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Intel Core i5-655K processor review

November 20th, 2010 Leave a comment Go to comments

The Core i5-655K belongs to the core i5 series of processor, with the letter K in the suffix denoting that the processor is officially over clockable. The Core i5-655K is a two core processor with a nominal clock frequency of 3.2 GHz. To further boost the performance Intel allows turbo boost feature in the core i7-655K which can temporarily raise the frequency to 3.46 GHz to cater for the increased demand in the processing power.

Notice that the turbo boost feature is different from the overclocking. Some review sites have been incorrectly using the term interchangeably. The turbo boost feature automatically increases the core frequency for a “short period if time”. The overclocking permanently increases the basic clock frequency either by using the clock multiplier in settings or by increasing the external clock frequency.

It is worthwhile to note another processor – Intel core i5-650. The core i5-650 and the core i5-655K both have the same specification – core frequency, turbo boost. The core i5-650 is priced at $176 Vs $216 for the core i5-655K. You are paying $40 extra for the overclocking feature. If you do not plan to overclock, you may better buy the core i5-650.

The core i5-655K has 4 MB of Cache memory that intel calls smart cache, which dynamically allocated the cache to the two cores depending upon the demand. The Hyperthreading is enabled in the core i5-655K which means that there could be 4 threads running at a time. The Table below captures the major specifications of the Intel core i5-655K.

Table : Intel Core i5-655K processor quick facts

SL No.
Item Value
1 Clock Frequency 3.20 GHz
2 Turbo Frequency 3.46 GHz
3 Number of Cores 2
4 Cache 4 MB
5 Memory Controller Dual Channel DDR3
6 Chipset communication DMI 2.5 GT/s
7 TDP Rating 73 Watts
8 Price $246

You may like to notice the relatively low TDP rating of 73 Watts, which means that there is a room for overclocking as the processor gets heated more when the clock frequency is increased.

While the core i5-655K has integrated garphics which has decent performance, you may invariably find motherboards and systems with external discrete graphics component, which in essential, if you want to play high end games and expect decent performance.

Core i5-655K Pros – Fast 3.2 GHz Clock frequency,DDR3-1333, 733 MHz integrated GPU.

Core i5-655K Cons – Moderate cost, integrated GPU not good enough for high end gaming

You may also like to compare this processor against the AMD processor – the quad core X4-645. While it may look on the front that it is not fair to compare a quad core processor against a dual core processor, what matters at the end of the day is the price. And the AMD quad core X4-645 is about $75 less expensive than the Intel Core i5-655K. Several benchmark have proved that the X4-645 has better performance in many cases, especially those requiring multiple threads to be executed simultaneously. You are encouraged to read the benchmark and comparision results at benchmarkreviews.com which concluded that AMD X4-645 has consistently outperformed intel core i5-655k by a significant margin.

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