With Ivy Bridge set to launch in just a few months' time (April), we are now learning a little more about the specifications for the upcoming Core i3 processors.
In December, we got our first information on Ivy Bridge's specifications for its Core i7 and Core i5 processors. In a recently leaked slide coming out of website Zol.com.cn, we get an early picture of Ivy Bridge's Core i3 specifications.
Taking a look at Intel's standard Core i3 series, we start with the Core i3 3240. It has a base clock speed of 3.4 GHz with 2 cores (4 threads) with no turbo boost and a TDP of 55W. Intel has kept the cache at the same level as with Sandy Bridge, but the memory support has been bumped to 1333 and 1600MHz. The Core i3 3240 uses Intel's HD Graphics 2500, not the newer HD 4000 seen with some of other models.
Next in line is the Core i3 3225, which has a base clock speed of 3.3 GHz with 2 cores (4 threads) with no turbo boost and a TDP of 55W. As is the trend on Sandy Bridge, CPU model numbers with a 5 at the end utilize the higher-end integrated graphics. The Core i3 3225 follows the same trend with the use of Intel's HD Graphics 4000. The Core i3 3220 has the same specifications as the i3 3225 but uses Intel's HD Graphics 2500.
Next, we take a look at Intel's Core i3 T (ultra low power with 35-45W TDP) models. The Core i3 3240T has a base clock speed of 3.0 GHz with 2 cores (4 threads) with no turbo boost and a TDP of 35W. It utilizes Intel's HD Graphics 2500. The Core i-3 3220T has the same specifications as the i3 3240T but has a base clock speed of 2.80 GHz. The Core i3 T models have the cache at the same level as with Sandy Bridge, but the memory support has been bumped to 1333 and 1600MHz like with the standard Core i3 models.
All the leaked slides suggest the new Core i3 series doesn't offer PCIe Gen 3.0 support. We are not sure if the information is incomplete or if Intel has a reason behind not providing PCIe Gen 3.0 support for its new Core i3 series. Personally, I think this would a bad move (if true) by Intel for the end-user. This would mean end-users who want to build a system based on a dual-core setup with a higher-end motherboard would not have PCIe Gen 3.0 support. They would need to purchase either a Core i7 or Core i5 processor to gain PCIe Gen 3 support for their systems. Please keep in mind, of course, that these specifications are from a leaked source. We won't know for sure until Intel shares official information, so be sure to stay tuned.