Intel's new beastie packs a brand new microarchitecture. To find out exactly what makes it tick and whether it delivers on Intel's claims, we put Core i7, along with the outgoing Core 2 QX9770 Extreme Edition and AMD's top Phenom chip, through possibly the toughest set of tests we've yet conducted.
In key multi-threaded metrics such as video encoding and professional rendering, Core i7 utterly decimates the opposition. Single-threaded performance remains extremely important and Core i7 is strong here too, if not quite as dominant.
We have also given specific features such HyperThreading a good seeing to and clocked the twangers off the poor thing in our overclocking tests. Finally, just for good measure, we pitted Core i7 against the monstrous Skulltrail, Intel's exotic dual-CPU platform.
What we found:
Core i7 has stunning multi-threaded performance, but it's not a massive leap forward for single-thread grunt. It also uses more power than Core 2. i7 isn't perfect, but it's still a staggering achievement.
Click here to download our benchmark sheet!