In the coming months, Intel will expand its Sandy Bridge processor lineup with a new K-series Core i7 CPU that targets enthusiast users and features four processing cores with Hyper-Threading support and an unlocked multiplier.The chip is known as the Core i7-2700K and, once launched, it will become Intel's fastest Sandy Bridge CPU for the desktop market.
However, its most important feature is the unlocked multiplier design, as this means overclockers will be able to push the operating frequencies of the processor further than Intel's specifications.
The existence of this chip was uncovered by the CPU-World publication, which has found it mentioned in Intel's updated Material Declaration Data Sheets (MDDS), but sadly no specifications are available at this point in time.
However, judging by Intel's previous Sandy Bridge product releases, it's safe to assume that the chip will feature a small increase in its base and Turbo frequencies, 100MHz most likely, making i7-2700K's stock speed 3.5GHz with up to 3.9GHz Turbo.
Right now, we don't know when the Core i7-2700K is scheduled to make its appearance, but a Q4 launch seems to be Intel's target (probably at about the same time with AMD's first FX-Series CPUs).
When it designed the Sandy Bridge architecture, Intel decided to take a different route as far as overclocking is concerned and it locked the BCLK of the CPUs.
This means that overclocking is no longer possible if the processor doesn't come with an unlocked multiplier.
Right now, only two of Intel's CPUs have such a multiplier, the Core i7-2600K and the Core i5-2500K, but both of these feature four processing cores.
In the forth quarter of this year, Intel will release a series of new processor models based on the Sandy Bridge-E architecture that will feature even greater overclocking potential as both their BCLK and multiplier will be unlocked.