Intel Core i5 2300 2400 & 2500K Sandy Bridge Review

👤by David Mitchelson Comments 📅03-01-11

You may have noticed that the Sandy Bridge reviews have gone up earlier than expected across the web. Intel moved the NDA to 3 days earlier and a lot of sites including ourselves have had to quickly pull things together in order to get reviews online. I would like to thank Alex Hull our news editor and reviewer for assisting with the publishing of this review.

So where do we begin? Our new Intel 6 Series Sandy Bridge chips have presented us with some astounding results across the board. We have great performance, matched with excellent efficiency. In particular the 2500K, which is considered a mainstream processor tackled the Intel Core i7 920 with ease. Being overclocked further enhances that performance far beyond what an LGA1366 chip is capable of producing both in and out of the gaming environment.

Being considered as a mainstream processor, we tested on a mainstream P67 board provided by ASUS. Many of the BIOS on P67 boards at the current time are premature and do need fine tuning, I am sure as soon as this has been resolved higher overclocks will be possible. But for now 4.3GHz remains our highest overclock on the 2500K. Overclocking has been simplified, all that is needed is a modification to the multiplier and perhaps CPU voltage and we are there in overclocking paradise. 4.3GHz gives very pleasing results.

Whilst the lower end chips - 2300 and 2400 aren't capable of overclocking by way of altering the multiplier we can still channel in to excellent performance with stock CPU clock speeds. The benchmarks we ran clearly show that even the 2300 is capable of giving excellent results without even being overclocked. If you are going to head in the non-K direction, then its worth considering the H67 chipset of motherboards as this range will focus mainly on entry-level performance.

Those looking to upgrade in Q1 should look no further if they are on a budget as Sandy Bridge within the i5 realm certainly offers outstanding performance. The 2500K is there for the taking, and will appeal to enthusiasts on a budget. Combine it with a mainstream motherboard and you are the envy of your LGA1366 friends at around £250.

Plenty of headroom for overclocking, performance and efficiency right out of the box - the new Sandy Bridge Core i5 range is a no-brainer for enthusiasts on a budget.

+ Excellent performance out of the box
+ Overclocking is easy and effective
+ Affordable
+ Low power consumption
+ Strong IGP

- None apparent

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