Intel Core i5-750



Note:Intel has already introducedits all-new Core processor family the other day.

While many peoplegreeted the New Year with fireworks, many PC consumers, this PC junkie included, celebrated 2010 with renewed resolve to upgrade existing computer components. And for mid-ranged to hardcore PC consumers who wish to upgrade their CPUs, there are certainly more than enough reasons to welcome the turn of a fresh decade on a positive note, as Intel introduced an equally fresh batch of products, following its rebranded family of Core i3, Core i5, and Core i7 processors.

Today, we have Intel's Core i5-750, Lynnfield, up for review. The CPU aims to offer what Intel's Core i7 couldn't– impressive performance at an affordable price. It's only P10,799 versus the i7's P15,999 tag price. Don't getus wrong, though. Processors from the Core i7 family are outstanding performers, even at standard clock speeds – a leap above most, actually. But so far, opinions regarding Intel's flagship architecture have been mixed, mainly because of its steep price point. Moreover, expensive components tied to Nehalem ownership, namely an X58 chipset motherboard and a triple channel DDR3 memory kit, make the price of admission unpalatable to many, considering current multi-core platforms running Intel's Core 2 Quad lineup and AMD's Athlon II X4 965 fetch far lower prices. Intel is hoping to change this with the release of the Core i5-750 which is meant to bring Intel's class-leading Nehalem technology down some notches to the mainstream level without shortchanging consumers on features and performance.

The Core i5-750 is essentially a straightforward quad-core processor. It combines four CPU cores on one 45nm die, features a generous 8MB shared cache, and uses the smaller and newer LGA 1156 socket. The most glaring difference it has with chips from the Core i7 family is its lack of support for Intel's Hyper-Threading feature. But don't let this dissuade you, as this Core i5 processor sports the latest Turbo Boost technologywhich independently borrows power from idle CPU cores to overclock active threads, depending on the workload. With Turbo Boost switched on, the Core i5-750 runs at 3.20GHz. Ignoring it, theprocessor operates at a modest clock speed of 2.66GHz.

Test setup and methodology

For review purposes, Intel was gracious enough to lend us a good mid-range gaming bundle powered by an Intel Core i5-750 CPU, 20-inch Viewsonic VA2026w LCD monitor, and a Logitech LX710 Cordless Desktop, to boot. The test setup's specifications ran as follows:

  • Motherboard: Intel DP55KG "Kingsberg"
  • Processor: Intel Core i5-750
  • Processor Cooling: Thermalright MUX-120
  • Memory: 2GB DDR3-1333
  • Video card: Inno3d GTX 285 OC Edition
  • Power supply: Gigabyte Superb 550W
  • Hard drive: Seagate Barracuda 320 GB, 7200 RPM
  • Enclosure: Gigabyte GZ-X9
  • Operating system: Windows 7 Ultimate (32-bit)
  • Monitor: Viewsonic VA2026w

Beforewe share with you the Core i5-750's benchmark results, it is important to note thatwe utilized the latest versions of Prime95 and OCCT [Overclock Checking Tool] to sniff errors and instability issues, while running our test system at stock and overclocked settings. I used these tools, as they are two of the most trusted stress-testing applications available on the Web. Both are likewise very CPU-intensive, and are generally regarded by PC junkies, this author included, as great foundations of a rock-solid CPU overclock.

Weran six hours of Prime95's SmallFFTs test, and ran OCCT's Linpack test for two with the desktop operating at its default clock rate, and at an overclocked configuration of 4.08GHz. It passed both tests at different CPU operating speeds without hiccups, sowe went on and verified its clock rates with CPU-Z.

Weproceeded with benchmarking its aforementioned configurations separately to determine performance differences between a Core i5-750 operating at stock speeds, and one that is kicking along at 4.08GHz– with Turbo Boost enabled for both.

The methodology used to scrutinize the desktop sent to us involved a series of CPU-intensive benchmarks designed to determine its prowess using synthetic and real-world tests. These benchmark applications ran after a successful system reboot, with the first result of each application dropped, as it usually only cached the test. Every benchmark was completed thrice for each, with the average results posted in this article to ensure credible results and minimize anomalies. The following applications were used:

  • CPU-Z
  • 3DMark06 Basic
  • PCMark Vantage Professional
  • MAXON Cinebench R10
  • Street Fighter 4 Benchmark Tool
  • Crysis 1.0 (Vanilla)
  • Crysis Benchmark Tool 1.05 Final

Testing

CPU-Z

CPU-Z is a free software for Microsoft Windows that allows users to identify and monitor their computer's motherboard chipset, CPU, RAM, video card, and other components, and detect their settings. A staple tool in computer hardware circles, its ability to document clock rates makes it an invaluable tool to overclockers, as it provides a way of vindicating CPU speeds achieved through various experiments.

As we've mentioned earlier,we wereable to hit the 4GHz mark with the Core i5-750's Turbo Boost technology effortlessly. And while Core i5's are widely knownas exceptional chips,we believe the outcome also had a lot to do with the Intel P55 motherboard that came with the test rig lent to us. That said, overclocking the Core i5-750 to operate at 4.08GHz is as easy as bumping the base clock to 167MHz and increasing CPU voltage. Of course,we could go higher with more luck, a better aftermarket cooler, and Turbo Boost turned off. But for this review,we opted to put a leash onour overclock, as4.08GHz is higher than the clock rates most people are willing to operate at.

3DMark06 Basic

3DMark06 is the latest benchmark staple from a long list of trusted test suites from Futuremark, emphasizing on gaming performance using the latest technology to provide users with a solid synthetic benchmark that allows them to measure their systems' overall 3D capabilities. In addition, it also has some heavily multi-threaded CPU tests, making 3DMark06 scores one of the most crucial and sought-after statistics in the gaming realm. An excellent tool for system comparison, users can also upload their scores, and compare them with those submitted by millions of other users to make it easier for them to select effective upgrades or system optimizations.

Although the test setup didn't produce astronomical gains in the 3DMark06 score at higher clock rates, it nevertheless crunched data 28% better, processor-wise. Quite an achievement, actually.

 

Performance
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Value
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Overall
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+
  • Bloody fast
  • Vast overclocking headroom
  • A relatively more affordable upgrade option versus Intel's Core i7
  • -
  • Need to pony up extra cash to match the Core i5-750 with a P55 motherboard and dual channel DDR3 memory
  • Bottom Line

    The Core i5-750 delivers excellent performance far above its price point. Price-for-performance-wise, it's the best processor upgrade you can gift yourself today

    Gold Award
    Editor's Pick Yes
    Price P10,799
    Tech Specs
    • Brand: Intel
    • Processor Type: Desktop
    • Series: Core i5
    • CPU Socket Type: LGA 1156
    • Core: Lynnfield
    • Multi-Core: Quad-Core
    • Name: Core i5-750
    • Operating Frequency: 2.66GHz
    • L3 Cache: 8MB
    • Manufacturing Tech: 45 m
    • 64-bit Support: Yes
    • Visualization Technology Support: Yes
    • Thermal Design Power: 95W
    • Cooling Device: Heatsink and fan included



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    COMMENTS


    1. Chuck: Hmm, 10.8k? This costs less than 10k, I got mine last November 2009 and at the time it was priced at around 9.9k in Gilmore iirc. Little has changed, nasa ~9.8k siya ngayon due to stiff competition among vendors.

      In any case, I agree it's well worth any penny. There's little reason to skip to the i7-860 LGA1156 or even Bloomfield since the price difference would be better off invested into a better videocard...

      ...besides if you're using it as a render workstation or something heavier, you'll be aiming higher anyway.
      January 15, 2020 at 4:14 pm

    2. Aldrich Barcenas: Quads are fine for 2 more years of quality gaming. the I line is for cpu intensive rendering, and ridiculous gaming setup with 3 30" monitors, running 3 graphics card side by side.

      Althou the 3D mark is more on the GPU (Granted Intel gave you a work unit to test on). Its entirely irrelevant in the test.
      January 16, 2020 at 11:22 am

    3. Carlo: I'm sorry, I'm going have to disagree with you, Aldrich.

      For me, 3DMark, more importantly, video games that largely depend on GPUs are relevant in this CPU review, as they give readers an idea how the Core i5-750 complements a powerful video card. If I ignored GPU tests, and only focused on synthetic benchmarks that determine how fast the CPU crunches data, then my review would have been wanting because consumers, especially gamers, who are interested in it would have been unable to see how it fares in gaming and 3D applications.
      January 16, 2020 at 12:54 pm

    4. Carlo: Glad to see you approve of the review, Chuck.

      With regard to the price we published, the test rig came from Villman Computer Systems, Inc., so it's only natural that we price the processor based on their stores or website. In this case, we valued it after the latter. Yes, it's higher than what most stores are asking for, but then again, they may have already adjusted its tag price -- and their website just needs to be updated, price-wise.

      Now, allow me to agree with you. IMHO, unless you regularly run applications that benefit from Hyper-Threading, I highly suggest Techies to take the Core i5-750 upgrade path rather than investing a lot of money on cl*ss-leading multi-core processors.

      Hopefully, we can get our hands on higher-end Lynnfield processors or Intel's new Clarkdales, and submit them to a string of benchmarks, so we could share the results with you, and the rest of our readers.
      January 16, 2020 at 2:18 pm

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