Intel i7 5960X Review with ASUS X99 Deluxe

What's New?

Intel Core i7-5960X Review

What's New?

We never get tired of images like this. It feels like we've all had hyper-threaded multi-core CPUs forever, and then you realise that it's only been 9 years of more than a single core. There also is a neat demonstration of the importance of looking at the whole architecture rather than merely the clockspeed and core numbers. Eight cores of the original Pentium 4 would still only be 16M transistors. Not the 2.6 Billion the i7-5960X is packing.

The move to 8 cores definitely has us salivating at the possibilities, but given the importance of memory bandwidth when it comes to freeing up your system we're almost certain that the move from DDR3 to DDR4 will be the change that has the most difference to us at the real-world level.

Intel Core i7-5960X Review     Intel Core i7-5960X Review  

As always there are a range of new CPUs available in the Haswell E family. We're naturally focussing upon the top of the line model with 8 cores and 16 threads. The 20MB of total Cache will, along with the DDR4, really enable this processor to sing. The i7-5930K looks like the natural replacement for the current top of the range i7-4960X, so it will be interesting to see how much of a difference the DDR4 makes in isolation.

The advertised differences are largely the ones we've already explained above. It's strange to see that the amount of PCI Express 3.0 lanes has gone from 40 to up to 40. Thanks to the extra 2 cores the TDP has gone up from 130W to 140W, but considering that the new i7-5960X has 33% extra cores on board then Intel has done well to limit the TDP increase to only 10W. The improvement in IO is also a massive one, with 10 SATA 6Gb/s ports now supported natively.

Intel Core i7-5960X Review     Intel Core i7-5960X Review  

Quad channel DDR4 memory at blistering speeds? Don't mind if we do. The DDR3 world has been one of diminishing returns in recent years, so the move across to DDR4 just has us chomping at the bit to get started. Odd to still see USB 2.0 forming part of this wholesale change into the 21st Century. We're sure there must be a reason behind it, we just struggle to think of what that reason is, especially as USB 3.0 is backwards compatible. 

Once again Intel are including an AIO liquid cooling solution. The days of a micro-fan on a thin slice of aluminium are a long way behind us now. 

Intel Core i7-5960X Review     Intel Core i7-5960X Review 

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Most Recent Comments

29-08-2014, 15:50:13

It's like Christmas! *^* Yay!Quote

29-08-2014, 15:52:15

I keep looking at the benchmarks and having to tell myself I don't need one.
I really want it :/Quote

29-08-2014, 16:24:10

Gah, I don't think I'll bother with X99. I don't need 12 threads, and while affording it is a non-issue, I just can't justify spending nearly €1000 on a motherboard, CPU and 16GB of DDR4.

Performance on the other hand, particularly a workstation, there's no beating it. Although it's a pity the turbo frequencies are as low as they are though. The two 8-core Xeon E5-2687V2's that are in my workstation at work turbo up to 4GHz. No way Intel is going to sacrifice their huge margin Xeon business though. Quote

29-08-2014, 16:36:23

Everyone wants it but doesn't that pricey premium

I'd buy one second hand if i could at the right priceQuote

29-08-2014, 16:50:06

Great review.

Wow Tomb Raider really benefits from the extra cores, Wish they would of done like they did with the last gen though, 4930K had the same cores as the extreme version.

Not out of my price range but it would be wasted on me due to only gaming with 1 GPU and not needing a gazillion gigs of ram Quote

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