Seven months have passed since Intel officially launched its Core i7 processors, and for seven months they have remained at the top of our performance charts. Albeit pricey, Nehalem can’t be beat; it is the world’s fastest desktop microprocessor.

Just last week we previewed Intel’s upcoming more mainstream Nehalem, codenamed Lynnfield. Based on our early results and leaked Intel roadmaps, I’m expecting Lynnfield to pretty much negate the need for low end LGA-1366 Core i7 parts. Rather than allow Lynnfield to cannibalize Intel’s high-end LGA-1366 Core i7 platform, Intel is raising the performance bar with two new i7 CPUs: the Core i7 975 Extreme and the Core i7 950.

Processor Clock Speed Cores / Threads Maximum Single Core Turbo Frequency TDP Price
Intel Core i7-975 Extreme 3.33GHz 4 / 8 3.60GHz 130W $999
Intel Core i7-965 Extreme 3.20GHz 4 / 8 3.46GHz 130W $999
Intel Core i7-950 3.06GHz 4 / 8 3.33GHz 130W $562
Intel Core i7-940 2.93GHz 4 / 8 3.20GHz 130W $562
Intel Lynnfield 2.93GHz 2.93GHz 4 / 8 3.60GHz 95W $562
Intel Core i7-920 2.66GHz 4 / 8 2.93GHz 130W $284
Intel Lynnfield 2.80GHz 2.80GHz 4 / 8 3.46GHz 95W $284
Intel Lynnfield 2.66GHz 2.66GHz 4 / 4 3.20GHz 95W $196


The 975 replaces the 965 and is priced at $999 while the 950 replaces the i7-940 and is priced at $562. The chips run at 3.33GHz and 3.06GHz, respectively, with maximum turbo frequencies topping out at 3.6GHz and 3.33GHz. Intel really has no other external motivation to push for higher frequency parts, so we only see a bare minimum increase in specs here.

The Core i7 Extreme part, like its predecessor, ships unlocked so you can easily overclock it. Its un-core (L3 cache + memory controller) operates at 2.66GHz, just like the i7-965. The i7-950 is locked and runs its uncore at 2.13GHz, just like all other non-Extreme i7s.

Both of these chips use Intel’s new D0 stepping so they should clock up a bit higher than the original i7s.

The Fastest Processor for Single Threaded Tasks
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  • RadnorHarkonnen - Wednesday, June 3, 2009 - link

    I7 is already on a notebook.

    My DT PSU is a 750W psu.

    Most laptops carry a 65w AC. People start complaining when they have to carry 6kg plus the 130w (or bigger) power brick. Computers are like cars, if you want performance, it will consume loads of juice.

    Lappy owner wants, batery life, portability and low weight. They hate when lappys got too hot. So you got everything agaisnt performance. Its like asking a Smart/1.4 HDI engines to compete with my 309 GTI or Delta HF Turbo. And keeping the low mpg. Some DT CPUs have a 140W heat dissipation packadge. Most of them are about 65W - 90W. This is just HEAT that the CPU dissiaptes, the value it consumes is higher. Most lappies AC Adap are in the 65W range...

    Most consumers that buy a lappy are ill informed or just don't know what they are buying. Most of them doesn't need that portability, and consider the computer slow soon after they buy it, when they start finding out what it "can't" do. Most time is branding in action or a bad sales monkey.

    Netbooks were the way of the future, until they started getting a 30% of return rate. Netbooks are only good as a seconday computers.

    I am not a hard core gamer. I don't need workstation performance. I do like a decent performance and i do heavy multi-tasking. You can say Microsoft Office is light (for example), and any laptop can do it, but my Ms for various reasons, when some tasks come, she just drops her lappy and come to my DT. Sometimes to apply a filter. that is just one example.

    Laptops/Desktops/Netbooks will never disapear, because they do diferent jobs. You know a laptop/netbook can't handle for very long a intensive (10+ hours daily) tasks. You can't carry a desktop. Well you can, but not everyday.

    Honestly ? I think the normal Laptop will disapear and it will be replaced by the netbook in one tier, and slim CULV/ULV cpus in a higher tier. If you need "some" performance and reliability for that matter, the Desktop is there for you.

  • SDSUMarcus01 - Friday, June 5, 2009 - link

    Yeah, I got a desktop $2000 "replacement" laptop about 3 years ago and it has been a nightmare. In the beginning, it overheated and shut down all the time. Sometimes I couldn't even turn the damn thing on, it'd overheat while LOADING windows.

    Now I get it to work pretty well but that's after a cooling pad, arctic silver 5, coppermodding the gpu, undervolting AND underclocking (even undervolted, the higher multipliers get too hot).

    Not to mention it's not that portable either, it's damn big and heavy.

    I look forward to returning to the US in about a month and using a desktop again. If I ever buy a laptop again, it WILL be a secondary computer for travel purposes.
  • aeternitas - Wednesday, June 3, 2009 - link

    "Its like asking a Smart/1.4 HDI engines to compete with my 309 GTI or Delta HF Turbo. And keeping the low mpg."

    I think keeping low mpg isnt much of a problem ;)
  • RadnorHarkonnen - Wednesday, June 3, 2009 - link

    Sure, My Lancia does 0-240 Km/h in less than 40 secs.
    The Peugeot takes a bit more time and only reaches the 220 Km/H.

    Get a SMART/1.4HDI engine doing that, and keeping the 4L per 100Kms.

    That is what hes asking. The Smart could only reach that in a free-fall.
  • nubie - Wednesday, June 3, 2009 - link

    Dumbest analogy I have ever heard.">">

    I assume there is some reason that the Nehalem processors can't be targeted to more vigorous sleep states and attempt to run on 1-2 processors more of the time?

    There is no reason that they can't be in laptops, they are no more power hungry than the P4 notebooks. And they are much much better performing.
  • strikeback03 - Wednesday, June 3, 2009 - link

    Can you do anything interesting with it? All the tool driving appears to be interested in is blowing doughnuts.

    And that Ferrari driver sucks, dunno if that is the best the Smart can do, but the F430 can certainly top a 13.4 second quarter mile with a competent driver.
  • Anand Lal Shimpi - Wednesday, June 3, 2009 - link

    You'll see both dual and quad-core Nehalem (Core i7 derivatives) on the notebook in the second half of this year. The quad-core options will appear first then the dual-core at the very end of 2009 and into 2010.

    I wrote about this a little while ago:">

    Hope that helps :)
  • Hrel - Wednesday, June 3, 2009 - link

    yeah, I also remember reading that we were going to see performance comparisons between different notebook GPU's and CPU's; and I quote, "soon". Where's that?? I'm with the guy above, notebooks are the future, barely anyone should care about desktops anymore... granted we need a standardized GPU slot on notebooks and dedicated GPU to integrated GPU switching NEEDS to become standard. Also LED and OLED screens, battery life is SO important. Intel thinks lighter laptops will make people take them outside more... still pointless if we need to carry a stupid ac adapter with us.
  • nitromullet - Wednesday, June 3, 2009 - link

    That's my first question when I read this... Is Intel planning to phase out the 920 and replace that segment with Lynnfield?
  • TA152H - Wednesday, June 3, 2009 - link

    Why would you want a dog like Lynnfield if you can get a i7 920 for around the same price?

    The issues with Lynnfield can't be fixed, you can overclock an i7 920 and resolve what makes it slow (relatively speaking, of course). How are you going to fix the brain-damaged memory controller on the Lynnfield?

    Lynnfield is the Celeron of the Nehalem world. It's fine for mainstream America, who actually can get by with AMD parts. But, for someone who knows how to overclock, why be saddled with a crippled processor when you get pay a little more and get a more capable platform? You're better off getting slower/cheaper memory, and getting an i7, than getting fast memory with the crippled Lynnfield memory controller.

    Of course, I'm basing this on the performance given here on the previous review, which has me stunned. Maybe it's just pre-release hardware that caused the big drop in performance and the released version will be better. But still, I really hope they leave the i7 920 or something like it just in case the Lynnfield releases with the performance we saw in the pre-release version. If that's the case, forget it, and get the i7 920. It's got much more potential.

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