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Intel Core i7 870

CPUBoss Winner
Front view of Intel Core i7 870

Differences What are the advantages of each

Front view of Intel Core i7 870

Reasons to consider the
Intel Core i7 870

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More cores 4 vs 2 Twice as many cores; run more applications at once
Supports trusted computing Yes vs No Somewhat common; Allows for safer, more reliable computing
Much better overclocked clock speed (Water) 4.28 GHz vs 3.07 GHz Around 40% better overclocked clock speed (Water)
Front view of Intel Core i3 540

Reasons to consider the
Intel Core i3 540

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Has a built-in GPU Yes vs No Somewhat common; A separate graphics adapter is not required
Much newer manufacturing process 32 nm vs 45 nm A newer manufacturing process allows for a more powerful, yet cooler running processor
Much better performance per watt 1.24 pt/W vs 1.11 pt/W More than 10% better performance per watt
Much more l2 cache per core 0.5 MB/core vs 0.25 MB/core 2x more l2 cache per core
Higher clock speed 3.06 GHz vs 2.93 GHz Around 5% higher clock speed
Much lower typical power consumption 94.67W vs 121W More than 20% lower typical power consumption
Much better overclocked clock speed (Air) 4.47 GHz vs 4.1 GHz Around 10% better overclocked clock speed (Air)
Much lower annual commercial energy cost 91.1 $/year vs 120.89 $/year Around 25% lower annual commercial energy cost
Significantly lower annual home energy cost 35.75 $/year vs 42.57 $/year More than 15% lower annual home energy cost

Benchmarks Real world tests of Core i7 870 vs i3 540

GeekBench 3 (Multi-core) Data courtesy Primate Labs

Core i7 870
8,046
Core i3 540
4,078

GeekBench 3 (Single core) Data courtesy Primate Labs

Core i7 870
2,243
Core i3 540
1,947

GeekBench 3 (AES single core) Data courtesy Primate Labs

Core i7 870
142,100 MB/s
Core i3 540
123,300 MB/s

GeekBench (32-bit) Data courtesy Primate Labs

Core i7 870
7,874
Core i3 540
3,934

GeekBench (64-bit) Data courtesy Primate Labs

Core i7 870
8,534
Core i3 540
4,362

GeekBench

Core i7 870
10,143
Core i3 540
5,930

PassMark Data courtesy Passmark

Core i7 870
5,398
Core i3 540
2,694

PassMark (Single Core)

Core i7 870
1,300
Core i3 540
1,220

Specifications Full list of technical specs

summary

Core i7 870  vs
i3 540 
Clock speed 2.93 GHz 3.06 GHz
Cores Quad core Dual core
Socket type
LGA 1156
Is unlocked No No

features

Has a NX bit Yes Yes
Supports trusted computing Yes No
Has virtualization support Yes Yes
Instruction set extensions
SSE2
MMX
SSE4
SSE3
SSE
SSE4.1
SSE4.2
Supplemental SSE3
Supports dynamic frequency scaling Yes Yes

integrated graphics

GPU None GPU
Label N/A Intel® HD Graphics
Number of displays supported N/A 2
GPU clock speed N/A 733 MHz

memory controller

Memory controller Built-in Built-in
Memory type
DDR3-1333
DDR3-1066
DDR3
Channels Dual Channel Dual Channel
Maximum bandwidth 21,333.32 MB/s 21,333.32 MB/s
Maximum memory size 16,384 MB 16,773.12 MB

details

Core i7 870  vs
i3 540 
Architecture x86-64 x86-64
Threads 8 4
L2 cache 1 MB 1 MB
L2 cache per core 0.25 MB/core 0.5 MB/core
L3 cache 8 MB 4 MB
L3 cache per core 2 MB/core 2 MB/core
Manufacture process 45 nm 32 nm
Transistor count 774,000,000 382,000,000
Max CPUs 1 1
Clock multiplier 22 23
Voltage range 0.65 - 1.4V 0.65 - 1.4V
Operating temperature Unknown - 72.7°C Unknown - 72.6°C

overclocking

Overclock popularity 37 26
Overclocked clock speed 4.1 GHz 4.47 GHz
Overclocked clock speed (Water) 4.28 GHz 3.07 GHz
Overclocked clock speed (Air) 4.1 GHz 4.47 GHz

power consumption

TDP 95W 73W
Annual home energy cost 42.57 $/year 35.75 $/year
Annual commercial energy cost 120.89 $/year 91.1 $/year
Performance per watt 1.11 pt/W 1.24 pt/W
Idle power consumption 70W 66.7W
Peak power consumption 138W 104W
Typical power consumption 121W 94.67W

bus

Architecture DMI DMI
Number of links 1 1
Transfer rate 2,500 MT/s 2,500 MT/s
Intel Core i7 870
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Intel Core i3 540
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