Back in the days of the Conroe CPUs, I compared Intel to a charging rhino. They are a big company that has a lot of weight and momentum behind them. Often there are times it can be hard for them to change direction, but once they are on a course they can build up quite the momentum.
If you have ever seen a rhino charge and hit something squarely (even on TV), you will also know they can have quite an impact. Ever since the launch of Conroe Intel has been building up momentum behind their CPU designs and just like that rhino they have hit the market with quite an impact. On the heels of Conroe came Nehalem, then Lynnfield, then Clarkdale, and now we have a new name to drop on the market.
Sandy Bridge brings a few new things to the table along with a new socket and chipset. Some may be annoyed at the need for a completely new motherboard to support the new chip (AMD will especially like to point this out), but others will see it as a continued evolution in the process. No matter where you sit on this one, you will be looking at a new P67 or H67 if you plan to pick up a Sandy Bridge CPU.
But in addition to the new chipset, Sandy Bridge also brings some new innovations; the GPU is no longer an add-on but has become a part of the CPU itself. We also see improved instructions, a closed power gate (which has a few side effects) and more that we will cover in detail later in the review.
Will Sandy Bridge have the same impact as the others? - That is something we will find out now as we introduce both the socket 1155 Core i7-2600K and the Core i5-2500K CPUs to you.