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Written by Hank Tolman   
Monday, 03 January 2011
Table of Contents: Page Index
Intel Core i5-2500K Sandy Bridge CPU
Features and Specifications
Closer Look: Core i5-2500K
CPU Testing and Results
AIDA64 Benchmark Tests
Passmark PerformanceTest
PCMark Vantage Benchmark Tests
SiSoftware Sandra Tests
Cinebench R11.5 Benchmarks
Street Fighter IV Benchmark
x264Bench HD 3.0 Test
Sandy Bridge Final Thoughts
Intel Core i5-2500K Conclusion

Intel Core i5-2500K Sandy Bridge CPU Review

One of the processors in Intel's Sandy Bridge line-up that is being released in early January 2011 is the Intel Core i5-2500K. Intel is calling Sandy Bridge the 2nd Generation of Intel Core Processors. That also happens to be the significance of the 2 in the name of the Core i5-2500K. Sandy Bridge has promised to bring a lot of new ideas and technologies to the computer hardware industry, including improved media and gaming performance. The Intel Core i5-2500K is a quad-core, non-hyper-threaded, 3.3GHz processor equipped with the latest version of Intel's Turbo Boost. Set to be priced at $205 dollars, the Intel Core i5-2500K competes directly with the top end AMD Phenom-II X4 processors in price. In this article, Benchmark Reviews is bringing you the scoop on the Intel Core i5-2500K, including its performance against AMD's newest flagship quad-core, the Phenom-II X4-975BE.

With their second generation core processor line, Intel made a few changes. Core i5 processors have previously been found with anywhere from two to four cores and with or without hyperthreading technology. With the release of Sandy Bridge, that changes a little. The basic series Sandy Bridge Core i5 CPUs are all quad-core processors and none of them are equipped with hyperthreading. To take advantage of an extra thread per core in Sandy Bridge, you'll have to invest in a Core i7. Some of the off-series Core i5 CPUs (like the S or T series with lower clock and turbo frequencies) may come with hyperthreading, as may the Core i3 processor line, but you'll be hard pressed to find one of those at a retail location.


The Sandy Bridge CPU offers a combination of CPU, GPU, and IMC all housed on the same die. This allows for increased speed in processing as well as lower power consumption. The newest installment of Intel HD Graphics housed with the CPU was made with media consumers in mind. Intel also says that the Intel HD Graphics will be able to play most mainstream games.

The Sandy Bridge is supposed to be a real game changer. For that reason, we are testing the Intel Core i5-2500K against a whole slew of AMD CPUs. In the past, Core i5 Lynnfield processors have competed pretty well performance-wise with Athlon-II X4 CPUs, which cost a whole lot less. At about $200, the new i5-2500K fits in the same price range as the soon to be released Phenom-II X4-975BE, AMD's newest flagship quad-core processor. Can the i5-2500K outperform the Phenom-II X4-975BE? And how does it match up against older X58 hardware, like the extremely popular i7-920? These questions will be answered as Benchmark Reviews brings you all the details on the Core i5-2500K.

Manufacturer: Intel Corporation
Product Name: Intel Core i5-2500K
Model Number: BX80623I52500K
Price as Tested: $224.99 (NewEgg)

Full Disclosure: The product sample used in this article has been provided by Intel Corporation.



# GamerKyle 2011-01-06 20:39
I agree with the that every new line of processors comes with new motherboards. To me this is quite silly and I wish that they would not do as such. It is also a fault when Intel is placing quite the restriction on overclocking even with the K models.

Either way I am most likely going to get the i5 2500k since it is very strong. Also the price is rather cheap at $211 when currently the i5 750 is $200 and the i5 760 is about $209 dollars. Since I did not upgrade following the first i series I would need to get a new motherboard anyway.Integrated graphics means little to me since as a gamer I would get a higher end GPU regardless. I just have to make sure the motherboard is p67 not H67 for overclocking and such.

Anyway nice read, thanks for the article.
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# MrJMG 2011-02-23 14:57
If the p67 motherboards do not use the GPU on these new chips does that mean the GPU potential goes to waste I.e. If it were to make use of it, then in a standard system would you have, in effect, two graphics cards (with the intel HD GPU plus whatever other dedicated graphics card you use working together)?
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# RE: MrOlin Coles 2011-02-23 15:12
Only H67-Express motherboards can utilize Sandy Bridge integrated graphics, because only those motherboards have the DVI/D-SUB/HDMI output ports built-in. NVIDIA is already working with Intel on this very solution. Using Optimus technology, paired with Lucid Logic 'GPU Virtualization' software (yet unannounced), the Sandy Bridge CPU will be able to enable QuickSync + GPU.
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# mrzikkun 2012-03-24 11:35
nahh. actually h61 also have dvi, hdmi ports, dont know about d-sub(need it?). so actually use h61 and run this cpu is could be cheap, than buy a h67 or whatever that expensive twice
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