Print 41 comment(s) - last by laok.. on Jan 8 at 12:15 PM

Intel introduces Core 2 Quad Q6600, Xeon X3220 and X3210

Intel started shipping three new quad-core processors on Friday night. The three quad-core processors include the mainstream Core 2 Quad Q6600 and single processor workstation and server Xeon X3220 and X3210.

Intel Kentsfield Core 2 Quad
Launch Price
2.40GHz 1066MHz $851 $530

The Core 2 Quad Q6600 slots right below the current king-of-the-hill Core 2 Extreme QX6700 which launched two months ago. It’s clocked slightly lower at 2.4 GHz and features 1066 MHz front-side bus. L2 cache size remains at 8MB like the Core 2 Extreme X6800. Pricing will be $851 per unit in 1,000 unit quantities with a price drop to $530 expected in Q2’2007. Online retailer ZipZoomFly currently has the Core 2 Quad Q6600 in stock for $989.99.

Intel Kentsfield Xeon
Launch Price Q2'07
X3220 2.40GHz 1066MHz $851 $530
X3210 2.13GHz 1066MHz $690 $425

Joining the current Xeon 3000 series of processors are the new quad-core Xeon X3200 series. These processors are based on the same Kentsfield core as the Core 2 Quad and quad-core Core 2 Extreme processors. The Xeon X3220 will be identical to the Core 2 Quad Q6600 albeit with Xeon branding. Slotted right below the Xeon X3220 is the X3210 which is clocked at 2.13 GHz. This model retains the same 1066 MHz front-side bus and 8MB of L2 cache as the other Kentsfield based processors.

Pricing for the Xeon X3220 is identical to the Core 2 Quad Q6600 at $851 per unit in 1,000 unit quantities with an expected price drop to $530 in Q2’2007. The lower clocked Xeon X3210 is priced at $690 per unit per 1,000 unit quantities with an expected price drop to $425 in Q2’2007.

In addition, Intel's single-core Allendale E4300 will also make its debut this week.

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I like this. But I'll wait for a while.
By KaiserCSS on 1/7/2007 3:54:39 AM , Rating: 2
I mean, don't get me wrong, it's absolutely great to have quad-core processors available for purchase at relatively reasonable prices, but I don't quite see the point just yet. I'll use the same argument people have been using since the launch of dual-core CPUs: why bother when few if any programs support quad-core? I'm sure Vista will change all that in time, but at the moment I've only seen a few multi-threaded applications which aren't necessarily aimed at the consumer market (more towards professional digital artists and game/CGI effects specialists). Then again, perhaps I need to search harder. Regardless, I see no point in purchasing a quad-core system any time soon. As a matter of fact, the only reason I can come up with for purchasing quad-core CPUs within the next 6 months or so is bragging rights. So you have the latest bleeding-edge CPU, but is it really worth it when perhaps you could purchase a dual-core for less money and relatively equal performance at the moment? As I said, this will no doubt change when multi-threaded software becomes readily available, but at this point in time a normal PC enthusiast would do well to spend his money on other components, such as RAM upgrades or a new GPU (aka 8800GTX), which will show performance improvements immediately and noticeably.

The story might change if you are planning on purchasing a quad-core system for a server or some such use. I'm not an IT person myself, so I wouldn't know if this would be a wise purchase. Perhaps someone can elaborate this for me. I would also assume quad-core processors would be perfect for the latest-and-greatest workstation systems as well. Alas, I wouldn't be the person to tell you... I'm a gamer myself. I look forward to seeing a greater volume of performance reviews and comparisons very soon regarding these new chips.

RE: I like this. But I'll wait for a while.
By Lakku on 1/7/2007 4:00:16 AM , Rating: 2
Well, it can be a good buy for anyone looking to purchase/build a system. I have a qx6700, along with an 8800gtx but I did so for future proofing. I won't be able to build a new computer for quite some time (might be able to squeeze a GPU upgrade sometime down the line maybe), and this is the best I could build at this time. It's a good all around processor, and, it's quad core. I'm a gamer, and I can think of a number of games due in the next 6 months with more then dual core support. Alan Wake, Unreal Engine 3 games, Crysis (maybe), future Valve games, and more then likely, hopefully anyway, 360 ports will have some sort of multi-core support. The transition is going to be faster then you think.

By IntelUser2000 on 1/7/2007 5:33:40 AM , Rating: 2
If there's any irony worth mentioning, its computers and future-proofing.

By Lakku on 1/7/2007 6:04:26 AM , Rating: 2
Well, relatively speaking. I use it in the sense it's more future proof to have a qx6700 then a e6700, or a 8800gtx then a 7900gtx. Yeah, it won't hold out forever, but, considering this will be Intel's top, or on of their top, CPUs till Q3 or Q4 of next year, it will turn out to be a pretty good bet. Better then my last 3 CPU purchases anyway. :-p

By FITCamaro on 1/7/2007 10:13:52 AM , Rating: 2
AutoCAD, 3DS Max, etc. Also the server market running huge databases. Yes quad cores for the average consumer are a bit excessive at the moment but for the professional space they can be fully utilized. And yes, gaming developers in the next 2 years hopefully will make the jump to threaded games. Once its threaded the more cores you have the better. Now if they restrict it to only a few threads, then quad cores won't help much for more than multitasking while gaming. But if they make it truly multi-threaded, then quad cores will have an effect.

RE: I like this. But I'll wait for a while.
By iNGEN on 1/7/2007 3:13:18 PM , Rating: 2
Multicore has usefulness in gaming right now. Some of it more desireable than what can be offered by a faster graphics card. For example, during a typical gaming session I run: Battlefield 2142, Teamspeak, Ventrilo, FRAPs, Comcorder, NetMan, Setpoint (with dynamic profiles), Saitek Keymanager (for macros), as well as all the Windows processes. Now, I'm not aware of any of those being multithreaded apps, but using my A64 4000+ at 2.8Ghz, I average 52fps in game with around a 15fps minimum. When I drop in my 4400+ at the stock 2.2Ghz, I average 49fps with a 38fps minimum. Those frame rates are averages of more than 10 hours of real play on each config. (thank you FRAPS)

Needless to say, my 4000+ now sits in a box on my shelf.

By willow01 on 1/7/2007 8:53:47 PM , Rating: 2
Exactly. This is where you will see a benefit in multiple cores now, running multiple apps at the time, especially if they are more cpu intensive than io. As for the future, seeing as though the Xbox 360 and the PS3 (less so because of its different approach with Cell), game developers will be learning and investing more time into utilising multiple processors, as more experience is gained.

By kilkennycat on 1/7/2007 6:27:37 PM , Rating: 2
For the many of us who do desktop video processing, pro, semi-pro or "home", quad-core on a desktop at a very reasonable price ($530 in Q2 !!) is a very big deal, and the large caches sweeten the pot when executing video-compression algorithms. The leading desktop-video editors (eg: Premiere or Final Cut)and other desktop-video processing programs are fully multicore/multiprocessor aware and make use of as many cores as are available.

Intel is on to a winner here.... deliberately increasing the pressure on AMD to cough up their next-gen quad-core (and dual-core) and forcing them to quote a volume-production price at launch... no premium-price development-cost recovery. Pressure on AMD's margins everywhere to stifle AMD's development money is Intel's strategy. And AMD has just shot themselves in the foot by borrowing a couple of billion $$ to buy ATi.. a really stupid move. They will be paying interest on this loan instead of investing it in fully-securing their processor technology. AMD had two very willing and highly-competent chip-set partners, nVidia and ATi. No need to rush into a ATi purchase at a time when it was critical to expand their manufacturing and shore up their future processor-development strategy against a re-invigorated Intel.

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