With the Core i7 980X Intel has not only shipping out the first 6 core/12 thread CPU, it has also delivered one of the biggest stock heatsinks to date.  That size will enable you to actually get a decent overclock without resorting to a third party cooler; though if you already have one for your current i7 system it will certainly be compatible and let you go further.  The scaling from the additional two cores is rather impressive especially when looking at the more processor intense rendering applications though Ryan did hit an interesting snag on the 7-Zip benchmark as it decided that 6GB of RAM was not enough to support 12 threads and limited the testing to 8 threads.  The 980X did still manage a lead of 23% in that test.  The price will actually match the price of the current top end processor, the i7 975, so if you were planning an upgrade you should hold on for a few weeks as the new 6 core 980X is a superior chip.
“Intel continues to prove its dominance in the CPU world with the release of the Core i7-980X hexa-core processor. With 12 threads of computing power behind it the new Extreme Edition part offers computing power unrivaled by other desktop processors especially when looking at heavily threaded workloads and applications. Gaming doesn’t see a big performance boost yet, though Intel assures us that more and more game engines being written are going to push multi-threaded performance benefits very soon.”

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