Feeds
80%

Intel Core i7 'Nehalem' processor and X58 chipset

We put the chip giant's new architecture to the test

Build a business case: developing custom apps

That’s the theory but now it’s time to see how Core i7 performs.

Intel Core i7 CPUs

Intel said, 'test these.' So we did.

Our Intel-supplied review kit consists of a hefty box of goodies that includes a Core i7 920, Core i7 965 Extreme, DX58SO motherboard, three 1GB 1066MHz DDR 3 DIMMs from Qimonda, a regular Intel heatsink, a hefty Thermalright heatsink and an 80GB X25-M Solid State Drive.

Although we love the X25-M dearly, it’s 80GB capacity makes it impractical for everyday use and its £500-600 cost makes it an exotic treat. For the purposes of this review we’re sticking with a 1TB WD Caviar Black, which is a decent hard drive and which neither slows nor flatters the Core i7.

Asus Rampage II Extreme mobo

Asus' Rampage II Extreme mobo: CrossFire and SLI

The other decision we took is to test the new CPUs with an Asus Rampage II Extreme motherboard that supports both CrossFire and SLI. We used a relatively puny GeForce 8800GT during our tests as the emphasis was on system and CPU performance, but we have also done some quick runs with a pair of GeForce GTX 280 cards in SLI and intend to do a follow-up on Core i7 and X58 for gaming.

Although the Intel DX58SO motherboard looks very interesting, it seems a bit daft to exclude the possibility of SLI while we’re getting familiar with this new processor and chipset.

Our starting point is the Core 2 Extreme QX9650 overclocked from its stock speed of 3.0GHz to 3.16GHz on an Intel DX38BT with 2GB of dual-channel DDR 3 running at 1333MHz. This is a damn fine PC that represents the best of the current generation of technology so it is telling to compare it with the Core i7 Extreme at its stock speed of 3.2GHz with triple-channel memory running at 1,066MHz.

The essential guide to IT transformation

More from The Register

next story
Reg man looks through a Glass, darkly: Google's toy ploy or killer tech specs?
Tip: Put the shades on and you'll look less of a spanner
So, Apple won't sell cheap kit? Prepare the iOS garden wall WRECKING BALL
It can throw the low cost race if it looks to the cloud
One step closer to ROBOT BUTLERS: Dyson flashes vid of VACUUM SUCKER bot
Latest cleaner available for world+dog in September
Samsung Gear S: Quick, LAUNCH IT – before Apple straps on iWatch
Full specs for wrist-mounted device here ... but who'll buy it?
Apple promises to lift Curse of the Drained iPhone 5 Battery
Have you tried turning it off and...? Never mind, here's a replacement
Now that's FIRE WIRE: HP recalls 6 MILLION burn-risk laptop cables
Right in the middle of Burning Mains Man week
Apple's iWatch? They cannae do it ... they don't have the POWER
Analyst predicts fanbois will have to wait until next year
Tim Cook in Applerexia fears: New MacBook THINNER THAN EVER
'Supply chain sources' give up the goss on new iLappy
HUGE iPAD? Maybe. HUGE ADVERTS? That's for SURE
Noo! Hand not big enough! Don't look at meee!
prev story

Whitepapers

Top 10 endpoint backup mistakes
Avoid the ten endpoint backup mistakes to ensure that your critical corporate data is protected and end user productivity is improved.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Backing up distributed data
Eliminating the redundant use of bandwidth and storage capacity and application consolidation in the modern data center.
The essential guide to IT transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIOs automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise
Next gen security for virtualised datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.