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Intel is planning to release another Sandy Bridge CPU before Ivy Bridge is launched next year. The Core i5-2550K will feature an unlocked clock multiplier and four CPU cores, according to an investigative report from CPU World.
A new entry in the Material Declaration Data Sheets database revealed the BX80623I52550K box part number, CM8062301213000 OEM part number and SR0QH S-spec code. Because the part was just recently added to the database and the i5-2550K isn't on Intel's roadmap, it is believed that the decision to launch this processor was only recently made.
Aside from a slightly higher default clock speed, likely 3.4GHz, the chip will be functionally identical to a Core i5-2500K with the aforementioned unlocked multiplier, HD 3000 graphics, 6MB of L3 cache, Turbo Boost support and a 95 watt TDP. One could speculate that the 2550K will be priced slightly higher than existing 2500K models and perhaps overclock higher based on better binning.
No launch date or price has been issued yet but the CPU will likely drop around the same time as the next round of AMD FX-Series CPUs are released. Perhaps Intel didn't get the recent memo from AMD spokesperson Mike Silverman when he went on record with the San Jose Mercury News proclaiming that AMD is no longer trying to compete with Intel. Either way, more products on the market at different price points means more options for the end user.