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Core i7 950 to be Priced Under $300 This August

A recent report by HKEPC shows that Intel will be cutting the prices of certain key SKUs to make them and the price-point they're targeting, more competitive. For instance, until now available for over US $500, and replaced by the Core i7 960, the Core i7 950 (LGA1366, 3.06 GHz, quad-core) chip will be placed at the $294 price-point, displacing the Core i7 930 2.80 GHz chip.

With the value segment, the socket LGA1156 Core i3 500 series chips will have a new SKU, the Core i3 560. This dual-core chip is clocked at 3.33 GHz, and priced at $138. Intel has recently released its new $200 LGA1156 quad-core chip, the Core i5 760 2.80 GHz. The new pricing will be effective from August 29.

Source: HKEPC

Intel Introduces Core i7 960 Processor

Intel silently made its newest addition to the Core i7 desktop processor family official: the Core i7 960. This socket LGA-1366 processor is designed to work on motherboards with the Intel X58 Express chipset. After Intel's gradual replacement of the Core i7 965 Extreme Edition with the Core i7 975 Extreme Edition, there remained a scope for a non-XE Core i7 model with the same clock-speed as the i7 965 XE, albeit with an upwards locked bus frequency multiplier.

The Core i7 960 comes clocked at 3.20 GHz (24.0 x 133 MHz), with a maximum Turbo Boost speed of 3.43 GHz. It has four processing cores, and with the HyperThreading Technology, provides the operating system with eight logical CPUs. It comes with a QuickPath Interconnect speed of 4.8 GT/s, and supports up to 24 GB of memory with its triple-channel (192-bit wide) DDR3 memory interface. Each processing core has a dedicated L2 cache of 256 KB, while an 8 MB L3 cache is shared between all four cores. It is built on the 45 nm HKMG process, with a TDP of 130W.

The Core i7 960 is touted to displace the Core i7 950 from its existing price-point of around US $562 (in 1000 unit tray quantities). As evidence of that, popular American retailer Newegg.com has listed the OEM part (chip-only) at $589.99, a mere $10 higher than the retail box of the Core i7 950 listed on the same store.

Intel Updates Mainstream, Performance, and Extreme CPU Roadmap

Intel issued a confidential roadmap for CPU product releases that looks as far as Q3 2010, leaked to sections of the Chinese media. The roadmap covers prominent Intel processors in their designated market segments drawn out by Intel, covering three grades of mainstream, one each of performance and extreme. The roadmap marks a definite transition of architectures from Intel's Core (penryn) to next-generation Nehalem, and the advent of Intel's first 32 nm based Westmere CPUs.

To begin with, there three models of Intel's first LGA-1156 processors scheduled for Q3 2009, the quad-core "Lynnfield" based Core i7 870 (2.93 GHz, HTT) in Performance, Core i7 860 (2.80 GHz, HTT) in MS3/upper-mainstream, and Core i5 750 (2.66 GHz, no HTT) in MS2/middle-mainstream. The HTT-enabled Core i7 800 processors were earlier believed to have been scheduled for Q1 2010, but are combined with the Core i5 750 for a grand platform launch. The Core i7 800 models will remain seated in their segments for the better part of 2010.

Intel to Introduce Core i7 960 in Q4

A lot of controversy and uncertainty is surrounding the future of lower end Core i7 models. Recently surfaced information suggested that the company would phase out lower models of Core i7 to make room for higher Core i5 ones. The recently introduced Core i7 950, is already staring at its successor, which will displace it from its price point, and put in in line for being phased out, as early as in Q4 2009.

The Core i7 960 inherits a part of its specifications from the Core i7 965 Extreme Edition, which is now replaced by the 975 Extreme Edition. The i7 960 comes with a clock speed of 3.20 GHz, with a bus multiplier of 24 (24 x 133 MHz). Unlike the 965 Extreme Edition chip, the multiplier will be capped at 24x, and it will use a 4.8 GT/s QPI interface, unlike 6.4 GT/s for the 965. The rest of its specs remain standard. It comes with a triple-channel DDR3 memory interface, and 8 MB of L3 cache. It is expected to be priced at US $562, displacing the Core i7 950 from its range.Source: TechConnect Magazine
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