Intel Sandy Bridge-E Debuts: Core i7-3960X Reviewed

Intel Kick launched its 2nd generation core processors in 2011 when they released the Sandy Bridge architecture for the first time. Initially there were five processors, including the popular Core i5-2500K and the Core i7-2600K.

These new processors were activated by the LGA1155 platform, which created three new chipsets. Two of them, the H67 and the P67, spoiled the otherwise perfect execution by Intel. Plagued by a SATA 3 Gbps error, this put the entire platform on hold for several months until Intel could start producing working B3 step chipsets to replace the defective models, which is effectively a billion dollars or more so cost.

In March the company was on the mend and soon everything was about Sandy Bridge. Intel described the increase in production for the microprocessor as the fastest ramp-up of all products in the company's history.

Since the Sandy Bridge processors were in full swing, the recent release of the AMD Bulldozer processors was not enough to slow down sales. This was mainly due to Bulldozer's inability to compete well enough with the Core i5-2xxx series. Even worse, it is almost impossible to buy an AMD FX-8150 processor due to the lack of chips. In the meantime, Intel is preparing to strike back by further strengthening its 2nd generation core processors.

Sandy Bridge-E and three new processors are launched today, including the Core i7-3960X Extreme Edition, the Core i7-3930K and the Core i7-3820. These 32nm processors are powered by a new LGA2011 socket and offer up to six cores with a dozen threads. Intel has also upgraded the integrated four-channel memory controller that supports DDR3-1600 memory for a theoretical peak bandwidth of 51.2 GB / s.

These processors will be examined in more detail shortly, but it is worth noting for the time being that they have a total of 2.27 billion transistors with a chip size of 20.8 mm x 20.9 mm, which are stunning statistics to say the least.

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