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I'm going to echo the choir here...

The Core i5 2500K comes to mind as the most obvious over the last 15 to 20 years. It wasn't the first quad core CPU, but the earlier ones were usually more expensive (discounting the Core 2 Quad Q6600's emergency drops), not as fast, and/or released in a time way ahead of needing that many cores/threads. I think the Core i5 2500K came around at about the right time, and was faster than the prior ones to the point to where it aged so much better. Unfortunately, this was mostly also because it was after this that Intel became too stingy to add extra cores, and IPC only crept up slowly, to where even today I only consider Intel's latest offering a mere, what is it, two or only three "real" generations newer, despite being called 10th generation? What makes a CPU so good is hardly ever just it's raw capability (the best few were often never the best even at their time, and that also applies here) but the circumstances that surround it. Largely, price and longevity (or how much you get out of it compared to what it's intended as, but that's less present these days with everything being released so close to its limits) in my opinion. While I'd obviously avoid 4 core CPUs (even Hyper-threaded ones) for anyone looking at their CPU situation today, and I think the release of the upcoming consoles and their games will be what really speeds up finalizing their obsolescence, for anyone who may still have one, even today Sandy Bridge holds on (though showing age in a few highly threaded titles). Nearly a decade of real usability would have been unheard of even a decade ago, let alone two where you'd get two or three years out of a CPU.

The Core i7 2600K too, much for the same reasons. If you got use of the extra threads to where the Core i5 2500K would have struggled, it was the better option, but since value is a big part of what goes into determining this for me, I think the Core i5 2500K was better. The Core i7 2600K was more of it's "extended offering if you need more threads" option, so by extension, it would of course be included.

I'm not sure I'd call anything afterwards on Intel's side as good, but I admit I stopped paying much attention after Ivy Bridge and Haswell or so. I don't think the Core 2 Quads aged as well, same for the initial Core i7/i5s, but a few of them were standouts too (Core 2 Quad Q6600, Core 2 Duo E8400, and perhaps Core i7 920 come to mind, though I'm hesitant to list the latter as buying into DDR3 at the time, especially more modules for triple channel, wasn't exactly "value" oriented).

I think the current crop of Ryzens might have a few that have a chance at being remarkable going forward, too. Time will tell.

I can't remember much of AMD during the Athlon 64/X2 era, though I had one for a short time, and I do recall many of them were fantastic values for the time.
 

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LTSC for life crew
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Discussion Starter #122
athlon 64, I wanna say 3000+ or 3600+.? 1900mhz outta the box, and a bunch of them overclocked to 2700mhz. that's a 50% increase. now we're lucky to get 5%
I had a 3600+ in one of the first rigs I built here on the forums and I seem to recall getting it to 2.3GHz with very minor tweaking. This was back when most super cheap motherboards had overclocking abilities, and even my barebones attempt could OC.
 

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i forget the exact model numbers. the single core was first but then when the dual core opterons came out, they were the same 50% increase. all we had to do was change the fsb from 200 to 300 pretty much. required decent ram ( although I even did it with hynix) and probably motherboard. many that were doing it had the DFI's tho. There weren't many cpu's in history that could so easily OC 50%
 

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LTSC for life crew
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Discussion Starter #124
I got a nearly 100% OC with my E6300 Core 2 Duo. Performance went from "Hey this is snappy" to "Woah. Now we're talkin'!" Too bad it was on Vista :ROFLMAO:
 

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10700K. The greatest CPU there is, was, or ever will be.
 

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Freeze it
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For me it was the E2200 and the E8500, I got a 4.4ghz overclock on the E2200 cpu on LN2 it was a great little chip to oc
 

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Twin Turbski
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For me, it has to be the OEM only AMD Phenom II 970 black edition -- which is actually a thuban with two cores disabled.

What is notable about this CPU is that these hidden cores can be unlocked, and if stable, you get a hexacore running stock at 3.5GHz, which would make it AMDs fastest base speed CPU out of any other X6 chip they make. There is no other CPU on the market that has these attributes of core unlocking, making this chip extremely unique from all other processors in its class. Or any class for that matter. So this is one reason I picked it, because it stands alone in a class of its own.

The PH-EO thubans also have an excellent memory controller that can be overclocked very easily. Usually get about 3000MHz on air, And a little bonus as well: L3 cache runs at the NB speed, so you get a two for one type deal when you OC the CPU/NBl, improving cache performance and memory throughput whilst at the same time dramatically improving memory latency. As you can see below with my best memory latency result, this platform has excellent potential in terms of tunability and makes for a fun and challenging overclock experience. The sky is the limit.



Another good attribute of this chip is heat, or lack thereof, its definitely not a hot running chip and can easily be cooled with a hyper 212 @ 4.0GHz across all six cores.

This platform is well flushed out and with the ultra low memory latency, this rig is just as fast as my 9600KF rig at most tasks, and just as snappy. Hard to believe that a 10 year old CPU can hang with Intels 9th gen hexacore for most tasks.

Not to mention, the performance increase you get from unlocking the cores, clocking the CPU to 4.0GHz and clocking the memory controller up to 3000, cannot be beat. Giving this chip the supreme distinction of having one of the highest performance gain potential (out of any other CPU) from stock to OC.

The cost/performance ratio is another thing going for it. Not many chips out there that come close to matching it.

If you can find one. They are super rare.
 

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LTSC for life crew
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Discussion Starter #128
Honestly I think the Ryzen 3600 is going on the list for a lot of people. Sales of it have been 3x or more other cpus from the same time period.
 

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Overclock? What?
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Legendary CPU's for me go kind of like this:

Athlon 64 (Socket 754) Clawhammer and Venice
E8400 (was able to hit 4.4GHZ stable with my DFI board)
Q9650 (Awesome Quadcore)

I still have an unopened AMD 64 3000+ Venice it brings back lots of great memories! (Link to the processor on Newegg)

2466282
 

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