Let's face it people, Core architecture has been a runaway success for the big blue CPU giant, and it's about time they got it right too. For nearly two years prior to the Core 2 release for the desktop, Intel was under fire for its continuation of the Netburst based Pentium 4, Pentium D and Pentium Extreme Edition CPUs, especially the ones running on the 90nm process. Compared to the AMD Athlon 64 of the time, the competing Netburst CPU ran slower in game benchmarks and generated nearly two times the heat of the green machine's CPU using the same 90nm transistors.
It's now been a generation on and Intel has pushed the Core 2 series into quad core variants, something AMD is yet to achieve. While Phenom is on its way, Intel still have the crown for the first quad core CPU to the market; and while technically not a true quad core, it still has four processors working on a single CPU package, just not on a single die.
While AMD still plays catch up, Intel has kept its processor train at full speed with yet another new processor in the Core 2 range. Using the 1333MHz FSB that the QX6850 brought to the party, the new series based on the Penryn architecture as it's now known reduces the production size from 65nm to 45nm as well as adding in a few new features along the way. Today we test out the Intel Core 2 Extreme QX9650 processor based on Penryn technology to see what or if anything has improved.