Overclocked Wolfdale vs i5 2500k?


I currently have an Intel Core 2 Duo E8500 Wolfdale 3.16GHz, with a Corsair H50 cooler and have the CPU overclocked at 4.0ghz and 4gb of DDR2 ram.

I was looking at a new system with 8gb DDR3 and Intel Core i5 2500K 3.30GHz Overlocked to 4.60GHz Sandybridge CPU.

I realise it will be going from 2 to 4 cores but for anything that only really used 2 of the cores anyway say some games, would there be a noticeable difference in performance with this new rig?

Would it effectively be just a 600mhz boost in performance or does the new architecture of the i5 chips add more?

Just the upgrade would cost me around the £600 mark keeping the same gfx card (Asus HD6850 Direct CU 1GB)

Any information would be most appreciated before I fork out the cash.


27 answers Last reply
More about overclocked wolfdale 2500k
  1. i would go for it, and i think that you could upgrade for less than £600, also wait until the i5 ivy bridge cpu is released in a couple of weeks.
  2. The 2500K will wipe the floor with the E8500. I upgraded from an E8400 at 4.050Ghz ( 450 FSB ) and 4GB of DDR2 800 at 900Mhz to this 2600K and 8GB of DDR3 1600 and the performance increase was amazing.

    I had my SSD and GTX460 1GB ( pretty much equal to a HD6850 ) with both systems so nothing else changed when I upgraded.

    The 2500K/2600K are about 30% faster clock for clock than Core2Duo.
  3. i'm seeing £380 for a 2500K + Mobo + 16GB of ram, you'll need a cooler too. I'm on the verge myself I think.

    don't bother with fast RAM, ivy/sandy doesn't really benefit from it.
  4. Assuming the same clock speed and number of cores the raw CPU performance increase from Wolfdale to Sandy Bridge will be roughly 20% - 22%. If you are talking about games, then the performance improvement will not be that high since most games are limited by the GPU rather than the CPU, but there should be a noticeable increase in FPS.
  5. Note that Ivy Bridge CPUs will be released on April 29th. The performance increase vs. Sandy Bridge is unknown, I'm guessing it will be relatively small (around 6%), but that's just my opinion. We all need to wait for benchmarks to know the truth, until then it's just a guessing game.
  6. I was looking at this:


    Which is 2500k with cooler mobo and 8gb of ram and they do the overclock and test it to a stable level at 4.6ghz. Looking at the components from a few other places it didnt seem that much less to get the part seperate and do the OC myself so thought it might be better to pay the bit extra and get it ready done save me a headache.
  7. 13th monkey where you getting £380 for the bits?
  8. Wolfdale at 4 GHz - quite impressive. My E8400 wouldnt go above 3.2. But in answer to your question, I believe that it would bottleneck the majority of modern games when paired with a decent gpu. It has substantially less fpu and simd power than sandybridge, as well as less bandwidth. Plus 2 cores will be limiting even in games not programmed to use more than 2 threads, because of background windows tasks.
  9. bwrlane said:
    Wolfdale at 4 GHz - quite impressive. My E8400 wouldnt go above 3.2. But in answer to your question, I believe that it would bottleneck the majority of modern games when paired with a decent gpu. It has substantially less fpu and simd power than sandybridge, as well as less bandwidth. Plus 2 cores will be limiting even in games not programmed to use more than 2 threads, because of background windows tasks.

    You did not do something right. Every E8400 made would do 3.6Ghz with no voltage increase. 4.0-4.2 was/is common. Even with stock cooling 3.6Ghz was easy. My E8400 at 4.050Ghz idled in the upper 20s C and maxed in the mid 60s C with a ZeroTherm Nirvana NV 120. I could have pushed it higher.
  10. Wildman, scan.co.uk no offers, it was a cheape end mobo, haven't got time to build the list again this morning, but will do it tonight if you want. £79 for 16GB of 99924 DDR3 is probably the key, its a lot easier to spend a lot more on that.
  11. Right the cheaper motherboard might be the difference that offer on overclockers had a decent mobo and then I picked the PRO version as well as I want one that def supports CrossFire as I will be adding a 2nd 6850 into it at a later date.
  12. Right just looked on Scan. Can get the following for £479.78 inc VAT:

    CPU - Intel Core i5 2500K Unlocked, S1155, Sandy Bridge, Quad, 3.3GHz
    Mobo - Asus P8Z68-V PRO GEN3, (same as the overclockers one)
    Case - Coolermaster HAF 912 Plus, Black, Mid Tower Case w/o PSU
    Ram - 8GB (2x4GB) Kingston DDR3 HyperX Genesis Grey, PC3-12800 (1600)
    Cooler - Corsair Cooling Hydro Series H60 High-performance CPU Cooler.

    Same thing on Overclockers with the OC already done and tested at approx 4.6ghz
    is £551.95 inc VAT (could prob get a bit off this as I think they would replace the Corsair Air cooler with H60 so that might reduce the cost slightly, also I have the H50 so might actually just tell them to remove the cooler and reduce the price and just reassemble the mounting bracket for my H50.

    The idea of not having to do the OC myself and it being stable and tested is learning me towards the Overclockers deal but then it is 80 quid more.

    Im currently leaning towards the Overclockers bundle but without the H60 and just put my old H50 on it that would cost £498.96 inc VAT and then maybe splash out a bit more for a 2nd hd6850..
  13. I think scan also do preoverclocked bundles.

    My understanding is that SB and IVB are easy to overclock to 4.2-4.6 no voltage, just increase the multiplier. Of course they are able to ensure that a chip that won't OC is not selected but I've not heard of any.

    Also I was talking without case and cooler. Ask yourself is water actually needed? its not always cooler and not always quieter.
  14. I had to get the H50 to for the wolfdale overclock and that worked really nicely kept the temps below 40 with the 4.0ghz clock.

    The bundle from overclockers comes with a corsair A50 i think which is air cooling but read its stupidly noisy and just runs at 100% speed doesnt slow down when the cpu is not under load etc.
  15. the slowing down underload is a mobo function providing it has a 4pin PWM fan connection, which nearly everything does from a cpu cooler point of view.

    Providing you are getting water cooling with an understanding that more expensive does not equal better then thats cool.
  16. As I say I knew the H50 did the job on my old dual core wolfdale when I clocked it to 4.0 but then im not sure how it compares to the A50 that that bundle ships with for keeping a i5 cool at 4.6?

    Anyone know if the H50 or H60 would be good enough to keep the sandybridge i5 cool at 4.6ghz? or would I need to look at a better cooler?
  17. its got the same TDP so it should be ok.

    Someone is bound to have used one.
  18. The H50 is sufficient for cooling a 2500K. It is not however a good cooler for the money. The $30 Coolermaster Hyper 212 + is actually a better performing cooler. The H50 is really only recommended when space is an issue. If you already have one then I would say use it but I would not have bought one myself due to the high price and middling performance.

    Don't forget the chip you have now is a dual core and the 2500K is a quad. The 2500K/2600K tend to run pretty cool though.
  19. Ok the next decision is this:

    I decided I was going to pay the extra for the preoverclocked bundle but then spotted another bundle with the same CPU and RAM the difference being its clocked to 4.4 not 4.6 and its got a different motherboard but its about 70 quid cheaper.


    Basically the 1st and 2nd items listed there. I was going to go for the Krypton Z68 600i Intel Core i5 2500K 3.30GHz @ 4.60GHz.

    The motherboards:

    Cheaper bundle has: http://www.overclockers.co.uk/showproduct.php?prodid=MB-342-GI

    2nd bundle has I would have picked this mobo:

    Can anyone tell me the major difference between them?

    The first one seems to have usb 3, sata support, crossfire support etc for mostly gaming based rig is there anything really the more expensive on offers me over the other? If not I was thinking I could get the cheaper one plus another hd6850 for about 100 quid?

    Thanks for all the feedback up to now btw. :)
  20. The first two bundles in your link to the 4.4Ghz and 4.6Ghz preoverclocked systems have i7 2700K CPUs not i5 2500Ks.
  21. http://www.overclockers.co.uk/productlist.php?groupid=43&catid=2053&subid=2063&sortby=nameAsc is that better? It was sorted by name on my screen...

    The Cheaper one is the Krypton Z68 590i Intel Core i5 2500K 3.30GHz @ 4.40GHz Overclocked Bundle.

    The other is the Krypton Z68 600i Intel Core i5 2500K 3.30GHz @ 4.60GHz.
  22. I'd prefer the asus mobo if i were building it, they've some nice features that make it easier, but for £80, i'd go for the cheaper one and sacrifice the extra 0.2Ghz, if you are willing to pay the extra £80, then buy an SSD instead.

    Wait for kepler (friday) on the gpu?, no idea what's going to happen but it will be interesting, well probably it will be.
  23. The only difference I see is the cheaper one has a Gigabyte board. The more expensive one is not worth that much money in my opinion. I have had no problems with any Gigabyte boards I have owned and I have used them in my personal systems since the Pentium 4 days.

    ^ +1 on waiting a few days on the GPU to see how Kepler does.
  24. Thanks for all the feedback think im going to go for the cheaper one with 8gb of ram and the slighltly more expensive gigabyte board (adds 8 quid).

    Then take 13th Monkeys advice and get:


    Will leave the 2nd GPU as you have both said Kepler could knock the bottom out of the market a bit and things could drop, also think the ssd and the new CPU/RAM will be a big enough boost in performance for now, can pick the 2nd gpu up next month when I see how the prices go.
  25. Ok slight update im going to go the whole hog and get the 120gb ocz agility as I can see myself using up the space quickly once I have windows drivers on then a game or two, the 60gb would be full.

    One final question? on the OC bundle page it says:

    If you add additional RAM it will need new bios settings and slow the OC down do you think this means the 8GB upgrade will slow the OC down? or is it if you add in more memory and end up with 4 memory sticks rather than 2? and the 8gb will be 2 x 4gb and be ok?
  26. Its ok problem solved, emailed overclockers it was if I added more RAM over the selected 8GB.

    Ok system has now been ordered the i5 overclocked to 4.4ghz with 8gb RAM and gigabyte motherboard with the 120gb SSD.

    Could have waited for Ivy to see if prices changed but its done now :)

    Will see what tomorrow brings with the Kepler thing before I crossfire any GPUs etc.

    Thanks for all the feedback on here.
  27. Ivy only gains about at most a 10% boost clock for clock over Sandy Bridge making the 2500K still a good choice. Good job on the 120GB SSD. You will thank yourself on that one. 60GB is just too small in my opinion. All in all you got a very nice build.
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