You are, no doubt, quite familiar with Intel’s CPU-release “cadence” of tick-tock by now. If not, the short story is that every tock brings a major breakthrough, while ticks are decent upgrades but nothing to Twitter home about.
That’s not necessarily the case with Intel’s latest tick, the Ivy Bridge CPU. Sure, the performance enhancements on the x86 side of the aisle won’t exactly knock you on your tuchus, but they’re still decent. The upgrades to the graphics core, however, make Ivy Bridge more noteworthy.
As we know, Intel found religion through graphics and has been progressively improving on it ever since. The Clarksfield CPUs moved graphics directly into the CPU package, and Sandy Bridge CPUs moved graphics directly onto the CPU die itself. With Ivy Bridge, Intel says it outdid itself by doubling the graphics performance of Sandy Bridge.
If you’re ready to write off Ivy Bridge as an incremental chip that you, the enthusiast, doesn’t give a damn about, you’re wrong. There’s a lot more to Ivy Bridge that makes it the default CPU for an enthusiast who doesn’t want to jump into the bigger, pricier LGA2011 socket. Don’t believe us? Read on to find out why you want this CPU instead of Sandy Bridge.