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Posts Tagged ‘intel’
Intel Kaby Lake

It’s about Freakin’ Time! INTEL has an Unlocked i3

It’s not asking too much! Budget builders like to overclock their CPUs, even if they can’t spend $200+ on them. So INTEL releasing an unlocked version of their i3 lineup of CPUs is huge news, in spite of some of the other news that doesn’t seem so good lately. While an unlocked i3 is a great idea for the budget enthusiast, I’m wondering what this means for the i5. The i3-7350K has quite a few features going for it. Not only do we have an unlocked multiplier (Finally!), but we have 4 threads in 2 cores, a 4.2 GHz boost clock and 4 MB of L3 cache. This would make it an amazing budget chip and if it wasn’t for AMD working on ZEN, I might have to kiss the FX series goodbye entirely. If the chip prices at $180, that would be steep but it could range as far down as $150 which is much more reasonable. The big issue with this release is what it does to the i5. Both chips offer 4 threads, although the i5 at least has 4 individual cores. Still, I’d be surprised that the performance on an i5 would really justify the extra cost at this point. Where does INTEL go from here? I think INTEL could’ve have destroyed the CPU market if they had done one more change with their Kaby Lake lineup. Rather than release a chip that has 4 cores, what if the i5-7600K kept the multi-threading, but only had 3 cores? With 6 threads, you’d have the perfect middle ground processor that splits the difference between the i3 and i7. Each tier could have it’...



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Is INTEL Stalling Out?

A while back, I posted an article talking about what looked to be impressive performance gains coming from Kaby Lake. Performance leaks had been good to me up till that point, but now you can see my shame here. Today, a Chinese review of the i5-7600K has released ahead of NDA and the results aren’t looking good. Even though Kaby Lake has some minor improvements, the IPC performance is running the same as Skylake. Granted, this review is ahead of NDA which also means any tweaks INTEL planned before released aren’t being considered yet, but it’s really feeling like INTEL is stalling out when it comes to pushing the limits of performance. Honestly, releasing a new chip series that essentially has no performance improvement is probably worse than holding back performance for the sake of sales. Technically, Kaby Lake has almost a 10% performance increase, but that number is so minuscule that the average user will never notice it. If this was coming to the professional market, it would make a bit more sense since 10% increases can actually translate to added dollars. As it is, IPC improvements are the things that really make a computer feel faster, as proven by comparing the current FX series to anything INTEL has had in the past couple of years. The FX chip can get it done, but the INTEL one makes it feel a lot smoother while doing it, while pulling better actual performance numbers. IPC for the 7600K is showing the same performance as Skylake and even if som...



PureOC Monthly News

October News Round Up: SWIFTECH Apogee XL2, GAMER STORM Genome II, GTX 1050 Ti and More!

Welcome back to our second roundup of hardware news that happened this month. The CPU and GPU side of things may have slowed down a tad, but there’s a lot that happened with cooling and cases. Let’s dive in and get excited about what’s coming down the road! CPUs Let’s start out with an update on Kaby Lake. Geekbench came out with some impressive results and the story made it look like INTEL has merely been holding back for a while. Recently however, an i5-7500K sample was benchmarked and only showed about a 10% improvement over Skylake. This is actually pretty disappointing, especially considering that the 4970K is still a top tier single thread performer. On the plus side, it looks like all 100 series motherboards will be able to support Kaby Lake with a BIOS update, but I doubt many will see the need to upgrade from Skylake in such a short time table. At the time being, ASUS is the only brand this is confirmed for, but that’s a good indication that other manufactures will follow suit. We’re still a ways out from release so we can almost expect performance to fluctuate a bit more until closer to release. http://wccftech.com/intel-core-i5-7600k-kaby-lake-cpu-benchmarks/ http://wccftech.com/kaby-lake-support-asus-100-series-motherboards-confirmed/ GPUs The big news this month was the release of the GTX 1050 Ti and the 1050. Each GPU offers a great budget option for 1080p gaming while being extremely energy efficient. Rather than reinvent ...



Intel Kaby Lake

INTEL Kaby Lake has a 40% Single Thread Performance Boost!?!

When it comes to overclocking leaks, I’ve learned to take those with huge grains of salt. Websites love finding these ridiculous clock speeds and getting our hopes up that this is going to be the new normal for overclockers, until we find out that overclocking is pretty standard in the reviews after release. (Btw, Guilty!) On the other hand, preliminary benchmark leaks are usually close to what to expect when a CPU actually releases. If what Geekbench is showing is true, then Kaby Lake is about to blow everyone’s mind, but I’m gonna hold a bit of irritation for what this could mean about the previous generations. WCCFTech has an article showing the INTEL i7-7700K scoring a 6131 in single and 20243 multi-core scores. This ends up being a massive 40% increase over Skylake in the single thread department. The multi-core score is a 20% increase. This is the kind of thing people who’ve been holding on to the 3770Ks have been waiting for. What’s upsetting is the fact that INTEL managed to pull this out of the hat at the perfect time when Zen was about to release. This begs the question, “Has INTEL purposely been slamming minor 10-15% increases down our throat simply because they wanted to make more money?” I could be completely wrong on this, but there’s no escaping the feeling that team blue has been cash grabbing consumers for the simple reason that they could, rather than taking the high road of trying to push the boundaries wi...



PureOC Monthly News

September News Round Up: Zen, Kaby Lake, GTX 1050 and More

How does a freelance writer keep up with everything happening in the industry when he has a full time job, a family, reviews to keep up with and a puppy in training? It’s worth pointing out that a lot has happened in the month of September this year. AMD has been making announcements about Zen, INTEL has had some details about Kaby Lake and NVIDIA is talking about the GTX 1050. Rather than try to keep up with every piece of news as it releases, we’re going to try something new by having a once a month update to catch you up on the things that are happening in the industry. Welcome to the PureOC Monthly News! On the last Friday of each month, we’ll pull together all the news that feels relevant and give a one stop location to get your info from. So without further ado, let’s get into what’s happened this month. CPUs, Motherboards and Chipsets  AMD Zen, Grey Hawk, X370 Chipset and A12-9800 We’ll start with AMD this time around since much of the anticipation of what will happen in the CPU sector relies on them. We got some more detailed shots of the new Zen chip and the 1331 pin design is confirmed. As far as new info is concerned though, we didn’t get much this month for that. The A12-9800 on the other hand had some very interesting leaks. Some performance scores showed up and even though the new AM4 chip is still using Steamroller cores, it has some reasonable improvements. What was really interesting was an overclocking result. So...



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Everything else we saw at CES 2016

Intro CES was a ton of fun and we already saw a ton of great releases coming up. Now it’s time to sum up the rest of what we could get to. Some parts of the show may not have been as relevant to high end computer components as others, but it didn’t stop the exhibitors from showing us some impressive feats. If you want to jump to a specific page, just click on the exhibitor below to take you straight there, or you can see each one by going through each page. So without further ado, here’s the rest of what we were able to see at CES 2016!   ADATA MSI INTEL NZXT CREATIVE D-LINK MYCHARGE



DirectX 12

DirectX 12 is a Great Thing for AMD

And everyone for that matter! But let’s not harsh on my sacrifice of proper grammar for stylistic writing when we can focus on good things from DirectX 12. I’m a firm believer that by the end of next year, DirectX 12 and Vulcan are going to be taking the gaming world by storm. I got a chance to play around with Fable Legends and the graphics were down right amazing! Techspot recently did a comparison of DirectX 11 and 12 to show the FPS gain from a couple of different configurations in Ashes of the Singularity. While the improvements were nice overall, there were some particular gains with FX CPUs that I’ve been waiting to see for quite some time now. Let’s start with the bad news. DirectX 12 is not Bulldozer’s salvation. If anything DirectX 12 is the final nail in that coffin, in the sense that new architecture is long overdue. Shifting away from single-thread performance was never a good move. I still believe AMD was on the right track in that we needed to move to more utilization of multi-threading, especially in gaming, but that shouldn’t have been at the sacrifice of single-thread. Zen is looking to solve these issues, but these initial results are showing an 8350 struggling to keep up with an i3. Even though the i3 is later gen, we’re still talking about a low budget range CPU beating out an enthusiast one for gaming. Now that we got that out of the way though, let’s get on to the good news for AMD. We still have only o...



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INTEL’s Profit Drops, but are we Really Surprised?

It seems like every other day, there is another story surfacing that’s letting us know PC sales are slipping and the latest iteration of this is that INTEL’s profits are down. I can’t say that any of us would be surprised about this, but the fun part is trying to place our finger on exactly what’s going on. The most obvious reason is that no matter how anybody wants to slice it, the world economies have been doing terribly in the recent months. Economy will certainly hurt the ability of a company to grow, but at the same time, said companies can’t just sit there and point the proverbial finger at government regulations without noticing the three pointing back at them. I’m not going to analyze every fiscal decision INTEL has made, but I do believe that their design process on their architecture is not helping with their current woes. Many of us know about the Tick, Tock cycle that INTEL uses. One cycle brings out a new manufacturing process, then the next improves on that process via architecture. This concept in and of itself is a bit lame for consumers. It essentially guarantees that you’re out of date with in a year of purchasing a new product. Now most of us know that performance will hold up for a quite a bit longer, but it always leaves consumers feeling slightly afraid of pulling the trigger on a new product because something better could be just around the corner. This leaves us with the feeling that INTEL is trying to sq...



Intel Skylake

Not Upgrading to Skylake could be Worth the Wait

Some people out there don’t understand what waiting to upgrade means. The rest of us know that once we sink a few hundred dollars into a nice upgrade, we aren’t putting anything new in our computers for a while, possibly even years. Skylake has been a great release with the return to good overclocking and some amazing chipset features on the Z170 boards, but if you’re still on the fence about whether to upgrade or not, there could be one good reason to hold out for just another year. In case you haven’t noticed, memory is in a state of flux. You may be thinking that DDR4 isn’t that big of a deal, and you’d sort of be right. Where memory is making huge improvements is in graphics cards, storage and caches in CPUs. The ability to 3D stack memory chips on top of one another is revolutionizing the way typical computing handles various memory work loads by exponentially increasing bandwidth. In the case of Skylake, the architecture is doing a great job, but the CPU cache is made up of the same ole’ same ole’. Broadwell didn’t get as much attention as Skylake because on an enthusiast level, it was pretty difficult to overclock. However, Broadwell introduced us to 128 MB of eDram in the L4 cache. If the number doesn’t blow you away on it’s own (128 MB of L4 cache!!!), the fact that the i7 5775C outperforms the 6770K in gaming performance should be enough to get your attention and I’m not talking about the int...



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Ashes of the Singularity Scaling: The AMD Crossroads

Last week, the new game, “Ashes of Singularity” had a pretty comprehensive scaling review performed with both DirectX 11 and DirectX 12. The results were interesting to say the least. Multiple CPUs were used to test both the R9 390X as well as the GTX 980. While AMD enjoyed some impressive gains, NVIDIA had some fairly lackluster results that even prompted the company to release statements for damage control. It would be very easy to say that AMD is making a comeback and NVIDIA is gonna be in trouble, but that would be too easy. How can we come to the proper conclusions about these results? Let me start off by saying that this is great news for AMD. It’s long been claimed that Radeon GPUs would be much better if the drivers could just utilize them properly. It seems this is almost true, but rather than drivers, it’s APIs that needed to take advantage of that hardware. However, I’m seeing some massive problems here that if AMD doesn’t quickly solve them, we can say goodbye to competition for a long time to come. I want to show you three conclusions that I saw from these results, and why I think there could be more bad news here than good if AMD doesn’t make some dramatic changes in the near future. (Click for Larger View) Let’s begin with the first big implication these AotS results are showing us. AMD needs to refocus their software development. This seems like something that is already in progress, but when we see what Direc...



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Does Skylake Interest You? Here’s a Round-up of Z170 Motherboards

Introduction Do you remember back in the good ole days when a new processor would release, there would only be maybe 2-3 high end motherboards you’d have to choose from? Well those days are so far gone that now there is a figurative ocean of great motherboards to wade through in order to find the right one, and that’s a great thing. Even I’ve been a tad shocked at the shear number of new releases that have come out with Skylake and the Z170 chipset. Unfortunately, life isn’t going to permit me to bring you an exhaustive list of every Z170 motherboard that’s out or coming soon, but I will give you a pretty comprehensive list of the boards that you should be looking out for. The way I worked through this is I decided to pick out the top of the line boards that I feel are doing things right. The competition is looking great and while I can’t make a decision for anyone, I can help pool some of the info I’ve been gathering to try and help you make a good choice. What’s nice is even if these top tier boards are out of your budget range, there are plenty of other options abroad that will most likely suit you. Generally, if a high tier board is performing well and breaking records, you have a pretty good bet that others are going to come pretty close to the same performance. The one manufacturer I couldn’t bring myself to add to this list is EVGA. They just seem to pale in comparison to what the other companies are doing. So ...



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INTEL Skylake Releases with Mixed Emotions

The long wait for Skylake is finally over and reviews are beginning to pour in. Unfortunately, the hype train was going full throttle on this release and even INTEL gave what seems to be some slightly unrealistic expectations. It’s pretty hard to come to a solid conclusion on the i7-6700K. There are some really good features but there are also some very lackluster improvements to take into consideration. Overall, I think the release is pretty solid and I’ll try to highlight what I’m picking up from the reviews but ultimately, it’s up to the end user to make the best decision based on individual circumstances as to whether to upgrade or not. My first impression of Skylake was pretty bland. When comparing to last year’s Devil’s Canyon launch, there isn’t enough performance gains to merit a subtle nod, let alone an upgrade. When following some of the graphics performance to that of the recent Broadwell release, we see much of the same story. It’s the comparison to Sandybridge that makes Skylake more interesting. Now, I know what you’re thinking but hear me out. Sandybridge was the latest architecture from INTEL that really turned heads. The IPC improvements were huge and what really sold enthusiasts on the chip was the great overclocking headroom. With decent cooling, 4.7 or 4.8 GHz was a very realistic possibility. As newer iterations of the architecture came out, headroom also decreased. What people were finding out ...



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3D XPoint Memory isn’t the Storage we Deserve, but the Storage we Need

INTEL and MICRON held a press conference yesterday and revealed something that could potentially turn the storage world upside down. The average gaming system benefits immensely from a single good performance SSD, but in the case of Big Data, storage is still the major bottleneck of being able to process information at higher rates. However, if 3D XPoint Memory really does work at 1000X the speed of NAND Flash with 10X the capacity of DRAM, storage could be taking a huge turning point within the next year or two. This isn’t first time we’ve heard of some crazy fast technology being worked on with the potential to change the market. For instance, graphene keeps hitting the headlines but even just a working sample is still a long ways away and could potentially never materialize. What’s different about the INTEL/MICRON press conference is this technology is going to be ready to sample towards the end of this year. MICRON even showcased a chip wafer that was already fabricated. Based on what was said, the initial technology can hold 128 Gb per die across two memory layers. It’s hard to picture exactly how this will turn out just yet but if multiple dies can be added to one device, similar to the way multiple NAND chips are combined on an SSD, we might see 1 Tb + devices pretty quickly. 3D XPoint is in it’s early stages but future generations can increase the memory layers and lithographic pitch scaling for higher capacities. This is some pretty h...



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Gigabyte X99-SLI Motherboard Review

Introduction We are starting to see more and more Intel X99 series motherboards hit the market. The X99 series wasn’t designed to be a budget series platform, but that doesn’t mean it can’t fit into other marketing segments as well. There are many users who don’t feel right spending $500+ on a motherboard, but are okay with something in between this price and the low-end/budget models. Now that this platform has had its time to mature, manufacturers are releasing a range of X99 motherboards to meet the demands of all types of consumers. We have a wide variety, from high end enthusiast boards to the more basic motherboards. Today, we have a chance to take a look at a Gigabyte X99 motherboard that meets “mid range” description perfectly: the Gigabyte X99-SLI. This motherboard is designed with quite a few bells and whistles, but with a more moderate price. Let’s dive in and take a closer look…   About Gigabyte: GIGABYTE was founded in 1986, establishing our uncontested position in continuous technological innovation. By focusing on key technologies and achieving strict quality standards, GIGABYTE has been regarded as an innovative and trusted motherboard leader in the globe. To keep pace in a rapidly changing world, we have offered a comprehensive product line covering Motherboards, Graphics Cards, PC Components, PC Peripherals, Laptops, Slate Devices, Desktop PCs, Network Communications, Servers and Mobile Phones. W...



Intel Skylake

INTEL Core i7-6700K Overclocked to 5.2 GHz on Air

Monday morning brings some pretty awesome news to the world of overclocking. The Chief Reporter at HKEPC recently posted on Facebook that Skylake was much funner to overclock than Broadwell after reaching 5.2 GHz with the flagship chip. The even more impressive news is that he did this on air. There’s a couple of considerations to take in with all of this but at the moment, this looks like some incredibly exciting news for overclocking enthusiasts who are considering the upgrade. This sounds pretty huge, but we need to consider a couple of factors before we take this as a guarantee of what’s to come. First of all, while the source seems like someone who’s very trusted in the hardware industry, it’s important to note that we don’t have any word on the specific cooling used or verification of stability. While an NH-D15 is considered air cooling, it isn’t the kind of accessible solution that everyone has. Also, we all know that while you may be able to boot into the OS, it doesn’t mean you can pass a stress test or even load a reasonably heavy application. The other bit of info missing is the core temp. While the temperature is said to be within specification, that doesn’t mean we want to see our core temps raising up above the 70’s all the time. However, these are just some considerations to keep in mind and since the source seems like a credible one, let’s get back to what makes this exciting. This is a 5.2 GHz...






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