Core i7 920 Getting New Stepping

Core i7 920 Getting New Stepping

Intel recently gave word that they will be releasing a new stepping revision of their bottom end Core i7 CPU, the 920.  Before you go clamoring about “Crap is there something wrong with the 920?!?!” or “Woot! New stepping = mad overclocks!”, by the looks of things this is a very minor, almost insignificant update.  Intel’s paperwork indicates a move from the current C-0 stepping to a D-0 stepping with the following changes:

• New S-spec and Material Master numbers for the converting products.
• CPUID will change from 0x000106A4 to 0x000106A5.
• The electrical, mechanical and thermal specifications remain within the current specifications. Intel anticipates no changes to customer platforms designed to previous Intel guidelines.
• Readable serial number will be removed from the package ink swatch to fully mitigate the potential risk of the IHS cosmetically overlapping a marked serial number. There is no change to the ULT matrix content which continues to contain the serial number.

Due to the changed CPUID, a BIOS update will be required to run the new D-0 stepping.

The new D-0 stepping CPUs are expected to appear starting March 2nd.

For more info, check out Intel’s Product Change Notification here.

Is this stepping update really the small change Intel leads us to believe it is?  And the big question for us, will the new stepping have increased overclocking abilities?

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