Intel Core i7 970 

Released July, 2010
  • 3.2 GHz
  • Hexa core
4.9 Out of 10

Awesome as the Intel Core i7 970 is, it's also awesomely expensive and simply poor value compared to quad-core processors costing one third the price.
by Tech Radar (Sep, 2010)
It's all very impressive until you remember the price.
by Tech Radar (Sep, 2010)

CPUBoss Review Our evaluation of the Intel Core i7 970 among desktop CPUs (over 75W)


Benchmark performance using all cores

Core i7 970
PCMark 8 Home 3.0 Accelerated, PassMark and 1 more

Single-core Performance

Individual core benchmark performance

Core i7 970
PassMark (Single Core), Geekbench 3 Single Core and 1 more

Integrated Graphics

Integrated GPU performance for graphics

Core i7 970
Fire Strike

Integrated Graphics (OpenCL)

Integrated GPU performance for parallel computing

Core i7 970
CompuBench 1.5 Bitcoin mining and 4 more

Performance per Watt

How efficiently does the processor use electricity?

Core i7 970
Fire Strike, CompuBench 1.5 Bitcoin mining and 11 more


Are you paying a premium for performance?

Core i7 970
Fire Strike, CompuBench 1.5 Bitcoin mining and 11 more


CPUBoss Score

Combination of all six facets

Core i7 970

Benchmarks Real world tests of the Intel Core i7 970

GeekBench 3 (Multi-core) Data courtesy Primate Labs

Core i7 970
Core i7 870
Core i7 4790K

GeekBench 3 (Single core) Data courtesy Primate Labs

Core i7 970
Core i7 870

GeekBench 3 (AES single core) Data courtesy Primate Labs

Core i7 970
1,630,000 MB/s
Core i7 4790K
5,140,000 MB/s
Core i7 870
142,100 MB/s

GeekBench (32-bit) Data courtesy Primate Labs

Core i7 970
Core i7 870
Core i7 4790K

GeekBench (64-bit) Data courtesy Primate Labs

Core i7 970
Core i7 870
Core i7 4790K


Core i7 970
Core i7 870
Core i7 4790K

PassMark Data courtesy Passmark

Core i7 970
Core i7 870
Core i7 4790K

PassMark (Single Core)

Core i7 970
Core i7 870

Reviews Word on the street for the Intel Core i7 970

As the Core i7-970 is priced at $885 (list), it might not seem like you're getting a scintillating bargain with the newer chip.

The damn thing even overclocks well.

so to summerize for multi-threaded usage it easily bests Bulldozer, Thuban, even socket 1155 SBs easily, and for gaming it comes very close to the current generation of Intel CPUs, and also handijly beats BD and Phenom IIs.


8.6 Out of 10

What People Are Saying Give it to me straight

Socket Type

My CPU PPD went up from 12,000 to ~35,000.
by jeffries7 (Nov, 2011)
It gets a 4.5 because there is a issue with the multi that doesn't allow 25x without a hardware mod other than that I can find no faults with this chip.
by jeffries7 (Nov, 2011)
Under an H50 with OCZ Freeze at 4.2GHz I load at roughly 62C, peaking at 70C if I let it run overnight in a burn-in test - and that's at 1.25v..
by TurboTurtle (Nov, 2011)


The temps were more than acceptable for stock clocks, and even giving it a slight kick to 3.90GHz and a small voltage bump didn't get unreasonable (holds at 70C after about 20 minutes of burn-in) - though for a folding machine or a 24/7 use you'd probably want to stay stock if you wanted to use the stock cooler.
by TurboTurtle (Nov, 2011)
You sacrifice a tiny amount of clock speed and an unlocked multiplier for easier overclocking, but the Core i7-970 is otherwise a fine way to supercharge your LGA1366-based desktop.
by PCMag (Aug, 2010)
The chip however can easily handle driving twopowerful cards such as the GTX 680in SLI with both GPUs at 95+% usage at all times.
by born2bwild (Apr, 2012)


If you can, the Core i7-970 would seem to be a worthwhile way to save a little money and still get most of the performance benefits of the Extreme Edition chip.
by PCMag (Aug, 2010)
For starters, it runs cooler than the 920 despite the additional cores.
by TurboTurtle (Nov, 2011)
But what else did you expect from six of the most advanced processor cores money can buy.
by Tech Radar (Sep, 2010)


Maybe I had a less-than-stellar 920 (ok, I did - but still, read on) but this chip is decently cooler at a higher clock on more cores in my experience.
by TurboTurtle (Nov, 2011)
In performance terms, therefore, no compromises are required.
by Tech Radar (Sep, 2010)
I'm sure that with some lovely water cooling you could get the load temps below 60c and the clock speed up to 4.5GHz.
by jeffries7 (Nov, 2011)


Upgrading from a i7 920 I didn't notice and difference in games or general use and it runs quite a bit hotter than the standard i7s.
by jeffries7 (Nov, 2011)

Specifications Full list of technical specs


Clock speed 3.2 GHz
Turbo clock speed 3.46 GHz
Cores Hexa core
Socket type LGA 1366
Is unlocked No


Has a NX bit Yes
Supports trusted computing No
Has virtualization support Yes
Instruction set extensions
  1. MMX
  2. AES
  3. SSE
  4. SSE2
  5. SSE4.1
  6. SSE3
  7. Supplemental SSE3
  8. SSE4.2
  9. SSE4
Supports dynamic frequency scaling Yes

integrated graphics

GPU None

memory controller

Memory controller Built-in
Memory type
  1. DDR3-1066
  2. DDR3-800
  3. DDR3
Channels Triple Channel
Supports ECC No
Maximum bandwidth 25,599.99 MB/s
Maximum memory size 24,576 MB


Architecture x86-64
Threads 12 threads
L2 cache 2 MB
L2 cache per core 0.33 MB/core
L3 cache 12 MB
L3 cache per core 2 MB/core
Manufacture process 32 nm
Transistor count 1,170,000,000
Max CPUs 1
Clock multiplier 24
Voltage range 0.8 - 1.38V
Operating temperature Unknown - 67.9°C


Overclock popularity 70
Overclock review score 5
Overclocked clock speed 4.44 GHz
Overclocked clock speed (Water) 3.56 GHz
PassMark (Overclocked) 4,185.5
Overclocked clock speed (Air) 4.44 GHz

power consumption

TDP 130W
Annual home energy cost 50.09 $/year
Annual commercial energy cost 144.8 $/year
Performance per watt 4.13 pt/W
Idle power consumption 80.4W
Peak power consumption 165.3W
Typical power consumption 144.07W


Architecture QPI
Data rate 19,200 MB/s
Transfer rate 4,800 MT/s
Clock speed 2,400 MHz
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