Another Intel rip off – Core CPUs

One of the annoying things about Intel is how much they mix and match features on their CPUs to try to screw you into paying more money. It gets that you have to drill right down into the specs of individual CPUs to make sure you are getting the features you need, for example virtualisation support.
It turns out this is still the case on the Core i3/5/7 CPUs and in a major way. A lot of people probably used the table below for a long time:
  • Pentium G – 2 cores, no hyperthreading
  • Core i3 – 2 cores, hyperthreading
  • Core i5 – 4 cores, no hyperthreading
  • Core i7 – 4 cores, hyperthreading.
It was therefore a shock to me to discover some Core i5 and i7 chips out there have only 2 cores. It turns out this has, in fact, been the case almost since the beginning of the Core series. At first, though, it was only mobile series processors that had reduced numbers of cores. However, starting with Sandy Bridge, there has been a desktop model Core i5 in each architecture with only 2 cores.
This situation emphasises that a significant amount of the price you pay for a CPU is based on marketing hype and as I may have said previously, for my personal use the lower spec Pentium G dual core chip is more than good enough and does not command an exorbitant price. And Intel really loves all the billions they are creaming from us every year.