Tom's Hardware by Bert Toepelt
Eight Virtual Cores Through Hyper-Threading
Just as Intel’s Core 2 has firmly established itself in the market, it is already being replaced by a completely new architecture. Unlike the switch from the Pentium 4 / Pentium D to the Core2—where the new CPUs worked as drop-in replacements on existing boards due to the fact that the processors were pin-compatible—Intel’s newest chip requires a completely new "ecosystem." But this transformation represents nothing less than a milestone for Intel.
Here’s the short version. Intel is introducing the Core i7, the successor to the Core 2 processor, which features both improved performance and higher efficiency. In our benchmark suite, the Core i7 is 25% faster clock-for-clock than the Core 2. Overclockers shouldn’t get their hopes up though: all standard models are equipped with an overclocking lock. Since Intel is re-introducing Hyper-Threading to its desktop CPUs in the Core i7 line, the new processors show a marked performance boost in many modern multi-threaded applications. However, the Nehalem platform will not offer improvements where power consumption is concerned. read more...