Intel's Sandy Bridge Microarchitecture Debuts: Core i5 2500K and Core i7 2600K CPUs Reviewed

By on January 2, 2011, 10:59 PM
Enter the Sandy Bridge 32nm architecture, which marks the introduction of the 2nd generation Intel Core processors. Sandy Bridge is designed to be a two-chip platform consisting of a processor and Platform Controller Hub (PCH). It incorporates an Integrated Display Engine, Processor Graphics, and Integrated Memory Controller.

The debut of Sandy Bridge will result in the replacement of almost the entire Intel desktop CPU lineup and an important segment of their mobile line as well. All in all, 14 new desktop CPUs are being launched today spanning the Core i7, i5 and i3 series, in addition to 15 mobile processors and several more supporting chipsets.


Although we will focus on the desktop side of things on this review, there's still a lot to cover. Before jumping into performance benchmarks we will detail the inner workings of the Sandy Bridge architecture and how it differs to its predecessors. We are also putting special emphasis on the improved integrated graphics logic, Turbo Boost and the new 6 series chipsets.

Read the complete review.




User Comments: 48

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dividebyzero dividebyzero, trainee n00b, said:

Excellent review.

Thanks Steve for sacrificing a portion of your seasonal holiday to bring us this review. I, along with a more than a few others I suspect, wasn't expecting reviews for a few days.

ackack47 said:

Disappointed not to see the 980x in the comparison.

Guest said:

Lets see if amd side of things keep up with that impressive IGP performance. More since they own ati, radeon, or what ever the name it is.

Staff
Steve Steve said:

Excellent review.

Thanks Steve for sacrificing a portion of your seasonal holiday to bring us this review. I, along with a more than a few others I suspect, wasn't expecting reviews for a few days.

Thanks are you are very welcome

Disappointed not to see the 980x in the comparison.

Hey we are just as disappointed, Intel let us hold on to our sample just long enough to benchmark it before snatching it back Now those results are out dated.

Guest said:

So what processors are not going to have this integrated graphics? Isn't it Sandybridge b2? When are they supposed to launch?

Sarcasm Sarcasm said:

Wow, that Photoshop CS5 test is impressive.

Gonna have to build a computer around Intel next time, my AMD 965BE is already feeling outdated

Staff
Julio Franco Julio Franco, TechSpot Editor, said:

@Guest, the true high-end replacements without integrated graphics won't come around for a while, but hey, the current Core i7s we just showed you can beat those $999 Extreme Edition processors for less than half the price so it's not all bad .

The Sandy Bridge E variants could arrive to market around Q2/11 at the earliest and Q4/11 at the latest.

Guest said:

Intel ***** start your engines . . .

SilverCider said:

Intel have certainly been busy making optimisations/changes to their architecture to create these processors that can beat the previous generation with almost half the power usage!

Excellent review too! XD

fpsgamerJR62 said:

Kudos to Steve for this excellent review to usher in the new year. What surprised me wasn't the performance increase and power usage optimizations that Sandy Bridge showed over the previous generation of Core processors which was, of course, to be expected. The big surprise was in the prices of these two K-series CPUs at the $200 and $300 level which effectively makes the previous generation far less attractive for new PC builds and increasing the pressure on AMD to come up with a worthy competitor to Sandy Bridge. I am a big fan of AMD but unless they pull off a miracle with Bulldozer, I don't see how they can continue to compete with Intel in the middle to high-end segment. Thanks, Intel for making a dinosaur of my 6-month old 955BE PC.

BMfan BMfan said:

Thank you intel for another socket change and what makes it worse is that even if you had the old 1155 board you still can't use it.

slh28 slh28, TechSpot Paladin, said:

Great review, but a clock for clock comparison would have been interesting though, to see how they compare to the older generation.

Now my i7-920 feels outdated and power hungry!

princeton princeton said:

BMfan said:

Thank you intel for another socket change and what makes it worse is that even if you had the old 1155 board you still can't use it.

You are confusing lga 1156 with this new 1155. The reason AMD doesn't need a new socket is because they just add more cores and cache to the same architechture.

BMfan BMfan said:

I'm not confusing it because before 1156 there was 1155.

from the article 'We hate this on-going trend of complete platform replacements (kudos to AMD for avoiding this), but because the new Sandy Bridge processors use the LGA1155 socket, it means new chipset and new motherboards are required. '

Cueto_99 said:

What a hit to start the year! I feel sad for guise who bought a new PC on christmas eve with core i5 or i7... These new chips blow everything else away... AMD need bulldozer fast, they can't keep lowering prices! If so we will soon find a phenom II x4 955 for 100 bucks...

madboyv1, TechSpot Paladin, said:

hurr, maybe I'll update my HTPC/NAS and take that motherboard and processor and make a net-appliance that I can keep on 24/7. An e5200 overclocked to 3.5GHz (with a low profile heatsink) paired with onboard Geforce 9300 only goes so far. lol

My only point of disdain at the moment is that intel processors never seem to drop in price when it is convenient for the consumer and because of the new socket, the motherboard market will be further over-saturated with new boards (which will likewise be expensive as older boards will end up stabilizing higher in the short run).

It's always a love-hate thing for me when a new architecture/socket comes out.

TorturedChaos, TechSpot Chancellor, said:

Well I am certainly glad I plan to build a new system this spring instead of a last fall like I was originally going to do.

grvalderrama said:

Price comparisons with older models are just as amazing as the new CPUs themselves...Hats off to Intel and Steve, for bringing this great review!

blimp01 said:

i might consider upgrading my q9550 but i still dont have $600 for everything. I'm thinking my overclocked Q9550 at 3.4 can still match these beasts in most games

TeamworkGuy2 said:

Thanks Steven and TS!

Wow, these are some impressive numbers, the Core i5 2500K looks really good, now the i5-750 looks old... Power consumption is amazing.

The only major draw back is the platform change, I just built my first computer and I went with AMD because I know I have half a dozen processors better than the one I got (Athlon II X4 640), so there is no need to worry about my motherboard getting outdated. But these intel processors are still tempting, AMD has nothing to compare to these.

Guest said:

Apologies if I'm just overlooking the obvious, but doesn't it seem a bit strange that for this new release of ~14 SKUs, there isn't a single one that doesn't include an in-built GPU, when presumably a significant number of users would be wanting to use their own GFX card - and as such have paid for an in-built GPU that will never be used?

I realise that the mainstream consumer market is inevitably heading in the direction of on-CPU graphics (not that it's a bad thing, given the gaming performance improvements in this review), but seeing as the 2600K and 2500K units beat most other currently available i7 chips other than the i7 975 EE variant in certain tests (unless I've misinterpreted the review results) - even enthusiasts are going to be interested in these new units over the current i7 chips.

However for these enthusiasts, they will either be stuck between the choice of paying for a 2600K/2500K that includes a redundant GPU, buying a current gen i7 using a now outdated socket or else having to wait 6-12 months (according to Julio's comment above) for the Sandy Bridge E parts that don't have in-built GPU.

I realise that price/performance is excellent for the 2600K/2500K and so the whole "I'm paying for something I'm never going to use" argument is slightly less valid, but there's a part of me that just thinks it's a bit of a waste / doesn't like the principal! ;-)

As an example:

I currently have an ancient C2D E6600 and have been wanting to upgrade it for a while. I'm about to buy an ATI 69xx or similar (current card is a GeForce 6200 and yes I know!) so would be slightly miffed at having to buy an Intel CPU that includes an inbuilt GPU that I would never use, but the alternative is either wait 6-9 months for Sandy Bridge E or else buy an outdated i7/socket 1156 combo, which would be a bit daft.

Also, is there any indication what type of units/what price-point the Sandy Bridge E units would be targeted at? ie: There's no point me waiting 6-12 months for it if it turns out they are all $700-$1000 units out of my requirements/price range.

Anyway, interested in what other people think - thanks!

Guest said:

Where are the socket 1156 i7's in the comparison? This review seems to be rigged to show that SB is more efficient than socket 1366. Bad form. The omission of the i7 860 is egregious.

Guest said:

I wonder how this CPU scores with SwiftShader. The CPU part actually has more computing power than the GPU part. All that's lacking to really make it efficient at graphics is support for gather/scatter instructions. We could then have CPUs with more generic cores instead.

Guest said:

I didn't find any info on what type of cooling was used to overclock to 4.4GHz. Was this done on air or liquid cooling? If it was done on air, any special cooling device used? What about temps after overclocking?

dividebyzero dividebyzero, trainee n00b, said:

I didn't find any info on what type of cooling was used to overclock to 4.4GHz. Was this done on air or liquid cooling? If it was done on air, any special cooling device used? What about temps after overclocking?

MY guess would be the stock boxed low profile heatsink fan.

Anand achieved 4.4GHz using the stock hsf while Guru3D also achieved 4.3GHz stable on the reference cooler.

Most sites are reporting 70-76C max temp for max overclock at max load using the stock Intel cooler. A decent airflow chassis (as opposed to an open air testbench) and a moderately priced aftermarket heatpipe cooler should bring these temps down considerably considering that the stock Intel HSF on past overclocked CPU's has the cooling ability of a housebrick.

OC3D managed just shy of 5GHz using a top of the line air cooler (Noctua NH-D14)

princeton princeton said:

BMfan said:

I'm not confusing it because before 1156 there was 1155.

from the article 'We hate this on-going trend of complete platform replacements (kudos to AMD for avoiding this), but because the new Sandy Bridge processors use the LGA1155 socket, it means new chipset and new motherboards are required. '

Yes you are. There wasn't 1155 before 1156.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/LGA_1155

And I quote...

"LGA 1155 is designed as a replacement for the LGA 1156 (also known as socket H)."

dividebyzero dividebyzero, trainee n00b, said:

BMfan be trollin'.....and like a lot of trolls, receives most of his world view and knowledge base via voices picked up by his tinfoil hat and Star Trek reruns.

Also (to avoid consecutive posts)

.I realise that price/performance is excellent for the 2600K/2500K and so the whole "I'm paying for something I'm never going to use" argument is slightly less valid, but there's a part of me that just thinks it's a bit of a waste / doesn't like the principal! ;-)

Try totally invalid. The price paid for a Sandy Bridge CPU is pretty much the same as you would pay for comparable performance for a Bloomfield CPU without GPU.

Don't want to use on-die graphics- simple- buy a P67 board. Think of it as an optional extra -like ashtrays or cup holders in cards (edit: cars ! do'h).

Using your argument you could also say that buying virtually any motherboard on the market "is paying for something I'm never going to use". When was the last time most people ;

Used the serial port on their motherboard?

Used 12-14 USB ports simultaneously ?

Used 6-10 SATA ports simultaneously ?

How many people use Firewire, Floppy, or for a growing number of users IDE ?

I currently have an ancient C2D E6600...I'm about to buy an ATI 69xx or similar (current card is a GeForce 6200 and yes I know!) so would be slightly miffed at having to buy an Intel CPU that includes an inbuilt GPU that I would never use, but the alternative is either wait 6-9 months for Sandy Bridge E or else buy an outdated i7/socket 1156 combo, which would be a bit daft.

No, What's daft is that you'd consider using an HD 6950/6970 with a E6600 for the next 6-9 months. Just because the on-die GPU is there doesn't mean you have to use it. It doesn't degrade CPU performance

Also, is there any indication what type of units/what price-point the Sandy Bridge E units would be targeted at? ie: There's no point me waiting 6-12 months for it if it turns out they are all $700-$1000 units out of my requirements/price range..

The "E" in Sandy Bridge E stands for Enthusiast or Extreme. It will be the replacement for the present Core i7 9xx CPU's and will support 40 lanes of PCIE 3.0, have quad channel DDR3-1600 support, while the CPU's themselves will be (much as the present CPU's are) server grade Xeon's that don't meet the requirement. I'll let you connect the dots on pricing.

princeton princeton said:

dividebyzero said:

BMfan be trollin'.....and like a lot of trolls, receives most of his world view and knowledge base via voices picked up by his tinfoil hat and Star Trek reruns.

Also (to avoid consecutive posts)

.I realise that price/performance is excellent for the 2600K/2500K and so the whole "I'm paying for something I'm never going to use" argument is slightly less valid, but there's a part of me that just thinks it's a bit of a waste / doesn't like the principal! ;-)

Try totally invalid. The price paid for a Sandy Bridge CPU is pretty much the same as you would pay for comparable performance for a Bloomfield CPU without GPU.

Don't want to use on-die graphics- simple- buy a P67 board. Think of it as an optional extra -like ashtrays or cup holders in cards.

Using your argument you could also say that buying virtually any motherboard on the market "is paying for something I'm never going to use". When was the last time most people ;

Used the serial port on their motherboard?

Used 12-14 USB ports simultaneously ?

Used 6-10 SATA ports simultaneously ?

How many people use Firewire, Floppy, or for a growing number of users IDE ?

I currently have an ancient C2D E6600...I'm about to buy an ATI 69xx or similar (current card is a GeForce 6200 and yes I know!) so would be slightly miffed at having to buy an Intel CPU that includes an inbuilt GPU that I would never use, but the alternative is either wait 6-9 months for Sandy Bridge E or else buy an outdated i7/socket 1156 combo, which would be a bit daft.

No, What's daft is that you'd consider using an HD 6950/6970 with a E6600 for the next 6-9 months. Just because the on-die GPU is there doesn't mean you have to use it. It doesn't degrade CPU performance

Also, is there any indication what type of units/what price-point the Sandy Bridge E units would be targeted at? ie: There's no point me waiting 6-12 months for it if it turns out they are all $700-$1000 units out of my requirements/price range..

The "E" in Sandy Bridge E stands for Enthusiast or Extreme. It will be the replacement for the present Core i7 9xx CPU's and will support 40 lanes of PCIE 3.0, have quad channel DDR3-1600 support, while the CPU's themselves will be (much as the present CPU's are) server grade Xeon's that don't meet the requirement. I'll let you connect the dots on pricing.

Why are you not an admin here yet?

BMfan BMfan said:

BMfan be trollin'.....and like a lot of trolls, receives most of his world view and knowledge base via voices picked up by his tinfoil hat and Star Trek reruns.

I normally have respect for you but do you know what you can go and do?

To Princeton,i do apologize but for some reason i had it in my head that there was a 1155 socket before 1156.

Guest said:

@dividebyzero:

Thanks for your reply. That was pretty much the answer I was expecting (ie: price is so good, still better than previous generation of i7) - I just wanted to check I hadn't misunderstood the situation.

It just seemed too good to be true, to be getting greater performance, lower power consumption, lower price and an integrated GPU thrown in 'for free' on top - and I was wondering what the catch was. (ie: That perhaps you may have said that prices were predicted to drop for current i7s which might compensate slightly - or that other there were other SKUs not included in the review that would be more appropriate for those not going to use on-die graphics).

Using your argument you could also say that buying virtually any motherboard on the market "is paying for something I'm never going to use". When was the last time most people ;

Used the serial port on their motherboard?

I agree that there are lots of features that people don't use on motherboards, but trying to compare a serial port or extra USB ports to the cost of a GPU is perhaps stretching it a little. At least until recently, GPUs were anything but a cheap component. This now appears to have changed enough of late, to the extent that these new Intel SKUs can include one without raising the price visibly - or more have been able to lower the price significantly for the same performance. Not a bad thing by any means - but makes my surprise at it fairly understandable surely? (Or maybe I'm just a cynic when it comes to companies and newly released component pricing!)

Guest said:

Too bad ski or crossfire is as limited as with the lga 1156 x8/x8.

I think much of the performance increase from the previous gen is due to the large difference in clock speeds of the previous gen and sandy bridge. What is impressive about SB is that while they increased the frequency they lowered power usage.

Guest said:

This has got to be one of the most hyped CPU releases ever, thats a shame really, because it doesn't exactly live up to it.

Memory bandwith: Pretty good for dual channel but not much better than P55. 8/10

Synthetics: Meh, not earth shattering but reasonable. 7/10

Applications: Very nice. 8/10

Encoding: Good but not great. 7/10

Gaming: Good but nothing spectacular here really. 7/10

IGP: Very good, but many will never use it. 8/10

Power Consumption: Fairly good. 7/10

Overclocking: Looks to be its saving grace but many will never do this. 8/10

Price: 9/10 (for 2500K), 6/10 (for 2600K)

Overall: 7.5/10

The 2600K is just simply over priced, it's performance does not justify $100 odd price premium over 2500K, knock $50 off it and it's reasonable otherwise I'd steer clear. 2500K is good value for anyone running a dual core who wants to go quad.

Anyway I'm not getting too excited over this yet, Im sticking with my C2Q q9550 until Ivy Bridge and Bulldozer (and anyone on a P55 or X58 Quad is simply going to shrug at Sandy Bridge) it is simply not worth the time and money upgrading. I know many will upgrade (and Intel are counting on this fanboyism) but whats that old saying about having more dollars than sense?

RaiDeR55 said:

What about the built in DRM for streaming video content etc.?.Lets see Remote shutdown of chip and hardware level DRM..Are those good things to really have in a cpu..?? The speed and other features of the Sb chip seem pretty good.With good OC potential on air..

princeton princeton said:

Guest said:

This has got to be one of the most hyped CPU releases ever, thats a shame really, because it doesn't exactly live up to it.

Memory bandwith: Pretty good for dual channel but not much better than P55. 8/10

Synthetics: Meh, not earth shattering but reasonable. 7/10

Applications: Very nice. 8/10

Encoding: Good but not great. 7/10

Gaming: Good but nothing spectacular here really. 7/10

IGP: Very good, but many will never use it. 8/10

Power Consumption: Fairly good. 7/10

Overclocking: Looks to be its saving grace but many will never do this. 8/10

Price: 9/10 (for 2500K), 6/10 (for 2600K)

Overall: 7.5/10

The 2600K is just simply over priced, it's performance does not justify $100 odd price premium over 2500K, knock $50 off it and it's reasonable otherwise I'd steer clear. 2500K is good value for anyone running a dual core who wants to go quad.

Anyway I'm not getting too excited over this yet, Im sticking with my C2Q q9550 until Ivy Bridge and Bulldozer (and anyone on a P55 or X58 Quad is simply going to shrug at Sandy Bridge) it is simply not worth the time and money upgrading. I know many will upgrade (and Intel are counting on this fanboyism) but whats that old saying about having more dollars than sense?

The 2500K definitely lives up to it. It can match the 975 at a fraction of the cost. IMO nobody is going to even consider bulldozer. I'll be replacing my E7500 with a 2500K as soon as they become available in Canada.

dividebyzero dividebyzero, trainee n00b, said:

I normally have respect for you but do you know what you can go and do?.

Mmmm...continue to point out that people who contribute multiple posts containing fallacious information may be better served researching facts -most specially after being provided the correct information after their first post ? I'm right aren't I ?...That was the answer to the question you posed ?...What do I win?

Why are you not an admin here yet?

I would probably need to brush up on my sensitivity training first....oh! and learn another language....Emo is a language isn't it?

It just seemed too good to be true, to be getting greater performance, lower power consumption, lower price and an integrated GPU thrown in 'for free' on top - and I was wondering what the catch was.

Oh, there are plenty of catches. The first being that connectivity of the chipset isn't anything but a minor reworking of the P55 family. The second would be that while the differences between CPU's looks fairly impressive in bar graph form, how many people would see needing to take -for example- an extra 12 seconds to compress a 400mb file (Core i5 750 v Core i7 2600K) and consider that result a dealbreaker in keeping (or buying) a Core i5 750 ?

The main differentiator between Sandy Bridge and it's predecessors is the new AVX instruction set, which has yet to be implemented by software writers. Once it see's widespread use in browsers etc. it (along with Bulldozer) will make a whole lot more sense for even those running P55 and X58.

...trying to compare a serial port or extra USB ports to the cost of a GPU is perhaps stretching it a little. At least until recently, GPUs were anything but a cheap component. This now appears to have changed enough of late, to the extent that these new Intel SKUs can include one without raising the price visibly

The Intel GPU isn't Fermi by any stretch of the imagination. Maybe this will help clarify the situation. The Intel GPU die is approximately 4.7mm x 8.8mm. Overall die size is 216mm˛ (compare with its predecessor Lynnfield at 296mm˛). You could argue that culling the GPU would decrease die size and could be a factor in lowering costs. By the same token, that would require two seperate wafer lines, masks etc ( for both 2 and 4 core variants of both desktop and mobile parts) and a partial redesign to account for die layout which would probably erode most,if not all,those savings.

Stupido Stupido said:

One of those new i5 2whatever should be very good match for a mini-ITX system... almost ideal HTPC system... ( I would have omit the "almost" part if the gaming performance is better )

banzaigtv said:

A Core i5 2500K beating the crap out out of the Core i7 975 Extreme Edition for one-fifth of the price??? And a Core i7 2600K running Resident Evil 5 on 720p resolution at 45 FPS with NO ATI OR NVIDIA GRAPHICS CARD??? ARE YOU F****** SERIOUS??!?! Dell, please put a Core i7 2600 in the Dell Studio XPS 8100, PLEASE!!!

princeton princeton said:

banzaigtv said:

A Core i5 2500K beating the crap out out of the Core i7 975 Extreme Edition for one-fifth of the price??? And a Core i7 2600K running Resident Evil 5 on 720p resolution at 45 FPS with NO ATI OR NVIDIA GRAPHICS CARD??? ARE YOU F****** SERIOUS??!?! Dell, please put a Core i7 2600 in the Dell Studio XPS 8100, PLEASE!!!

I know right? This is quite a remarkable leap in integrated graphics. Obviously it isn't going to be for hardcore gamers, but it could help bring pc gaming up. A lot of people don't pc game because they buy terrible prebuilt pc's with onboard graphics.

Sarcasm Sarcasm said:

princeton said:

banzaigtv said:

A Core i5 2500K beating the crap out out of the Core i7 975 Extreme Edition for one-fifth of the price??? And a Core i7 2600K running Resident Evil 5 on 720p resolution at 45 FPS with NO ATI OR NVIDIA GRAPHICS CARD??? ARE YOU F****** SERIOUS??!?! Dell, please put a Core i7 2600 in the Dell Studio XPS 8100, PLEASE!!!

I know right? This is quite a remarkable leap in integrated graphics. Obviously it isn't going to be for hardcore gamers, but it could help bring pc gaming up. A lot of people don't pc game because they buy terrible prebuilt pc's with onboard graphics.

It's one helluva steal if you think about it. An insanely fast $300 processor without having to buy a separate GPU to play games is quite amazing in my books.

Budget gamers rejoice!

Archean Archean, TechSpot Paladin, said:

Excellent review Steve, thank you for your brilliant efforts. You have covered almost every area which needed attention, however, one question which I felt need to be looked at is "will IGP's performance can multiply just like CPU performance with every product cycle?" If so, then I guess by the mid of this decade IGP performance level may reach 70-100$ discrete grahpic range, at which point significant market for the likes of nVidia in these segments will disappear and Intel and AMD will be left alone to fight it out. Not a bad situation for most of the users IMO.

Secondly, I would like Intel to take a step forward and comeup with something to rival with Optimus, where when the discrete GPU is not needed the desktop PC should switch straight to CPU-IGP; which should result in reasonable power savings as well.

PS: I am not an Ecomentalist, but power is an expensive commodity in my part of the world

banzaigtv said:

Some other site is comparing the Core i5 2500K to the Core i7 975 EE and the Core i7 2600K to the Core i7 980X. When Apple, HP, and Dell start shipping Sandy Bridge computers to retail, this is going to be epic. Epic, especially when I have a shiny new Sandy Bridge i7 desktop playing NFS Hot Pursuit sitting in my bedroom in March.

yukka, TechSpot Paladin, said:

Well it had to happen. 2 Years after buying my Dell Studio XPS with i7 920 there is finally a worthy successor to the chip and finally my processor is not guarenteed to sit in the top 3 of all CPU related benchmarks. Its been a long time at the top and I was quite used to it. Dammit its gonna be a long way down

Still, 2 years ain't bad. Longest I've ever had a CPU remain the high in the charts etc.

Nice review guys

SilverCider said:

One question I have on these strangely awesome cpu's, what does Intel know that we don't? I mean those prices are extremely odd! We all know Intel are very good at producing $1000+ high end cpu's, so why do we have these that kick the last generation's butt all over whilst undercutting their previous efforts with price. Are they aware of some upcoming AMD competition or are they trying to push AMD's market share out of the window? :P

Staff
Steve Steve said:

One question I have on these strangely awesome cpu's, what does Intel know that we don't? I mean those prices are extremely odd! We all know Intel are very good at producing $1000+ high end cpu's, so why do we have these that kick the last generation's butt all over whilst undercutting their previous efforts with price. Are they aware of some upcoming AMD competition or are they trying to push AMD's market share out of the window? :P

There is nothing odd about the pricing. Plus it doesn't work that way. If they want to charge $1000 they do. When competition comes about they slash prices, but not before.

SilverCider said:

Steve said:

There is nothing odd about the pricing. Plus it doesn't work that way. If they want to charge $1000 they do. When competition comes about they slash prices, but not before.

I'm sorry, I really don't know what I typed there looking back at it! I suppose we've just got to be grateful that they haven't charged more than they have given their impressive products that sit with their extreme range! It's also nice to see that Intel have still pushed ahead with their tech as much as possible despite there being very little coming from AMD in this particular segment yet.

Guest said:

Hi, I have to ask because this baffles me. I have looked at all sorts of reviews now, and the review sites use 1200watt, 850, 750 and 700 watt. I haven't seen anyone below which I don't get because even a 300 watt PSU should be sufficient. Isn't this correct or am I missing something?

Staff
Steve Steve said:

Hi, I have to ask because this baffles me. I have looked at all sorts of reviews now, and the review sites use 1200watt, 850, 750 and 700 watt. I haven't seen anyone below which I don't get because even a 300 watt PSU should be sufficient. Isn't this correct or am I missing something?

Anything over 700w is overkill for a single graphics card but 300w is too low. With a GeForce GTX 580 you don't want to go below 550w or there abouts. Without the graphics card 300w is fine.

Guest said:

Great review.

How many different CPU/Chipset combos do you really need to have?

With 14 CPU's and 4 chipsets how much more complicated can you get? Yeah, there will be more chipsets later, just to make the waters more muddy.

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