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What does "Unlocked" mean?

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March 9, 2012 6:48:37 PM

I am building a computer and coming to the choice between the Intel Core i5 2500 or Intel Core i5 2500K. My understanding is that the "k" means unlocked but what does it actually mean? What are the advantages?

Thanks in advance,
Logan77

More about : unlocked

a c 203 à CPUs
a b å Intel
March 9, 2012 6:50:55 PM

Unlocked CPU multiplier gets you an easy overclocking opportunity.
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March 9, 2012 6:51:01 PM

logan77 said:
I am building a computer and coming to the choice between the Intel Core i5 2500 or Intel Core i5 2500K. My understanding is that the "k" means unlocked but what does it actually mean? What are the advantages?

Thanks in advance,
Logan77


It means it can be heavily overclocked. A non K version can only be slightly overclocked usually only a few hundred MHz. You can pretty easily get a 2500k to 4.5 GHz. You probably won't get anywhere near that with a locked CPU.
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a c 103 à CPUs
March 9, 2012 6:51:30 PM

The 'K' suffix denotes that the chip is easier to overclock basically, you can still clock the non-K's as far as I know, just not as well
if you are gaming/overclocking then go for the 2500k, if nothing else you can clock it up in a few years to get better performance before you 'have' to upgrade
if you will never overclock, save a couple of quid and get the non-K variant
Moto
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a c 203 à CPUs
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March 9, 2012 6:52:38 PM

The 'K' model gets you 'extra speed' for free.
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March 9, 2012 7:27:45 PM

WR2 said:
The 'K' model gets you 'extra speed' for free.


+1
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March 9, 2012 10:03:25 PM

The other thing I am confused about is Turboboost. Both the 2500 and the 2500K are 3.3GHz and Turbo to 3.7GHz. Is what that does overclocking?

The other thing. Does overclocking void the warrenty of any of the parts?
Thanks,
Logan77
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a c 126 à CPUs
March 10, 2012 12:09:27 AM

Motopsychojdn said:
The 'K' suffix denotes that the chip is easier to overclock basically, you can still clock the non-K's as far as I know, just not as well
if you are gaming/overclocking then go for the 2500k, if nothing else you can clock it up in a few years to get better performance before you 'have' to upgrade
if you will never overclock, save a couple of quid and get the non-K variant
Moto


You will only get a small bump on the non-Ks as the only way is to overclock the BCLK, stock is 100Hz but most can get to 103Hz before you have stability issues due to the PCIe and SATA clock generator being tied to the BCLK.

The K however will clock as high as you can get it stable by using the multiplier. Mines at 45 right now so 4.5GHz, some have 4.7GHz and a very few lucky oens have 5GHz+.

logan77 said:
The other thing I am confused about is Turboboost. Both the 2500 and the 2500K are 3.3GHz and Turbo to 3.7GHz. Is what that does overclocking?

The other thing. Does overclocking void the warrenty of any of the parts?
Thanks,
Logan77


Its like overclocking but not quite. Overclocking is when you take a CPU from its stock frequency and all cores are clocked to a higher frequency. So my 2500K for example is at 4.5GHz for all 4 cores when under load. Thats a overclock. Turbo will dynamically clock the CPU cores higher depending on load. 3.7GHz is only when the CPU has only one active core. So its not quite the same since when all 4 cores are active I believe it only goes to 3.4GHz.

And Intel states it does but they do also offer a extended "overclocking" warranty for like $60-80 depending on the CPU that will cover a CPU going bad due to overclocking.
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