Originally Posted by perfectblade
the ivy-e might technically be faster, but offers basically no benefit for consumer programs and games because such programs/games don't support more than 4 cores. correct?
No, not correct.
There are numerous consumer programs that will use almost as many cores as you could conceivably throw at them. Just looking at my recent programs on my laptop (which is a dual core, four thread, i5) I see at least five programs that can take advantage of many more logical cores than I currently have available on my 3930k...namely 7-zip (24 threads), Handbrake (at least 16 threads), PDF Xchange Editor (at least 16 threads), TrueCrypt (32 threads, I believe), and FireFox/Opera/Chrome (which can all run individual tabs on their own threads, and I often have dozens of tabs up). My desktop has even more such programs; all of the former, plus VMware Workstation, various distributed computing projects (F@H, BOINC, etc), scrypt hashers, password crackers, A/V editing tools, etc.
Even if an individual program cannot take advantage of many threads, multi-tasking has been mainstream for a very long time, and it would only take a handful of well-threaded, mainstream, programs to fully saturate a 12-core/24-thread processor. I've gotten used to being able to play a game, record game footage, transcode older game footage, have a variety of media up on a browser, and be transferring files to/from multiple encrypted drives, while testing software in sandboxed VMs, all simultaneously, on my Gulftowns and SB-E. There is much more I would do, if I had the cores available to do so without crippling slow downs.
true that most games do not make good use of large numbers of cores, but again, this does not imply that a game is the only program that will be running, or that all consumers are exclusively gamers.