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Intel Core i7-975 Extreme Edition
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by Rob Williams on June 2, 2009 in Intel Processors

It’s been a good seven months since the launch of the original Core i7 processors, so isn’t it about time we got to see some new models? Don’t fret, as Intel has just announced their i7-950 3.06GHz mid-range and i7-975 3.33GHz high-end models. We’re taking a look at the latter today, so let’s see how it compares to its predecessor.

Introduction

Where has the time gone? It feels like (to me, at least), that Intel just dropped their Core i7 launch processors, but in reality, it happened a full seven months ago. That’s a long time in CPU years, so what about a follow-up? Don’t fret… Intel is delivering just that today, although exact availability is yet to be seen.

To quickly recap, in November of 2008, Intel kick-started their i7 line-up with the mainstream i7-920 ($284), the mid-range i7-940 ($562) and also the high-end i7-965 Extreme Edition. Since then, nothing else Core i7 has launched, although a few Core 2 Quad’s have, such as the S series (power-efficient) and also some budget Quad-Core.

Intel today launches two models that are set to replace two already launched. The main focus from the company is the i7-975, an Extreme Edition, which boosts the i7-965’s clock speed from 3.2GHz to 3.33GHz. It’s a sure thing that the i7-975 will eventually replace the i7-965 wholly, but when that will happen is unknown.

Also new is the i7-950, a 3.06GHz part that bumps the clock speeds of the i7-940 from 2.93. Like the i7-975, this model is likely to entirely replace the i7-940. It’s important to note that speculated pricing for these two new models put them a little more expensive than the previous parts, but it’s highly doubtful that they will stay at such prices for long.

Closer Look at Intel’s Brand-New i7’s

The i7-950 and i7-975 are more evolutionary than revolutionary, or as many like to call them… “speed bumps”, meaning that the architecture is the same, but the clocks experience a boost. Although Intel hasn’t been entirely open about any other changes made, it’s been rumored that minor changes have also been made to the chip to help improve overclocking, but we’ll have to wait and see what overclockers can accomplish before we settle on that.

As you can see in the chart below, Intel currently has a huge line-up of CPUs (excluding Dual-Core), with five Core i7 total. Core i5 will soon be added to this list, but not until around late August/early September when the chips start to flow to the market. As it stands though, the top two models are the only to use a 6.4GT/s QPI, while the others use 4.8GT/s, although the real-world differences between the two are difficult to pinpoint.

Quad-Core CPU Name
Cores
Clock
Cache
QPI/FSB
TDP
1Ku Price
Intel Core i7-975 Extreme Edition
4
3.33GHz
8MB
3200MHz
150W
$999
Intel Core i7-965 Extreme Edition
4
3.20GHz
8MB
3200MHz
150W
$999
Intel Core i7-950
4
3.06GHz
8MB
2400MHz
130W
$???
Intel Core i7-940
4
2.93GHz
8MB
2400MHz
130W
$562
Intel Core i7-920
4
2.66GHz
8MB
2400MHz
130W
$284
Intel Core 2 Extreme QX9775
4
3.20GHz
2 x 6MB
1600MHz
150W
$1,499
Intel Core 2 Extreme Q9650
4
3.00GHz
2 x 6MB
1333MHz
130W
$316
Intel Core 2 Quad Q9550S
4
2.83GHz
2 x 6MB
1333MHz
65W
$369
Intel Core 2 Quad Q9550
4
2.83GHz
2 x 6MB
1333MHz
95W
$266
Intel Core 2 Quad Q9400S
4
2.66GHz
2 x 3MB
1333MHz
65W
$320
Intel Core 2 Quad Q9400
4
2.66GHz
2 x 3MB
1333MHz
95W
$213
Intel Core 2 Quad Q9300
4
2.50GHz
2 x 3MB
1333MHz
95W
$266
Intel Core 2 Quad Q8400S
4
2.66GHz
2 x 2MB
1333MHz
65W
$245
Intel Core 2 Quad Q8400
4
2.66GHz
2 x 2MB
1333MHz
95W
$183
Intel Core 2 Quad Q8300
4
2.50GHz
2 x 2MB
1333MHz
95W
$183
Intel Core 2 Quad Q8200S
4
2.33GHz
2 x 2MB
1333MHz
65W
$245
Intel Core 2 Quad Q8200
4
2.33GHz
2 x 2MB
1333MHz
95W
$163

While we don’t have an i7-950 on-hand, we do have an i7-975 Extreme Edition. So, let’s see how it compares to our entire line-up of processors, including its predecessor, the i7-965.