By the time 5.4 hits, many heroic raiders will be 548-549 with most/all heroic thunderforged and a 608 cloak (speaking from a 25man guild perspective). I'm sitting at 540 myself, and basically just waiting for thunderforged heroic gear to drop. I was expecting similar ilvl jumps this tier, something along the lines of ~560 normal, ~575 heroic, with 5.5 bringing upgrades back again. This seemed roughly in-line with what we've seen this expansion.
However, 521/541/554 is just not a big enough gap. Anyone who has been clearing heroics, and upgraded their gear, will get absolutely nothing from normals. Anyone who's been clearing normals will get absolutely nothing from LFR. This is totally different from all previous patches. If everyone stays at roughly the same progression, people are looking at a mere 5-7 ilvl upgrade compared to around 26 ilevels... 509 > 535.
Is such a small gear increase going to keep people playing? What's everyone's thoughts? Hopefully these numbers are not final.
5.0 Normal: 489-496
5.0 Heroic: 502-509
5.2 Normal: 522-528
5.2 Heroic: 535-541
5.4 Normal: 541
5.4 Heroic: 554