Intel Core i7-980X Extreme 6-Core Processor Review - HotHardware

Intel Core i7-980X Extreme 6-Core Processor Review

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Cinebench R11.5 is an OpenGL 3D rendering performance test based on Cinema 4D from Maxon. Cinema 4D is a 3D rendering and animation tool suite used by 3D animation houses and producers like Sony Animation and many others. It's very demanding of system processor resources and is an excellent gauge of pure computational throughput.

Cinebench R11.5
3D Rendering

This is a multi-threaded, multi-processor aware benchmark that renders a single 3D scene and tracks the length of the entire process. The rate at which each test system was able to render the entire scene is represented by the Cinebench scores in the graph below.

  

The new Core i7-980X Extreme was once again the fastest of the bunch, by far. All else being equal, Cinebench R11.5 scales almost linearly with additional cores, as is evident by the Core i7-980X Extreme's approximate 49% lead over the Core i7-975--6 cores is 50% more than 4, and the processors are clocked the same, hence the almost 50% lead.

POV-Ray Performance
Ray Tracing

POV-Ray , or the Persistence of Vision Ray-Tracer, is a top-notch open source tool for creating realistically lit 3D graphics artwork. We tested with POV-Ray's standard 'all-CPU' benchmarking tool on all of our test machines, and recorded the scores reported for each. Results are measured in pixels-per-second throughput; higher scores equate to better performance.

POV-Ray tells us two things: 1) The additional compute resources of the Core i7-980X Extreme give it a huge boost in the multi-threaded rendering test over the next fastest processor, the Core i7-975. 2) When the shared L3 cache doesn't come into play, the individual cores in Gulftown are no faster than Bloomfield, clock for clock, as is evident by their near identical performance in the single-threaded test.

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I guess Intel and AMD have given up totally on trying to raise clock speeds. In 2000 we hit the 1GHz mark. In 2004 we made it to 3.8GHz. Now 6 years later down to 3.33GHz. Random though, but I wonder if we will ever see CPUs faster than 3GHz no mater the number of cores.

Over my random rant. This is a pretty awesome CPU. The thermals look pretty cool all things considered.

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bob_on_the_cob:

I guess Intel and AMD have given up totally on trying to raise clock speeds. In 2000 we hit the 1GHz mark. In 2004 we made it to 3.8GHz. Now 6 years later down to 3.33GHz. Random though, but I wonder if we will ever see CPUs faster than 3GHz no mater the number of cores.

Over my random rant. This is a pretty awesome CPU. The thermals look pretty cool all things considered.

 

Indeed. O AMD, AMD, where art thou AMD?  Intel has created the ultimate chip, far ahead of the competition and their own processors.  The biggest surprise for me is the 980X is the fastest chip, whether you're using single thread or multi-thread applications. Core performance quality was not sacrificed for quantity. And the $999 price tag is high, but in line with past Intel Extreme processor offerings. The Phenom II X6 is slated for release later this year, but judging the way Intel is going, they might as well not bother.

Furthermore it looks like the Thuban is set to replace the current quad core offerings, it will essentially be a X6 with two disabled cores. Lots of unlocking potential there as we've seen with the X2 550, and the X3 720. AMD continues to offer value to the consumer, but is yet to challenge Intel at the top end of the market.

 

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gibbersome:
AMD, AMD, where art thou AMD?

By the way, how fast have you got your wazoo Incredi-Chip up to so far?

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Ouch...$1200 in Canada Tongue Tied

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Yeah, looks great.

 

Except for the price.

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Too expensive, but extremely fast!

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Well that was fast lol

Hey why no OC'd benchmarks?

Also how about loading up Batman: AA w/a single GPU and turning on Phsyx. Let's see how the extra cores handles Physx calculation! :-D

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Super Dave:

$1,000.00 is right Super Dave,....It's the usual Extreme performance tax.

It does look like a solid performer though and it's only natural to want one or two of them.

I just can't see me spending this kind of money for a CPU unless I win the friggin' lottery or something.

Another thing,....is it just me or did anyone else notice that there is very little performance difference between the current Intel flagship 'Extreme' Core i7-975 and the Core i7-870? They run real close to one another. The Core i5-750 is lagging, but still 'in the same ballpark' as well.

After I got my i5-750 and have played with it a little, my opinion of it keeps growing.

This is Intel's hidden gem. It is a sweet CPU and delivers the most 'Bang-For-The-Buck' of any of their CPU's to date.

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The sales tax alone would cost me $87.50! Could it be that this thing was made to help pay for the AMD settlement?

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