Intel Core i9-7960X & i9-7980XE Extreme Edition Sky Lake-X LGA2066 X299 CPU Review



At Computex this year, Intel officially announced its new HEDT (High-End Desktop) platform based on a new 2066 pin socket and X299 chipset. Intel, with a lineup extending from quad-cores up to an unheard of 18 core CPU, had enthusiasts and professional users foaming at the mouth only to end up crestfallen to learn these high core count parts would not be available at launch or even shortly after. Team Red managed to steal the spotlight for a few weeks with the first 12 and 16 core consumer-oriented CPU’s landing on store shelves, but today Intel retakes the throne. With the official launch of the long-awaited last three SKU’s in the lineup, the fourteen core i9-7940X, sixteen-core Core i9-7960X and the monster eighteen-core Core i9-7980XE Extreme Edition, Intel once again hold the title of “The most cores and threads in a consumer CPU”.

We are already familiar with Sky Lake-X’s great performance from our hands-on with the eight-core Core i7-7820X and the ten-core Core i9-7900X reviews, but does that performance that scale similarly when you roughly double the core count? Workstation class users have often been torn between high core counts but relatively low clock speeds on Intel Xeon platforms, and the overclockable but lower thread count consumer CPU’s, but they no longer have to choose. Today we’ll be looking at the i9-7960X and i9-7980XE Extreme Edition CPU’s packing 16c/32t and 18c/36t respectively.

ProClockers would like to thank Intel for sending us these monsters to check out!
Intel’s take on the 7th Generation Core HEDT processors

Experience Extreme Performance Today with Arrival of Intel® Core™ X-series Extreme Edition 18-core Processor, Alongside 14- and 16-core

Intel is announcing the availability of its 14-, 16- and 18-core processors – Intel® Core™ i9-7940X, Intel® Core™ i9-7960X and Intel® Core™ i9-7980XE processors – which begin shipping to ecosystem customers today. This final piece of the puzzle rounds out the availability of the Intel® Core™ X-series processor family, providing content creators and enthusiasts with the much-anticipated Extreme Edition, the most extreme desktop processor ever introduced.

While the entire Intel Core X-series processor family delivers on the promise of rich, immersive experiences that require significant computing power, the Extreme Edition brings a new level of power to content creators, enabling extreme mega-tasking, a platform for editing and rendering high-resolution 4K and VR video, and a full studio on your PC.

With Intel Core X-series Extreme Edition processors, content creators can expect up to 80 percent better performance for VR content creation and up to 60 percent faster 4K video editing over the previous generation’s Extreme Edition. 

Announced at Computex 2017, the Intel Core X-series processor family is the most powerful, scalable and accessible high-end desktop platform1 offered by Intel, designed to deliver the performance needed to meet extreme computing demands for virtual reality (VR), content creation, gaming and overclocking.

The new X-series processor family is the ultimate platform for content creators and gamers. Multitasking becomes extreme mega-tasking with simultaneous, compute-intensive, multithreaded workloads aligned in purpose, powered by up to 18 cores and 36 threads. And, with up to 68 PCIe 3.0 lanes on the platform, people have the ability to expand their systems with fast SSDs, up to four discrete GFX cards and ultrafast Thunderbolt™ 3 solutions.

Content creators can expect up to 20 percent better performance for VR content creation2and up to 30 percent faster 4K video editing3 over the previous generation. This means less time waiting and more time designing new worlds and experiences. Gamers and enthusiasts will experience up to 30 percent faster extreme mega-tasking for gaming4 over the previous generation.

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