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Date First Available
April 29, 2012
Warranty & Support
2 years intelAmazon.com Return Policy:
You may return any new computer purchased from Amazon.com that is "dead on arrival," arrives in damaged condition, or is still in unopened boxes, for a full refund within 30 days of purchase. Amazon.com reserves the right to test "dead on arrival" returns and impose a customer fee equal to 15 percent of the product sales price if the customer misrepresents the condition of the product. Any returned computer that is damaged through customer misuse, is missing parts, or is in unsellable condition due to customer tampering will result in the customer being charged a higher restocking fee based on the condition of the product. Amazon.com will not accept returns of any desktop or notebook computer more than 30 days after you receive the shipment. New, used, and refurbished products purchased from Marketplace vendors are subject to the returns policy of the individual vendor.
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***Update 06/03/2013: The next generation Haswell i7-4770K and i5-4670K have superseded the IvyBridge i7-3770K and i5-3570K. They are between 0-15% faster in most regards, depending on task. See AnandTech's "The Haswell Review" for details.
As of 04/29/2012, this is the current top-end "premium" tier Intel chip - about 5-10% faster than the i7-2700K which it replaces. The current top-end "extreme" tier is and will remain the six core i7-3960X until the second half of 2013, when the Ivy Bridge-E is released.
It overclocks nearly as high as Sandy Bridge and heats up more with voltage. This means 4.4 to 4.7 GHz will be around the limit on air. Note that if you do not plan to overclock and/or intend to run virtual machines, the plain 3770 is the cheaper and better choice as it has Intel SIPP, vPro, VT-d and TXT enabled (the K has these disabled).
At its official retail price, three hundred and thirty two dollars, it is currently one of the best values for a high performance chip in the market. The next steps up are 2-3 times this price.
The GPU performance compared to the 2700K is about 50% faster, which is equivalent to a $40-60 video card. This is enough to play most games at mediocre quality with a mediocre framerate or run Quick Sync very fast (Intel's custom medium-quality h264 encoder; about 300 frames per second on 1080p video).
If you do not have much use for the GPU, most i5 and i7 owners will have a hard time justifying the Ivy Bridge upgrade. All other slower chips will see a substantial improvement. Another good value is the Ivy i5 3570K which is something like 0-15% slower and 30% cheaper.
The new motherboard lineup consists of the Z77, Z75, H77, Q77, Q75 and B75 chipsets. The major improvements over the Sandy Bridge generation is native USB 3.0 support, PCIe 3.0 (with Ivy chips only) and SSD-HDD hybrid caching. Z/H/X all have CPU overclocking. The 77s have the SSD caching. Most owners of this chip will probably get a Z77 which is feature rich and nearly the same price (about ninety dollars for the cheapest board currently).
[Sources: AnandTech, TomsHardware, overclock.net; see comments for some minor extra detail]
-SETUP- CPU: Ivy Bridge i7-3770k HEATSINK: Noctua NH-D14 MB: Asus Maximus V Gene GPU: EVGA GeForce GTX 680(OC'd to 1286Mhz core clock & 3400Mhz memory clock. AC Twin Turbo II heat sink installed) MEM: 16GB Mushkin Enhanced Redline 2133Mhz(OC'd to 2400Mhz) SDD: 2x 240GB Mushkin Chronos Deluxe in RAID0 PS: Seasonic 1000W 80+ Platinum CASE: Fractal Design Define Mini
-OVERCLOCKING- As we all know, Ivy Bridge runs pretty hot overclocked when compared to its predecessor Sandy Bridge. Arguments have been made as to the reason of this and it may be due to its newly implemented 3D transistors or because it uses thermal paste as a conduit between the heat shield and the CPU die or maybe its due to a combination of both. Regardless, IF you plan to overclock this sucker YOU WILL NEED A 3RD PARTY COOLER!!! Whether it be water cooled or air cooled or even cooled by ln2, do your research and find a good heat sink!
Most reviewers are reporting that you can reach a decent overclock of 4.6Ghz at around 1.275 - 1.300 volts with temperatures reaching the 85-90C mark during stress tests. This is considered NORMAL because Ivy Bridge is more resilient to high temperatures than Sandy Bridge. To be safe and to lessen CPU degradation, aim for no more than 1.5v and MAX load temps ~90C. For the majority of people out there, this type of overclock should suffice.
-RESULTS- Currently I am running my CPU at 4.6Ghz at 1.300v for the extra headroom. Here are the temperature results during stress tests:
The temperatures were about 4-5 degrees cooler in normal mode.
-CONCLUSION- In the end, this processor proves to be a true successor to Sandy Bridge due to its performance increase and lower power consumption; however, these performance increases are marginal at best. This means that if you're thinking about upgrading coming from a 2600k or 2700k, don't bother. Unless you absolutely need to have the latest hardware or if you want features such as integrated PCI-E 3.0, USB 3.0, higher memory bandwidth, HD 4000 graphics, etc... keep your Sandy Bridge. IMO, you shouldn't upgrade your CPU unless you're at LEAST 2 generations behind. I upgraded coming from a Yorkfield Q9550 and am very happy with the noticeable performance boost. Though temperatures are higher than what we're used to seeing, it doesn't mean that it's a bad thing, it's just different. So don't let high OC temps shy you away from this great piece of hardware. Great product Intel!!! A++
-UPDATES- 04/29/2012 - Bought the product
05/02/2012 - Managed to get it stable at 1.280 volts at same 4.6Ghz. New temps are all 5C cooler!!!
05/17/2012(FINAL) - Reduced to 1.21 volts at same 4.6Ghz. - Highest load temp was 85C while fans were in silent mode. - Reduced memory clock to stock speed(2133 Mhz), and timings(9-11-10-28) to run prime95 for ~16hrs. Overclocked them back to 2400Mhz 10-12-11-32 after stress testing since they run just fine. No BSODS or random crashes. If I do experience any issues with stability, then I know I need to clock the memory back down, otherwise I'll keep the extra speed. - No updates shall be added unless something drastic occurs. - Remember, running stress tests on a new PC is done only to test stability. In a realistic environment, you will not be running your machine at 100% load 24/7 unless you're folding proteins or something. On a normal day of playing games, surfing the internet, listening to music, watching moves, etc... my CPU does not go above 70C and averages around ~60C.