In late 2011, I wagered that Intel would follow-up its i7-3960X with an eight-core model within the year. That didn’t happen. Instead, we have had to wait nearly three years since that release to finally see an eight-core Intel desktop chip become a reality. Now for the big question: Was the company’s Core i7-5960X worth the wait?
It was a glorious thing when Intel released its Gulftown-based Core i7-980X in early 2010. It was the first desktop CPU out of the company that featured six cores, and it felt like a relative boon to those, like me, who run virtual machines, encode video, compile software, and more. In the end, I was left seriously impressed with that chip.
At that time, I naively believed that an eight-core was in our near-future. In fact, I outright expected Sandy Bridge, which released in late 2011, to have an eight-core model. It didn’t. I didn’t let anything dampen my spirits though, as at the end of my look at the Core i7-3960X, I said something to the effect of, “I can’t imagine that eight-core models will not be released within the next six months or so.”
I’m not sure what got that into my head. A staggering 1,020 days have passed since the 3960X’s announcement, and we finally have an eight-core chip at our disposal. Admittedly, I wasn’t exactly enthralled by what the Core i7-4960X brought to the table, but with eight cores, I think the i7-5960X has a great chance at having a different conclusion.
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