest of the throne and made a quick flourish—perhaps a slicing motion across the throat—and tilted his head in the general direction of the Phenom II X6. A little fiddling in the royal factories and a few marketing slides later, and the king’s official response rides forth across the drawbridge, the Core i7-875K and the Core i5-655K. Both of the K-series CPUs are priced attractively and have unlocked core and memory multipliers for easy overclocking. And they offer precious little room for those pesky Phenom IIs to breathe.

Make way for the K series

Neither of the K-series processors is new speed grade from Intel. The Core i5-655K is just an unlocked version of the Core i5-650, and the Core i5-875K is an unlocked Core i7-870. The K-series parts have the same core clock, Turbo frequencies, and thermal envelopes as their unlocked brethren. What makes them different is the ability to crank up and down the core and memory multipliers at will. Well, there’s one more major bit of news for the i7-875K, best illustrated by a look at how it fits into Intel’s lineup.

Model Cores Threads Base core

clock speed

Peak Turbo

clock speed

L3 cache

size

Memory

channels

TDP Price
Core i5-650 2 4 3.2 GHz 3.46 GHz 4 MB 2 73W $176
Core i5-655K 2 4 3.2 GHz 3.46 GHz 4 MB 2 73W $216
Core i5-661 2 4 3.33 GHz 3.6 GHz 4 MB 2 87W $196
Core i5-670 2 4 3.46 GHz 3.73 GHz 4 MB 2 73W $284
Core i5-680 2 4 3.6 GHz 3.86 GHz 4 MB 2 73W $294
Core i5-750 4 4 2.66 GHz 3.20 GHz 8 MB 2 95W $196
Core i7-860 4 8 2.80 GHz 3.46 GHz 8 MB 2 95W $284
Core i7-870 4 8 2.93 GHz 3.60 GHz 8 MB 2 95W $562
Core i7-875K 4 8 2.93 GHz 3.60 GHz 8 MB 2 95W $342

Intel charges a bit of a premium for the 655K versus the 650, but the 875K is $220 cheaper than the Core i7-870—at least right now. One would expect the Core i7-870’s price to snap into line or the product to be canceled, but Intel says it has no plans to change the i7-870’s price “in the near term.” So it may just hang around as a singularly poor value. Whatever happens, the 875K gives you a more flexible CPU for a whole lot less cash.

In fact, the i7-875K costs roughly 50 bucks more than the Phenom II X6 1090T Black Edition, AMD’s fastest desktop processor, which is also unlocked. No doubt Intel charges a little more because, at stock speeds, the Core i7-875K is faster than the X6 1090T. We know this because the Core i7-870, with the same stock clocks, was faster overall in our review of the 1090T. Still, the price is close enough that 875K’s intended target is pretty clear.

The Core i5-655K isn’t such an obviously good value. At $216, it slots into the existing price structure for Clarkdale-based dual-cores, and we’ve long thought Intel charges too steep a premium for the higher clock speeds of those CPUs. Heck, the 655K costs more than the Core i5-661, which has higher stock clocks for both the CPU cores and the integrated graphics, so there’s a premium for the unlocking, too. If you leave overclocking out of the equation, we’d prefer Intel’s $199 quad, the Core i5-750. The closest competition from AMD has more cores, as well: the Phenom II X4 965 Black Edition is $185, and the Phenom II X6 1090T is $199.

Then again, you can’t really leave overclocking out of the conversation when you’re talking about a 32-nm Clarkdale processor, for reasons we’ll make clear shortly.

The new value mix

Since the 875K and 655K don’t break any new ground in terms of stock clock frequencies, we’ll spare you the massive CPU benchmark comparison. You can look at our Phenom II X6 review if that’s what you want. We’re instead going to focus on overclocking the K series.

Before we go there, though, we should take a quick look at how the effective price cut heralded by the 875K’s release changes the value picture. To get a sense of that, we’ve taken the performance and value data from our Phenom II X6 review and modified the prices slightly. Since we’re only considering stock clock speeds here, we’ve used performance data from the Core i7-870 to represent the 875K—the two should perform identically. Only a handful of the CPU prices have changed since that comparison, mostly for lower-end Athlon II processors.

A simple look at the price-performance ratio gets us this:

The cheaper processor almost always comes out on top if you run the numbers like this. As you can see, the 875K doesn’t fare so well on this basis. We don’t think that’s entirely fair, though, which is why we came up with our scatter plots that show both price and performance at the same time.

That looks much more promising. In fact, the 875K is in a very nice spot. To get higher performance than it, you’ll pay substantially more money.

Then again, CPU purchase decisions are usually made as part of a complete system build, and the math changes quite a bit when we consider price and performance in that context. In our X6 review, we priced out a comparable set of system components for each platform we tested, and it wound up looking like so:

Platform Total price Motherboard Memory Common components
AMD 890GX $656.94 Asus M4A89GTD Pro

($139.99)

4GB Kingston DDR3-1333

($104.99)

XFX Radeon HD 5770 1GB graphics card ($159.99), Western Digital Caviar Black 1TB hard drive ($109.99), Samsung SH-S223L DVD burner ($26.99), Antec Sonata III case with 500W PSU ($114.99)
Intel P45 $656.94 Gigabyte GA-EP45T-USB3P

($139.99)

Intel P55 $649.94 Gigabyte GA-P55-UD3

($132.99)

Intel X58 $789.94 Gigabyte GA-X58A-UD3R

($199.99)

6GB OCZ DDR3-1600

($177.99)

If you consider performance per dollar in the context of a mid-range system build like this one, the results change dramatically.

The 875K is our new value leader, just ahead of the Phenom II X6 1090T Black Edition. There’s very little daylight between the 875K and the 1090T, but the 875K comes out ahead.

The scatter plot illustrates the dynamic: the 875K’s additional performance offsets its higher price. Of course, none of this analysis takes overclocking into account, so it is just a starting point. Not a bad starting point, though!

We have a new leader in power efficiency per dollar, as well—by a very tiny margin over the old champ, the Core i5-750. The X6 1090T just isn’t as power-efficienct as Intel’s best chips.

Overclocking

Truth be told, overclocking most processors isn’t exactly difficult to do these days. An unlocked K-series chip does confer certain advantages, though. You can raise the multiplier to increase the core frequency while keeping the base clock steady, which is handy since an overclocked base clock can cause other system components to run at funky speeds. The K series gives the user total control over Intel’s Turbo Boost feature, too, so you can balance the CPU’s peak clock speeds against power consumption and different workload types. Also, you get unlocked memory clock multipliers with the K series, so higher memory frequencies are possible without altering the base clock.

A good motherboard will shepherd you around many of these difficulties, by locking down the PCIe clock to the correct speed, for instance. An unlocked CPU just makes everything a little easier and, with the right BIOS, gives you near-total freedom.

For our K-series overclocking attempts, we chose the Asus P7H57D-V EVO motherboard and a Thermaltake Frio CPU cooler; the combo is pictured above. We chose the Frio because its five heatpipes, large surface area, and dual fans will dissipate a tremendous amount of heat. We chose the EVO board because Asus was able to provide us with a special BIOS that supports fine-grained tweaking on K-series processors. Have a look at the menu below for a sense of the control it offers.

The base multiplier, or “CPU ratio setting” goes as high as 63, ridiculously enough, so there’s plenty of leeway for setting clock speeds there. The 875K’s default ratio of 22 multiplied by the 133.33MHz base clock yields a 2.93GHz core speed. The BIOS also allows us to set the additional multiplier increments added by Turbo Boost, depending on how many CPU cores are busy—those go as high as 15 beyond the base multiplier.

Gigabyte’s recent BIOSes do support the K-series chips’ unlocked multipliers, but they don’t give you control over individual Turbo multipliers.

The version of the Asus BIOS we used for the bulk of our testing exposed memory clocks up to 1600MHz for the 875K and up to 1333MHz for the 655K. A later revision added 1600, 1866, and 2133MHz memory speeds with the 655K, though we weren’t able to get the system stable at memory frequencies beyond 1600MHz in our few attempts with a couple of different fancy DIMM sets, even with loose memory timings and memory voltages over 1.65V.

We decided to overclock the two K-series processors by turning up the Turbo Boost multipliers in the BIOS, mainly because we could. We initially set all four Turbo multiplier offsets the same, however, since we had good cooling and didn’t see the need to limit performance. Although the CPU’s use of Turbo Boost frequencies is typically capped by certain thermal limits, the EVO’s BIOS appears to have removed them. During our stability tests with Prime95, our fully loaded CPUs didn’t appear to waver from their Turbo Core peak multipliers, even at high voltages and frequencies, when temperatures crept up above 70° C.

In fairly short order, as these things go, we got the 875K up to 4.13GHz by raising the Turbo offset for all cores to +9 and the core voltage to 1.275V. CPU temperatures hovered around 64° C at those settings, well within hand.

Bumping the multiplier up another notch just wasn’t entirely stable, even at 1.3V and beyond. The system would POST and boot into Windows, but it crashed during our stability tests. To compound the problem, at those settings, CPU temperatures climbed into the mid 70s and were on the rise. We were at the limits of both the chip and our cooling. Had we only been at the limits of our cooling, we could have used individual Turbo multipliers to get a little more frequency out of one or two cores. However, even just one core set to a +10 offset produced a system crash.

4.13GHz ain’t too shabby, though, all things considered. Your mileage may vary, but I’d say these results are fairly typical for casual Lynnfield overclocking with air cooling.

The 655K upstaged its bigger brother by reaching 4.4GHz without a fuss. That’s at a Turbo offset of +9 for both cores, adding to a base multiplier of 24. We had to raise the voltage to 1.38V to get there, but temperatures remained relatively low at around 61°C in our stress tests. An offset of +10 wasn’t stable, even at over 1.4V.

We’ve hit similar speeds with non-unlocked Clarkdales in the past, so this result isn’t unexpected. Seeing a CPU’s ticker going that fast doesn’t fail to impress, though.

I had an awfully good experience with overclocking the Phenom II X6 1090T Black Edition using AMD’s Windows-based Overdrive utility. I’ve not been favorably disposed to Windows-based overclocking tools in the past, but Overdrive exposes all of the X6’s knobs and dials exquisitely and is very easy to use. Given that, I figured I should try out Intel’s Control Center app, as well.

Unfortunately, this app only works with Intel’s own motherboards, and only certain ones. I installed the 875K into the supported DP55KG mobo and attempted to replicate our overclocking success from the Asus board.

Control Center will let you set all of the multipliers and raise the CPU voltage, and it even gives the user the ability to adjust Turbo Boost’s wattage and amperage limits. However, you’ll notice in the picture above that all of the items marked with a blue asterisk require a reboot in order to take effect. Many of the good ones, including CPU voltage, are subject to this limitation. In my view, that makes this application nearly useless. The whole point of Windows-based overclocking is to avoid the reboots required with BIOS-based tools

Worse yet, I found that voltage settings in the app didn’t always persist. If the system crashed and rebooted, it would often come up at a lower voltage than the one I’d just been using. I’d have to select the voltage I wanted and, yes, reboot once again. Ugh.

We had some trouble replicating the results we got on the Asus for another reason: the CPU voltage on the Intel board tended to droop under load, and that often led to a lockup or crash. This happened even after we raised the Turbo wattage and amperage maximums well beyond their defaults. The solution was to crank up the CPU voltage to 1.3875V in Control Center; it would then droop to 1.29V under load, as monitored in Control Center, and the system would remain stable at 4.13GHz.

Obviously, the total package here isn’t great. AMD’s Overdrive is miles ahead of Intel’s utility, and Asus’ BIOS is faster and easier to use. If you are using an Intel motherboard and want to overclock a K-series processor, the BIOSes on Intel’s enthusiast-class boards have allowed control over Turbo multipliers on unlocked chips for some time now. That capability has been limited to expensive Extreme Edition chips in the past, but no longer. You’re probably better off just using the BIOS, provided your board has the option.

Overclocked performance and power draw

Here’s a quick look at the performance of the overclocked 655K and 875K processors compared to some other chips we’ve abused recently. Note that we had the Phenom II X6 at a base clock of 3.9GHz and a three-core Turbo peak of 4.3GHz.

At stock speeds, the Phenom II X6 1090T is only a smidgen slower than the Core i7-870. When the 875K and 1090T are both overclocked to their limits, the margin grows, and the 875K’s lead is more pronounced. Remember, also, that we’re seeing four Intel cores outperform six AMD cores at similar clock speeds.

One might expect the Core i5-655K’s dual cores to have little chance against the quad-core competition, but its dizzying clock frequencies and strong per-clock performance allow it to close within striking distance. At 4.4GHz, the 655K trails the stock-clocked Phenom II X4 965 by only about five percent—and the 655K is over 50% faster than the X4 965 in the single-threaded test. The only other processors to break the 6000 mark in the single-threaded portion of Cinebench are other overclocked 32-nm Intel CPUs.

Even at 4.4GHz, the 655K’s power consumption is pretty reasonable; it draws about as much power under load as an Athlon II X4 635 or a Core i7-870—and substantially less than a Phenom II X4 965. The 875K’s power draw is much more considerable at 4.13GHz, but it’s still lower than our overclocked Phenom II X6’s. You’ll need good cooling to get the most out of the X6 or the 875K.

Cranking up the memory speeds

After we’d taken the core clocks on our K-series CPUs up to their peaks, it occurred to me that we should see how those overclocked CPUs would perform with faster memory, as well. We have incredibly capable Corsair Dominator DIMMs in all of our CPU test rigs, but we rarely push them to their limits when we’re not overclocking. Since the K-series processors have unlocked memory multipliers, we quickly turned up the DIMM clocks to 1600MHz at 8-8-8-24 timings with a 1T command rate. We did the same with the Phenom II X6 1090T. That’s quite a bump from our usual settings of 1333MHz at 8-8-8-20 and 2T. Here’s how it affected memory bandwidth.

The 875K posts some decent gains over the Core i7-870 at stock speeds, but none of these gains are all that exceptional. Still, faster memory should give our overclocked processors a little more headroom in some tests.

Putting it all together

Now that we’ve overclocked both the CPUs and the memory, let’s take another quick look at performance in some common applications. For these tests, I took the liberty of raising the 1090T’s Turbo Core limit from three occupied cores to four to give it a little extra speed.

The 875K’s four cores juuust manage to outperform the 1090T’s six in this nicely multithreaded application. The 655K’s two screaming cores, meanwhile, are scary close to the Phenom II X4 965, though they fall short of victory.

Blah blah four cores blah blah six blah blah fall short of victory.

A fast CPU simply isn’t a requirement for most of today’s games. With averages in the 50 FPS range, even the cheapest contemporary processors we tested will run this game (and many like it) quite smoothly. I wouldn’t worry too much about those frame rate minimums, either; they seem to be a little flaky in this test.

For what it’s worth in terms of future-proofing, though, both overclocked K-series processors are measurably faster than the overclocked Phenom II X6 1090T.

Conclusions

Like I said, it’s good to be king. Intel has calibrated its response to the Phenom II X6 quite carefully, and the result is a clean sweep. At stock clock speeds, the Core i7-875K is a better performer than the Phenom II X6 1090T—just a little bit in multithreaded applications, but quite a lot in single-threaded ones. The 875K is also a (very slightly) better value. When both CPUs are overclocked, the 875K retains its performance lead. Either way, the 875K is more power efficient than the 1090T, too.

The Phenom II X6 1090T is still an attractive product, but it’s not quite as good as the Core i7-875K. One gets the impression that’s exactly how Intel wants it. Meanwhile, Intel is no doubt giving AMD a look that says, “Don’t make me bring my 32-nm six-core over there. Don’t you make me do it.”

The Core i5-655K is another matter entirely. I’m not convinced it’s a great value compared to the quad-core alternatives, but it is the best way to get blistering performance with applications that use only light multithreading.

The 655K is also an official blessing of sorts for Clarkdale overclocking, and that’s like having a special pass from your doctor for eating all the bacon you want. When its two cores at 4.4GHz nearly match a stock-clocked Phenom II X4 965 in a video encoding or rendering test, it’s hard not to be a little taken. If you then notice that a system based on a 4.4GHz 655K draws 30W less under load than a system based on a Phenom II X4 965, you may start asking serious questions about how many cores your next computer really needs to have. I can envision an incredibly fast, exceptionally quiet system built around a 655K. The 655K may be a little pricey for what it is, but it’s very much an enthusiast’s play toy. You may be able to get similar overclocking satisfaction out of the Core i3-530 for nearly half the price, though, if you don’t mind doing a little more tweaking to reach stable settings.

Comments closed
    • kamikaziechameleon
    • 9 years ago

    Considering a good portion of this review features overclocking I think we all would have liked to see points for the 1090T, 1050T, 875K, 655K, and 980X overclocked added into the value mix to put some things in perspective.

      • Mr Bill
      • 9 years ago

      Were the NB speed at 2400MHz while the DDR3 was at 1600MHz?

    • kamikaziechameleon
    • 9 years ago

    Just going over this review since its the last thing here approaching on a full featured cpu review.

    I can’t believe how well placed AMD is for value/power systems. The quad core at 100 bucks is amazing! I also really like the solid potential of their buttom 6 core especially since AMD prices have all dropped 70 or more dollars for the hex core designs since this review and the intels have all remained slightly inflated.

    • obarthelemy
    • 9 years ago

    I Kinda disagree with the article’s introduction: what has kept AMD on my radar is NOT unlocked clocks (nor cores), but overall value:
    – Intel’s MBs are more expensive
    – Intel’s IGPs used to suck hugely, and are still slightly inferior.

    In the end, having the fastest CPU is nice, except almost nobody buys those. For low- to mid- end PCs, AMD’s CPU have been competitive on a perf/price metrics, and turn out cheaper and more reliable once you take the MB and usable IGP into account.

    I think Overclocking is not that common anymore. I no longer know anybody who does it, I myself underclock if anything… PCs are fast enough at stock speed, and the kids who took to overclocking (the same way the generation before messed with cars or bikes) have grown up and have better things to do. The new generation must be doing something else, probably involving Facebook, texts, and Twitter. As long as they stay off my lawn…

      • Sunburn74
      • 9 years ago

      I dunno… right now i’m weighing buying either an i7-860 for 200 dollars or a i7-875k for 300 dollars. I’m like 80 percent in favor of the i7-875K for two reasons:

      1) its slightly faster whilst being equally as power efficient
      2) its newer meaning my upgrade is right on the sweet spot of today’s value curve
      3) I may want to overclock in the future and don’t feel like relearning the tricks involved in dealing with the p55 chipset (all that qpi, blclck nonsense). I took way too long ocing my old q9550 and quite frankly, think the ease of just bumping up a multiplier and giving a little bit more cpu vtt is a welcome change from weekend after weekend of trying to balance all a board, ram, and a cpu at oced settings.

      I don’t see the chip as a phenomenal value (again the i7-860 is available at 200 dollars at microcenter). I just see it as a security option for those who know they’ll toss and turn at night second-guessing if they really should have picked the i7-860 over the i7-930 platform or AMDs thubans.

      • indeego
      • 9 years ago

      /[<"- Intel's IGPs used to suck hugely, and are still slightly inferior."<]/ So don't buy one with an IGP and buy a 3rd party card? Any card under $50 will beat either AMD's or Intel's IGPg{<.<}g As for MB's, I find this true for Intel upon release, but they quickly come down to reality 3-6 months laterg{<.<}g

      • 1love4all
      • 9 years ago

      shut up and move on with your laptop……we are busy OCin

    • =assassin=
    • 9 years ago

    When is the 875k actually out in the shops? I can’t see it anywhere yet, or any reference to to a release date?

    • bfar
    • 9 years ago

    You may not need an expensive motherboard/memory combo if you’re only changing the cpu multi/vcore and you’re not gonna push the b-clock.

    This could turn out to be a very tempting option for someone putting together a decent value overclocked system.

    • herothezero
    • 9 years ago

    q[

      • Sunburn74
      • 9 years ago

      Not even a little epeen?

      • flip-mode
      • 9 years ago

      +1 good call, and and additional $20 saved with x4 955. $70 saved is a substantial shift on the value chart.

    • BoBzeBuilder
    • 9 years ago

    Will this be available for us poor socket 775 users?

      • Kaleid
      • 9 years ago

      No, socket 775 is pretty much dead.

    • WasF
    • 9 years ago

    Misplaced post

    • octop
    • 9 years ago

    No matter what it is. AMD is the last underdog we couldn’t effort to loose. The last qualified one to bring balance to the force. I don mean doing charity when U purchase a processor, AMD is still good in value when you consider overall platform & upgradability. Since Intel’s the King, he changes the socket whenever he like & U have to stick with your old motherboard until next election. Most important of all, Imagine what Intel’d behave without AMD.

    • NeelyCam
    • 9 years ago

    Yet another review of Intel processors, and AMD fanboi zealot trolls are out in droves, defending their faith.

    Do I really have to start posting sh&t in every AMD CPU article about how much better Intel CPUs are? And I don’t even have to lie.

    • herothezero
    • 9 years ago

    q[

    • evilpaul
    • 9 years ago

    As of this writing I’m only on the second page and have to take issue with the value proposition.

    I suspect a lot of “older” TR readers in their late twenties and/or thirties used to be all about overclocking and still find it interesting, but would rather have a PC running at stock speeds that’s quiet, power efficient, and nearly 100% stable over a few extra FPS in some game or synthetic benchmark. I owned an Abit BP6 back in the day, did plenty of Socket A OC’ing, etc. But at stock speeds just about any recent decent CPU is plenty fast for gaming anymore.

    Were I not unemployed and had money for an upgrade, I’d be going straight for a Core i7-860. It’s ~$80 more than the i5-750 (my second choice), but sports Hyper-Threading which makes my multi-tasking day. (Were my imaginary budget lower I’d go with an Athlon II X4.)

    The i7-860 missing is seriously skewing the value proposition. I doubt the majority of the people here would seriously consider spending 2x more on their CPU for the tiny bit of extra performance. The difference could buy a 80+ GB SSD which would provide a better overall boost to system performance, anyway.

    The X58 platform comparison is also slightly flawed. If you’re running at stock speeds it uses DDR3-1066. While I wouldn’t say getting DDR3-1600 to “future-proof” a little is a bad idea, you could knock ~$30 off your platform price by going with DDR3-1333.

    So there’s my rant. Some minor criticisms on an otherwise interesting article.

    • swaaye
    • 9 years ago

    Hmmm I might consider an upgrade from my Q6600 @ 3.0 to an i7 @ 4.0. 🙂

    The issue is that video encoding is about the only thing I do that would really benefit tangibly.

    $300 for a CPU isn’t that big of a deal. It’s the upper midrange. It’s less than the various Intel chips cost in the ’90s. It’s just not the bargain bin, and today we have awesome stuff down there unlike before.

    • NeelyCam
    • 9 years ago

    This is entirely off-topic, but…

    WHERE THE HELL IS THE LINK TO THE OLD TECHREPORT PAGE?!??!?

    Did I not predict that the link will disappear in a couple of weeks.

    CHANGE IT BACK NOW!

      • Flying Fox
      • 9 years ago

      More -> At A Glance? It’s the first item under that menu item.

        • NeelyCam
        • 9 years ago

        Way too hard to hit both the Menu link AND the At The Glance button. Bad hangover/lack of coffee -> jittery hands and pissy mood.

        Change it back, pretty please?

      • 5150
      • 9 years ago

      OMG TEH CONSPIRECAYS!

    • vvas
    • 9 years ago

    Yes the price/performance of these parts looks great, especially with the overclocking potential in mind. But I’d reserve judgement until the availability picture clears up. I mean, at the moment these processors look good on paper, but they are nowhere to be found. And it remains to be seen whether Intel is planning to commit to sufficient quantities, or whether this is mostly a publicity stunt with enough volume to send to reviewers, followed by constant scarcity on the retail channel.

    So there. Let’s see first how easy it will be for one to actually /[

    • Krogoth
    • 9 years ago

    Great review, Damage. You clearly show how both chips are just black editions of their regular counterparts (i7 870 and i5 650). The 655K carries the “unlocked” tax, but oddly enough 875K does not. Perhaps, Intel is anticipating high demand for the 875K which will make its retail price closer to its desktop counterpart.

    A minor nitpick, it is actually 4 cores + HT (8 threads) versus 6 cores (6 threads) for the 875K/1060T comparison. The higher clocked and greater thread count that the OC 875K possesses should allow it to defeat the OC 1060T. I don’t see what is the surprise here.

    Also the review kinda gloss over the detail that overclocking #1 rule has always been “YMMV”. Not all chips will be able to reach the same speed and a few “golden ones” might be able to obtain an even higher OC. The unlocking gimmick just makes it easier for the motherboard since you do not have to crank up QPI link speed (HT link speed for AMD chips). You can get away with using JEDEC-spec DDR3. Let’s be honest, memory performance hasn’t really matter much for single-socket chips in a long time.

      • Mr Bill
      • 9 years ago

      No mention in either article of how easy it is to overclock of the AMD Black Edition memory controller from 533MHz to 800MHz and NB speed from 2GHz to 2.4GHz Just bumping core speeds does not help nearly as much if memory access is still slow.

        • OneArmedScissor
        • 9 years ago

        No kidding. What is the point if it’s not comparing the difference between overclocking with the CPU multiplier and bumping everything else up?

        A simple system bus overclock comparison would have been nice. I figured that would be the entire point of tests run on existing CPUs given unlocked multipliers.

        …or did Intel say that was a no-no?

    • FuturePastNow
    • 9 years ago

    Is the graphics core not unlocked?

      • LaChupacabra
      • 9 years ago

      That’s kind of like asking if your 3 cylinder diesel is turbo-charged

        • Firestarter
        • 9 years ago

        A 3 cilinder diesel without turbocharger is a pathetic thing indeed.

    • Coran Fixx
    • 9 years ago

    Would have loved comparison to i7-860 at stable overclock (3.8 maybe?)

    I also wonder if unlocked multi’s really lead to extraordinary overclocking advantages.

      • Krogoth
      • 9 years ago

      It is easier for the motherboard since you do not have crank up the QPI link speed to obtain aggressive overclocks.

      You are more limited in overclocking by how much the CPU can handle in terms of pure clock speed and thermal output.

    • flip-mode
    • 9 years ago

    As #30, an excellent review.

    I still lament the absence of the x4-955, from a value perspective, but in the grand scheme I think it makes little difference.

    AMD really, badly, urgently needs to get its next gen CPU out, and have it be impressive or at least more competitive.

      • anotherengineer
      • 9 years ago

      Ya, although the 955 would be very close to the 965 anyway.

      I have mine undervolted to 1.2V which cuts down on the power quite a bit.

      That’s about the only curosity I have with the 45nm AMD’s, they can easily run at 1.2V and lower yet they run about 1.4V stock, just seems like a waste to me, unless they don’t want to cut into the energy efficient chips mark up??

        • derFunkenstein
        • 9 years ago

        Probably easier to say “all these chips run at 1.4v” than to go through and bin them based on a lower voltage – probably keeps yields high.

    • End User
    • 9 years ago

    It appears that Core i3/i5/i7 has hit a wall – roughly 6000 in single-threaded Cinebench R10 when overclocked on air. Thats what I see with my i7-920 D0 @4.2.

    • Tamale
    • 9 years ago

    what an excellent, targeted review of a great product. just great stuff, all-around

    • JrezIN
    • 9 years ago

    You gotta love AMD! Nothing is better than competition!
    those two has to keep close to each other (even if you’re one’s fanboy!).

      • NeelyCam
      • 9 years ago

      Yes.

      Honestly, I starting to think that AMD is getting ahead of Intel because of “peripheral” (=non-CPU) reasons… Intel CPUs are faster, but AMD CPUs are fast enough, and what really matters is the ‘other stuff’ like IGP and support for things like SATA6 and USB3.

      My prediction: Intel will catch up with AMD on IGPs in the next year or two (now that they are “focused on graphics”), but they’ll royally f#ck up on lack of USB3/SATA6 support. Once CPUs are all fast enough at low-power points, it all becomes a game of features, and AMD will win that game.

      I would almost argue that Intel is focusing on smartphones/tablets/health/”DigitalHome”/etc. too much and losing sight of their bread and butter.

    • ssidbroadcast
    • 9 years ago

    q[

      • dpaus
      • 9 years ago

      What, and cut their profit margins? You forget: Intel’s not there to give you the maximum processor they can, they’re there to get the maximum cash out of your pocket for whatever processor they care to give you.

        • ssidbroadcast
        • 9 years ago

        Nope, I didn’t forget: if they don’t like the margins, they can just charge more. Like Scott said, it’s good to be king.

    • WasF
    • 9 years ago

    You know what? The king is naked! Or no AMD would have *[

      • Flying Fox
      • 9 years ago

      What if you are buying new and not upgrading? People have different circumstances you know..

        • WasF
        • 9 years ago

        I was making a statement 🙂
        Explicitly: Intel is now reverting to sanity (does it have a choice?) after milking early adopters of their products (their best customers!). That’s disrespectful.
        Changing socket/chipset requirements every other new CPU is disrespectful too.
        Intel is treating its best customers (those who would spend 500 bucks on a processor) as a bunch of wh*res: not only Intel expects them to buy overpriced devices (duh!), but 6 months later makes those devices obsolete with a new socket/chipset requirement/.., to upgrade: buy new mobo!

          • wibeasley
          • 9 years ago

          Cash flows the other direction for prostitutes. Try again with another inflammatory metaphor. Drugs, Hilter and abortion haven’t been used in these comments yet.

            • WasF
            • 9 years ago

            Since you chose carefully what to comment on, metaphors aside, you agree it is disrespectful, then.

            • wibeasley
            • 9 years ago

            It depends on the unspoken agreement between Intel and its customers. I don’t think enthusiasts had a justified expectation that Intel wouldn’t change chipsets. So ‘disrespectful’ doesn’t seem like the right word to me, but I agree that AMD does offer better short-term value to enthusiast customers willing to upgrade only the CPU. I don’t think OEM customers benefit much.

            If you need only a new CPU, TR has plenty of information for you to make a value judgement that’s tailored to your specific situation. The performance stats are in this article and the AM2/AM2+/AM3 compatibility possibilities/limitations were described in previous articles. (But still you should check your MB’s updated compatibility list).

            (Disclosure: 6 days ago I bought a Athlon II and a 785G. The decision was partially influenced by the appeal of later upgrading to more cache and cores if it was needed). No one’s been betrayed or tricked, and I don’t understand your agitation. The TR article’s “computations” are not “wrong”. And something’s wrong if you need to buy a new case to upgrade to an 1156 socket; you’re being hysterical here.

            And maybe the AMD strategy isn’t best in the long term for two reasons. (1) Perhaps it means their CPU performance is limited because they’re forced to comply with an older chipset, and (2) maybe this increases R&D expense and time to market.

            If AMD’s performance was dominating Intel again (given the two chips costs the same price to construct), I’d be more likely to agree that Intel should change its platform strategy. I’ve gotta think there’s some benefit to changing chipsets other than the diabolical motivations you seem to suggest. Selling 5% more chipsets to motherboard makers doesn’t seem to be it.

            • WasF
            • 9 years ago

            I expressed my self “hysterically”, as you say, to make a statement.
            You knew I used metaphors and you’re shocked I’d upgrade my case for a CPU upgrade?! There is a little contradiction there. You really think I’d do that?! If I thought that, I woudn’t have answered my own crazy post 🙂

            Anyway, I’m sure 870 buyers totally disagree with the “agreement” you mention. Actually they already expressed them selves here.

            I also fail to understand how socket stability/backward compatibility is a short term strategy! Really.
            Instead of it being a burden to R&D, which is apparently not judging by how the 1190 performs while it’s based on an older process, maybe this shows the R&D had more insight into future development and already made provision for useful pins. That happens when you *[

            • wibeasley
            • 9 years ago

            l[http://www.techreport.com/forums/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=71924<]§ l[

            • WasF
            • 9 years ago

            We finally agree on something 🙂 but the 870 not being good value is no reason for Intel to turn it into a trap for its best true believers.
            You really count on Intel customer to read many hidden signs, unspoken agreements and the like.. its getting hard to follow!
            I’m a simple mind: Intel is being disrespectful (or call it my failure to read the signs :).

            So, you’re recommending 860. See #40. “generate sales with new customers, to crap with our existing customers.” He, too, feels played, for some reason..

            I think shank15217 said it best: “All Intel is doing is killing it’s enthusiast platform”.

            I would, and now will, sacrifice a little processor power to get stable platform.
            Actually, I wanted pure CPU power for my HD x264 encodes exclusively. Looking at how much FPS an 870/860 would give me over an AMD, and now that I can use CUDA, I’m starting to think that, overall, AMD offers a better solution!

            My argument was, the article calling Intel king, when, obviously, it’s being *[

            • wibeasley
            • 9 years ago

            This drama and personification isn’t necessary: l[

            • WasF
            • 9 years ago

            Oh, so those who bought the infamous 870 did it because they read no signs, either?! OKey.
            And someone who spends 500+ bucks on a processor is no true believer.
            OK, I think I lost any hope to convince you here 🙂
            Might I just remind you that 860 buyers (the best value, article readers, then) would also have been interested in a 875K. They too, feel trapped..
            And that 920 buyers woke up angry someday, for some reason..
            I see a pattern, and those are the signs I can read..

            Other than that we globally agree. I’m sure if the situation was reversed, AMD would behave like no saint, and, yes, I would be the first to call them bastards.
            Taking advantage of customers is never OK. Being systematic never will make OK. And that’s why you should join me in denouncing Intel’s attitude. And tomorrow, maybe, AMD’s.

            • wibeasley
            • 9 years ago

            Ok.

      • derFunkenstein
      • 9 years ago

      if you’re just plugging in a CPU you can use the first calculations.

    • deinabog
    • 9 years ago

    Although I’m happy with the Core 2 Quad 9650s in both my boxes that i7-875K looks mighty good.

    • potatochobit
    • 9 years ago

    I dont know anyone other than people who might post on this tech forum that would purchase an almost 400$ CPU.

    I’m glad you like the 875k but only benchmark junkies will be purchasing it.
    most people purchase a computer for work or for video games and this does not fit the bill for either of those.

    if I had bout a 975 extreme perhaps I would be regretting that purchase now but I am totally satisfied with my AMD, even now. My computer is still waiting for a current Generation game that can push it’s limits, so I am totally cool with waiting till next spring for a new processor which hopefully will set new standards.

      • flip-mode
      • 9 years ago

      Good thing the article was published here instead of in People magazine then. Even most people who read this article here probably don’t spend that much, though.

        • sweatshopking
        • 9 years ago

        HA i would NEVER spend 400$ on a cpu. that’s a whole system cost! including monitor!! …not that i’d buy that… my wife would kill me!!

          • End User
          • 9 years ago

          l[

            • derFunkenstein
            • 9 years ago

            you’re better off just not responding to him. He’s writing stuff like this because he likes attention.

            • Farting Bob
            • 9 years ago

            The same reason people watch programs like Top Gear. You are never going to be able to afford the £300k hypercar they play around with but it doesnt stop you wanting to know about it.

            • TravelMug
            • 9 years ago

            Spoken as someone who does not know sweatshopking (and his posts) yet. Just leave it be, not worth it.

      • Flying Fox
      • 9 years ago

      If that is the case then all of these hardware sites should only test the mid to low range stuff then, because “nobody” is stupid enough to buy the high end at ridiculously prices? 🙄

      BTW, $342 is “almost $400”? What kind of math is this?

        • UberGerbil
        • 9 years ago

        Not to mention today’s $340 chip is tomorrow’s $170 chip. It’s not like this review’s benchmarks stop being applicable even as future rounds of price cuts change the value equation.

          • Freon
          • 9 years ago

          I tend not to believe this anymore. C2Q and C2D chips flatlined 2 or more years ago. I paid $180 for my E8500, it’s still about the same on Newegg. It’s never been worth the C2Q upgrade to a Q9550, Q9650, etc because they’re still $250+ chips.

            • UberGerbil
            • 9 years ago

            It happens more at the top end of the lineup, where the marginal dollar increase for performance goes nonlinear. When a new chip is introduced at the top of the line the price drop for the former top dog still tends to be considerable (at least on the Intel side where you still see stickers approaching $1K). That has little effect on the middle of the lineup, which only really gets a significant haircut when an entirely new microarchitecture is introduced — and even that has slowed with Intel’s lethargic filling-out of the Nehalem line (while being in no hurry to kill off the Core 2). The realities of shopping at the $400 vs the sub-$200 price-points, I guess.

            • Freon
            • 9 years ago

            Yeah I’m sure the 870 will drop, likely the 980 will eventually if it isn’t just bumped by a similar but cheaper part. The Q9650 is still $349 and I doubt it will drop before it is just discontinued.

            I also remember the X2 socket 939 chips became scarce and expensive. I had a 3200 single core and finally had to settle for a 4200 X2 as an upgrade for a decent chunk of change before 939 was dropped, then prices actually started to go up. I had hoped for a 4600 or 4800 on the cheap (<$150) if I waited out. Never happened. Don’t recall the exact prices, but it was something like that.

    • Pasdepardon
    • 9 years ago

    Bought a i5-750 in november, it is still in its unopened box (because of unexpected cash shortages for the rest of the built), but happy to see that processor is still a good value 6 month later. Just sayin’…

      • Firestarter
      • 9 years ago

      That’s why you should never buy part for part! I’ve been there, it’s not pretty.

    • Sunburn74
    • 9 years ago

    Scott,
    Did you lose any board functionality as you approached 4.4ghz? Specifically, could you still sleep the board at those high speeds?

      • Meadows
      • 9 years ago

      Good question. Oftentimes an overclock may prove rock-stable from day to day – I’ve had a system like that before, too -, but can’t execute a wake-up to save its life.

      I’m still guessing as to why that can be. Power supply? Motherboard? Bad voltages at the sudden load?

        • tay
        • 9 years ago

        I have the same issue with a number of boards. I have heard of this issue consistently recently as more people just put their computers to sleep rather than restart. I’ve seen it with MSI and Gigabyte boards. I don’t think its power related, but its motherboard related. I doubt it is voltage related either as I have seen this at stock/auto voltages.

      • Damage
      • 9 years ago

      Honestly didn’t try sleep mode. I’ll consider looking into it…. after the holiday weekend. 🙂

    • GreatGooglyMoogly
    • 9 years ago

    Again, why no i7 860?

      • fent
      • 9 years ago

      Im guessing they dont have one. But just take off like 3-5% of the i7 870 and thats the 860.

    • Voldenuit
    • 9 years ago

    Let us all put our hands together and thank AMD for forcing intel into this position.

    My next build will probably /[

      • Flying Fox
      • 9 years ago

      With Intel ~2-year tick-tock release schedule this is bound to happen. You have to consider cpu+mobo+RAM in one shot. If you get more out of the same core it is a bonus, not a given.

      As I have been saying for a while, there is only so much left in advancing the CPU in terms of system performance, especially considering price and users’ needs. So they have to find something else to improve. That’s why they are all pushing for things like greater interconnect (CPU-chipset) speeds, pulling PCIe lanes closer to the CPU, using SSDs (worth a couple of CPU speed grades they say!) with SATA3, etc. Some of these /[

        • guardianl
        • 9 years ago

        This, unfortunately, is the current best strategy for both AMD and Intel platforms. We do not know when MB sockets will change, if the vendor will update our MB BIOS with new CPU speeds even if it’s socket compatible etc.

        Better to buy mainstream MB/CPU/RAM for $300 or less (i.e. AMD 630, 765G MB, 4GB RAM) once every two years than try to buy a future-proof $600 system every four (i.e. i920 + 1366 MB + 6GB RAM).

        Ironically, the best parts to invest in are probably Case+PS+Monitor since you can carry them from build-to-build for the most part.

          • NeelyCam
          • 9 years ago

          Great post. You’re absolutely right, and I haven’t thought of that enough before.

          The only things I seem to keep from build to build are my monitor and PSU/case/DVD-burner. Keeping two-year-old HDs seems stupid, and memory is always going from DDR to DDR2 to DDR3 to DDR4… The practical result of all this is that I have several old, perfectly adequate builds everywhere that end up giving to my friends/family.

          My old passively-cooled NVidia card (some 8xxx series) is another thing I’m still using… without fail, it kicks Intel’s IGP ass, and scales up my flash TV shows to 1080p without a hiccup. I’m sure the new AMD 5xxx passive cards would be faster at lower power, but when it works, don’t fix it?

          • d0g_p00p
          • 9 years ago

          No such thing as “future proof” However I pretty much do what you wrote. Every 2 years I do a core upgrade. CPU/memory/motherboard. Then each year I’ll do a small upgrade if needed. Typically it’s a videocard and a couple of new hard drives. Last year my main upgrade was a Corei7/X58/DDR3 core upgrade and this year I bought a new PS, coupld of SSD’s and a 5850. I honestly don’t see myself upgrading for quite some time as this machine is really powerful. The CPU barely takes a hit on games it’s all on the GPU.

          Yeah, so like I said every 2 years = “core” upgrade, every year = extra if needed

        • Voldenuit
        • 9 years ago

        Who said anything about clinging?

        If I had bought an AM3 instead of a LGA775 system 2 years ago, a Thuban would be a drop in upgrade for me today instead of, well, /[

          • Flying Fox
          • 9 years ago

          AM3 introduces support for DDR3, so if you are into that you would have to buy new RAM (assuming you came from a DDR2-platform already). Besides AM3 does up the HT speeds by a bit. Who knows if the next one (AM3+?) will also give some extra performance? So by just plugging in a newer CPU you are leaving some performance off the table. Not that it will matter I have to say.

          AMD takes the approach which allows a group of builders to reuse more of their components. Not bad, and I think we can all agree that choices are good. So we have the AMD and Intel approaches for us to pick. Buyers need to balance their performance goals, budget, and other factors when they pick an approach. I picked AM2+/Athlon II X2 because I want to reuse RAM, so my chief concern was cost. If I am building another rig my requirements will be different.

          • NeelyCam
          • 9 years ago

          Don’t forget the utterly shameful lack of support for USB3/SATA6 by Intel. And still no word about when these will be supported…

          Should I pick a marginally better (but less-than-marginally more expensive) cpu, and start buying PCIe cards for USB/SATA… again?

          Based on the big words on “IGP performance”, I have a feeling Intel is going to figure out how to boost the graphics. But the lack of USB3 is unacceptable.

    • Meadows
    • 9 years ago

    g{

      • continuum
      • 9 years ago

      HAHA ++;

      Heck at stock clocks even, if the price on the i7-875K holds true… that’s a hell of a deal.

    • StuG
    • 9 years ago

    Ouch, this was a pretty rough blow to AMD. Not a devistating, but serious blow.

      • sweatshopking
      • 9 years ago

      damn that devistating. not as bad as devastating, but close.

        • zagortenay
        • 9 years ago

        I don’t understand how you read these reviews. Devastating blow to AMD? Core i7-875K does not OC any better than its locked brothers. There is a marginal performance difference between Core i7-875K and X6 1090T and X6 is almost 50$ cheaper.
        …and a 2 core chip for 216$? No, thank you, no matter how it overclocks!
        Actually we have been hearing these comments for years, but AMD is doing pretty good nowadays. AMD has never been so strong on the desktop.

          • Farting Bob
          • 9 years ago

          l[

            • WaltC
            • 9 years ago

            Actually, Flatulent Bob, both of you are right….;)

            When Intel decided to pump literally billions of $ into subsidizing Rdram production around the world in the form of investments and grants to companies like Infineon and Samsung (at that time Intel co-owned Rambus, IIRC), Intel also made the decision to get AMD off its back permanently by nuking the x86 platform through its upcoming 64-bit architecture known at the time as EPIC–what we know now as Itanium, or “itanic” in some circles.

            Intel’s commitment to nuking x86, and in the process AMD as well (because AMD’s bus licenses were all x86 based, even though AMD never used the P4 bus license it had obtained from Intel much earlier) was so thoroughly ingrained at the highest levels of the company that it was well over year after AMD began shipping the Opteron and then the AMD 64 desktop line before Intel belatedly truncated its relationship with Rambus and called a halt to its now ill-remembered “You don’t need 64-bits on the desktop!” Public Relations campaign for Itanium adoption. It was only at this point that Intel licensed x86-64 from AMD and began the process of moving the Core architecture into 64-bit, x86 territory.

            During that time span, which eclipsed a couple of years all total IIRC, yes, AMD was “kicking Intel’s butt” in just about every performance-related measurement taken both on and off the Internet. The P4 on a number of levels was simply not competitive, and the upcoming, seriously bragged-on Prescott, publicly rumored by Intel to eventually hit 10GHz before the architecture’s EOL, turned out to be a complete dud and was canceled in favor of an all-out Intel push towards Core 2 production.

            (I’ll add here that Intel’s “Netburst 10GHz” rumors were so convincing at the time that even such notables as John Carmack wrote copiously on the subject at times, and even predicted that the enormous ramp in P4 MHz speed occasioned by Intel’s superior manufacturing process capabilities would more than offset the “architectural tricks” that AMD had used with the AMD 64 to get ahead of Intel at the high end of the x86 performance structure.

            Ironically, and somewhat comically, Intel later adopted x86-64 and its own “architectural tricks” to far surpass the P4 architecture in both longevity and performance, and I haven’t heard so much as a peep out of Carmack on this subject ever since…;) Wise of him, I think, to currently stick to commenting on his own software development and little else.)

            Anyway, during that two-year window, one might logically have expected AMD to capture a significantly larger share of the overall x86 market than it was able to do. AMD was not able to do that because–drum roll–enter the antitrust lawsuit that AMD eventually filed against Intel.

            It turns out that even though AMD actually nailed Intel with its pants down so to speak, and nailed Intel significantly in performance for a significant amount of time, Intel was throwing money at OEMs, right and left, to keep them buying Intel cpus anyway, just as it literally threw hundreds of billions of $ away trying to stimulate Rdram production when what the market clearly wanted was the less expensive, more compatible DDR sdram, instead. Unlike Intel’s unsuccessful push with Rdram standardization, however, Intel mostly succeeded in its bid to limit, or even eliminate whenever possible, AMD’s share of the market even when AMD clearly had the superior technology to sell.

            Of course, the fact that Intel recently wrote a check to AMD for $1.25B and agreed to henceforth to cease and desist paying OEMs not to buy AMD products in the future (which is significant because this time Intel’s pledge comes in the form of a written, legal, and recorded series of documents), is now a matter of public record. I think what you’re saying is undeniably true, but is tempered by the fact that when AMD had the upper hand technologically, Intel still had the upper hand financially, and wasn’t shy about using its money to artificially truncate AMD’s market share at the time.

            I think zagortenay is also correct in what he says, too, because unlike in those days, Intel today cannot pay OEMs not to buy AMD cpus, or other AMD chips, and so from that perspective alone AMD is assured of getting its rightful share in a market where a product price and value advantage cannot be offset by an Intel willing to pay OEMs to buy its products, regardless of how they stack up from a price and value perspective. Those days are gone for good.

            But also zagortenay is right because AMD is flush with investment cash and no longer has to consume itself with the daily ins and outs, and the daily expenses, of operating its own FABs. What AMD has managed to do is to secure a certain and sure production capability without having to directly own and mange the source of production. No doubt in my mind that in that respect, too, AMD has never been in better shape.

            So just imagine what will happen should AMD come around again and trump Intel technologically as it did with Athlon, which succeeded even against every obstacle the formidable Intel could mount against it (which was no mean achievement itself, as AMD succeeded where all of Intel’s previous x86-cpu competitors crashed and burned.) Ok, so you might very well say, “Yea, but AMD’s Athlon was a fluke and that kind of thing will never happen again.” You might say that, certainly, but I’ll just remind you that as late as 1998 I recall several so-called cpu-business analysts predicting that AMD was not long for this world, and then in 1999 along comes the Athlon which upset that particular belief in a very big way. I’ll just remind that prior to the Athlon then the Opteron/A64, it was the considered opinion of many that AMD would never, ever surpass Intel technologically, even for a short period of time.

            My own opinion is that if AMD did it once AMD can do it again, but this time when they do it, if they do it, the company will be in a far, far better market position than it was in the days of Opteron and Prescott.

      • Freon
      • 9 years ago

      Definitely cut them at the knees just as they seemed to have some traction with some of their products.

      But without AMD, would Intel have released this? I give them firm pat on the back, but I think my money is still going to Intel.

      • charged3800z24
      • 9 years ago

      I guess I am lost, where we count “devistating blow” as a benchmark showing what only a bench mark can see. I lost about 10FPS peak on a game that is playable on a 90dollar CPU. I must sell my 1055t now ahh!!!

        • StuG
        • 9 years ago

        I just said it was a serious blow, and this is only because the 1090T was priced at a point where it had no real competitor. The i5 in this review is horrible and the i7 is a worthy contender but still a little overpriced.

        The fact of the matter is though that this is a direct attack against the newest Thuban chips, and still a rough blow for AMD…as I had said before.

        FYI, I have a Phenom II 940 so I know whats up. No-one in my family even has in Intel processor right now suprisingly, I don’t bash AMD but i’m not a fanboy either. Just call it how I see it.

          • NeelyCam
          • 9 years ago

          l[

            • StuG
            • 9 years ago

            Yes, it does mean I know whats up. I have a relative chip to the performance of AMD’s newest line, they are the same chip and I know how fast they can run and what they are capable of.

            And no, if you buy Intel you are not clueless, but possibly you under-estimate how quick AMD cpu’s are from them being “behind” on benchmarks.

          • WaltC
          • 9 years ago

          /[

    • wira020
    • 9 years ago

    What about the stock cooler? Will it be like the tower cooler included with 980x?… that will surely adds value…

      • Flying Fox
      • 9 years ago

      Interesting, I look through a few reviews and none of them mentioned or even show a picture of the cooler. But then again people who buy these K CPUs are going to overclock and will most likely use an aftermarket one.

    • shank15217
    • 9 years ago

    All Intel is doing is killing it’s enthusiast platform, AMD will counter with a price cut to the black edition and the value equation will change again.

      • wira020
      • 9 years ago

      Which is good for us… hehe..

      • Vaughn
      • 9 years ago

      I don’t see how they are killing the enthusiast platform that title belongs to Socket 1366 not 1156 which is the mainstream platform, if they release a i7 900 series chip that is unlocked and undercuts the x980 then you might have a point.

        • shank15217
        • 9 years ago

        Because there is at least 2 less reason to get the 1366 platform?

        + Unlocked multiplier
        + Significantly cheaper than the 980X and cheaper than most other 1366 CPUs too and more OC friendly.

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