So, I am sure you have heard lots of talk about Ivy Bridges processors, and because you are hip and cool, you know they are awesome. But do you know why? Let’s take a look.
First off, how do you know it’s an Ivy Bridges processor? Intel is putting a 3 in front of all of their Ivy Bridges line. For example, the Intel® Core™ i7-3770 Processor . If it has a “Q” at the end of the name, it’s a mobile processor - Intel® Core™ i7-3720QM Processor . Look for dual core and ULV (ultra low voltage) processors coming soon. ULVs will be what you will find in your next-gen ultrabooks that could sport some awesome battery life.
Graphics also get a boost with the Ivy Bridges chips. The HD4000 and HD2500 on board graphics are on board with the new processors. “But integrated graphics are lamez!” No. Not since Sandy Bridges, and the HD4000 offer around 50% improvement over those. The HD2500 offers more modest 10-20% performance gains, so be aware of that. Note that these chips are built on a tiny 22nm architecture with 3D transistors, so they are prepped for the future.
Also, if you have a motherboard with LGA-1155 sockets, throw your Ivy Bridges chip in there. It will work.
Should you buy one? If you have Sandy Bridges processors in your machine, meh. If you have an earlier chip, go for Ivy Bridges if you are buying soon. Want to know when the chip you want will be available. Look at this chart: