Experiment: Does Intel’s Turbo Boost Trump Overclocking?

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dtemple

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I second that, PhantomTrooper. I'm on a slightly lower end spec PC than you're using (Athlon 7750 with Radeon HD4830) and with it hooked up to my 1366x768 TV through VGA, everything I play maxes without lag. Mind you, I don't play any titles that are extremely demanding, but I'm playing 2008 and 2009 titles maxed out, on a $60 CPU and an $80 video card.
 

curnel_D

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Great article. On another note, the useless Mass Effect 2 ad blaring it's stupid music in my ears at every new page is really starting to piss me off.
 

cangelini

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Yeah, you guys are going to get a kick out of the upcoming Clarksdale story. It's amazing how badly a Core 2 Duo E8500 gets killed by a Phenom II X4 or Core 2 Quad in some of these more optimized titles.

Curnel--sorry about the ad. I also find it pretty annoying to play automatically every time I open a page for proofing. I'll ask about it.
 

HansVonOhain

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[citation][nom]Curnel_D[/nom]Great article. On another note, the useless Mass Effect 2 ad blaring it's stupid music in my ears at every new page is really starting to piss me off.[/citation]

Thanks Chris for your courtesy.
 

descendency

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[citation][nom]Curnel_D[/nom]Great article. On another note, the useless Mass Effect 2 ad blaring it's stupid music in my ears at every new page is really starting to piss me off.[/citation]
I know it's not a viable solution for all, but I never have my sound on... so I didn't even notice the advert (other than seeing it.)
 

gilbertfh

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I have been building computers for myself family and friends for years and I remember some of the different ways utilized to speed up your computer (including the turbo button on your computer). This method seems like a viable way to speed up computers of those of us that don't really want to overclock.

On a side note: Woot!!! I just saw the Mass Effect 2 ad has been removed. It did have the option to mute it but it was removed fast enough I didn't have a chance to check to ensure it saved to all pages. Thanks Tom's.
 

wuzy

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It was quite obviously already the only useful purpose for Turbo Boost is if the chip ran @stock. With it enabled it hinders scaling potential greatly. What I found most useful in this article is it provided more data on which programs benefited from the 'new & improved' Hyper-Threading.
 

cannon_foddermn

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Interesting article. What I don't understand is every time a pc website, magazine article, or review refers to the difference in system cost for value consumers vs. high end or performance consumers.

There is a considerable price overlap for the low to high range for a 1156 i5/i7 system and the low to high range for a 1366 i7 system.

The system assembled for the testing of the value oriented consumer system in this article with out OS is $1700+ at Newegg! Of course, as Chris Angelini points out in the article, the non chipset specific components (GPU, PSU, SSD and heat sync) were chosen to remove potential bottlenecks to facilitate a reliable review.

If you add up the current Newegg cost Intel Core i7-860, Intel DP55KG, and CORSAIR DOMINATOR 4GB DDR31600 (PC3 12800) alone it is $653.97 while the Intel Core i7-920, "Tom’s Hardware 2009 Recommended Buy" ASRock X58 Extreme LGA 1366, and CORSAIR DOMINATOR 6GB DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) total $683.97. The performance gains, better feature set (triple channel memory/3 x PCI Express 2.0 x16 slots) and future upgrade options (SLI and Crossfire support) of the X58/1336 based system are well worth the extra $30! These prices are not even shopping around for deals on the components, since Microcenter has had the i7 920 for $199.00 since launch and you can save $88.00 and add the saving back into a better GPU or mobo or save the extra money for a real value.

Don't believe the hype from Intel about the "value" and "enthusiast" product lines. The only difference is Intel's greater profit margin on the stripped down Lynnfield and P55 chips.
 

Gandalf

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I've got the i7-975 quad core on a DFI LP UT X58-T3eH8 motherboard.
I'm finding the Turbo feature great. If the CPU workload decreases, the clock rate decreases allowing the system to cool down. There is no messing with RAM voltages. Only turning on the feature in the BIOS. Even I could do that.

Also, this is a designed feature. You're not trying to run the CPU faster than it was designed to run as is often the case with overclockers and there is no trial and error with possibly burning out your CPU. I love the Turbo feature.
 

nicklasd87

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[citation][nom]dfusco[/nom]I would like to see how a minor OC with Turbo enabled would stack up.[/citation]
I agree, I am currently gunning my i7 920 at 3.2 ghz on stock cooling, and with turbo boost enabled, the clock increases to 3.3ghz when the multiplier increases from 20 to 21. Without turbo boost, I am not able to reach a multiplier of 21 because of the limitations on the processor, and correct me if I'm wrong, but disabling turbo boost also disables speed step, so my processor would always run with a multiplier of 20 instead of scaling back to a multiplier of 12 when it is idle.
 

grimjester

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[citation][nom]dfusco[/nom]I would like to see how a minor OC with Turbo enabled would stack up.[/citation]
Same here. It seemed to work well for the $1300 SBM.
 
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Could we see an apples-vs.-apples comparison of load power usage as well please? Such as Prime95 running for 10 minutes on all (virtual) cores, for example.

I've read a fair few reviews on the socket 1156 processors and they have all pointed to significant overclocking/overvolting absolutely wrecking power statistics with a draw some three _times_ the base model. Sometimes more.
 

cyberkuberiah

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this is actually nice , i dont have to overclock my i5 for any game out there ... with powerful single gpu's here , looks like i would be happy without 1366 , sli or CF ... with an easy 3.6 oc when i need it , i think this would last me at least 3 years ... same for any body who has phenom 2 x4 , q9xxx (even q6600) , they're all powerful and can oc well .. the only sad thing's that have happened to gaming this year is radeon's higher than launch prices and delayed fermi .
 

Catalina588

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This article was useful as far as it went. Unfortunately, I think Tom's and the PC testing industry need to look at benchmarks that better simulate real-world users, and most specifically, multi-tasking. The fact is, most of the time users are today running a mix of jobs simultaneously. This article treats applications like they ran under MS-DOS 20 years ago: one at a time. How about throwing a few mixes together and reporting the results? Examples from this article include: iTunes + productivity; gaming + zipping + encoding.

I find that in a typical day's computing, the Core i7 and Core i5 with modest overclock on (about) stock voltages, hyperthreading and TurboBoost on do great, and use electricity modestly. But I can't measure that good feeling. Tom's can do that.
 

hanafyaa

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I've left my turboboost on and overclocked to 164 bus speed and am just short of 4.2 Ghz when running prime95. I am more than happy with that and see good use of the turboboost when required.
 

juliom

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We are presented with yet another Core i5/7 overclock article... The bias from Tom's is becoming to great to bear. I miss Tom's from the old days...
 

eaclou

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Good article, but I would have liked to see a more in-depth analysis of the power-usage and using that, some efficiency statistics.

Of course the 4Ghz will be faster, but where does it stand as far as efficiency goes? That's really what you should be comparing here.

It might be nice to throw in some heat numbers, as well.
 
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