No wonder all the Intel staff had big grins on their faces all this week as they walked around here at Computex in Taiwan - they are sitting on a kick ass processor and just waiting for the right time to launch it into the market.
From our benchmarking, we can see that Intel's upcoming range of Conroe processors have a lot of raw performance available. Even the X6800 Core 2 Extreme which is clocked at just 2.93GHz is able to kill the 955 Extreme Edition processor pretty much all of the time. Considering the 955 EE is clocked over half a gig higher than the X6800, it is painting a very good picture for Intel. As Intel ramp up the clock speeds of the new Conroe chips, performance will only become stronger.
Not once did AMD's current highest performing and most expensive FX-62 processor come close to beating the Conroe. At times, the X6800 was over 50% faster. The 955 EE was able to beat the X6800 once in Quake 4 but that is because the 955 EE has a much higher clock speed. And even in Quake 4, the 955 EE was only about 3% quicker - imagine when the Core 2 Extreme hits 3.46GHz and you'll have a processor which will destroy the old Intel CPU design.
Intel's Conroe design makes their older Pentium chips look very, very ordinary. At times, the X6800 is able to beat the Pentium 4 631 clocked at 3GHz by as much as 180%. As far as gaming performance goes, Intel is looking very strong and as we have predicated and told many people at the Computex show throughout the week, Intel is looking like they will be the gamer CPU of choice in H2 2006 and all of 2007. The Core 2 Extreme clocked at 2.93GHz was able to beat the AMD Athlon FX-62 on average by 15% in our gaming benchmarks.
Right now is a good time to be in the industry, especially as an enthusiast and gamer. Intel are fighting back against AMD after some years of tough times as AMD become stronger and stronger and grew their market share against Intel. Now things are looking very good for Intel - they have the fastest desktop PC processor in the world just waiting to let it loose and a great chipset platform in the Intel 965P and nVidia nForce 5 series with ATI lurking around in the background with their RD600 chipset which should be launched around September 2006, apparently the same time as Intel will release their new Core 2 Duo and Core 2 Extreme processors into the market.