Intel’s New Broadwell E Chips Are Primed for Virtual Reality
Andrew Wheeler posted on June 02, 2016 |

On the first day of Computex Taipei, Intel will reveal its new Extreme Edition processors, including the first 10-core CPU built for consumers, the Core i7-6950X, which costs $1,723. That is cost prohibitive to most interested parties, but that’s not the only thing out of reach. The Core i7-6950X is the apex member of the Extreme Edition family of processors, otherwise known as Broadwell E chips.

The Extreme Edition is extremely expensive—that’s for certain. If you’re interested, you can upgrade your CPU without changing up your motherboard. At least they’re keeping things compatible for Intel users.

Thankfully, Intel is keeping the new Broadwell E generation and the X99 chipset compatible for upgrades. (Image courtesy of Intel.)
Thankfully, Intel is keeping the new Broadwell E generation and the X99 chipset compatible for upgrades. (Image courtesy of Intel.)

The Broadwell E series would be perfect if you had money to burn and wanted to have a super-powered home virtual-reality station for your Oculus Rift or HTC Vive headsets. Otherwise, expensive CPUs are generally a hard sell, because processor speeds aren’t increasing as quickly, and most people don’t really need them when a less expensive option would suffice.

According to Intel, the Broadwell E chips render 3D graphics 35 percent faster. Their Turbo Max technology supposedly powers 360-degree video content creation and 4K video editing faster by helping chips utilize power more efficiently. The Broadwell E chips, or “Extreme Edition CPUs,” work this well when paired with high-powered GPUs from NVIDIA and AMD. Both NVIDIA and AMD have been pursuing virtual-reality markets lately, which means that companies are responding to the collective desire of enthusiasts to have a faster standalone virtual-reality station at home. But this virtual-reality PC is going to cost thousands of extra dollars, jacking the overall price of virtual reality out of the range of most consumers and would-be enthusiasts. 


 

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