Intel will retain Core i7 branding with its six-core Gulftown processors
Details about Intel's hexa-core chip, codenamed Gulftown, have emerged on the web. As per the slides grabbed by PC Online, Intel Gulftown has been branded as Intel Core i7 980X Extreme Edition. This new 32nm Westmere based six-core Gulftown processor will operate at the same speed as the current generation Intel Core i7 Extreme Edition processors. Rumors still continue to speculate the availability of the processor which tosses between first quarter and second quarter of 2010.
Intel's Gulftown chip will have six-core, ability to handle 12 processing threads with Hyper-Threading technology enabled. This hexa-core chip is based on 32nm Westmere architecture and will be clocked at 3.33GHz featuring 12MB unified L3 cache in addition to 256KB L2 cache per core and 64KB L1 cache. Apart from that, a 32nm chip will integrate triple-channel DDR3 memory controller and will feature Socket LGA 1366 for Intel X58 Express chipset platform. Also, Gulftown will feature Intel's Turbo Boost technology and Intel's QuickPath Interconnect.
According to PC Online, this chip will be released in the first quarter of 2010 and not in the second quarter. A while back, we spotted benchmarks of 2.8GHz six-core 32nm made Intel's Engineering Sample. This CPU showed 50 percent boost in Video Encoding and 3D modeling.
Rival AMD, on the other hand, promised to bring hexa-core 45nm architecture based AMD Thuban processor for consumer desktop platfrom. However, Thuban CPU will have 6MB L3 cache and 3MB L2 Cache. AMD hasn't committed any fixed period but just left it open to release it next year in 2010.