We may have only just gotten used to dual core computing but technology stands still for no man, woman or Spode so it is with much trumpeting that Intel has unleashed the first quad core processor on us all and Evesham and Dell have been quick to jump onboard.
Four Xeon workstation processors have been announced: the X5355 (2.66GHz, 1,333MHz FSB), E5345 (2.33GHz, 1,333MHz FSB), E5320 (1.86GHz, 1,066MHz) and the E5310 (1.6GHz, 1,066MHz FSB) as well as a desktop chip, the Intel Core 2 Extreme QX6700 (2.66GHz, 1,066MHz FSB) which Spode reviewed last week. All feature 8MB cache and the QX6700 is compatible with Intel’s existing 975X Express chipset family.
Of course the usual theoretical benchmarks have been trawled out so Intel can state incredible performance gains such as the 60 per cent plus increases it claims are possible with the 5300 series and the potential 80 per cent gains the QX6700 offers in comparison to the Core 2 Extreme X6800. Unfortunately we won’t see such real world boosts until programmers code for the additional cores.
That said if you like to be on the Samurai-swordish cutting edge both Evesham and Dell have produced machines that will make your heart go all a flutter. The former has come up with the Solar Quattro (above) which for £2,699 including VAT offers up a QX6700, GeForce 8800 GTX, 2GB DDR2 800 RAM, 500GB 7,200RPM HDD, Sound Blaster X-Fi Fatal1ty FPS audio, Creative Gigaworks ProGamer G500 5.1 speakers, a Logitech Cordless Desktop MX 5000 laser keyboard and mouse and a three year parts and labour warranty plus free upgrade to Vista.
As for Dell it has simply thrown a QX6700 into its existing XPS 700 gaming rig which Benny was only moderately impressed by here. The XPS 700 already carried a price tag of £2,468 so we fear what it has risen to now.
Quad core is officially here. Software coding types, get software coding!