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Intel's Sandy Bridge CPU specifications leaked?

By Jos ยท 15 replies
Jul 14, 2010
  1. While reporting its record financial results yesterday, Intel also made a quick mention of its upcoming "Sandy Bridge" chip design, announcing that they have accelerated their 32-nanometer factory ramp in an effort to meet the anticipated demand. Although the company offered very little news besides citing the "very strong reception" of its all-new architecture, early details have already started to emerge from a handful of sources.

    Read the whole story
  2. Burty117

    Burty117 TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 3,041   +793

    Well this should lower the price on current i7's and of course x58 chipsets, can't wait! Finally can build that dream computer i've been wanting to make and if i wait a bit longer the price will be considerably lower :)
  3. dividebyzero

    dividebyzero trainee n00b Posts: 4,891   +1,262

    Sorry to rain on your parade Burty, but I don't think the P67 introduction will affect X58 pricing to any great degree.
    Sandy Bridge DT (LGA 1155) will be a direct replacement for Core i5/i7 LGA 1156, but I doubt whether the owner of the latter would bother too much with the upgrade since the only notable differences are :
    (1) a few new instruction sets, the most notable being AVX, that will still require software to be written to take advantage of them-probably around the two-year timeframe for AVX usage to become anything more than a novelty
    (2) native SATA 6Gb support, as opposed to a third party onboard controller chip.
    (3) Upgraded DMI (4 lanes PCI-E v2.0 for "Southbridge" duties)
    The new chipset retains the dual channel DDR3-1333 (official support) and sixteen lanes of PCI-E 2.0 that the P55 enjoys.
    So, LGA 1366/X58 will remain the enthusiast setup of choice* until Sandy Bridge B2 (LGA 2011) launches in late 2011.

    * Depending upon whether Bulldozer mounts any worthwhile challenge, assuming it launches before LGA 2011....not a given at this stage.
  4. TomSEA

    TomSEA TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 2,633   +694

    "Sandy Bridge chips will also require a brand new socket, LGA 1155 and later on LGA 2011 for six and eight core variants, neither of which will be backwards compatible with older CPUs."

    This is getting to be a royal pain in the rear to have to buy new mobo's each time you want to do a proc upgrade. :(
  5. Julio Franco

    Julio Franco TechSpot Editor Posts: 7,413   +809

    @TomSEA +1
  6. princeton

    princeton TS Addict Posts: 1,676

    @TomSEA +1 also. The amount of new features lga 1155 is bringing do not really justify a new socket. It's just a cash grab to get money from motherboard sales.
  7. dividebyzero

    dividebyzero trainee n00b Posts: 4,891   +1,262

    While LGA 1155 and LGA1156 aren't exactly light years apart, as I said in my earlier post, I doubt that the incremental advance justifies the a P55 user from upgrading to P67, many users (including yourself, princeton and julio) are using LGA775, and have already effectively skipped two Intel sockets, one mainstream and one enthusiast, so their place in the marketplace is somewhat a moot point for many people- an option in the marketplace, no more and no less.

    Now, to get to the crux of the matter....how many computer users do you think upgrade their CPU during their systems life cycle ? And of that percentage, how many would upgrade their CPU a second time for that same system? -this the probable/possible time when the socket is at/near EOL
    So princeton....you have an E7500...if a CPU performance/computer sub-systems upgrade is what you desire, then you still have headroom by using a CPU with double the L2 cache + FSB increase (E8xxx), double the cores + double the shared L2 + FSB increase (Q9300/9400/9400S/9500/9505/9505S), double the cores+ quadruple the shared L2 cache+FSB increase (Q9450/9550/9650/QX9650/9770). What precisely is holding you back? Every one of these options will gain you productivity, and thanks to the higher FSB (as opposed to your higher multiplier) most of these options have as good if not better OC potential, and certainly offer increased memory bandwidth options.
    Tom, julio...you're upgrade path on LGA775 is somewhat more constrained, but is still available...and even if it was not (i.e. you had a Q9650/QX9650/9770 and I presume Q9650 (board dependant), respectively) would you both consider a hardware swap out to a Core i5-i7/P55-P67/DDR3 a worthwhile and cost effective move ?

    LGA1156 to LGA1155...meh. But the only people I think this issue really effects are existing upper-mainstream performance P55 owners, who should possibly be asking about their potential upgrade path...the kind of people buying higher strata boards like the M3E,UD7 and Big Bang Fuzion -but then, people buying these kind of boards are well aware of the "diminishing returns" concept. And at the other end of the scale, from personal experience, I doubt whether the smallest fraction of H55/H57 board owners would likely upgrade their CPU to a Sandy Bridge/Ivy Bridge if they could.
    As for LGA 2011....Somehow I don't think accomodating a CPU with a quad-channel memory controller into a socket/board utilising triple-channel memory is much of a starter.
  8. gwailo247

    gwailo247 TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 2,010   +18

    I'm still a long way from upgrading the 920. I hit almost no CPU bottleneck, and any CPU intensive application I use for over 1 hour, like encoding, etc, I let it run overnight, and my computer goes to sleep when I'm done.

    I use my computers in a hand me down fashion, where the newest PC is for gaming, and then the rest take on other duties like music production or downloading. But using the 920 as just a web browser or multimedia player is really overkill. I guess I could set up some kind of network multiplayer game set up, but as it stands, I rarely have more than 2 computers on.

    And trading up the current 920 for a higher performance X58 chip would kinda be a waste of money too, because I have nothing to put the old 920 into...

    But frankly I'm eventually going to end up with one powerful computer, and a bunch of smaller cheaper computers that are going to be just powerful enough to do the task they're intended for.
  9. princeton

    princeton TS Addict Posts: 1,676

    My original plan was to buy a socket lga 1155 cpu and a socket lga 1156 motherboard cheap. Remove one pin and there you go I win. /sarcasm
    I'm just waiting for LGA 1155.
  10. dividebyzero

    dividebyzero trainee n00b Posts: 4,891   +1,262

    Not a lot of point upgrading a 920 to say, a 950/960/975, unless the upgrade price is commensurate with the performance increase. Since the 920 clocks (inc turbo) just as well as the supposed "faster" CPU's there is little point in swapping out.
    Personally, I will swap out CPU's a few times, but usually of the same variety, until I find one that clocks the best for the lowest Vcore. Largely a trial and error/CPU batch needle-in-a-haystack operation...but I do have a ready access to a fair few CPU's.
  11. EXCellR8

    EXCellR8 The Conservative Posts: 1,835

    ebay. just look into used stuff. it's not like you need brand new stuff every single time you upgrade; it's not going to run slower because it's been installed and used already. the reason i bring this up is because i got an X58 board, an i7-920 and 6GB DDR3 for a little over $400 a few days ago. the setup is real decent and is barely used; also ships with all original packaging and manuals. can't beat saving $250+ on stuff that's gonna go together anyways...

    my last motherboard was a used X48 based platform, and it's the best unit i've used to date. just buy from private sellers and you can't lose, plus ebay protects against defective junk. i agree that it's a hassle to upgrade each time a new processor platform is released, but that's not gonna stop, so don't waste money buying brand new equipment each time.
  12. bugejakurt

    bugejakurt TS Booster Posts: 157   +15

    @TomSEA +1
  13. I'm waitng for haswell :DDD
  14. ddg4005

    ddg4005 TS Guru Posts: 376   +50

    Man I must be out the loop because I'm still running Q9650s on my Socket 775 boards. I won't be upgrading to a new platform for at least 2 years (unless something breaks).
  15. dividebyzero

    dividebyzero trainee n00b Posts: 4,891   +1,262

    I wouldn't see a problem with that at all.
    Intel have adhered very closely to their timetables for CPU introduction, so anyone planning an upgrade in 1, 2...5 years can plan fairly easily based upon Intels own literature (this example might need a translate for the finer points). A quick Google for IDF or a visit to Intel's site will fill out the basic info, but basically:
    Mainstream/Mainstream mobile:
    Sandy Bridge (32nm) -> Ivy Bridge (22nm die shrink, same socket, Q1 2012) -> Haswell (native 22nm, 8 core standard, Q3/4 2012) -> Rockwell (16nm die shrink, probably same socket as Haswell,2013 )
    Sandy Bridge B2 (32nm, quad DDR3-1600, PCI-E 3.0 (40 lanes), LGA 2011, Q3 2011) -> Ivy Bridge (22nm die shrink, same socket, 6 and 8 core only, Q4 2012) -> Haswell (native 22nm, Q1? 2013) -> Rockwell
  16. Sandy Bridge will be most exciting as a laptop with amazing features.
    USB3.0, great power management, etc.
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