i3-3220 HD Graphics 2500 3.3GHz, Ivy Bridge 55W and
i3-2125 HD Graphics 3000 3.3GHz, Sandy Bridge 65W
Both fit absolute max budget for an Office build's CPU, as they're (for now) priced about the same (within $3) locally.
Photoshop, Office apps, some video. Little or no 3D rendering/gaming at all.
Will be using the Intel HD Graphics.
Guess my question is whether benefits (if any) from going Ivy for a Core i3 outweigh any graphics hit going from HD 3000 -> HD 2500 - assuming numbering = performance across i3 microarchitecture-types. The few reviews I've found seem to be looking mostly at Core i5s and i7s and HD Graphics 4000 vs either 2500 or 3000. And others just gloss over 6 vs.12 execution units and miscellaneous other differences.
Thanks for any comments. (Already have an Intel B75 board and a good 400W PSU if it makes a difference.)
Either one should be fine. Other than the HD 3000 being faster the other minor differences are:
1. The HD 2500 supports DX11 while the older HD 3000 only supports DX10. Since you do not plan on playing games anyway, then this is not really important especially since both are pretty weak. However, I have played Mass Effect 3 from start to finish with the HD 3000 in my laptop just for the hell of it without any issues, but the resolution is only 1366x768.
2. There have been a few complaints about video stutter when playing movies with 24 frames per second on the HD 2000 / HD 3000. Most people do not notice the stutter, so it's only a small percentage of users. The newer HD 2500 and HD 4000 seems to have resolved this issue.
Thanks to everyone for the comments. I suppose that most of the reviews don't bother to compare graphics between a Sandy and Ivy i3, since Intel enthusiasts probably would start with an i5/i7 and/or a discrete graphics card.
More concerned with simple HD video playback, and Photoshop (which I think primarily relies on CPU not GPU). From browsing it was unclear to me whether Intel graphics driver updates (post version 2372) minimized the mentioned sometimes 24 fps problem on the gen 2 processors, or whether the gen 3s have only partially addressed it. (Presume this is a non-issue with 3:2 pull-down.)