Core i7-980X aka Core i9: Intel's 6-core desktop CPU pictured
Intel's desktop CPU (codename: Gulftown with 32 nm Westmere architecture) hasn't even been announced yet, but that doesn't stop the omniscient Internet from spreading information. Now the first Core i7-980X aka Core i9 arrived at the PC Games Hardware office.
PC Games Hardware had access to a engineering sample of a Gulftown processor. See our hands-on test of the six-core CPU for application and game benchmarks.
The Lynnfield with the Nehalem architecture hasn't fully hit the markets yet, but the CPU fans are already looking for Westmere, Intel's 32 nanometer architecture, that replaced Nehalem step by step in 2010.
Westmere will be available in several variants. For gamers the Core i9 series with the codename Gulftwon might be the most interesting option since it offers six cores with twelve parallel threads due to SMT. Gulftown CPUs are produces in a 32 nanometer process (like the dual core CPU Clarkdale) and will be released for the socket 1366 (like the Bloomfield). Thus motherboards with Intel's X58 chipset will be required. The TDP is said to be 130 W. Intel's Turbo Boost technology is supposed to be integrated, too, in order to accelerate applications that don't make use of multiple cores. Apparently the first Core i9 that will be released is going to be an Extreme Edition processor.
|Name||Core i3-530||Core i3-540||Core i5-750||Core i7-860||Core i7-870||Core i7-975 XE||Core i9-xxx XE|
|Architecture||Westmere (32 nm)||Westmere (32 nm)||Nehalem (45 nm)||Nehalem (45 nm)||Nehalem (45 nm)||Nehalem (45 nm)||Westmere (32 nm)|
|Core frequency||2.93 GHz||3.06 GHz||2.67 GHz||2.8 GHz||2.93 GHz||3.33 GHz||Unknown|
|Multiplier||22||23||20||21||22||25 (open)||Unknown (open)|
|L2-Cache||2 x 256 KiByte||2 x 256 KiByte||4 x 256 KiByte||4 x 256 KiByte||4 x 256 KiByte||4 x 256 KiByte||6 x 256 KiByte|
|L3-Cache||4 MiByte||4 MiByte||8 MiByte||8 MiByte||8 MiByte||8 MiByte||12 MiByte|
|TDP||73 Watt||73 Watt||95 Watt||95 Watt||95 Watt||130 Watt||130 Watt|
|Socket||LGA 1156||LGA 1156||LGA 1156||LGA 1156||LGA 1156||LGA 1366||LGA 1366|
In the gallery below you can find pictures of the Gulftown CPU that has arrived in the PC games Hardware office.
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