The Roadmap: Sandy Bridge in 2011

Like Bloomfield, Gulftown may end up having a relatively long lifespan at the top of the charts. Below is Intel’s current desktop roadmap through the beginning of 2011. You’ll notice that when Sandy Bridge arrives, it’s going to be limited to two and four core configurations. Performance per core will improve, but it doesn’t look like we’ll see an ultra high end version of Sandy Bridge until at least Q2 or Q3 of next year.


A wafer of Gulftown

The verdict isn’t out on whether or not Sandy Bridge will require a new motherboard. It is possible to make the chip work in existing LGA-1156 motherboards, but that requires additional validation that Intel may not be willing to commit to at this point. The decision isn’t final yet and Intel is telling its partners to expect a new chipset (6-series) and thus new motherboards to support the chip at this point.

The next point of interest is the Core i7 970, which is apparently a cheaper Gulftown due out next quarter. It slots in above the Core i7 960 and 870, meaning it may be priced somewhere in the $600 - $900 range. The very first Extreme Edition carried a $740 price tag. I’d guess that we’d see a 3.2GHz default clock speed on that part.


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  • aigomorla - Thursday, March 11, 2010 - link

    W3680 will be a workstation hexcore @ 3.2ghz

    Im guessing since its a 3600 series, it will be a 1 x QPI, so it will not work in tandium on a DP board.

    Xeons are uber expensive tho.
    And this one if its gonna be priced like the W3580's is gonna have a price of around 1499.

    :X

    Reply
  • Rev1 - Thursday, March 11, 2010 - link

    I know the OC's were on stock cooling but being this chip starts out @ 3.33 ghz and having a smaller 32nm size, the OC capability seems very underwhelming. I heard this chip is good for extreme overclockers because they did away with the cold boot bug. This thing probably puts out to much heat for any current air or wc setup to get a good oc out. That being said i dont see replacing my D0 920 anytime soon. Reply
  • aigomorla - Thursday, March 11, 2010 - link

    come to our cpu and overclocking forum.
    http://forums.anandtech.com/showthread.php?t=20576...">http://forums.anandtech.com/showthread.php?t=20576...

    Or read one of my comments with a forum link.

    I showed people what it can do on higher voltages, when you take heat away from the equation of being the limited value.
    Reply
  • Hacp - Thursday, March 11, 2010 - link

    With the 800 dollar premium over an I7 920, why don't you just build a second 920 system instead! Reply
  • aigomorla - Thursday, March 11, 2010 - link

    http://forums.anandtech.com/showthread.php?t=20450...">http://forums.anandtech.com/showthread.php?t=20450...

    ;)

    I welcome you guys to join our forums.

    You'll see more info on stuff on the OC potentials in that preview.
    Reply
  • atfuser - Thursday, March 11, 2010 - link

    Looks like the i7-860 is where gamers and people who run lots of multicore apps want to spend their money. Gamers will save $750 and will see almost no difference in performance. Reply
  • RaistlinZ - Thursday, March 11, 2010 - link

    Yes, gamers will still be more than satisfied with their i7 920's @ 4Ghz. Especially considering those chips are only $200 at Microcenter these days.

    I just hope the upcoming Xeon CPU's will have more of a mainstream price.
    Reply
  • quickbunnie - Thursday, March 11, 2010 - link

    I think the L4D performance is actually due to the extra cores, as source engine games have n-1 multithreaded scaling. It's been shown to have diminishing returns past 3-4 cores, so a 6% bump for an extra 2 cores makes more sense to me than the extra cache, considering no other games show this level of performance increase Reply
  • vailr - Thursday, March 11, 2010 - link

    What happens if you put this 6 core CPU in a non-upgraded bios X58 board? Do you then have the minimal functionality to be able to flash the bios to the updated version? Or does the system fail completely, to even show anything on the video display?
    Just wondering...
    Reply
  • aigomorla - Thursday, March 11, 2010 - link

    If your bios can not handle gulftown, it will just refuse to post.

    eVGA boards are even more picky. If you somehow manage to get a hold of an A0 stepping gulftown, you can not use the same bios on a B0 or B1 gulftown.

    The b0 and b1 are the retail versions, while the A series were pure evaluation / testing samples.

    Some asus boards should support gulftown without bios updates, however its still recommended u get one.

    And if u guys come into our forums, you will see i pushed one up to 4.4ghz with HT ON, @ 1.388 vcore, so i think my 980X is better then the one Raja has.

    Sorry Raja.. :P
    Reply

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