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Intel Core i5-3470 Ivy Bridge Processor and HD 2500 Graphics Review

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Subject: Processors
Manufacturer: Intel

A slightly lower cost Ivy Bridge

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.

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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:

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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. 

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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. 

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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.

June 27, 2012 | 04:50 AM - Posted by HyperMinimalism

The most compelling use of the HD4000 graphics is in the mid to low end segment. OEM's may disagree but I think that Intel forgets that they can compete with AMD and Nvidia on the low end discreet GPU segment if they just put their best foot forward.

We are still waiting for their sub $200 chips. Now if they could just marry the great x86 performance with HD4000 (or better...).

June 27, 2012 | 10:19 AM - Posted by Tim Verry

If I had to guess, they won't pair their sub-$200 chips with the better HD400 graphics :(

June 29, 2012 | 09:34 PM - Posted by HyperMinimalism

That is a pretty good guess.

The decision to not do so makes me want to smash 300mm wafers over CEO's heads.

June 27, 2012 | 01:19 PM - Posted by Azuza001 (not verified)

I don't understand, is it just me or do most review sites always give awards now days. To me the simple fact that the 2600K is still avalible for about the same price would make this a no-award product.

Quote : "Still, the Core i5-3470 would make a solid low cost processor for users looking to build a reasonable cost machine for some mainstream gaming and general enthusiast computing."

If I'm buying a cpu for mainstream gaming and general enthusiast computing I'm not buying a processor with a locked multiplier.

Love the site, keep it up!

June 27, 2012 | 02:25 PM - Posted by jacob (not verified)

Comparison to Ivy i5 3570k in benchmarks, wrap-up?

July 3, 2012 | 02:56 PM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

Why does Intel still sell HD2500 in their chips? Tired of Intel hashing up older GPU architecture just to satisfy price points.

July 16, 2012 | 04:18 PM - Posted by Brandon (not verified)

Does this chip matter that much when the i5-3550 already exists? Very small differences between the two chips, and only a $5 difference on Newegg. (A promo right now actually makes the 3550 even cheaper).

I was excited when I first heard about this chip... but now I think it's just another unnecessary SKU.

December 16, 2012 | 06:06 AM - Posted by hassan (not verified)

Is the intel core i3 cpu& intel hd graphic suitable for cfd code in fortran?
what about fluent 6.3?

July 22, 2014 | 02:38 PM - Posted by BossTek (not verified)

Eh man yo check it yo! I got this Intel stuff from Intel since I am a partner yo! And I can sale it at half price. I got i7's for $500 and Intel i5's for $400 and i3's for $350 yo! That's cheaper than you ever get it at old egg yo!

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