IntroductionMy sincerest thanks go out to Intel for providing both the QX6700 CPU as well as the Bad Axe 2 motherboard.
When you enter the computer world, one of the first companies you will come across is Intel. And quite rightly so. After all, you cannot have a functioning computer without a CPU – that would be like trying to build a car without an engine. Intel has been with us for almost 40 years. All that time, it has been powering PCs, constantly increasing their performance over time.
In the last years, however, Intel was struggling to deliver the performance we are used to. AMD gained advantage in both gaming and benchmarking, sponsoring many events, and bragging about the capabilities of its 64-bit processors. Intel wasn’t asleep though – it did what it could to offer high performance solutions, yet it wasn’t too successful. There was something “wrong” with Intel’s CPUs – either they ran hot, or had large power requirements, or were simply slower than the AMD counterpart. So, the PC enthusiast world split up into two groups – those that were running AMD, and enjoying performance, and those that stayed with Intel, hoping for the return of the king.
Intel took the world by storm when news about its new Conroe architecture started appearing all over the Internet. Intel fans started to rejoice. They knew that now was the time for the enterprise to strike back at AMD, and regain the performance crown. Those in favor of AMD simply didn’t know what to think. At first, waves of amazement started to appear. But then, doubt kicked in – how on earth could Intel possibly achieve such benchmark scores on a CPU that was going to be run 24/7, and not just some super-cooled test sample? Is Intel playing a trick on us? As the official launch date got closer, even the most die-hard AMD supporters knew that, in order to enjoy maximum performance, they would have to step over to the dark side. There was no turning back.
It has now been half a year that we have enjoyed the benefits of the Core 2 architecture. Intel has risen from its own dust, showing people all around the world that it is in better shape than ever. Being very ambitious, Intel is prepared to launch a new architecture every two years, prolonging the applicability of Moore’s law. Since Intel stepped away from its own race for Gigahertz, it has shown a healthy trend in producing fast CPUs. Now, the “hit of the season” (I sure hope it lasts more than a year) is parallel computing – having more cores on a CPU, which in turn means faster processing in applications that are multi threaded.
Today, we take a look at the latest and greatest from Intel – the Core 2 Extreme QX6700. Sporting 4 cores, this CPU is bound to scream. But are there enough programs and benchmarks to take full advantage of what this CPU has to offer? How much of a performance increase can we expect, going from two cores to four? Read on to find out!
Intel Conroe CPUsBelow, you can find a table that lists Intel’s current Core 2 offerings
|Model||Core Clock (MHz)||Cores||L2 Cache (MB)||Front side bus (MHz)||TDP (W)|