Intel Lynnfield Core i5-750 & Core i7-870 Processor Review

by MAC     |     September 6, 2009

The Platform in Pictures

By now, most of you have seen the P55 motherboard previews that have been plastered all over the internet, however Intel's own P55 motherboard have been kept a secret...until now, of course.

On a side note, if you have not yet had the opportunity to check them out, you may be interested in our P55 motherboard previews. We have taken a look at several very interesting models, namely the ASUS P7P55D Deluxe, ASUS RoG Maximus III Formula, EVGA P55 FTW, and the MSI P55-GD80.

Intel DP55KG (Kingsberg)

The DP55KG is Intel's enthusiast-oriented SKU, as you can see by the omnipresent Skull that has been the logo for Intel's performance motherboards for the last few years. From a specifications point-of-view, this model features two PCI-E x16 slots, one PCI-E x4 slot, two PCI-E x1 slots, and two legacy PCI slots. This is one of Intel's most connectivity-rich motherboards, with 8 angled SATA-II ports, 2 eSATA ports, 2 FireWire ports and up to 13 USB 2.0 ports (via headers). It also features one Intel Gigabit LAN port and a 7.1 Intel HD Audio codec with Dolby Digital Home Theatre technology. This particular model features a six-phase power design with robust DrMOS and CHiL components. Compared to the DDR3-2000+ memory frequency support that other manufacturers have given their models, Intel have gone the conservative route by topping out at DDR3-1600. Those who overclock will be glad to see MOSFET heatsinks and the onboard LED post code display. Aside from the Skull on the PCB, which actually has LED backlighting and can serve as the HDD activity light, one of this board's most unique features is built-in bluetooth connectivity, which is something that we have yet to see on any other P55 motherboard.

Intel DP55SB (Sharpsburg)

The MicroATX form factor has been increasing in popularity during the last 12-18 months, and you can expect to see many mATX P55 motherboards on the market very soon. The DP55SB is Intel's first compact enthusiast offering, and it is part of the Extreme Series motherboard family. It is similar to to DP55KG, but minus the PCI-E x4 slot, the two PCI slots, and two SATA-II ports.

Intel DP55WG (Warrensburg)

Next up we have the DP55WG, which is a Media Series product but "with a Touch of Extreme". This model features two PCI-E x16 slots, one PCI-E x4 slot, two PCI-E x1 slots, and two legacy PCI slots. It comes with 6 angled SATA-II ports, 2 FireWire ports, up to 14 USB 2.0 ports (via headers). It features the same six-phase DrMOS + CHiL power design as the DP55KG, and the onboard LED post code display too. The only really notable omission is the MOSFET heatsinks.

Intel DP55WB (Whitesburg)

The DP55WB is the barebones model of the four. It features a cut-down 3-phase power design and only one PCI-E x16 slot. We don't know the specifics of this model, but we wouldn't be surprised to see it retailing for under $80.

For this CPU launch, we were provided with the enthusiast Kingsberg model, which is what we used in this review.

Click on images to enlarge

As with all Intel's enthusiast-oriented Extreme Series motherboards, the Kingsberg features a simple black and blue theme. As previously mentioned, you can see that the skull logo once again has a predominant place on board. However, what you can't tell is just awesome that skull is since it is backlit and the eyes glow red, serving as hard drive activity lights.

The full platform in all its glory. The cooler is the new Thermalright MUX-120, which features a tweaked and lightened Ultra 120 Extreme design. In addition Patriot was kind enough to send us an early sample of their upcoming Sector 5 Viper II DDR3 memory which has been specifically designed for the capabilities of the P55 / Lynnfield platform.

The specifics regarding all of our test platforms, as well as our methodology, can be found on the next page.

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