Intel Core i7-2657M vs Intel Core i7-2920XM vs Intel Core i7-2620M

Intel Core i7-2657M

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The Intel Core i7-2657M is power efficient ULV (Ultra Low Voltage) processor for thin and light laptops. The base frequency of 1.6 GHz is relatively low, but due to Turbo Boost 2.0, the CPU may clock up to 2.7 GHz (on core loaded, 2.4 GHz with both cores loaded). However, this depends on the cooling and power consumption of the laptop. Due to HyperThreading, the i7-2657M is able to handle 4 threads in parallel. Compared to the slower i7-2617M, the 2657M offers a higher clock speed (processor core and turbo, graphics turbo).

Sandy Bridge is the evolutionary successor of the Arrandale architecture. The most noteable improvements is the improved Turbo 2.0 and the integration of the graphics card into the 32nm CPU core. 

The integrated Intel HD Graphics 3000 clocked at 350 or 1000MHz (Turbo Boost). Due to the slower clock rate, compared to HD Graphics 3000 in 35W and 45W processors (usually clocked at 650-1100/1300MHz in non LV processors), the performance should be noticeable lower.

The performance of the CPU should be a bit higher than a similar clocked Arrandale Core i5. In our benchmarks (see below), the ULV processor was as fast as a Core i3-2310M due to the high Turbo Boost frequencies. However, the laptop cooling system has to keep the processor relatively cool for the Turbo Boost to work often.

The TDP of 17W (includes the integrated GPU and memory controller) allows the use of the 2657M CPU in small subnotebooks.

Intel Core i7-2920XM

► remove Intel 2920XM

The Intel Core i7-2920XM is the fastest quad-core processor for laptops in Q1-2011. Due to the Extreme Edition branding, the CPU should be easy to overclock (unlocked multiplicator). It is based on the Sandy Bridge architecture and offers Hyperthreading to handle 8 threads at once (for a better usage of the pipeline). Compared to the previous Clarksdale quad-cores, the i7-2920XM is now manufactured in 32nm, offers an integrated graphics card and AES functions. Compared to the slower clocked 2820QM, the 2920XM is specified with a higher TDP.

Sandy Bridge is the evolutionary successor of the Arrandale architecture. The most noteable improvements are the new 256Bit AVX instructions, the improved Turbo Boost and the integration of the graphics card into the 32nm CPU core. Furthermore, the integrated memory controller was improved and supports up to 8 GB DDR3-1333.

The Core i7-2920XM offers an integrated graphics card (Intel HD Graphics 3000) which proved to be clearly faster than the old Intel HD Graphics in the Arrandale CPUs and on a level with entry level dedicated graphics cards like the GeForce 310M. The HD Graphics 3000 also supports Turbo Boost and clocks between 650 MHz and 1300 MHz. As the graphics card shares the fast last level cache, the processor is a bit slower with activated GPU.

Due to the high Turbo Boost and Hyperthreading, the performance of the Core i7-2920XM can reach levels of the fast desktop Core i5-2500K processor. Compared to the previous generation, the i7-2920XM is up to 42% faster than the old Core i7-940XM processor. Therefore, the performance should be sufficient for even the most demanding tasks like HD video editing or 3D games. Extensive benchmarks can be found at the end of this page and in our review of the new Sandy Bridge quad core processors.

The high TDP rating of the 2920XM enables the usage of the quad core only in large and heavy laptops (usually 15" and up). Compared to the previous generation of quad-cores, however, the TDP improved, as the integrated GPU is now included.

Intel Core i7-2620M

► remove Intel 2620M

The Intel Core i7-2620M is the fastest dual core processor at the time of introduction in Q1 2011. It is based on the Sandy Bridge architecture and offers Hyperthreading to handle 4 threads at once (for a better usage of the pipeline). Compared to the slower Core i5, the i7 offers a larger last level cache of 4MB. The base clock speed is 2.7 GHz but due to Turbo Boost it can reach 3.2 GHz (2 cores active) and 3.4 GHz (1 core active).

Sandy Bridge is the evolutionary successor of the Arrandale architecture. The most noteable improvements are the new 256Bit AVX instructions, the improved Turbo 2.0 and the integration of the graphics card into the 32nm CPU core. 

Der i7-2620M offers an integrated graphics card ( Intel HD Graphics 3000) which is clearly faster then the older Intel HD Graphics in the Arrandale CPUs. As the new GPU is included in the CPU, it is also manufactured in 32nm and shares the fast level 3 cache with the CPU cores (using a new ring bus). In the 2620M it is clocked from 650-1300MHz (Turbo Boost).

Furthermore, an improved dual-channel DDR3 memory controller is included on the CPU die that is used by the CPU and GPU part.

Due to the improved architecture and the new Turbo Boost 2.0, the average performance of the Core i7-2620M is higher than a similar clocked Arrandale Core i7. In synthetic benchmarks the performance ranges from the old Core i7-620M to the Core i7-820QM quad core processor. On average it should be on a level of the fast Core i7-640M.

The 35W TDP rating includes the integrated GPU and memory controller.

Intel Core i7-2657MIntel Core i7-2920XMIntel Core i7-2620M
Intel Core i7Intel Core i7Intel Core i7
Sandy BridgeSandy BridgeSandy Bridge
: Core i7 Sandy Bridge
Intel Core i7-2960XM2700 - 3700 MHz4 / 88 MB
Intel Core i7-2860QM2500 - 3600 MHz4 / 88 MB
Intel Core i7-2920XM2500 - 3500 MHz4 / 88 MB
Intel Core i7-2760QM2400 - 3500 MHz4 / 86 MB
Intel Core i7-2820QM2300 - 3400 MHz4 / 88 MB
Intel Core i7-2720QM2200 - 3300 MHz4 / 86 MB
Intel Core i7-2675QM2200 - 3100 MHz4 / 86 MB
Intel Core i7-2670QM2200 - 3100 MHz4 / 86 MB
Intel Core i7-2635QM2000 - 2900 MHz4 / 86 MB
Intel Core i7-2630QM2000 - 2900 MHz4 / 86 MB
Intel Core i7-2640M2800 - 3500 MHz2 / 44 MB
Intel Core i7-2620M2700 - 3400 MHz2 / 44 MB
Intel Core i7-2649M2300 - 3200 MHz2 / 44 MB
Intel Core i7-2629M2100 - 3000 MHz2 / 44 MB
Intel Core i7-2677M1800 - 2900 MHz2 / 44 MB
Intel Core i7-2637M1700 - 2800 MHz2 / 44 MB
» Intel Core i7-2657M1600 - 2700 MHz2 / 44 MB
Intel Core i7-2617M1500 - 2600 MHz2 / 44 MB
Intel Core i7-2960XM2700 - 3700 MHz4 / 88 MB
Intel Core i7-2860QM2500 - 3600 MHz4 / 88 MB
» Intel Core i7-2920XM2500 - 3500 MHz4 / 88 MB
Intel Core i7-2760QM2400 - 3500 MHz4 / 86 MB
Intel Core i7-2820QM2300 - 3400 MHz4 / 88 MB
Intel Core i7-2720QM2200 - 3300 MHz4 / 86 MB
Intel Core i7-2675QM2200 - 3100 MHz4 / 86 MB
Intel Core i7-2670QM2200 - 3100 MHz4 / 86 MB
Intel Core i7-2635QM2000 - 2900 MHz4 / 86 MB
Intel Core i7-2630QM2000 - 2900 MHz4 / 86 MB
Intel Core i7-2640M2800 - 3500 MHz2 / 44 MB
Intel Core i7-2620M2700 - 3400 MHz2 / 44 MB
Intel Core i7-2649M2300 - 3200 MHz2 / 44 MB
Intel Core i7-2629M2100 - 3000 MHz2 / 44 MB
Intel Core i7-2677M1800 - 2900 MHz2 / 44 MB
Intel Core i7-2637M1700 - 2800 MHz2 / 44 MB
Intel Core i7-2657M1600 - 2700 MHz2 / 44 MB
Intel Core i7-2617M1500 - 2600 MHz2 / 44 MB
Intel Core i7-2960XM2700 - 3700 MHz4 / 88 MB
Intel Core i7-2860QM2500 - 3600 MHz4 / 88 MB
Intel Core i7-2920XM2500 - 3500 MHz4 / 88 MB
Intel Core i7-2760QM2400 - 3500 MHz4 / 86 MB
Intel Core i7-2820QM2300 - 3400 MHz4 / 88 MB
Intel Core i7-2720QM2200 - 3300 MHz4 / 86 MB
Intel Core i7-2675QM2200 - 3100 MHz4 / 86 MB
Intel Core i7-2670QM2200 - 3100 MHz4 / 86 MB
Intel Core i7-2635QM2000 - 2900 MHz4 / 86 MB
Intel Core i7-2630QM2000 - 2900 MHz4 / 86 MB
Intel Core i7-2640M2800 - 3500 MHz2 / 44 MB
» Intel Core i7-2620M2700 - 3400 MHz2 / 44 MB
Intel Core i7-2649M2300 - 3200 MHz2 / 44 MB
Intel Core i7-2629M2100 - 3000 MHz2 / 44 MB
Intel Core i7-2677M1800 - 2900 MHz2 / 44 MB
Intel Core i7-2637M1700 - 2800 MHz2 / 44 MB
Intel Core i7-2657M1600 - 2700 MHz2 / 44 MB
Intel Core i7-2617M1500 - 2600 MHz2 / 44 MB
1600 - 2700 MHz2500 - 3500 MHz2700 - 3400 MHz
128 KB256 KB128 KB
512 KB1 MB512 KB
4 MB8 MB4 MB
2 / 44 / 82 / 4
17 55 35
624 995 624
32 32 32
149 mm2216 mm2149 mm2
100 °C100 °C100 °C
BGA1023FCPGA988rPGA988B, BGA1023
Turbo Boost 2.0, Hyper-Threading, Virtualization VT-x, Virtualization for Directed I/O (VT-d), Trusted Execution, AES, Intel 64, Anti-Theft, My WiFi, Idle States, Enhanced SpeedStep, Thermal Monitorin, Execute Disable BitHD Graphics 3000 (650-1300MHz), DDR3-1066/1333/1600 Memory Controller, HyperThreading, AVX, Quick Sync, VirtualizationHD Graphics 3000 (650-1300MHz), DDR3-1066/1333 Memory Controller (max 8GB), HyperThreading, AVX, Quick Sync, Virtualization
iGPUIntel HD Graphics 3000 (350 - 1000 MHz)Intel HD Graphics 3000 (650 - 1300 MHz)Intel HD Graphics 3000 (650 - 1300 MHz)
$317 U.S.$1096 U.S.$346 U.S.
Intel Core i7 2657MIntel Core i7 2920XMIntel Core i7 2620M

Cinebench R11.5 - CPU Multi 64Bit
1.9 Points (5%)
min: 5.7     avg: 6     median: 6 (16%)     max: 6.2 Points
min: 2.6     avg: 3     median: 3.1 (8%)     max: 3.11 Points
Cinebench R10 - Rendering Single 32Bit
3491 Points (36%)
min: 4282     avg: 4387     median: 4378.5 (45%)     max: 4507 Points
min: 3532     avg: 4200     median: 4333 (45%)     max: 4384 Points
Cinebench R10 - Rendering Multiple CPUs 32Bit
6229 Points (10%)
min: 16067     avg: 16949     median: 17187.5 (29%)     max: 17355 Points
min: 7650     avg: 9124     median: 9433 (16%)     max: 9632 Points
Cinebench R10 - Rendering Multiple CPUs 64Bit
7715 Points (10%)
min: 19727     avg: 20763     median: 20959 (28%)     max: 21407 Points
min: 9634     avg: 11273     median: 11444 (15%)     max: 11711 Points
Cinebench R10 - Rendering Single CPUs 64Bit
4376 Points (41%)
min: 5343     avg: 5525     median: 5565 (52%)     max: 5628 Points
min: 4462     avg: 5325     median: 5412 (50%)     max: 5479 Points
wPrime 2.0x - 1024m *
min: 264.9     avg: 277     median: 273.7 (3%)     max: 295 seconds
min: 494     avg: 525     median: 505 (6%)     max: 593.5 seconds
wPrime 2.0x - 32m *
min: 8.29     avg: 8.5     median: 8.4 (2%)     max: 8.9 seconds
min: 11.565     avg: 16.3     median: 16.2 (3%)     max: 19.4 seconds
WinRAR - Result
min: 3296     avg: 3923     median: 3923 (46%)     max: 4550 KB/s
X264 HD Benchmark 4.0 - Pass 2
min: 30.4     avg: 30.8     median: 30.8 (20%)     max: 31.2 fps
X264 HD Benchmark 4.0 - Pass 1
min: 129.4     avg: 131     median: 131.4 (47%)     max: 133.4 fps
TrueCrypt - Serpent Mean 100MB
min: 0.293     avg: 0.3     median: 0.3 (16%)     max: 0.296 GB/s
TrueCrypt - Twofish Mean 100MB
min: 0.508     avg: 0.5     median: 0.5 (0%)     max: 0.521 GB/s
TrueCrypt - AES Mean 100MB
min: 2.8     avg: 3     median: 3 (15%)     max: 3.1 GB/s
3DMark 06 - CPU
2546 Points (17%)
min: 5944     avg: 6100     median: 6131 (41%)     max: 6206 Points
min: 3039     avg: 3753     median: 3827 (26%)     max: 3884 Points
Super Pi mod 1.5 XS 1M *
14 Seconds (3%)
min: 10     avg: 10.5     median: 10 (2%)     max: 11.7 Seconds
min: 11     avg: 11.4     median: 11 (2%)     max: 14.3 Seconds
Super Pi mod 1.5 XS 2M *
32 Seconds (1%)
min: 24     avg: 24.6     median: 24 (1%)     max: 25.9 Seconds
min: 26     avg: 27.3     median: 27 (1%)     max: 32.9 Seconds
Super Pi Mod 1.5 XS 32M *
751 Seconds (3%)
min: 580     avg: 600     median: 594 (3%)     max: 620 Seconds
min: 620     avg: 685     median: 640.1 (3%)     max: 1098.43 Seconds
SiSoft Sandra Dhrystone (MIPS)
40570 MIPS (19%)
min: 118300     avg: 121717     median: 121780 (58%)     max: 125070 MIPS
min: 53030     avg: 55805     median: 53870 (26%)     max: 62450 MIPS
SiSoft Sandra Whetstone (MFLOPS)
26000 MFLOPS (20%)
min: 71200     avg: 74190     median: 75680 (58%)     max: 75690 MFLOPS
min: 37790     avg: 37923     median: 37950 (29%)     max: 38000 MFLOPS
Windows 7 Experience Index - Processor
6.6 points (85%)
min: 7.5     avg: 7.6     median: 7.6 (97%)     max: 7.6 points
min: 6.9     avg: 7.1     median: 7.1 (91%)     max: 7.1 points
3DMark Vantage - P CPU no PhysX 1280x1024
7732 Points (11%)
min: 20540     avg: 21107     median: 21148 (30%)     max: 21592 Points
min: 8605     avg: 11161     median: 10271 (14%)     max: 21984 Points
3DMark 11 - Performance Physics 1280x720
3102 points (15%)
min: 7804     avg: 7915     median: 7914.5 (39%)     max: 8025 points
min: 3296     avg: 3947     median: 4060 (20%)     max: 4362 points

Average Benchmarks Intel Core i7-2657M → 100%

Average Benchmarks Intel Core i7-2920XM → 168%

Average Benchmarks Intel Core i7-2620M → 125%

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* Smaller numbers mean a higher performance
1 This benchmark is not used for the average calculation

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Redaktion, 2017-09- 8 (Update: 2017-09-11)