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CPU Benchmark, Part 3: High-End Processors
The third part of our massive processor benchmarking shoot-out is dedicated to solutions priced beyond $200. We are going to compare fifteen CPU models from AMD Phenom II X6, Intel Core 2 Duo, Intel Core 2 Quad, Intel Core i5 and Intel Core i7 families. by Ilya Gavrichenkov 12/02/2010 | 01:23 PM Recently we have begun to publish a series of reviews with the results of a comprehensive test of modern CPUs we did in our test labs. Right now you can read two articles on that topic: CPU Benchmark, Part 1: Value Processors CPU Benchmark, Part 2: Mainstream Processors

Thus, we have already covered all desktop processors from both AMD and Intel that are officially priced at below $200. It’s time to move on further now, to more expensive and faster products. As we noted in our earlier articles, $200 is the threshold after which the performance of CPUs does not grow up at the same rate as their price. Therefore we don’t think that choosing expensive CPUs for general-purpose desktop computers is a rational solution. If you seek higher overall performance, your investments into the graphics subsystem or, for example, into SSDs are going to be far more effective. Well, of course we don’t mean that purchasing top-end CPUs is a sheer waste of money. There are situations and scenarios when high processing power is called for and quickly returns the investment into it. It is when the computer is used for computations-heavy applications. Home users and amateurs often dabble in video processing such as simple transcoding, nonlinear video editing or application of visual effects. Various 3D modeling suites and audio editing/mastering systems may also need high processing power. Gamers may also be interested in top-end processors, especially if they have premium-class graphics solutions and strive for the highest image quality possible. Thus, expensive CPUs are not a luxury but a demanded class of products, even though not as popular and demanded as entry-level and mainstream CPUs. It must be noted that the top-end CPU market is structured differently than the low-end and midrange segments. The main difference is that there are almost no offerings from AMD here. AMD had to leave the top-end market sector not through the company’s own volition. While Intel’s engineers have been constantly improving their microarchitecture for the last few years, AMD has largely limited itself to polishing off its manufacturing process. As a result, AMD is now unable to offer a serious alternative to Intel’s top-of-the-line CPUs. Thus, this article will largely be concerned with Intel’s solutions, especially as Intel has spent a lot of effort to develop its high-performance products and even offers a special platform for them. But let’s be systematic and start out with those AMD models that manage to be objectively priced above the $200 mark.

High-End Processors from AMD
Talking about AMD’s top-end processors we have to limit ourselves to the Socket AM3 platform only. Today, AMD supports but one platform and offers CPUs of very different specs and prices for it. This is the reason why all modern processors from AMD have to be equipped with a dual-channel DDR2/DDR3 controller, but that’s okay for the top-end segment we are discussing today. The problem with AMD’s products is that they are based on the Stars microarchitecture which has a very low IPC parameter by today’s standards (IPC stands for Instructions per Clock). Therefore even those of AMD processors that work at high frequencies prove to be not as fast as their


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com/articles/cpu/print/cpu-benchmark-highend. AMD has not yet been able to implement 32nm tech process. you can buy a $ 200 and more expensive CPU even for LGA775 or LGA1156. It may seem quite natural that the Phenom II X6 series is positioned among expensive CPUs. and offers them at a much higher price.33 GHz) and 12 megabytes of cache. leaving their place for new products with the Bulldozer microarchitecture which are promised by AMD in the second quarter of the next year. The first variety is quad-core CPUs based on 45nm dies. it is Intel that will play the first fiddle in the top-end market segment. The LGA1336 platform is positioned as the main top-end solution. A special monolithic semiconductor die with improved energy efficiency was developed for it. The clock rates of the senior Phenom II X6 models that fall into the top price segment are 3. 8 megabytes of L3 cache. and support triple-channel DDR3 SDRAM.2 GHz. surprisingly enough. but here two out of the three platforms can coexist thanks to their unique features. The addition of two QPI controllers into the main chips makes LGA1366 systems consume more power in comparison with LGA1156 computers. Intel offers its six-core CPUs in the top price segment. High-End Processors from Intel So.xbitlabs. The top-of-the-line model Phenom II X6 1090T is a Black Edition modification and can be overclocked by increasing its frequency multiplier. They are additionally equipped with Turbo Core technology which can raise the clock rate to 3.5-3. this platform is not without downsides for all its elite status. We are only expecting one new model in the Phenom II X6 series and then these CPUs will steadily go down to the mainstream. too. They feature all the performance-boosting technologies available today: Hyper-Threading for virtual CPU cores and Turbo Boost for automatic overclocking. The rest of the specifications are ordinary enough. In fact. The integrated memory controller supports DDR2 and DDR3 memory at frequencies up to 1600 MHz. Therefore it is no wonder that AMD’s six-core processors are quickly getting cheaper under the pressure from Intel. Each core has 512 kilobytes of L2 cache. This series combines rather variegated processors which are designed for the LGA1366 platform.06 to 3. Otherwise. The internal competition and the availability of all the three platforms in the top price segment is an indication of certain flaws in the company’s marketing policy. but the manufacturing process is still 45 nanometers.html 11/11/2013 13:53:13 . which has a negative effect on the power consumption and heat dissipation of its products.0 to 3. Core i7-900. The six-core CPUs have higher frequencies (3. There are actually only two CPU models from AMD in this review and both belong to the same series. the Socket AM3 platform may soon leave this market segment altogether. Socket AM3 can be viewed as a top-end platform as yet. The six-core CPU series is a rather recent addition to AMD’s product line-up. there are hardcore gamers oriented Socket AM3 mainboards which allow building graphics subsystems out of three or four graphics cards! The next table shows the specifications of the few AMD processors that fall into the top-end category and took part in our tests. each Phenom II X6 has 6 megabytes of shared L3 cache. For example. On the other hand.2 GHz. The benefits of LGA1366 solutions are obvious.2-3. And. Moreover.6 GHz if at least three out of the six cores are idle. http://www. when you take a look at the test results. and the second variety is six-core CPUs with 32nm dies. the company offers not only different CPU models but also different platforms here. they are similar to their quad-core LGA1366 counterparts in their specs. Anyway. it doesn’t have a suitable system architecture: the controller of the graphics PCI Express bus resides in the chipset which calls for a high-speed QPI bus to connect the CPU to the chipset. It is exclusively for this platform that Intel offers six-core CPUs whereas quad-core LGA1366 processors differ from their LGA1156 counterparts in having a triple-channel DDR3 SDRAM controller. The quad-core models have clock rates of 3. there are two varieties of products with the Nehalem microarchitecture within this series. In other words. Coming to desktop PCs from the world of servers and workstations. After all. Page 2 Phenom II X6. However. they also have a triple-channel memory controller and support Hyper-Threading and Turbo Boost.X-bit labs . you realize that the Socket AM3 platform doesn’t have bright perspectives in the top market segment. All of this makes AMD’s position in the top-end segment rather weak.Print version opponents from Intel. On the other hand. Particularly. There are expensive and feature-rich mainboards for Socket AM3 processors which provide broad opportunities for assembling high-performance computers. Besides.

Print version Page 3 It must be noted that there is a very slim separating line between the quad. drivers and applications versions to change accordingly. http://www. most results databases available online are either updated over a large period of time.xbitlabs.33 GHz and a 333MHz system bus. it is identified as a quad-core CPU by the operating system. The LGA1156 platform looks like a more mature solution than LGA1366 because it came out later and its designed was optimized by integrating the PCI Express controller into the CPU.6 GHz and 4 megabytes of L3 cache. The dual-core LGA775 CPU series based on a 45nm core is available in the top price segment. Right now. As for the LGA775 platform. Core i7-800.0 GHz and a 333MHz system bus. The model names up to i7-960 are quad-core CPUs whereas the i7-970 and higher models are six-core ones.or 3-year-old products at high prices. It also has a shared 6MB L2 cache. Core i5-600. The Core i5-670 has 8 MB of L3 cache and its integrated memory controller supports dual-channel DDR3-1067 and DDR3-1333. We can only view it as a reminder of the highly successful Core 2 Duo and Core 2 Quad series which helped Intel beat its opponent in terms of CPU performance back in 2006. Core i5-700. many LGA1156 processors. 2 cores. 6 cores. Such processors are identified by the OS as quad-core ones because they support Hyper-Threading which enables each physical core to execute two instructions threads simultaneously. Core 2 Quad. which is 12 MB large. Interestingly.8 to 3. a quad-core LGA775 processor is in fact two dual-core semiconductor dies within a single package.X-bit labs . The integrated memory controller is compatible with dual-channel DDR3 SDRAM at 1067 or 1333 MHz.33 GHz. The two platforms will be incompatible and there will be no LGA1156 processors faster than what is already available. These quad-core LGA1156 processors are the masters of the top-end market segment.0 GHz. like the Core i5-600. but Intel. Although based on the same semiconductor die as the Core i5-700. Core 2 Duo E8600. Top-end models from the Core i5-600 series have clock rates of 3. Most importantly. There are several quad-core LGA775 processors in this market segment. AMD Phenom II X6 1090T (Thuban. This CPU has a clock rate of 3. Therefore the L2 cache. does not even try to increase the clock rates of its old CPUs and offers 2. limits the performance of multi-GPU graphics subsystems. the Core i7-800 features a faster memory controller which supports not only DDR3-1067 and DDR-1333 but also DDR3-1600. Therefore this platform can be recommended for users who like to upgrade their computers regularly. the 700 series have no integrated graphics core.06 GHz) and support both Turbo Boost and Hyper-Threading. the LGA1156 platform looks highly appealing but it is getting closer to its demise. they have higher clock rates (2.2 GHz. even though top-end solutions. 6 MB L3). 6 MB L3). Therefore. In other words. 3. the LGA1366 platform is likely to have the longest lifecycle among all the platforms available today. We did our best to avoid any of these problems – all our tests are current and have been performed at the same time for all CPUs. It supports Turbo Boost but doesn’t have Hyper-Threading. or have the results obtained on the same old platform that hasn’t been updated for a while. even though splittable in two. 3. too. is divided by half between the two pairs of CPU cores. Testbed Configuration and Testing Methodology Simultaneous testing of a large number of processors is a pretty complicated task that not only takes a lot of time and effort.and six-core CPUs for LGA1366 systems in terms of model names. In a couple of months it will be replaced with the new LGA1155 platform which will support more advanced CPUs working at higher clock rates. the Core microarchitecture of the LGA775 processors is just as outdated as the Stars one. Core 2 Duo. They also support Turbo Boost and to automatically increase the clock rate when one core is idle. The junior series of quad-core LGA1156 processors also has its representation in the above-$200 category. These are dual-core LGA1156 processors based on a 32nm semiconductor die that additionally incorporates a graphics core die. It is going to be replaced no sooner than in the end of the next year. the senior CPU models for this platform have lower frequencies and are equipped with a dualchannel memory controller. Here is the list of hardware and software components we used for our today’s test session: Processors: AMD Phenom II X6 1075T (Thuban. As opposed to the 600 series. These are models with clock rates of 2.46 to 3. The Core i7-800 has the same amount of cache as the Core I5-700.83 to 3. 3. there is no reason for it to be in the top-end market sector in late 2010. By the way. 6 MB L2). The senior Core i7-980X is additionally referred to as Extreme Edition which means that you can overclock it by changing its frequency multiplier.com/articles/cpu/print/cpu-benchmark-highend. Therefore. This is the Core i5-760 model which is based on a 45nm die and has a clock rate of 2. which causes the testbed configuration. Besides. which is 8 megabytes. However. but also requires access to dozens of different processor models at the same time. 6 cores. As a result. As a result. they only offer one PCI Express x16 but which. Intel Core 2 Duo E8600 (Wolfdale.html 11/11/2013 13:53:13 . unlike AMD.8 GHz. We used only the latest hardware components with the most recent BIOS and driver versions as well as the operating system with all available updates. a Core i7-800 is identified by the OS as an eight-core processor. The next table shows the specifications of all top-end CPUs from Intel available today. are positioned lower in the product hierarchy than their LGA1366 counterparts. There is but one model.

46 GHz. Operating system: Microsoft Windows 7 Ultimate x64. Intel Core i7-980X (Gulftown. ATI Catalyst 10.html 11/11/2013 13:53:13 . 3. Core i7-880 CPUs. Intel Core i7-870 (Lynnfiled. 12 MB L3). 3. 4 cores. Core i7-970 and Core i7-980X CPUs. ASUS P7P55D Premium (LGA1156. Power supply unit: Tagan TG880-U33II (880 W).2 GHz. Core i5-680 and Core i5-760 CPUs. AMD 890FX + SB850. Performance General Performance To estimate the processors performance in general-purpose apps we use SYSmark 2007 test that emulates usage models in popular office and digital content creation and processing applications.1. 8 MB L3). Intel Core i7-970 (Gulftown. 12 MB L3). 4 cores. Intel Core i7-880 (Lynnfiled. Intel Core i5-760 (Lynnfiled. 2.xbitlabs. 2.com/articles/cpu/print/cpu-benchmark-highend. Gigabyte X58A-UD5 (LGA1366. Memory: 2 x 2 GB DDR3 SDRAM (Kingston KHX1600C8D3K2/4GX): DDR3-1333 9-9-9-27 with Core 2 Duo E8600.93 GHz. Phenom II X6 1090T. 12 MB L2). Intel Core 2 Quad Q9650 (Yorkfield. 4 cores. 6 cores. Intel P55 Express). DDR3 SDRAM). 4 cores. Core i7-860. 3 x 2 GB.6 GHz. 8 MB L3).83 GHz. 2. 3.06 GHz. 8 MB L3). Core 2 Quad Q9650.1025. Core i5-670. 4 MB L3). DDR3 SDRAM).X-bit labs . 3. 4 cores. Hard drive: Kingston SNVP325-S2/128GB. DDR3 SDRAM (Crucial BL3KIT25664TG1608): DDR3-1600 9-9-9-27 with Core i7-950.1.8 GHz.33 GHz. 3. 12 MB L2). Intel Core i7-960 (Bloomfiled. 4 cores. http://www. Core 2 Quad Q9550.00 GHz. 3. 4 MB L3). 2 cores. Drivers: Intel Chipset Driver 9.06 GHz. Intel X58 Express). 2 cores.8 GHz. 8 MB L3). Intel Core i7-860 (Lynnfiled.9 Display Driver. Intel Core i5-670 (Clarkdale. Intel P45 Express. 8 MB L3). The idea of this benchmark is very simple: it produces a single score that characterizes average system performance. 8 MB L3). Mainboards: ASUS Crosshair IV Formula (Socket AM3. 4 cores. 2. 6 cores. 4 cores. 3. Core i7-870.Print version Page 4 Intel Core 2 Quad Q9550 (Yorkfield. 3. DDR3-1600 9-9-9-27 with Phenom II X6 1075T. Core i7-960. ASUS P5Q3 (LGA775.2 GHz. Intel Core i5-680 (Clarkdale. Intel Core i7-950 (Bloomfiled. Graphics card: ATI Radeon HD 5870.

the high overall scores of the dual-core processors Core i5-670 and Core i5-680 are explained by their high performance in office and image-editing applications. Therefore we run gaming tests in our CPU reviews without full-screen antialiasing and at low resolutions. but that’s hardly a surprise considering their prices. it is no wonder the Phenom II X6 is so inexpensive. So. Gaming Performance As you know.Print version Page 5 We can see Intel’s new microarchitectures being indeed superior to the older solutions: the LGA1156 and LGA1366 processors are faster than their LGA775 and Socket AM3 opponents. The LGA1366 platform justifies its higher positioning. So. the senior model of the Core i7 800 series is but slightly ahead of the Core i7-950. making the CPU the limiting factor. But it is the Core i7 series for both LGA1366 and LGA1156 that wins in SYSmark 2007. The table below contains the detailed scores from the SYSmark 2007 suite sorted according to the application type: Easy to see. For example. The CPUs with more cores are ahead at processing video content and 3D modeling. They also have high clock rates and feature Hyper-Threading for multithreaded applications. Even the dual-core models like the Core i5-670 are easily ahead of the six-core products from AMD in SYSmark 2007.com/articles/cpu/print/cpu-benchmark-highend.html 11/11/2013 13:53:13 .xbitlabs. The dual-core Core i5-670 and Core i5-680 CPUs are indeed very fast in SYSmark 2007 because most of popular real-life applications use only two CPU cores.X-bit labs . This can give us some insight into the future when graphics cards will get faster. This series is only competitive to the Core 2 Duo and Core 2 Quad series in practical applications. it is the graphics subsystem that most often determines the overall performance of a computer in modern games. and nearly all of the LGA1366 processors prove to be faster than their LGA1156 counterparts. the results are not indicative of how fast the particular game can run on modern computers but rather how well the tested CPUs can cope with gaming load. http://www.

X-bit labs .com/articles/cpu/print/cpu-benchmark-highend.Print version Page 6 http://www.xbitlabs.html 11/11/2013 13:53:13 .

com/articles/cpu/print/cpu-benchmark-highend.html 11/11/2013 13:53:13 .X-bit labs .xbitlabs.Print version Page 7 http://www.

They only show their full potential in a few games and only if you have a high-performance multi-GPU graphics subsystem.Print version Page 8 We’ve got expected results here. Even at low resolutions and without FSAA the Core i7 series processors deliver close results. like Intel’s six-core ones. Archiving and Encryption To test the processors performance during data archiving we resort to WinRAR archiving utility. Top-performance CPUs are not really necessary in most games because the frame rate is going to be limited by the graphics card’s speed. Using maximum compression rate we archive a folder with multiple files 560 MB in total size. Generally speaking. may only be interesting in some particular situations.xbitlabs. top-of-theline CPUs.html 11/11/2013 13:53:13 . In other words.X-bit labs . each Core i7 series processor is more than enough for any gaming configuration.com/articles/cpu/print/cpu-benchmark-highend. http://www.

Image Editing We measured the performance in Adobe Photoshop using our own benchmark made from Retouch Artists Photoshop Speed Test that has been creatively modified. It includes typical editing of four 10-megapixel images from a digital photo camera. However.xbitlabs. this time the diagram looks quite simple. Intel’s ones are faster due to their more advanced architecture and support for the AES instruction set. and the quad-core LGA775 at the bottom. I have to say that it can not only effectively utilize any number of processor cores. but also supports special AES instructions.Print version Page 9 There are a lot of factors affecting the performance of WinRAR: the CPU’s clock rate. http://www. We’ve got LGA1366 models at the top.X-bit labs . The only disappointment is that the Phenom II X6 is only capable of beating its dual-core opponents. The processor performance during encryption is measured with an integrated benchmark from a popular cryptographic utility called TrueCrypt.html 11/11/2013 13:53:13 .com/articles/cpu/print/cpu-benchmark-highend. the number of CPU cores. the quad-core LGA1156 ones in the middle. Encryption can easily be paralleled. the mount of cache memory. etc. therefore we’ve got six-core processors from both AMD and Intel in the lead.

The dual-core Core i5 series processors with higher clock rates are in the lead. http://www. Audio and Video Transcoding We use Apple iTunes utility to test audio transcoding speed. Apple iTunes uses two CPU cores only.Print version Page 10 There are no surprises here. The LGA1366 and LGA1156 processors are ranked up according to their model numbers.X-bit labs .com/articles/cpu/print/cpu-benchmark-highend.xbitlabs. either. which explains the results.html 11/11/2013 13:53:13 . Note that the typical peculiarity of this utility is its ability to utilize only a pair of processor cores. The LGA775 oldies can’t compete with the newer products whereas the six-core processors from AMD are slow. It translates the contents of a CD disk into AAC format.

Page 11 In our previous reviews AMD processors used to be good enough at transcoding video with the x264 codec.264 format and apply different special effects to it. the Phenom II X6 falls behind Intel’s six-core CPUs as well as many of the quad-core Core i7 series models that support HyperThreading.xbitlabs.html 11/11/2013 13:53:13 . VirtualDub. such as HandBrake. But when it comes to the top-end products. The performance in Adobe Premiere Pro is determined by the time it takes to render a Blu-ray project with HDV 1080p25 video into H. http://www. because the x264 codec is also part of numerous popular transcoding utilities.com/articles/cpu/print/cpu-benchmark-highend. MeGUI.Print version In order to measure how fast our testing participants can transcode a video into H. I have to say that the results of this test are of great practical value. etc.264 format we used x264 HD benchmark. It works with an original MPEG-2 video recorded in 720p resolution with 4 Mbps bitrate.X-bit labs .

we can say that the sixcore Core i7 series is most appropriate for video editing. Final Rendering We use special Cinebench test to measure the final rendering speed in Maxon Cinema 4D.xbitlabs. Summing up these results.com/articles/cpu/print/cpu-benchmark-highend. We’ve got expected results again. the CPU models perform according to the official price list.X-bit labs .html 11/11/2013 13:53:13 . Installing a Core i7-970 or a Core i7-980X instead of an expensive quad-core model may boost the computer’s performance in such applications by 50% and more! This is quite normal as video processing algorithms can effectively run in multiple parallel threads. Within this series.Print version Page 12 We’ve got the same standings in the Adobe Media Encoder test as when using the x264 codec. Mathematical Calculations We launch standard MathematicaMark7 test from Wolfram Mathematica suite to measure the systems’ performance here. The Core i7 series has no competition. http://www.

The speed of rendering in 3ds max 2011 is similar to the Cinebench results. Power Consumption http://www.html 11/11/2013 13:53:13 . Rendering speed in Autodesk 3ds max 2011 with both. was measured using SPECapc test.xbitlabs.com/articles/cpu/print/cpu-benchmark-highend. the higher the performance is in this test.Print version Page 13 The more cores. We can again see that AMD’s six-core CPUs can only compete with Intel’s quad-core solutions and that the LGA775 products are outdated. Scanline as well as Mental Ray.X-bit labs . This explains the results if you take into account that Hyper-Threading allows executing two instruction threads on a single physical core.

The CPUs are loaded by running the 64-bit LinX 0. The same parameter sets certain restrictions and criteria when it comes to picking out a system case.xbitlabs.X-bit labs . We enabled all the power-saving technologies for a correct measurement of the computer's power draw in idle mode: C1E. AMD Cool'n'Quiet and Enhanced Intel SpeedStep.6. which might be expected considering its architectural specifics. It is the total of the power consumption of all the system components. The second group combines somewhat less efficient CPUs from the LGA775 and Socket AM3 series. The LGA1366 platform has the highest power consumption when idle. There are three groups of CPUs in terms of power consumption in idle mode. The most energy-efficient group includes the whole LGA1156 platform. http://www. In many cases their power consumption matters a lot.html 11/11/2013 13:53:13 .4 utility. The graphs below show the full power draw of the computer (without the monitor) measured after the power supply. The PSU's efficiency is not taken into account.com/articles/cpu/print/cpu-benchmark-highend. we decided to add power consumption tests to our performance research.Print version Page 14 Performance is not the only practical spec that may be of interest to potential buyers of mainstream CPUs. as it has direct connection not only to the amount of your next power bill. Therefore.

Print version Page 15 The picture is somewhat different at load even though the LGA1366 processors still consume the most. this rule also has exceptions. So.html 11/11/2013 13:53:13 . which may require a more expensive CPU. you should also be careful about expensive dual-core solutions in the Core i5 lineup. these processors may only be appealing for two reasons: they may suit for some specific applications that do not utilize all the advantages of multi-core CPUs for some reason. they are similar to the senior quad-core LGA1156 processors in terms of power consumption. The general rule. Firstly. the high-end price range is extremely broad. As for the Socket AM3 platform and Phenom II X6 processors. In order to illustrate the correlation between the consumer qualities of the tested processors in the high-end price segment. They are obviously outdated and cannot compete against newer models with dramatically higher performance. Conclusion Although there were a lot of processor models participating in our today’s test session. Most contemporary resource-hungry tasks. Secondly. we put together the following diagram showing the average performance vs. or they may be appealing to those users who value energy-efficiency over performance. if you are looking to buy a processor priced beyond $200. can be easily split into parallel threads. In other words. however. The dual-core Core 2 Duo and Core i5 processors expectedly need the smallest amount of power. is the following: more expensive processors run faster. so that even high clock rates don’t help the top Core i5-670 and Core i5-680 to win you over.com/articles/cpu/print/cpu-benchmark-highend.X-bit labs . Unlike mainstream and value segments. quad-core processors are generally a better choice.xbitlabs. so the CPUs that fall into it may have dramatically different prices and rarely compete directly against one another. like any other rule. then LGA775 shouldn’t be even considered. However. the price is often the main criterion determining the CPU choice in this segment. Therefore. http://www. price. we hardly witnessed any cut-throat battles.

Summing up everything we have just said. Its performance is quite competitive with that of Core i7-950. their average price-to-performance ratio doesn’t look very appealing to the end-users. LGA1366 mainboards are pretty expensive and a system with an LGA1366 processor will be far from energy-efficient. we wouldn’t recommend them for regular high-performance home systems. If these aspects matter a lot to you. Although you will have to put up with certain limitations when it comes to configuring your multi-card graphics sub-system. Its another indisputable advantage is that it is designed for LGA1366 platform. http://www. if you are going to use your computer for tasks like that. So.html 11/11/2013 13:53:13 . that’s for sure. then you should definitely bet on one of the six-core products. but I am sure not everyone needs them anyway.xbitlabs. this quad-core processor is not only faster than many of its competitors. then you should check out Core i7-870. However. Core i7-950 appears to be one of the best processors in the upper price segment in terms of price-to-performance ratio. Among such tasks we could name high-definition video processing. However.com/articles/cpu/print/cpu-benchmark-highend. but at the same time it is much more energy-efficient and doesn’t require an expensive mainboard. While its price is quite reasonable (for a high-end product). there are a lot of specific applications where six fully-fledged cores may become very handy. Of course.X-bit labs . we would like to award Intel Core i7-950 and Core i7-870 processors with our Recommended Buy title: Six-core processors are also worth your immediate attention. but also offers everything necessary for building high-speed graphics sub-systems of any potential.Print version Page 16 As you can see. They are the low-cost Phenom II X6 and expensive Core i7-970 and Core i7-980X. This platform not only has great future ahead. final rendering and some other similar applications that require a lot of calculations.