You’ll now see a 5.2 raid item of LFR quality at item level 502, the same item in Normal quality at item level 522, the item in Normal Thunderforged quality at item level 528, the Heroic version of the item at level 535, and the Heroic Thunderforged version of the item at level 541.
To put this into perspective, this puts tier 14 MSV (heroic), which has current item levels of 502, at the same ilvl as LFR ToT. All normal mode HoF and ToES gear that isn't infused with 1500 valor points (of which it is impossible even to have most of your gear upgraded to 2/2) inferior to the drops from LFR ToT.
When looking at normal mode the disparity is even wider. With normal mode ToT dropping 522 ilvl gear, which is a full 20 ilvls (a tier and a half) higher than the 'new' LFR, which we've already established is better than tier 14 normal mode gear, this puts it on par with tier 14's highest item level drops, the elite heroic 2/2 pieces from protectors, which is ilvl 524, and is only available on certain pieces, and is vastly superior to normal heroic pieces (ilvl 509) and significantly better than 2/2 heroic pieces (ilvl 517).
I'll discount the level of heroic tier 15 pieces, as it follows a more standard upgrade path (13 ilvls); however, why do we now have such a huge gap in item levels between tiers? I was under the impression that LFR, normal, and heroic were all separate progression paths, yet in this system, heroic tier 14 raiders will have viable side/upgrades, from LFR tier 15. Has the implementation of upgrading items with valor bloated item levels so drastically? Will thunderforged (and eventually thunderforged 2/2 items) perpetuate this item level bloat? And most importantly, how does the community feel about this?