Andrew unworthy shops for Intel's
Intel's new Ivy Bridge processors are now available to
purchase, and we're going to look at some of the CPU packages on sale. I must
say, before I go any further, that I haven't seen or used any of these
processors; I'm just looking for the bargain buys.
Fishing for chips
Sadly, there isn't going to be much variation in price,
because they're brand new, but if you want to go for an entry-level Core i5 processor,
check out the Core i5 3450, the OEM version of which is currently available to
preorder at Scan (www.scan. co.uk) for $171.
This is a quad-core 3.1GHz CPU with 6MB of cache memory that can Turbo Boost to
3.5GHz. It also has the improved Intel HD Graphics 2500 on-chip GPU predictably
providing its graphics. You'll have to purchase a heat sink and fan separately,
but at least that means you can get items that meet your needs, whether that's
hardcore cooling or something calm and quiet. Scan also sells the retail
version, which includes its stock heat sink and fan. It currently costs $180.
If you require a higher-end Ivy Bridge Core i5 processor,
you could go for the 3570. It's also a quad-core CPU with 6MB of cache memory,
but it has a clock speed of 3.4GHz and a Turbo Boost speed of 3.8GHz. It also
has a HD Graphics 2500 GPU built into it. You can currently buy OEM Core i5
3570 package from Scan for $206, which means you'll also have to buy a fan and
heat sink, but you can buy the retail version of the Core i5 3570K for just
$206 from Aria Technology (www.aria.co.uk).
That price appears to be a special offer, however, so you'll have to move
quickly to buy one for that amount. The Core i5 3570K is an unlocked version of
the processor, which means you can overclock it to higher speeds, should you so
Ivy Bridge Core i5
If you want to go truly high-end, you could pick up a Core
i7 CPU. These chips have always been the stuff of dreams for enthusiasts, but
the price of a decent Core i7 isn't prohibitive. You can currently pre-order an
OEM Core i7 3770 for $273 from Scan. This is a quad-core 3.4GHz CPU that cans
Turbo Boost to 3.9GHz. It also has 8MB of cache memory and Intel's new HD
Graphics 4000 GPU built into it. Aria is currently selling the retail version
of this at the very competitive price of $280.
The Core i7 3770K is also available. Again, this is an
unlocked chip, which means it's designed to be overclocked and, once again,
Aria has aggressively priced the retail package at a current $309. The Core i7
3770K also gives you a very slight standard clock speed increase, being 3.5GHz
rather than 3.4 GHz. It still Turbo Boosts to 3.9GHz, however.
The new Ivy Bridge models aren't cheap, but they're not that
expensive either when you consider their performance. If you're creating a new
build, you should give the new Ivy Bridge range some serious consideration.
“These chips have always been the stuff of dreams for