Intel have just released a small batch of new Haswell CPUís to distributors this week (end of June 2014), as such we have updated our computer range to offer them to you immediately.
The new chips are part of the mainstream Haswell family, specifically a new i5 quad core and an i7 quad core (with hyperthreading) chip.
Whilst they are still classed as Haswell CPUís their code name is Devilís Canyon!?!
This follows up on last monthís motherboard chipset release to the new Z97 system.
Usually when a new motherboard is released Intel change the size of the slots for the CPUís so that you also need to upgrade your processor at the same time however the new Z97 motherboards can work with the existing Haswell CPUís, the newly released CPUís will also work in the older Z87 motherboard series.
This tells you immediately that nothing too major has changed, indeed the CPUís are only slightly modified versions of the existing range, tweaked a bit to give you more processing power and speed.
For the i5 CPU the clockspeed, which dictates how fast a processor can actually carry out operations, has increased marginally from 3.4GHz on the older 4670K to 3.5GHz on the new 4690K, nothing that is going to set your world on fire but it is an improvement.
The i7 is more exciting though, the 4790K sees a fairly major jump to 4GHz, this is compared to the previous i7 4770k which was clocked at 3.5GHz.
What does this all mean in the real world though? Well, for the new i7 it performs tasks around 10% quicker, for example if you were encoding a video (which is a fairly processor intensive task) then a job which would have taken 54 seconds would now complete in around 48 seconds.
Itís not earth shattering performance gains but this is generally what happens with CPU releases, 10% here, 15% next time, within a year or 2 you usually end up with a fair bump in speed overall.
In terms of the motherboard chipsets, well there is even less difference between the older Haswell capable Z87ís and the newer Z97 boards than there is between the old and new CPUís really.
Technically the new motherboards can support a few new technologies such as a new M2 sata port but in reality there are very few devices available at this time which can fully take advantage of the port, it is more a future proofing move.
The long and short of it is that the newer board is better, just, than the older ones, it will certainly not perform worse than the older ones and will likely help your new CPU perform better in certain scenarios.
Is It Worth An Upgrade?
If you have a Haswell system already then I would not recommend trading it in just for a new CPU and motherboard, the performance increases are not justified by the cost of changing.
If you are running on an Ivy Bridge CPU then these latest Haswell chips might offer just enough to push you into an upgrade, personally I probably wouldnít bother unless I had a really compelling reason to upgrade my PC though.
If you are running anything prior to Ivy Bridge then you will definitely see a performance jump by moving to these latest Haswell chips.
It might also be worth pointing out that in most tasks the new Haswells will massively outperform AMD CPUís, unfortunately AMD seem to have lost their way in terms of desktop CPU performance over the past 3 Ė 4 years and donít seem to have an answer to Intelís chip lineup.
Where Are They Available?
Okay, so the Pro and Ultra computers that we offer both now feature the new Z97 motherboards as standard. Note that the Extremeís use a different Ivy Bridge-E CPU and motherboard combination which are unaffected by these new releases.
The Ultra series come loaded with the new i5 4690K 3.5GHz CPU as standard, the i7 4790K 4GHz CPU is an upgrade option on all the Ultra PCs.
As always, we have managed to bring you these new motherboards and CPUs immediately without touching our pricing, you get the extra performance increases at no additional cost.
Remember that other computer retailers might be slower moving across to the new chips, or offer them at an increased price over the previous generation, we never do this, all our systems feature only the latest, fastest most powerful components available, always.
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Written by Darren @ Multiple Monitors
Last Updated: June, 2014