Average Bench: 77.7% (270th of 1442)

more Based on 2,165 user benchmarks.  Devices: BFEBFBFF000206D6, 00000000C16BD000, , BFEBFBFF000306A9, 00000000BC8A1000, 0FABFBFF000206D7, 17CBFBFF000206D7, 1FABFBFF000206D7, 00000000BC80C000, 00000000BC89E000, 00000000BC89D000 Model: Intel(R) Core(TM) i7-3960X CPU @ 3.30GHz

The fact that the near three year old Intel i7-3960X still tops the speed charts reflects just how little competition there is in the CPU market. Intel have dominated for so long that there is simply no economic incentive to push the speed boundaries at anywhere nearly the pace of improvement we saw in previous years. The i7-3960X has 6 cores and 12 threads which is two cores more than the vast majority of Intel's other top end processors. The extra two cores explain why the 3960X still performs so well compared to the majority of the 3960X's newer siblings. This processor will offer little more than a far cheaper i3 to regular desktop users but for server orientated workloads it is still one of the best processors available. [Mar '14 CPUPro]

Poor: 66%Average: 77.7% Great: 89%
Gaming
Gaming 78%
Battleship
Desktop
Desktop 79%
Battleship
Workstation
Workstation 67%
Battle cruiser

Good average bench

The Intel Core i7-3960X averaged 22.3% lower than the peak scores attained by the group leaders. This is an excellent result which ranks the Intel Core i7-3960X near the top of the comparison list.

Strengths

Avg. Memory Latency 87.1Pts
Avg. Quad Core Speed 369Pts

Good consistency

The range of scores (95th - 5th percentile) for the Intel Core i7-3960X is 23%. This is a relatively narrow range which indicates that the Intel Core i7-3960X performs reasonably consistently under varying real world conditions.

Weaknesses

Avg. Multi Core Speed 728Pts
Avg. Octa Core Speed 585Pts
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Average Bench

(Based on 2,165 samples)
Min Avg Max
78.4 Memory 87.1 95.3
76.9 1-Core 96.7 118
156 2-Core 192 233
72.7% 125 Pts
Min Avg Max
279 4-Core 369 457
462 8-Core 585 715
58.7% 477 Pts
Min Avg Max
607 64-Core 728 888
45.1% 728 Pts
User Benchmarks BenchNormalHeavyServer
The fastest CPU (mainstream) averages a speed of 100%
LGA2011, 1 CPU, 6 cores, 12 threads
Base clock 3.3 GHz, turbo 3.6 GHz (avg)
Memory 93.4
1-Core 93.6
2-Core 183
73% 123 Pts
4-Core 359
8-Core 533
56% 446 Pts
64-Core 674
42% 674 Pts
LGA2011, 1 CPU, 6 cores, 12 threads
Base clock 3.3 GHz, turbo 4.25 GHz (avg)
Memory 86.1
1-Core 109
2-Core 216
78% 137 Pts
4-Core 392
8-Core 610
62% 501 Pts
64-Core 806
50% 806 Pts
LGA2011, 1 CPU, 6 cores, 12 threads
Base clock 3.3 GHz, turbo 3.5 GHz (avg)
Memory 89.3
1-Core 81.3
2-Core 180
69% 117 Pts
4-Core 370
8-Core 568
58% 469 Pts
64-Core 699
43% 699 Pts
CPU 1, 1 CPU, 6 cores, 12 threads
Base clock 3.3 GHz, turbo 3.6 GHz (avg)
Memory 82.8
1-Core 91.8
2-Core 182
69% 119 Pts
4-Core 347
8-Core 543
55% 445 Pts
64-Core 692
43% 692 Pts
LGA2011, 1 CPU, 6 cores, 12 threads
Base clock 3.3 GHz, turbo 3.35 GHz (avg)
Memory 78.9
1-Core 85.7
2-Core 176
66% 113 Pts
4-Core 329
8-Core 571
54% 450 Pts
64-Core 799
50% 799 Pts
2,165 MORE »

 Market Share (See Leaders)

The number of benchmark samples for this model as a percentage of all 67,671,882 CPUs tested

 Prices

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MSRP ≈ $1044 @ launch in Sep '11
EbayUS $2658 mins
AmazonUS $31419 mins
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Typical Core i7-3960X Builds (Compare 1,557 builds) See popular component choices, score breakdowns and rankings
Gaming
Gaming 43%
Speed boat
Desktop
Desktop 82%
Aircraft carrier
Workstation
Workstation 38%
Jet ski

Motherboard: Asus RAMPAGE IV EXTREME - $589

EDIT WITH CUSTOM PC BUILDER Value: 61% - Good Total price: $1,163

Popular Core i7-3960X compatible motherboards:

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Processor Rankings (Price vs Performance) April 2024 CPU Rankings

We calculate effective speed which measures real world performance for typical users. Effective speed is adjusted by current prices to yield a value for money rating. Our calculated values are checked against thousands of individual user ratings. The customizable table below combines these factors to bring you the definitive list of top CPUs. [CPUPro]

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Group Test Results

  • Best user rated - User sentiment trumps benchmarks for this comparison.
  • Best value for money - Value for money is based on real world performance.
  • Fastest real world speed - Real World Speed measures performance for typical consumers.

 Specifications

Essentials

DescriptionIntel® Core™ i7-3960X Processor Extreme Edition (15M Cache, up to 3.90 GHz)
Code NameSandy Bridge E
Launch DateQ4'11
Processor Numberi7-3960X
# of Cores6
# of Threads12
Cache15 MB SmartCache
Instruction Set64-bit
Instruction Set ExtensionsSSE4.2, AVX, AES
Embedded Options AvailableNo
Lithography32 nm
VID Voltage Range0.6V-1.35V
Recommended PriceN/A
Clock Speed3.3 GHz
Max Turbo Frequency3.9 GHz
Bus Speed5 GT/s DMI2
Max TDP130 W
DescriptionThis product includes VT-d support only on the C2 stepping. Stepping information can be viewed via the menu on the left.

Memory

Max Memory Size64 GB
Memory TypesDDR3 1066/1333/1600
Memory Channels4
Memory Bandwidth51.2 GB/s
ECC Memory SupportedNo

Expansion Options

PCI Express Revision2.0
Max # of PCI Express Lanes40

Data Protection

AES New InstructionsYes

Advanced Technologies

Virtualization Tech (VT-x)Yes
Intel 64Yes
Idle StatesYes
Enhanced Intel SpeedStep® TechYes
Thermal Monitoring TechnologiesYes
Turbo Boost Tech2.0
Hyper-Threading TechYes
Virtualization for Directed I/O (VT-d)Yes
VT-x with Extended Page Tables (EPT)Yes
Demand Based SwitchingNo
vPro TechNo
Identity Protection TechYes
Smart Response TechYes

Package

Package Size52.5mm x 45.0mm
Max CPU Configuration1

Platform Protection

Execute Disable BitYes
Trusted Execution TechNo

 Comments

Experience the most advanced processor ever...

Added 10 years ago.

Excellent (edit your comment) Add link

15 months ago.

It is still good even in 2022 for gaming.


Good

4 years ago.

This processor auto overclocks itself up to 3.9ghz when under load


Very good

10 years ago.


Excellent

2 years ago.

still awesome performance in 2021


Your
opinion?
1442 Processors (Compared) Thousands of user benchmarks compiled into one comparison list

See how consistently different CPUs perform with varying real world conditions. The charts also illustrate overall performance, popularity and rank.

 Frequently Asked Questions

 Best User Rated

The Best.
CPUGPUSSD
Intel Core i5-13600K $273Nvidia RTX 4060 $295Crucial MX500 250GB $35
Intel Core i5-12600K $183Nvidia RTX 4060-Ti $385Samsung 850 Evo 120GB $80
Intel Core i5-12400F $134Nvidia RTX 4070 $409Samsung 860 Evo 250GB $52
HDDRAMUSB
Seagate Barracuda 1TB (2016) $34Corsair Vengeance LPX DDR4 3200 C16 2x8GB $45SanDisk Extreme 64GB $72
WD Blue 1TB (2012) $31Corsair Vengeance LPX DDR4 3000 C15 2x8GB $43SanDisk Extreme 32GB $28
Seagate Barracuda 2TB (2016) $45G.SKILL Trident Z DDR4 3200 C14 4x16GB $351SanDisk Ultra Fit 32GB $16
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