4 expert reviews - 0 user reviews
We have collected 4 reviews of the Intel Core i7 970. Experts rate Intel Core i7 970 8.7/10. Reviewsor.com helps you find reviews, best prices, user reviews of the Intel Core i7 970 and Intel Processors.
Six cores, 12 threads, one billion transistors and a whole lotta processing power. That's the Intel Core i7 970. It's a fabulous technological achievement. But can it really be worth nearly £700?Admittedly, the Core i7 970 is a bit cheaper than Intel's top six-core chip, the Core i7 980X. But it's still a tough ask given that AMD will sell you its own six-core Phenom II X6 1055T CPU for around one third the price. What the AMD chip doesn't give you, however, is the very latest technology. The Core i7 970 sports literally the most advanced PC processor die on the planet.Part of the 970's advantage comes down to microprocessor architecture. Known as Nehalem, it's as good as it currently gets thanks to features such as HyperThreading, a triple-channel memory controller and the super-fast QPI interconnect.The Core i7 970 is also hewn from Intel's latest 32nm silicon. That means the chip itself is physically smaller than most current quad-core processors including Intel's own Core i7 870 and AMD's Phenom II X4 965 Black Edition. In theory that means it should be cheaper to manufacture. For now, Intel isn't passing on those cost savings to customers.
After the Core i7 980X, Intel has brought a second six-core processor for the general consumer: the Core i7 970. What's the difference between the two? The clock... and that's it! The Core i7 980X runs at 3.33 GHz and the i7 970 runs at 3.20 GHz. For the rest, both have the same technologies such as Hyper-threading, which allows you to best use the different cores, and Turbo mode. This mode allows you to increase the clock of the processor depending on the number of cores being used. From 3.20 GHz, the i7 970 can thus go up to 3.46 GHz (3.60 GHz on the 980X). In practice, the differences in clock translate to a little over 3% difference in performance. Not too much of a lag then for this processor which is very rapid across the board. For a more detailed analysis of the Core i7 900 six-core series, we refer you to the detailed test of the . In particular you'll see a breakdown of the benefits of the 32nm engraving and look at gaming performance. Lastly, don't forget the performance index table available to give you an overall vision of the current processor offer.
When Intel released its groundbreaking Core i7-980X "Gulftown" CPU earlier this year, the first consumer processor to feature six cores (and thus operating with 12 threads thanks to Hyper-Threading), it blew us away with its performance—but its price gave us pause. Occupying the typical "Extreme Edition" real estate of $999, it remained out of the grasp of any but the most enthused enthusiasts, meaning its capabilities wouldn't be realized by most for a while yet. It wasn't long until AMD offered its own six-core CPU with a price better aimed at mainstream buyers, but its performance couldn't compare to that of the Core i7-980X. How long until we saw a six-core Intel chip that more people could afford? The answer has now—sort of—come with the Core i7-970. In terms of specs, it's a near-exact mirror of the Core i7-980X. Both have been built using the same 32nm manufacturing process, packing about 1.17 billion transistors on a 240mm2 die. With six cores ready for 12 threads, a 12MB L3 cache, and a 130-watt TDP, the Core i7-970's slight speed differences (3.20-GHz core clock versus the Core i7-980X's 3.33 GHz; 3.46-GHz Turbo Boost speed compared to 3.6 GHz) don't look particularly significant on paper.
There's little question, like the sun rising and setting each day, that when Intel launches their latest top-of-the-line processor, a stinging four-figure price point awaits. It seems like forever that Intel's latest flagship desktop chips drop into the market at anywhere from $999 - $1100 or so at their time of launch. Obviously, for many mainstream users, that's the price of an entire system and monitor and they just don't need all that much CPU horsepower. But for others, the need for speed is insatiable. Either that or their productivity and ultimately profitability, is directly proportional to processor throughput; as is often times the case with folks in the video production or professional design and animation business, for example. Either way you slice it, it's hard to argue, when you've got the fastest desktop chip on the planet, you get to command a hefty premium. And to play devil's advocate for just a moment, how else should we expect Intel to recoup the R&D expenditures they put forth to design a killer chip like the Core i7, to say nothing of having to pay for the billion dollar fab plants they have to build in order to manufacturer these things? Okay, we'll stop there, for fear that we'll incite a riot on the subject, but you get the drift.
|Intel Core i7-970 Processor 3.20 GHz 12 MB Cache Socket LGA1366||$698.95||See it|