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Intel Core i5 655K review

Intel's new K Series chip delivers Extreme Edition features in a mainstream dual-core processor

Intel Core i5 655K
The Core i5 665K is a tad more expensive than the Core i5 661

Our Verdict

Intel makes some outrageously good CPUs. This isn't one of them. It's the wrong chip at the wrong price.


  • Fast for a dual-core chip
  • Lots of overclocking options


  • Too expensive
  • Integrated graphics is redundant

In this modern age of multi-core CPUs, can dual-core really cut it in an enthusiast chip? Intel obviously thinks so. How else to explain the Core i5 665K?

One of a pair of new K Series processors aimed at overclocking addicts, the Intel Core i5 665K's stand out feature is an unlocked CPU multiplier. Previously only found on ultra expensive Intel Extreme Edition models, an unlocked multiplier allows for CPU overclocking without stressing other parts of the system.

Indeed, it's the unlocked multiplier that explains why the Core i5 665K is marginally more expensive than the closely related Core i5 661 despite a slightly slower 3.2GHz standard operating frequency.

What's harder to justify is the how the dual-core 665K stacks up against quad-core processors from Intel and AMD. The likes of the Intel Core i5 760 and AMD Phenom II X4 965 Black Edition are both cheaper and more powerful. As for the six-core AMD Phenom II X6 1055T, the less said the better.