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Tuesday | November 30, 2021
Intel Core i7-3930K vs Core i7-3820 vs FX-8150 vs 990X vs 2700K Review

Intel Core i7-3930K vs Core i7-3820 vs FX-8150 vs 990X vs 2700K Review

Intel Sandy Bridge Extreme Core i7-3930K and Core i7-3820 vs AMD FX-8150, Core i7-2700K and Core i7-990X


When we reviewed the Core i7-3960X back in November it was very clear that Intel had created a very impressive CPU, in fact platform. The new CPU combined with the X79 chipset to offer a wide range of features that brought Intel’s top of the range components up to date. Improvements such as native SATA 3.0 and enhanced performance through the new CPU architecture with quad channel memory allowed our systems to exceed the performance possible on older systems.

With the i7-3930K we have a processor which gives us the same platform to build our system around, the same level of build quality and design but at a lower price… with minimal performance drop compared to the i7-3960X. This lower specification chip is just 100MHz slower (with a little less L3 cache) than the top model and comes in at nearly half the price (retail versions). The fact that it overclocks incredibly well only serves to solidify it as our favourite CPU of the moment. No other processor offers the same mix of performance and value relative to the fastest product available. In the comparison with the i7-2700K and FX-8150 the i7-3930K also does well, offering higher performance than each in every one of our tests today.

Looking at the i7-3820 we have an interesting product. Rather than base this model on an identical chip to that used on the 3900’s Intel took a bold decision to make a new quad core design and thankfully in the process have managed to create a product well worth considering for those who can’t afford the higher specification CPUs. There is of course the argument that the i7-3820 isn’t much of a leap over the already released i7-2700K however we feel that this particular CPU is designed to allow users to buy into a platform rather than the processor itself. There is a boost in performance over the 2700K in a number of scenarios, though generally they hit very similar levels but this CPU allows us to go with X79, have more flexibility in terms of memory configurations and in many cases buy a higher specification board than would be possible on other sockets. At that point we then have the option in the future of buying a new CPU and increasing the performance gap over the i7-2700K. It is also worth keeping in mind that the 3820 isn’t too far off the fastest socket 1366 CPU and consistently performs above the FX-8150 CPU, even in tests which are very much multi-threaded.

Without doubt it is cheaper to build a socket 1155 based system and Intel offer some great performance on that platform. With the new i7-3820 and 3930K CPUs they now allow us to choose a platform which will, over time, evolve to offer significantly higher performance without breaking the bank now.

Intel Core i7-3820 Processor
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Intel Core i7-3930K Processor
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Overclockers – £479

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About Author

Stuart Davidson

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