So, I have read everything I can about Sandy Bridge v. Ivy Bridge CPU for SolidWorks simulation, and it seems like just because Ivy Bridge is newer, people seem to be jumping on the bandwagon. However, is it actually better for SW? I work with 8000+ assemblies and want a CPU that can handle the load, but don't want to waste it. Lets see I can get some good answers without starting any fights! Thanks.
If you are comparing a Sandy Bridges I7 to an Ivy Bridges I7 than no there really isn't going to be that much of a performance difference. The main difference between SB and IB is IB has a die shrink from 32 nm's to 22 nm's and IB has slightly better on board graphics.
Took this line from Solidworks website: "the solving process used for parametric modeling is by nature linear and can only be run on a single thread"
Considering this line I shall recommend an intel over the AMD, I know that you didn't mention AMD cpus, but just to make sure you will get the best cpu to suit you.
Regarding SB vs IB. Sincerely? Any of them shall be enough.
Just a hint: If you use virtual machines in this pc, don't go with the k versions.
K versions allows better OC, but lacks many VM related functions.
About memory for your machine: 16GB ram at least (considering the 8000+ assemblies)
Also took from Solidworks website, their recommended config:
Windows 7 Professional x64
Intel Core i7
8 GB RAM (or more)
Min. 200 GB hard drive, 7200 RPM (dual HDDs in RAID 0 array for ultimate performance)
nVidia Quadro 2000 graphics card (these are considered mid-range)
nVidia Quadro 4000, 5000 or 6000 Graphics Card (for ultimate graphics performance)
High speed internet connection for downloading updates and Customer Portal access
He's talking about simulations and besides modeling is not cpu intensive. Modeling just needs a good gpu and enough ram. SW sims and rendering will use all the cpu power it can get so the cpu with the most performance is the best choice. Clock for clock IB is better even though it is only a small amount. I've never seen a sim benchmark but here's a rendering benchmark which shows only a 2.6% increase. BTW that is not the solidworks' site, although the info is correct. http://www.solidworks.com/