Experiencing the Intel® Turbo Boost Technology 2.0

Intel Core i7-2600K and i5-2500K Processor Review

What is the Intel® Turbo Boost Technology 2.0?

Intel has optimized Intel® Turbo Boost Technology¹ to provide even more performance when needed on the latest-generation Intel® microarchitecture code name Sandy Bridge. Intel® Turbo Boost Technology 2.0 automatically allows processor cores to run faster than the base operating frequency if it’s operating below power, current, and temperature specification limits.

Intel Turbo Boost Technology 2.0 is activated when the Operating System (OS) requests the highest processor performance state (P0).

The maximum frequency of Intel Turbo Boost Technology 2.0 is dependent on the number of active cores. The amount of time the processor spends in the Intel Turbo Boost Technology 2.0 state depends on the workload and operating environment.

Any of the following can set the upper limit of Intel Turbo Boost Technology 2.0 on a given workload:

* Number of active cores
* Estimated current consumption
* Estimated power consumption
* Processor temperature

When the processor is operating below these limits and the user’s workload demands additional performance, the processor frequency will dynamically increase until the upper limit of frequency is reached. Intel Turbo Boost Technology 2.0 has multiple algorithms operating in parallel to manage current, power, and temperature to maximize performance and energy efficiency. Note: Intel Turbo Boost Technology 2.0 allows the processor to operate at a power level that is higher than its rated upper power limit (TDP) for short durations to maximize performance.

As an independent and complementary feature, Intel® Hyper-Threading Technology (Intel® HT Technology) increases performance of both multi-threaded and single threaded workloads.

Source – visit the Intel site to view a graphical illustration of how it works.

In my own words – Turbo Boost means the system will overclock the processor dynamically to gain speed, to make things work faster for you. 🙂

*No, that doesn’t mean you’re an overclocker. That also doesn’t mean you’ve managed to overclock your processor either.

The Experience

For this, the machine used was a Packard Bell Sandy Bridge-based notebook with the Intel® Core i7-2820QM (8M Cache, 2.30 GHz) processor. Thanks Intel! 🙂

Here’s a video of Turbo Boost in action.

Comparing the same unit – with and without Turbo Boost

The test – using Canon’s Digital Photo Professional to convert 16 18-Megapixel RAW file (CR2 format) into JPG format.

Turbo Boost Time Taken
ON 129 seconds
OFF 175 seconds

🙂 Good eh? Bear in mind that this is a high-end processor. The result varies between processor and application.

Is it a need? No. Is it a feature that you would most welcome? OF COURSE!

Realistically speaking – if you’re just browsing the Internet, listening to music or watching videos then you wouldn’t actually FEEL the difference.

goldfries rated this product :


  1. It’s like VTEC’s second cam profile. Activated when there are more demands for power. Cool!

  2. interesting… Im wondering how it is compared with AMD’s bulldozer (8cores)

  3. I like very much the writings and pictures and explanations in your adress so I look forward to see your next writings. I congratulate you.

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