So long story short, my buddy is a dick and decided to hold off on Neha like me. So his QX9650 is longer mine
Anywho, I've been looking at the Q9550. I heard the E0 stepping is "the" chip to look for but how much of a difference will it make in the end? Is it worth my time to hunt for one when I can easily get one with C1 stepping?
I've heard that the E0's have lower VID's and will suually clock higher. Any truth to this? or is it still kind of a luck game?
I don't know that I've seen all that much evidence to support the superiority of the E0's. It's certainly nothing like the B3-->G0 difference that was seen with the Q6600 chips.
The E0's seem to run slightly cooler, but that doesn't really seem to reliably translate into more overclocking headroom. At their limits, within the realm of regular cooling, the 45nm chips tend to be more architecture-limited, rather than thermally-limited. Ultimately, as always, I expect luck (and patience) is still going to be big factors with either stepping.
i7 2600K | ASUS Maximus IV GENE-Z | 580GTX | Corsair DDR3-2133