A slightly lower cost Ivy Bridge

The Intel Core i5-3470 processor is finally here to offer quad-core IVB processors with HD 2500 graphics. Maybe?

Just a couple of short months ago, Intel released the desktop versions of its latest CPU architecture codenamed Ivy Bridge – and officially named the Intel 3rd Generation Core Processor. Ivy Bridge has a much cleaner sound to it if you ask me.  

At launch, we tested and reviewed the highest-end offering, the Core i7-3770K, a quad-core HyperThreaded part that runs as fast as 3.9 GHz with Turbo Boost. It included the highest end processor graphics Intel has developed – the HD 4000. Currently selling for only $350, the i7-3770K is a fantastic processor, but isn’t the bargain that many DIY PC builders are looking for. The new Core i5-3470 from Intel – the processor we are reviewing today – might be just that.

I am not going to spend time discussing the upgrades and benefits that the new Ivy Bridge processors offer over their predecessors, or the competition, from an architectural stand point. If you want some background on Ivy Bridge and why it does what it does, you’ll want to read the first few pages of our original Core i7-3770K / Ivy Bridge review from April

The Core i5-3470 Processor

Interestingly, in the initial information from Intel about the Ivy Bridge processor lineup, the Core i5-3470 wasn’t even on the list. There was a 3450 and 3550, but nothing in between. The Core i5-3470 currently sells for about $200 and compares with some other Ivy Bridge processors with the following specifications:

Continue reading our review of the Intel Core i5-3470 Ivy Bridge and HD 2500 Processor!!

Compared to the high end Core i7-3770K, the new Core i5-3470 removes the HyperThreading capability as well as the ability to overclock freely with unlocked multipliers. The L3 cache is a bit smaller at 6MB rather than 8MB though all three parts listed above maintain the 77 watt TDP. 

The graphics (iGPU) is another shift from the 3770K – the Core i5-3470 utilizes the HD 2500 graphics system rather than the (faster) HD 4000. 

The HD 2500 processor graphics implementation uses 6 EUs (execution units) rather than the 16 found in the HD 4000 parts. It is somewhat comparable to the performance found in the Sandy Bridge processors’ HD 2000 configuration. With upgrades in DirectX support and OpenGL support though this iteration should be more compatible, and at least modestly better at gaming, with the architectural changes made to the GPU portion. 

For our testing today, we are going to see just how fast both the CPU and GPU portion of the Core i5-3470 can be compared to your options in today’s CPU market.

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