Intel’s quad-core processor, codenamed Kentsfield, has been one of its least well kept secrets. In fact, benchmarks have been leaking out for months. Illicit samples obtained on the black market were the first to appear, then Intel itself gave more than just a sneak peek at its most recent Developer Forum. The numbers were already impressive back then, but at last the Core 2 Extreme QX6700 is finally here. And most of us haven’t even gotten used to having two cores in our CPU yet.
Since the Intel Developer Forum revelations, the Core 2 Extreme QX6700. which is the top-end part, has gained a name and the range has already expanded. Aside from the flagship QX6700, which takes over from the X6800 as Intel’s most extreme Extreme, there are already two more versions slated for more modest users, the Q6600 and Q6400, but their official release date, we're told, is Jan. 2007. We got our hands on all of them, and put them up against a variety of pretenders, from Core 2 Duo and Pentium D stable mates to AMD’s current dual-core finest. So read on to see if Intel’s Core 2 Extreme really is the processing powerhouse we were all expecting!