PC hardware from a few years ago? Relics of another era. How about a decade old? You might as well be talking about fossilised remains. Yet, people still happily run gear such as Intel's venerable Q6600, one of the company's more overclockable quad-core chips, under the belief that it's "good enough". The benchmarks, however, tell a very different story.
Tagged With cpus
This evening, Netflix is airing a four part Gilmore Girls special. I have no shame in admitting that, at some point, I'll be supremely keen on watching it.
And with good reason: it's a good show. But if you were hoping to watch it in 4K — since Netflix does that sort of thing now — Microsoft has some crappy news for you.
Kaby Lake, Intel's latest processor family, wasn't supposed to exist. Earlier this year Intel announced the end of its well-known tick-tock release schedule, whereby it trots out a new processor every September. The tick is the shrinking and improvements of the current microarchitecture, while the tock is a whole new architecture. Instead last year's "tock", Skylake, was going to hang around a while, with no new "tick" in sight.
The weekend is a great time to tackle that project you've been putting off for a while. Say, building a shelf, painting the bedroom or constructing your own CPU. Allotting time for these... wait, did I just write CPU? Yes, yes I did. And a fellow by the name of James Newman has shown it's very possible... though it might take longer than a single Sunday.
As one last thing at its Computex 2016 press conference, after introducing the Radeon RX 480 graphics card, AMD wanted to remind the world that its next-generation Zen CPU core isn't that far away. And we've now seen a desktop Zen chip for the first time, held by AMD boss Lisa Su — the same chip that will be competing with Intel's top processors in the months to come.
Today is the opening day of Computex 2016, and to mark the occasion Intel has a brand new processor family. Designed for the hardest of hardcore enthusiasts, Intel's new 14-nanometre Broadwell-E chips, the Core i7-69XX and i7-68XX, are its most powerful ever. Forget your garden-variety quad-cores and dual-cores; the Intel Core i7-6950X is an entirely unlocked, overclocking-friendly 10-core monster with support for quad-channel RAM and four graphics cards. If you can't afford the circa-$2200 price tag for the newest top-end silicon, though, new 8- and 6-core CPUs are also on the way.
It's been a long time since we've had to worry about CPU / OS incompatibilities. In fact, the last time it was an issue was the shift from x86 to x64, but that was largely transparent to consumers thanks to AMD and its x86-64 specification, which was later adopted by Intel. Now, with Windows 7 having just entered its extended support phase, Microsoft has taken the opportunity to drop the news that only Windows 10 will be supported on upcoming CPUs.
Intel's new Skylake processors fit inside practically any computer. Soon, you'll be able to get one inside a PC-on-a-stick. But it turns out that Core M computers can get even smaller still. Intel says it's already testing the new processors inside smartphones too.
Intel's new hardcore overclocking CPUs can hit some amazing core speeds with a cheap air or water-cooling system. They're built for speed, and unlocked to achieve those figures easily if you have the interest and technical know-how. One point of order, though — if you're buying a new top of the line Core i5 or Core i7, you won't get a cooler in the box.
Intel's integrated GPUs have never been fast performers, but in the last few years they've gone from being utterly terrible to kind-of competitive with NVIDIA and AMD's low-end mobile stuff. The trend looks to continue with Intel's Skylake architecture which, according to leaked slides, could have up to 40 per cent better 3D performance than Broadwell.
If you're buying a new laptop any time soon, the usual wisdom just got a shake-up. AMD has just launched a bunch of new low-power CPUs and discrete graphics chips that will be appearing in plenty of mainstream laptops, and they're a genuine contender for Intel's Core i3 and Core i5 — especially if you're thinking about playing any games.
AMD has a couple of new accelerated processing units (APUs, natch) for your consumption. They're interesting mainly because they have some of the most powerful integrated graphics chipsets you'll find in a CPU, and they can be tweaked for lower power consumption and heat output.
AMD announced a few new Accelerated Processing Units a few days ago, which isn't in and of itself particularly interesting. What is, though, is the fact that AMD is letting users configure the overall thermal output of one of the chips, catering to both enthusiasts and those that want low-power computing.
A former CPU researcher for Intel put together an Ask Me Anything session on Reddit over the weekend, where he answered the online community's questions about his experience designing processors and working with the nano-level technology that powers your PCs, laptops, tablets and smartphones. 'eabrek', to use his Reddit alias, had some brilliant insights about the past, present and future direction for processing tech.