Intel Core i7-4960X Flagship Processor Tested – Ivy Bridge-E Launches on 11th September

Hassan Mujtaba

Intel would launch their upcoming Ivy Bridge-E processors including the flagship Core i7-4960X Extreme Edition on 11th September. The folks at Tomshardware somehow acquired an engineering sample of the Core i7-4960X CPU for an early preview to test  the performance of the new Ivy Bridge-E processors.

Intel Core i7-4960X Ivy Bridge-E Processors Tested

The Ivy bridge-E Core i7-4960X processor would be built on a 22nm architecture featuring high K+ metal gate core technology. Although its just a die shrink of the 32nm Sandy Bridge core, the Ivy Bridge-E CPUs would feature improved performance (around 10% increase as seen in the benchmarks leaked previously), 40 PCI-Express lanes (Generation 3.0), DDR3-1866 MHz memory support, Intel Hyper Threading, Intel Turbo Boost 2.0 and complete Unlocked CPU designs. The Ivy Bridge-E processors would be compatible with the current X79 chipset based LGA 2011 motherboards and would have 130 Watt TDP across the entire lineup. AMD has also prepared their own Extremely high clocked 5 GHz FX lineup called the new FX-9000 series lineup to compete against the $1000 chips from Intel which can be seen here.

Model Cores Threads Base Clock (Ghz) Turbo Clock (GHz) L3 cache Memory TDP
Core i7-4960X 6 12 3.6 GHz 4.0 GHz 15 MB DDR3-1866 130 Watt
Core i7-4930K 6 12 3.4 GHz 3.9 GHz 12 MB DDR3-1866 130 Watt
Core i7-4820K 4 8 3.7 GHz 3.9 GHz 10 MB DDR3-1866 130 Watt

The flagship Intel Ivy Bridge-E CPU would be the Core i7-4960X packed with 6 cores and 12 threads and would feature a core clock of 3.6 GHz base and 4.0 GHz Turbo boost with 15 MB of L3 cache. The Extreme Edition CPU would cost $1000 and would boast a 130W TDP which is lower than the 150W TDP on the Core i7-3960X and 220W TDP on the FX-9000 series processors from AMD while being just a bit higher than the FX-8350 which has a TDP of 125W. The performance minded users would look forward to the Core i7-4930K with the same 6 core and 12 threads configuration however shipped with a lower core clock of 3.40 GHz base and 3.90 GHz with Turbo boost 2.0. The Core i7-4930K would feature 12 MB of L3 cache.

Last of all is the entry level Core i7-4820K which will retail around the $290-$350 mark. As you may note, this time Intel thought it was better off to ship their entry level HEDT CPU with an unlocked multiplier while the Sandy Bridge-E based Core i7-3820 didn’t had an “K” unlocked design. Specifications wise, the Core i7-4820K ships with 4 Cores and 8 threads, 10 MB of L3 cache and 3.70 GHz base and 3.90 GHz Turbo frequency.

The testing was evaluated on an X79 rig since Ivy Bridge-E processors feature compatibility with the LGA 2011 socket and the X79 chipset. We may see new motherboard variations on the launch of these new processors as we saw from EVGA recently with their X79 Dark motherboard.

From the benchmarks posted below, you can note that Intel not only did a well job improving performance by some bit but drastically improved the efficiency of their new Ivy Bridge-E processors. With a 130W TDP package, the Core i7-4960X consumers lower power than the i7-3930K and i7-2600K compared to the power hungry AMD FX processors and the Sandy Bridge-E based Extreme edition processors. So this is a really good thing plus the Ivy Bridge architecture would allow for better overclocking due to the tri-gate transistors technology which prevent leakage of current and enhance the efficiency. Do note that the performance was previewed with an engineering sample which does not represents the final retail product but still those are nice gains for an enthusiast platform. You can check out the complete preview at Tomshardware.

Following images are courtesy of TomsHardware!

Core i7 4960X Power consumption Core i7-4960X Power Core i7-4960X_3DMark11 Core i7-4960X_3dsMax Core i7-4960X_7-zip Core i7-4960X_Cinebench Core i7-4960X_CS6 Core i7-4960X_Fritz Core i7-4960X_handbrake Core i7-4960X_Photoshop Core i7-4960X_Power Core i7-4960X_Sissoft Sandra Core i7-4960X_Sissoft Sandra1 Core i7-4960X_Sissoft Sandra2 Core i7-4960X_Winrar Core i7-4960X_winzip

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