Intel Core i7 990 X

Published by Marc Büchel on 01.05.11
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With its recent Gulftown CPU's Intel has a really fast processor in its portfolio. But as usual their extreme processors come at a very high price tag. For CHF 1179.- (est. EUR 786.-) you get this very exclusive piece of hardware which is future proof because of its massive performance and high thread count. One can definitely say that six of these highly efficient cores paired up with Intels hyperthreading are at least one generation ahead of todays operating systems.

Because of the reason that Gulftown is an up scaled version of Bloomfiield it can profit from all the advantages the Nehalem architecture comes with. The Gulftwon models therefore are equipped with SMT as well as an overworked Turbo-Mode which now is able to raise the clock speeds up to 266 MHz or in other words by two multiplyer steps. Like this the enduser gets a real performance benefit in single threaded applications when the clock speed is as high as possible.

If we look at Gulftowns performance the 990 X is a little bit faster than its predecessor the Core i7 980 X. Because of the clockspeed which had been increased by another 133 MHz to 3.46 GHz one can see a small performance advantage over the i7 980 X. Also in game benchmarks Gulftown is able to make a lasting impression. Every game we tested performed better but we still wouldn't recommend a Gulftown for gaming. The additional money you pay for this CPU is better spent with a high-end graphics card if it only comes down to gaming.

As expected Gulftown isn't the most economic CPU. Never the less 128 Watt in idle is a very good value for such a high-end CPU. This result is down to the shrinked structures which are now only 32 Nanometers wide. But for those expecting big numbers here we have one: under load our 990 X testsystem needed 254 Watts to operate.

If you are looking for the most powerful desktop CPU available then the Core i7 990 X is excatly what you want to buy. There is no other CPU these days which can be compared. Therefore we recommend this CPU to PC enthusiasts as well as overclockers who have the pocket money to buy this very nice piece of hardware. Of course a Core i7 990 X also is a very good investment for a workstation which mainly does rendering operations or other highly multithreaded tasks.

At Brack Electornics AG you can buy the Core i7 990 X to a price of CHF 1099.- (est. EUR 845.-)

Author: Marc Büchel,

Page 1 - Introduction Page 9 - Super Pi / Wprime
Page 2 - Specifications Page 10 - WinRar
Page 3 - The Gulftown CPU Page 11 - Crysis
Page 4 - Test Setup Page 12 - PT Boats Knights of Seas
Page 5 - Futuremark Page 13 - Resident Evil 5
Page 6 - Cinebench Page 14 - Street Fighter 4
Page 7 - SiSoft Sandra 1 Page 15 - Power consumption
Page 8 - SiSoft Sandra 2 Page 16 - Conclusion

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Intel Core i7 990 X - CPUs Reviews - Reviews - ocaholic