Core i5 or Xenon for Solidworks

It's been a long time since I bought a PC. I'm looking at a Lenovo E20 to run Solidworks.

The following processors are the same price, which would give better performance?
Intel Core i5-660 Processor (3.33GHz 1333MHz 4MB)
Intel Xeon X3430 Processor (2.40GHz 1333MHz 4MB L2)
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  1. Best answer
    Core i5 is your better option. You are not going to need an Xeon X3000 processor because the only difference between that and the desktop CPUs is that it has support for registered and ECC memory. Using Registered/buffered ECC memory in a desktop is pretty pointless. Only in a server which answers multiple requests and is mission critical would these features be used.

    So just get a "Desktop CPU" (Athlon II, Phenom II, Core i3, i5, i7). Manufacturers will try to sell a Xeon to use as a workstation CPU while there is really no difference, at least one that matters for your application.
  2. SolidWorks is multi-core aware and multi-threaded so for certain processes you may even benefit from getting the quad core i5-750 (or even a i7 which has hyperthreading).

    Regardless of how many cores you have, certain processes and operations in SolidWorks are linear by nature - i.e. one at a time in sequence - as a result will only ever use a single core.

    With that in mind, go for the faster CPU, which is still the i5.
  3. if you can, get a dual socket xeon 5520 system, 8 cores physical, 16 physical, and possible upgrade to 6 or 8 core versions down the road, complete with large amounts of ram slots

    EDIT: above is only for professional / livelyhood systems, not for hobbyist or just on the side things.
  4. Best answer selected by stevieB_99.
  5. Thanks everyone.
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