IB vs. Haswell for productivity, long-term use

brettjrob

Senior member
Jul 1, 2003
214
0
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Saw a similar thread started by a gamer, but my concerns are almost everything *but* gaming so figured I'd do a separate one.

I'm currently running an E8400 with 4 GB DDR2 from 2008. It's held up well for general use, particularly with the addition of an SSD last year, but performance is finally starting to bother me in some cases. My main concerns are productivity, media (including some audio/video encoding) and Photoshop. I'd also like to have the option of running one or two VMs without breaking a sweat, a feat my current rig can't quite claim.

I came close to pulling the trigger on an 3570K-based setup over BF, but none of the deals (save in-store exclusives that I don't have locally) were tempting enough. Now that any chance of a firesale deal has passed, I'm back to asking myself whether it's worth jumping in now or holding out for Haswell, which I've read very little about.

A few specific questions for speculation:

1) Is Haswell expected to be *significantly* more efficient than IB, to the point where it would have a noticeable impact on my electric bill and heat generation in the room?

2) I haven't used HD4000, but hear it's a major step toward finally competing with low-end discrete GPUs. Is the Haswell GPU likely to be so good that I wouldn't miss my current 8800 GT using it? That might be a silly notion but again I'm a bit out of the loop these days.

3) Are mid-range (~$200) CPUs likely to be available in the spring/early summer, or just the high-end UBER EXTREME EDITION models, leaving budget users waiting til fall?

4) Are there any other noteworthy changes to chipsets/motherboards/ports upcoming that I should consider? I'm as much looking forward to better SATA performance, memory bandwidth and getting USB3 as the CPU upgrade. If any sea changes in those areas are on the horizon I might better wait, as I'll likely be on another ~4 year upgrade cycle.

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Somehow this feels eerily similar to my predicament back in '08. I ended up going with a C2D toward the end of that socket's lifecycle, and it's served me well, but I've felt hamstrung by the chipset and memory limitations these past couple years. Truth be told, I probably would've been a lot happier the past 2-3 years if it were cheap and easy to upgrade to 8-16 GB DDR2, but it's neither (in fact, my chipset doesn't even support it). Hate to grab 16 GB DDR3 now and then 8 months later we see mainstream boards that support 128 GB DDR4, leaving me with a sour taste again come 2014-15.
 

jhu

Lifer
Oct 10, 1999
11,915
7
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Here's a good hierarchy of graphics chips. The HD4000 is about on par with a 7600 GT. So, depending on what you actually do with your 8800 GT, you may miss it, you may not. I have an Ivy Bridge laptop with an HD 4000 graphics in it (Core i5-3317U), and it runs Guild Wars 2 well (40 fps at about medium settings).
 

ShintaiDK

Lifer
Apr 22, 2012
20,395
128
106
Already plenty of threads about the subject if you search.

Chipset wise you get full 6 SATA6 ports and 2 additional USB3 ports for a total of 6. CHipset is also made on a 32nm process instead of 65nm.

Depending on the code, Haswell will be between 10-15% and over 100% faster than IB. It will be more power efficient too. Memory bandwodth will be the same as with IB. Dualchanel DDR3 1600.

First release of Haswell is all the desktop quadcores. Same prices as todays IB chips. Perhaps with an inflation corrected price. But usually that happens every 2 years and not every year.

And you will always complain about something better, or the next one around the corner will be even better. Buy when you need instead and accept the changes over time.
 
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Idontcare

Elite Member
Oct 10, 1999
21,126
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1) Is Haswell expected to be *significantly* more efficient than IB, to the point where it would have a noticeable impact on my electric bill and heat generation in the room?
The performance/watt (efficiency) is not likely to be all that improved over IB. It will be improved, no question, but you are looking at maybe a 15% improvement at the CPU, but the power consumption for the rest of the system will be the same, so at the wall you might be looking at 10W reduction overall.

If power-savings was really a top concern or care-about then you could get that just by underclocking your processor until it was still fast enough for your needs.

That said, Haswell could be 9 months away. Do you really intend to wait 9 months before upgrading? Seems like a long time to wait on the basis of wanting improved iGPU performance or some such.
 

Concillian

Diamond Member
May 26, 2004
3,755
8
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The performance/watt (efficiency) is not likely to be all that improved over IB. It will be improved, no question, but you are looking at maybe a 15% improvement at the CPU, but the power consumption for the rest of the system will be the same, so at the wall you might be looking at 10W reduction overall.
The chipset will be 32nm vs 65nm, so technically there should be additional savings outside the CPU itself. Not that it really diminishes your point since current chipsets are only 7W TDP. Percent-wise it could be a pretty enormous power consumption savings, but Absolute difference will still be small.

Also, perhaps by putting more USB3 on chipset you see another tiny amount of savings from mobos not having so many external USB chips and such, and maybe this gen can finally kill off PCI so we don't need PCI chips on mobos eating up another tiny fraction of total power consumption. It could add up... I mean my current PC only eats like 60W at idle...10W would be a pretty significant percentage in that case.
 
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