Following up from June’s Haswell CPU release Intel have just (end of September) updated their ‘enthusiast’ CPU line up with the release of 3 Ivy Bridge E processors.
These are direct replacements for the older Sandy Bridge E CPU’s which feature in our Extreme range of computers.
Intel’s E (or enthusiast) series of CPU’s are the most expensive of their consumer chip line up and are aimed squarely at power users. The base i7 4820K processor is a Quad Core CPU with Hyper-Threading which basically means your Windows installation will see 8 CPU cores which greatly aids with multi-tasking performance.
The Haswell i5 & i7 CPU’s which we use in our Ultra series of PC’s are also quad core chips and the Haswell i7 also has hyper-threading to present the 8 logical cores to your operating system so there will be only small performance differences between that and the Ivy Bridge E 4820K processor.
What makes the Ivy Bridge E line up stand out though is that the 4930K and 4960X chips are 6 Core CPU’s, both also feature Hyper-Threading which in turn means your computer will have 12 logical CPU cores at its disposal, Haswell tops out at a quad core chip with 8 logical cores due to the hyper-threading technology.
Real World Differences
Four or six cores and eight or twelve logical cores are all well and good on paper but what does this actually mean to you as the end user of the system?
Basically the answer is that it depends… (Helpful I know)
Some software is specially designed to take advantage of a large number of CPU cores, it is written in such a way as to spread its workload efficiently across them all and therefore will benefit from having a high number of cores at its disposal.
The vast majority of software though is not (yet?) constructed with this in mind so there is no real advantage of having 6 (or 12 logical) cores available.
Once you take into account the extra cost of the Ivy Bridge E CPU’s and associated motherboards and cooling systems (they run much hotter than the Haswell chips so need to be water cooled) then the best option in terms of value is usually the Haswell i5 or i7.
If your software is designed to take advantage of lots of CPU cores though then Ivy Bridge E is the best option for you.
Our Ivy Bridge E Line Up
All our Extreme computers now come with Ivy Bridge E 4820K CPU’s as standard and the 6 core 4930K and 4960X chips are available upgrade options.
As ever if you need help choosing between our systems see our guides here or just get in touch!
Written by Darren @ Multiple Monitors
Last Updated: October, 2013