Intel K Series Processors

Introduction

Intel K Series Processors

Introduction

Overclocking. If you're unaware of the basic idea it's to get more out of something than it is initially designed to give. When dealing with processors the speed of your processor is governed by two factors. The FSB, Bus Speed or BCLK multiplied by, unsurprisingly, the multiplier. For example if you have a Bus Speed of 150MHz and a Multiplier of x10, you'll get a 1500MHz processor. So far, so easy.

Intel has had the same methodology for their processors for some time now. If you want to overclock it's quite likely that you have a lower end processor and wish to get more for less money. However Intel processors have always had a locked multiplier at the base end of the market, with only the premium "Extreme" editions having a multiplier that can be adjusted up as well as down. You're therefore limited to pumping the FSB, or BCLK as it is now, up as high as you can get away to maximise the locked multiplier.

The problem with increasing your bus speed is that to get the most out if you need to either have fast RAM, or play around with your dividers. Then you need to take into consideration that even the best motherboards eventually run out of the ability to keep increasing it.

So what is the solution? Unlock the multiplier. So you can get the gains of the BCLK increase without the potential drawbacks.

However until now that's meant buying an Extreme Edition, which are a huge amount of money, far beyond nearly all of us. If only Intel would unlock the multiplier of their lower chips.

As if by magic the shopkeeper appeared. No hang on this isn't 52 Festive Road even if it feels like Christmas.

As if by magic Intel are along with the answer to our prayers, the i5-655K and the i7-875K, both on the LGA1156 platform. Let's take a look at the technical specifications shall we...

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Most Recent Comments

07-06-2010, 06:49:50

tinytomlogan
It's been a long while since we've seen an unlocked multiplier on a mainstream Intel. How do the K series fare?

Continue Reading

07-06-2010, 10:09:15

Steve-O-
When I finally upgrade I'll be looking for a quad-core since I do graphic work. Looks like the $930 is still the best deal. The 655 is pretty sweet though for a dual-core.

07-06-2010, 10:21:57

Diablo
Yeah, they seem expensive for what they deliver. If anyone was going to spend 300 on a CPU (or more), they would go for an X58, and clock the i7 930. The 1156 platform doesn't seem the logical place to stick these chips, although I suppose that intel don't want to put people off buying the extreme edition chips.

Good review, so good for OC3D, but weird price/platform of chips from intel.

07-06-2010, 11:05:37

AMDFTW
WOW thats extreme for aircooled over 5Ghz on water

07-06-2010, 11:06:40

tinytomlogan
the conclusion was difficult tbh as there were so many factors to consider. The 875 is cheaper than the 870 but doesnt seem as good. The 655 goes like stink but costs a good chunk more and seems expensive for a dual but it is 32nm.....

Its a tough one to call tbh.

07-06-2010, 15:09:20

Steve-O-
I hear ya Tom. Good review regardless. And I think fair scores for both.

07-06-2010, 15:16:49

FragTek
Looks good to me!!

07-06-2010, 16:19:17

Lallespasser
I think you've overlooked an important aspect. By overclocking only the multiplier, you are not forced to disable Turbo, enabling you to have an overclocked chip while still maintaining low idle power consumption. This would, at least for me, be an important factor when buying a CPU.

07-06-2010, 17:56:17

tinytomlogan
Quote:
Originally Posted by name='Lallespasser'
I think you've overlooked an important aspect. By overclocking only the multiplier, you are not forced to disable Turbo, enabling you to have an overclocked chip while still maintaining low idle power consumption. This would, at least for me, be an important factor when buying a CPU.
We overclocked the BCLK too fella as Bus speed is just as important for us, if for no other reason than to show what the cpu has to offer. 99% of overclockers are more interested in a high base clock more than a higher multiplier.

08-06-2010, 07:38:22

Rastalovich
Higher clock means faster for other componets too. An extreme cpu running at 6ghz with memory running in the 700s aint very clever.

I don't know about these offerings. The games seem to favor high(er) caches - which is weird.

31-08-2010, 05:33:10

Ari-M.
i got my 875k on the cheap....and must have scored a gem. the mem controller on my 875k is an absolute BEAST. my fill rates and latencies even surpass my x58 rig (by a staggering degree)

the 875k does fall pretty short on synthetic CPU benches....but I use it for audio production....in that environment (sample editing) memory speed trumps all....so the 875k does have an interesting little niche

it is well matched to the ASUS p7p55d
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