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Intel "Broadwell-E" Core i7-6950X 10-Core Extreme Edition CPU Review

By: Steven Bassiri | Intel CPUs in CPUs, Chipsets & SoCs | Posted: May 31, 2016 6:00 am
TweakTown Rating: 91%Manufacturer: Intel

Turbo Mode 3.0

 

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To see the difference the Turbo Boost Max 3.0 makes, I first changed the Windows Performance plan to balanced so that frequency would fluctuate more and not lock into any type of motherboard enhancement. Then I ran CINEBENCH R15 Single Core performance benchmark twice; once with Turbo Boost Max 3 enabled and again with it disable (Turbo Boost 2).

 

Frequency logging through AIDA64 reveals that Turbo Boost Max 3.0 actually assigns a single core (core 7) the highest priority task, but in Turbo Mode 2.0 cores randomly pick up the slack. The results in the benchmark section of this review.

 

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Turbo Boost Max 3.0 isn't just limited to the OS, it's also in the UEFI. In GIGABYTE's UEFI, we can see that core 8 (numbered 1-10) is assigned the 40x Turbo bin, and this aligns with the numbering Intel uses in its application (0-9). With this new Turbo Boost Max 3.0 mode, it is now possible to find which core is better, and then assign that core a higher overclock than the rest.

 

 

CPU Overclocking

 

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While I didn't have much time to play with overclocking this CPU, I can say that overclocking the 6950X isn't all that different than overclocking the 5960X, except you have the ability to rank each core and overclock them to different maximum Turbo bins much easier than before. There are two new settings I have highlighted in the shots above; AVX Negative offset and VccU. I didn't mess with either, since I wasn't focusing on cache overclocking nor was I tuning down the AVX multiplier, but they should allow you to overclock higher. I will write an overclocking guide soon.

 

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Overclocking all cores like I would on the 5960X yielded a maximum overclock of 4.4GHz. At 4.4GHz, the CPU is a beast, but I fear that many of you will have trouble getting that 4.5GHz mark without overclocking only one or two cores to 4.5GHz while the rest stay below.

 

Voltages are much the same as Haswell-E, but watch the input voltage as it does help stability but also greatly increases temperatures. VCore around 1.3-1.4v can be handed by an AIO cooler like the Corsair H115i I used. I didn't have time to tune much for a maximum overclock irrespective of stability (CPU-Z validation), but I was able to boot into Windows at 4.5GHz, but I quickly crashed. When vendors release their Windows light overclocking programs, I will be able to test maximum overclocks.

 

 

Power Consumption

 

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Power consumption is lower than the 5960X, and that is to be expected because of the die shrink. I was actually surprised by some of the numbers, as they look really good at stock.

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