From the 29 test results we have in this article, the results were mixed. Most of the time the Intel Core i7 920 came out on top. When comparing the performance of the 2.66GHz Core i7 870 and 2.60GHz AMD Phenom II X3 710, both of which are mid-range processors from their respective companies, each processor had its own set of advantages in different areas.
The Core i7 870 more frequently came out ahead, but still the AMD Phenom II X3 710 had a number of strong finishes especially considering its only a triple-core processor and costs just over $100 USD. Even the Core i5 750 will cost more than the AMD Phenom II X3 710. What is important to keep in mind though is that Intel Turbo Boost Technology was disabled on the processors during testing, since this functionality had not worked under Linux for increasing the clock frequency but instead appeared to cause some sporadic performance problems.
Overall though the new Lynnfield-based Core i5 750 (Amazon.com) and Core i7 870 (Amazon.com) processors performed nicely and delivered strong performance. The price on the Core i7 870 is perhaps a bit steep considering the Core i7 920 Nehalem retails for just around $280 USD, but surely the Lynnfield CPU prices will drop once they have been on the market. What is also missing from the equation is any thermal monitoring support for the P55 / Lynnfield processors using LM_Sensors on Linux, though that should come with time. Update: after starting to see a flow of Windows-based reviews today, it looks like there are some more serious Linux + Lynnfield problems at hand, which we are currently investigating.
We will draw more in regards to conclusions once we have completed further Linux tests on these processors to hopefully sort out the Turbo Boost problem and to look at how well these Lynnfield processors can overclock. Stay tuned for more information on these new Intel products. Special thanks does go out to Intel for supplying this review hardware, especially prior to the launch so that Linux users can be informed on launch day how this new hardware performs and of any compatibility problems.
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