Xeon E5450 – Last Hope for LGA 775

The LGA775 platform has been around since 2004, and unusually for Intel, the socket remained unchanged even as new processor models and architectures were developed, starting with the infamous Pentium 4 Prescott, then to the impressive Core2Duo, and later to the mighty Core2Quad. This stands in stark contrast to the earlier the days of Pentium 3 Tualatin for Socket 370 being incompatible with the older version of Socket 370 for no good reason, or to the more recent times of Intel’s Coffee Lake processors for LGA 1151 being incompatible with earlier versions of LGA 1151 because “reasons.” And because games were perfectly playable with a quad core processor from the introduction of quad cores cpu in 2007 to circa 2017, Core2Quad remained a viable budget gaming cpu long past its prime. In fact, until 2017, Intel kept churning out 4-core/8-thread processors as the standard high end cpu for the average user (excluding expensive high end platforms such LGA 2011 and LGA 2066, where a high end cpu cost about $1000). LGA 775 got a further life extension when clever enthusiasts figured out that Xeon processors for the LGA 771 server platform could be fitted into ye olde standard LGA 775 with a simple swap of two contacts and rotating the cpu 90 degrees. Just in time for cheap LGA 771 Xeons from China to flood the market after being removed from decommissioned servers.

Which brings us to the star of today’s topic – the 3.0GHz Xeon E5450, revision E0. To make the old quad core usable in 2015 games and later, you will need heavy overclocking, so no point overpaying for Xeons X5460 or X5470 that are clocked slightly higher from the factory. The E5450 is designed for lower voltage, which should it help overclock without extreme voltage. The revision E0 is especially critical here, as it is consistently able to clock higher (about 4.0GHz) than the older revision C0 (about 3.6GHz). So armed with a beefy cooler, a capable LGA 775 motherboard on the P45 chipset, and fast DDR2 memory, we push the venerable Core2Quad to run games released 8, 9, and 10 years after the processor. We find out how the processor can manage them at default clocks, and what kind of boost it gets when overclocked.

Watch the video to find out:

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