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Eight-core Intel chips will be available this fall for $999

Eight-core Intel chips will be available this fall for $999

Eight-core Intel chips will be available this fall for $999

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Intel is widely expected to drop the eight-core Haswell-E bomb in September. Smart money places sometimes pop up around the Intel Developer Forum in San Francisco, but only the most devoted enthusiasts will be willing to shell out $999 for Intel’s new technology.

This means that the top performance processor family will get the Haswell microarchitecture about 15 months after the standard Haswell chips. While this may affect some people’s new launches, news that we’ll finally see a proper eight-core, sixteen-thread Intel desktop CPU should make super enthusiasts sit up.

The top-of-the-line eight-core Haswell-E chip, the Core i7 5960X, is priced at $999, in line with how Intel has previously priced its Extreme Edition processors.

The other two Haswell-E chips will lack those two extra cores, but that still means we’ll get a six-core Intel Extreme CPU at a more reasonable price. The roughly $500 i7 5930K is still ridiculously expensive for monolithic silicon, but there’s more.

The Core i7 5820K is probably the most interesting of them all. Rumor has it that this six-core CPU will use the same 15MB of cache as the $500 part, but at a slightly lower clock speed — around 3.3GHz. Because of that “K”, we can expect it to be unlocked, and I wouldn’t be surprised to see this ~$350 chip overclock well.

With a top-of-the-line Devil’s Canyon chip — the quad-core i7 4790K — available at about the same price, you’d be forgiven for thinking a low-end Extreme Edition CPU might make its way into the Devil’s Canyon market, but there’s one catch: DDR4.

The new X99 motherboard chipset launched with Haswell-E will be the first consumer platform to use DDR4 memory, and the new memory design comes with a hefty price premium. So, coupled with the traditionally high price point of the Extreme Edition motherboards, we can expect the platform cost to be more inflated due to the cost of the new DDR4 modules.

DDR4 consumes less power and can provide higher density modules, but early adopters will have to pay more than the cost of equivalent DDR3 memory.

While these Haswell-E CPUs will be the most advanced and powerful desktop processors you can fit into a gaming rig, it’s only for very, very rich needs.

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Wilbert Wood
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