After the fourth-generation Intel Core processors (codenamed Haswell) come to market, third generation Intel Core CPUs (codenamed Ivy Bridge) is not going away. Instead, Ivy Bridge becomes the processor for the cost-conscious customers. But is Haswell really that much of an improvement over Ivy Bridge?
Ivy Bridge was a die shrink of Sandy Bridge (a.k.a., the second-gen Intel Core CPUs), moving down from a 32nm process to a 22nm process. Haswell continues to use a 22nm process, but it's using a new microarchitecture that's more power efficient.
Ivy Bridge and Sandy Bridge share the same LGA 1155 socket, so people can upgrade their old Sandy Bridge PC to new Ivy Bridge PC directly with a BIOS firmware flash.
But Haswell use the LGA 1150 socket, which is electrically incompatible with the previous models, so if you want Haswell computer you need totally new motherboard for it too.
New Haswell processors have upgraded Intel HD Graphics and new Iris/Iris Pro graphics, so 3D performance will improve over that of the Ivy Bridge CPUs. I think this is not much different if you don't use 4k out put, Haswell processors support 4k resolution but Ivy Bridge support only Blu ray resolution 1080P.
Power consumption Haswell wins, Hashwell processors all with lower TDP than Ivy Bridge, and the memory comes with them also low power, so Hashwell laptops battery can work longer time, much better in energy saving.
Ivy Bridge HTPC i3-3217u CPU 4G RAM 32G SSD 300M WiFi with 2 antennas US$ 233
Haswell HTPC i5-4200u CPU 4G RAM 32G SSD 300M WiFi with 2 antennas US$ 318