Test: Intel i7 920 @ 2.66 & 4 GHz - Gaming Performance HD 7970

Published by Christian Ney on 07.09.12
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Let's take a look at those results. One can see that under games on average the Intel Core i7 3770K is only 20 % faster than your four years old Core i7 920. The difference in performance goes from 5 % up to 67 % which is quite much. More detailed we have the Core i7 3770K taking the lead by 5 % under BattleField 3, Alien vs Predator and S.T.A.L.K.E.R. The difference gets a bit higher under Dragon Age II with 10 %, for DIRT 2 and Crysis 2 it was about 13 % and we had a gap of 22 % under Batman and Call of Duty MW3. The big numbers have been seen under Skyrim and StarCraft II with 45 and 67 % advantage on the ivy bridge processor over the Bloomfield.

The 50% overclocking we did on the i7 920 allows him to be more competitive but it turned out that under heavy graphics load it didn't help that much. I mean a 50 % overclocking that brings only 7 % more performance isn't really kickass. Anyway at this point against the Core i7 920 overclocked at 4.0 GHz the i7 3770K is only 12 % faster on average. Regarding other recent processors like the FX-8150/FX-4170, the Core i7 920 at stock frequency was as good as AMD's recent offer. At 4 GHz it was 9 % faster.

Conclusion: Still using a Core i7 9xx based setup? Don't upgrade, keep it, your built was and is still worth the money. We mean that spending money now for an Ivy Bridge processor or a Sandy Bridge implies a full upgrade of your configuration including motherboard, probably the cooler and the memory as well for just a 20 % improvement in performance if your processor is not overclocked. At this point upgarding the graphics card is a much better way to improve the performance ingame.

Anyway stay tuned as I said in our previous articles, more CPUs will follow: AMD Phenom II x2
AMD Phenom I x4
AMD Brazos ?
Intel Core i5 2500K
Intel Core i3 Ivy Bridge
Intel Atom ?

Hey guys, which fight do you want to see next time? Feel free to leave a comment!

Page 1 - Introduction Page 8 - Crysis 2 / Dragon Age 2
Page 2 - Test Setup & Specifications Page 9 - S.T.A.L.K.E.R. / The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim / StarCraft 2
Page 3 - Benchmarks and Games Settings Page 10 - Power Consumption
Page 4 - 3D Mark 11 / 3D Mark Vantage Page 11 - Summary Benchmark Results
Page 5 - Unigine Heaven / TessMark Page 12 - Performance Index & Performance/Price
Page 6 - Alien vs. Predator / Batman: Arkham City / Dirt 2 Page 13 - Conclusion
Page 7 - Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 / BattleField 3

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Author: Christian Ney

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Test: Intel i7 920 @ 2.66 & 4 GHz - Gaming Performance HD 7970 - CPUs CPU Gaming Performance 2012 - Reviews - ocaholic