A little over a year ago we saw Intel take back the performance crown when they launched their new CPU based off the Pentium M series, dubbed “Core 2 Duo” this CPU held 2 physical cores inside one heatspreader, and it’s performance was stellar even at lower clock speeds. Build on 65nm process the Core 2 Duo could be manufacturered at reduced cost and proved to have quite a bit of headroom in the speed department. The top of the line model was the Core 2 X6800 clocked at 2.93Ghz with 4Mb L2 cache and 266Mhz FSB.
Since then more affordable CPUs have been added to the Core 2 line-up, with lower end models receiving less L2 cache to reduce cost, newer revisions released this year got a FSB bump to 333, and we have one in for test here today too, the Core 2 E6850 is clocked at 3Ghz (9x333) and has 4Mb L2 cache; this CPU surpasses the performance of the original X6800 but costs only ~$280 at time of writing. AMD has yet to reveal a CPU which can match the Core 2 in price/performance, and while Intel it still in the lead, they are not sitting by idly.
Back in October last year Intel released a press statement
regarding the switch to 45nm manufacturing process, the 65nm CPU had a code name “Conroe”, the 45nm CPUs got a new one: Penryn. We are now at the end of October 2007 and Intel is going public with 45nm processors, you’ll see a large collection of reviews and articles on the web this week, covering not only the Penryn, but also its larger brother, the “Yorkfield”. The latter is a Quad Core CPU, and where the Penryn has 1x6Mb L2 cache, the Quad Core has 2x6Mb L2.
The CPU Intel provided us was an Engineer Sample of the QX9650 CPU, running at 3Ghz with 333 FSB (a multiplier of 9x), with an estimated retail price of $999. Still on socket 775 this new CPU should work on most recent motherboards.
Before we get started, a truly meant thank you goes out to Forcom.be
for providing us with most of the hardware used in this review.
What we have in store for you today:New Intel Core 2 Quad QX9650
Intel Core 2 Duo E6850
Motherboard compatibility and support
Performance comparison single/multi core with different applications and games
Power Usage and Temperatures
Overclocking and Performance Scaling
Let’s take a look at our test setup ->