Using just over 100 W while idle, the E8600 actually requires more power than the manufacturer's latest quad-core models from the 700 and 800 series. That said, it's still an acceptable result, especially given that it only rose to 141 W for the whole computer while active.
This is a processor that can do a little bit of everything. It's powerful enough to handle office applications, but it's also capable of rendering and encoding multimedia content. Of course, it won't be as fast as a quad-core processor, but it's good enough for occasional amateur use. In general, it's a little faster than an Athlon II X3 435 CPU, which has three cores.
Let's take a look at a couple of figures: in WinRAR 3.9, compressing our folder of files took 4 minutes 7 seconds; on the next model down, the E8500, the same task required 4 m 14 s. Another example is encoding MP3s in iTunes: this processor took 1 m 22 s, while the E8500 took 1 m 26 s.
Click on the graph to see all of our results and compare this CPU to other models.
Although it might be less happy than a processor with more cores when running demanding software, it's perfectly at home with games. When we tried it out with our test games, only World in Conflict: Soviet Alert seemed to pose it any problems, with an average framerate of 45 fps compared to 54 fps on the Core i7 870, which comes with four cores and hyper-threading. On the other hand, both models were neck-and-neck in Crysis Warhead, with an average framerate of 47 fps for each.
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- Energy efficient while active
- All-rounder that can handle most tasks
- You can find faster processors for gaming
- No Turbo mode
This is an excellent dual-core processor that combines powerful speeds with average energy consumption. On the other hand, we'd prefer a quad-core processor for encoding video or rendering 3D video.