Intel Core 2 Extreme QX6850

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Our Summary and Conclusion

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Performance Summary:  
Intel's new Core 2 Extreme QX6850 offered performance gains on the order of about 2 to sometimes as much as 13%, depending on the application and CPU / chipset combination.  Applications and tests that made heavier use of multi-threading, like our Sony Vegas test, showed significant gains, while others that relied mainly on overall system bandwidth tended to show a more modest benefit.  Overall though, according to our test findings, it's safe to say that the Core 2 Extreme QX6850 is the fastest desktop processor on the market currently. 

 

With today's launch Intel is also introducing a few other variants of their Core 2 desktop and workstation line-up with 1,333MHz system bus speeds.  They're also ratcheting down the price of the Core 2 Extreme QX6700, now branding it as a standard or "mainstream" offering dubbed the Core 2 Quad Q6700, for a significantly more palatable $530 price tag.  As always however, the new flagship processor, the QX6850, will retail for $999.  As usual, only those with money to burn need apply.  Here's the line-up of new Intel Core 2 processors:

Processor

# Cores

Frequency

FSB

L2 Cache

Price, 1K Pcs

Core 2 Extreme QX6850

4

3.0GHz

1,333MHz

8 MB

$999

Core 2 Quad Q6700

4

2.66GHz

1,066MHz

8 MB

$530

Core 2 Duo E6850

2

3.0GHz

1,333MHz

4 MB

$266

Core 2 Duo E6750

2

2.66GHz

1,333MHz

4 MB

$183

Core 2 Duo E6550

2

2.33GHz

1,333MHz

4 MB

$163

The introduction of the Core 2 Extreme QX6850 and these other 1,333MHz FSB driven chips is as much about a platform migration as anything else.  Without question, as more and more applications make heavier use of multi-threading techniques, Intel's shared bus architecture will have to be pushed higher and higher to afford more off-chip system and memory bandwidth for these multi-core CPUs.  There will come a day where Intel will finally go the way of a serial interface for their X86 processor offering but today another 267MHz or so of bus bandwidth will keep their processor line in the forefront while AMD is still running to play catch-up.

  • More system bandwidth
  • Better multithreading performance  
  • New lower power die stepping
  • Fantastic overclocking
  • The fastest processor we've tested to date.
  • Big-time pricey

 

 
Tags:  Intel, Core 2, Core, Xtreme, extreme, x6, 6850, XT, eme, QX

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