Dr. Damage writes: Less than two years after introducing its quad-core Core i7 processors, Intel will soon unveil a six-core CPU for the desktop that works as a drop-in replacement for older Core i7-900-series parts. The first previews of the six-core "Gulftown" reveal a chip with 50% more cores and cache that fits into the silicon area and power/thermal envelope as the quad-core it replaces. Performance in multi-threaded applications scales up nicely, but clock speeds—and thus single-threaded performance--remain the same. Do we really need six cores on the desktop? That depends, it would seem, on what you do with your computer.
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