Intel’s Broadwell-E Flagship Core i7-6950X Processor Confirmed – 10 Core Madness For X99 Enthusiast Platform

Intel has confirmed their flagship Broadwell-E processor in the latest compatibility list of their ME(Management Engine) software. Known as the Core i7-6950X, the processor has leaked before several times but not on Intel's own website where the chip is listed in a support list of their new utility software along with its specifications. It is all we have been hearing about and seems like enthusiasts are finally getting a taste of 10 core processors.

Listed over at Intel's Support Page is the Core i7-6950X, the flagship Broadwell-E chip!

Intel's Enthusiast Class Core i7-6950X CPU (Kind of) Officially Confirmed - To Be The First 10 Core Consumer Processor

Intel's Broadwell-E family is the next update to the consumer, enthusiast-class platform. The X99 HEDT platform was introduced last year with the Haswell-E family which featured the first 8 core processor in Intel's enthusiast processor lineup (Core i7-5960X). This year, Intel is going to launch an even beefier chip that will feature a total of 10 cores, the Core i7-6950X.

The Intel Core i7-6950X is the highlight of the Broadwell-E lineup and the processor is openly listed on Intel's website. It might seem odd but given that we are close to the launch of the Broadwell-E family which will be arriving in Q2 2016, it seems like Intel is already ready with driver and utility software support. Following are the specifications of the various Intel processors which are expected to launch in the Broadwell-E lineup:

Intel Broadwell-E Family

Processor NameIntel Core i7-6950XIntel Core i7-6900KIntel Core i7-6850KIntel Core i7-6800K
Process Node14nm14nm14nm14nm
Core Clock3.00 GHz3.20 GHz3.60 GHz3.40 GHz
Boost Clock3.50 GHz3.70 GHz3.80 GHz3.60 GHz
L3 Cache25 MB L3 Cache20 MB L3 Cache15 MB L3 Cache15 MB L3 Cache
Unlocked Multiplier (BCLK OC)Yes, Full Range OCYes, Full Range OCYes, Full Range OCYes, Full Range OC
SocketLGA 2011-3LGA 2011-3LGA 2011-3LGA 2011-3
PCI-E Lanes40404028
Memory SupportDDR4-2400 MHzDDR4-2400 MHzDDR4-2400 MHzDDR4-2400 MHz
Launch Price$1723 US$1089 US$617 US$434 US

*Note - Prices are based on rumors and are expected to change.

Intel Core i7-6950X – The First Deca-Core, Extreme Series Processor

The Intel Core i7-6950X processor will be the flagship processor of the Broadwell-E lineup. The processor will feature 10 cores and 20 threads. The processor will run at a base clock of 3.00 GHz and a 3.50 GHz boost clock. The processor will come in an unlocked package to allow overclocking support to enthusiasts but I think Intel will be making a point with the upcoming launch, that they are not stopping at 8 cores for their HEDT family but increasing the core count even further for consumers. The processor rocks 25 MB of L3 cache (2.5 MB per core) and will be compatible with current generation X99 motherboards that feature the LGA 2011-v3 socket.

The X99 lineup From ASUS is one of the most feature loaded series for enthusiasts!

There’s no reason to believe that board partners of Intel won’t launch new motherboards to mark the arrival of the first 10 core processor from any company. Currently, the highest core count processors that exist on retail include 8 core parts. Intel recently launched their workstation and datacenter platform, Broadwell-EP which has increased the core count up to 22 cores but those are expensive chips. The Xeon E5-2600 V4 chips do work with many X99 motherboards with proper BIOS support but unlike enthusiast class chips, they cannot overclock. The Core i7-6950X is rumored to launch at $1500 US according.

Intel Core i7-6900K – The Faster Octa Core Processor

Although the Core i7-6950X is one hell of a processor, Intel will also launch three more SKUs in the Broadwell-E lineup. This is the first time that Intel is launching four processors in an HEDT lineup but it might cover up the big price differences we have seen in the older lineups. Starting off with the Core i7-6900K which is an 8 core processor with 16 threads and has 20 MB of L3 Cache.

Intel's Broadwell-E lineup will feature the same level of OC Support as Skylake!

Now the processor specifications reminds me of the 8-Core Core i7-5960X which is the flagship Haswell-E offering that launched back in 2014 but fear not, this new processor would not only be a little bit cheaper than the Core i7-5960X but also come with faster clock speeds of 3.20 GHz base and 3.70 GHz boost.

All along with the added sweetness of an unlocked multiplier and full support on the latest X99 motherboards to allow for better overclocking. The Core i7-6900K is expected to hit the market at around $999 US range.

Intel Core i7-6850K and Core i7-6800K – Hexa Core Options For The Masses

At the bottom of the lineup, Intel will have two SKUs, the Core i7-6850K and the Core i7-6800K. Both CPUs have 6 cores and 12 threads and come with 15 MB of L3 cache but the interesting thing is that both chips are placed for the entry level enthusiasts which means these will be retailing for a price of sub-$450 US.

The Core i7-6850K will feature a base clock of 3.60 GHz base and 3.80 GHz boost while the Core i7-6800K will feature clock speeds of 3.40 GHz base and 3.60 GHz boost. Both processors are fully compliant with the LGA 2011-3 socket and will feature support for quad channel DDR4 memory with speeds of up to 2400 MHz (O.C+). The new chips will be arriving in the second quarter of 2016.

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