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i7-6950X vs i7-8700K — Red Dead Redemption 2 with GTX 1660 Benchmarks 1080p, 1440p, Ultrawide, 4K Comparison

GTX 1660 with

Intel Core i7-6950X @ 3.00GHz

Red Dead Redemption 2

GTX 1660 with

Intel Core i7-8700K @ 3.70GHz


i7-6950X
i7-8700K

Multi-Thread Performance

19974 Pts

15970 Pts

Single-Thread Performance

2151 Pts

2703 Pts

Red Dead Redemption 2

i7-6950X vs i7-8700K in Red Dead Redemption 2 using GTX 1660 — CPU Performance comparison at Ultra, High, Medium, and Low Quality Settings with 1080p, 1440p, Ultrawide, 4K resolutions

i7-6950X
i7-8700K


Ultra Quality
Resolution Frames Per Second
1080p

38.5 FPS

1080p

42.4 FPS

1440p

31.4 FPS

1440p

34. 6 FPS

2160p

20.0 FPS

2160p

22.0 FPS

w1440p

27.5 FPS

w1440p

30.3 FPS

High Quality
Resolution Frames Per Second
1080p

69.8 FPS

1080p

75.9 FPS

1440p

58.6 FPS

1440p

63.7 FPS

2160p

39.6 FPS

2160p

43.0 FPS

w1440p

52.2 FPS

w1440p

56.8 FPS

Medium Quality
Resolution Frames Per Second
1080p

101.2 FPS

1080p

109.4 FPS

1440p

85. 7 FPS

1440p

92.8 FPS

2160p

59.1 FPS

2160p

64.0 FPS

w1440p

76.9 FPS

w1440p

83.3 FPS

Low Quality
Resolution Frames Per Second
1080p

163.9 FPS

1080p

176.4 FPS

1440p

140.1 FPS

1440p

151.0 FPS

2160p

98.2 FPS

2160p

106.0 FPS

w1440p

126.3 FPS

w1440p

136.2 FPS

i7-6950X
  • The i7-6950X has higher Level 3 Cache. This is useful when you have substantial multiprocessing workloads, many computationally intense simultaneous processes. More likely on a server, less on a personally used computer for interactive desktop workloads.
  • The i7-6950X has more cores. The benefit of having more cores is that the system can handle more threads. Each core can handle a separate stream of data. This architecture greatly increases the performance of a system that is running concurrent applications.
  • The i7-6950X has more threads. Larger programs are divided into threads (small sections) so that the processor can execute them simultaneously to get faster execution.
i7-8700K
  • For some games, a cpu with a higher clock speed, or in a technical name IPC (Instructions per clock), has better results than other CPU’s with higher core count and lower core speed.
  • The i7-8700K is more power efficient and generates less heat.
  • The i7-8700K has a higher turbo clock boost. Turbo Boost is a CPU feature that will run CPU clock speed faster than its base clock, if certain conditions are present. It will enable older software that runs on fewer cores, to perform better on newer hardware. Since games are software too, it is also applicable to them.

Compare i7-6950X vs i7-8700K specifications

i7-6950X vs i7-8700K Architecture
i7-6950X i7-8700K
Codename Broadwell-E Coffee Lake
Generation Core i7
(Broadwell-E)
Core i7
(Coffee Lake)
Market Desktop Desktop
Memory Support DDR4 DDR4
Part# SR2PA SR3QR
Production Status Active Active
Released May 2016 Oct 2017
i7-6950X vs i7-8700K Cache
i7-6950X i7-8700K
Cache L1 32K (per core) 64K (per core)
Cache L2 256K (per core) 256K (per core)
Cache L3 25MB (shared) 12MB (shared)
i7-6950X vs i7-8700K Cores
i7-6950X i7-8700K
# of Cores 10 6
# of Threads 20 12
Integrated Graphics N/A UHD Graphics 630
SMP # CPUs 1 1
i7-6950X vs i7-8700K Features
i7-6950X i7-8700K
MMX
SSE
SSE2
SSE3
SSSE3
SSE4. 2
AVX
AVX2
EIST
Intel 64
XD bit
VT-x
VT-d
HTT
AES-NI
TXT
CLMUL
FMA3
F16C
BMI1
BMI2
Boost 2.0
MMX
SSE
SSE2
SSE3
SSSE3
SSE4.2
AVX
AVX2
EIST
Intel 64
XD bit
VT-x
VT-d
HTT
AES-NI
TSX
TXT
CLMUL
FMA3
F16C
BMI1
BMI2
Boost 2.0
i7-6950X vs i7-8700K Performance
i7-6950X i7-8700K
Base Clock 100 MHz 100 MHz
Frequency 3 GHz 3.7 GHz
Multiplier 30.0x 37.0x
Multiplier Unlocked No Yes
TDP 140 W 95 W
Turbo Clock up to 3.5 GHz up to 4.7 GHz
Voltage unknown variable
i7-6950X vs i7-8700K Physical
i7-6950X i7-8700K
Die Size unknown unknown
Foundry Intel Intel
Package FC-LGA1151
Process Size 14 nm 14 nm
Socket Intel Socket 2011-3 Intel Socket 1151
Transistors 3800 million unknown
tCaseMax 72°C 72°C

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Intel Core i7-6950X Review | PC Gamer

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For enthusiasts who wants the best, or content creators who need more cores.

Our Verdict

The price is a bitter pill to swallow, but for the right type of user, the performance and features are dream worthy.

For
  • Ten cores, ’nuff said
  • Very overclockable
Against
  • Costs as much as a complete high-end PC
  • What happened to the $1,000 Extreme Edition?

Let’s get this out of the way: Most of us can’t even begin to justify purchasing a Core i7-6950X. The official MSRP is $1,723 / £1,500 in lots of 1,000, for the boxed chip, but even Amazon’s reduced price of $1,650 (or their increased price of £1,694 for our UK readers) puts the cost of entry at more than a complete high-end gaming rig. You don’t go looking at Intel’s ‘Extreme’ line with an intent to purchase unless you have very specific needs—or a sizeable paycheck that might benefit from improved CPU performance.

But if money is no object and you simply have to have the best, the 6950X is currently as good as it gets. It’s also the first time Intel has veered away from the $1,000 price point for one of their Extreme Edition launches, which go all the way back to 2003’s Pentium 4 Extreme Edition. You could try and argue that the additional CPU cores and L3 cache justify the price, but I think it’s pretty clear that lack of competition from AMD—not to mention an unwillingness to cannibalize sales of more expensive Xeon parts, which cost more money for slightly lower clocks in most cases (e.g., the Xeon E5-4627 v4). Here’s hoping AMD’s Zen processor line can provide some much-needed competition in 2017.

Looking at the spec sheet breakdown, the i7-6950X has the same base and boost clocks as the outgoing i7-5960X, with two more CPU cores and an extra 5MB of L3 cache. Memory support on Broadwell-E also gets an official increase to DDR4-2400, but don’t let that fool you: I’ve been running DDR4-2667 memory with an i7-5930K for more than a year without any trouble, and others have pushed speeds well beyond 3000MHz (and the record for LGA2011-3 is at least 4800MHz, using a Haswell-E chip). Broadwell-E does have better memory support, with additional multipliers available to fine-tune performance, but the improved memory speed is likely the least interesting aspect of the new chips.

The main selling point of the 6950X is the two extra CPU cores, pure and simple, which potentially means 25 percent better performance than the previous generation 6950X, but that’s only at stock clocks. Intel has also added some new features with Broadwell-E, including architecture changes, so in some cases the new chip might be more than 30 percent faster.

There’s also Turbo Boost Max 3.0, which in theory allows the motherboard and CPU to boost the frequency of the ‘best’ core on a particular CPU above the normal max Turbo threshold. So for example, working alongside an Intel driver, one of the cores might be able to hit 4.0GHz in single-threaded workloads. In practice, complications with BIOS support and other factors make this less exciting, though if you’re interested in tuning for every last ounce of performance, you might be able to get an extra 200-300MHz out of certain cores when overclocking (more on this below).

I’ve covered the Broadwell-E landscape several times now, including the initial Broadwell-E monolithic review, as well as individual reviews of each of the other three parts (the i7-6800K, i7-6850K, and i7-6900K). Today I’m wrapping things up with the top-end i7-6950X, and while the performance charts haven’t changed (you can refer back to the main review for additional charts rather than the aggregates shown below), I’ll be looking specifically at why this is arguably the most interesting of the new LGA2011-3 processors. Yes, even with its stratospheric pricing, this is really Intel’s most marketable Broadwell-E part.

i7-6950X Stock Performance

Who buys a $1,700 enthusiast processor to run at stock clocks? That’s an interesting question, and the MSI X99A Carbon Pro Gaming motherboard used for testing by default pushes clocks closer to the maximum Turbo Boost speed—3.5GHz in this case. It did that on all the other X99 CPUs we tested as well, and other motherboards do the same by default (i. e., using ‘Auto’ settings), so we left things alone. Practically speaking, even these ‘stock’ numbers are partially overclocked, but this is the way people who don’t overclock will likely run them.

As I’ve noted in the other Broadwell-E articles, gaming with a single graphics card isn’t really the main selling point of the X99 platform. In fact, with a GTX 1080 Founders Edition, performance is slightly slower overall compared to a significantly less expensive i7-6700K build. Hitman is the only game tested (in DX12 mode, which likely helps) where the i7-6950X anything resembling a meaningful lead over the i5-6600K. You can easily build a complete gaming rig—including a GTX 1080 and i7-6700K—for less than the price of the i7-6950X. And yes, you would get better performance in each of the eight games I tested:

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But there are other reasons to consider going for the X99 platform, like the extra PCIe lanes. I’m still in the process of testing, but early indications are that anyone with a GTX 1080 SLI setup will benefit from moving to a processor with 40 PCIe lanes. Motherboard choice can mitigate that someone, if you purchase a Z170 that includes a PLX chips for example, but then you’re putting more money into a motherboard instead of the CPU. Besides, the people willing to shell out for a pair of GTX 1080 cards are the same folks who are likely to put the extra CPU cores of Broadwell-E to use.

For other workloads like video editing, 3D modeling, and content creation, many tasks will scale almost directly with core counts and clock speeds. Here, the i7-6950X ends up beating the i7-5960X by 22 percent overall, and dropping the single-threaded workload from the results increases the margin of victory to 24 percent—almost exactly scaling with core count. Put another way, a software developer might end up building a complex project multiple times a day, which could amount to several hours of waiting over the course of a week. If a faster CPU gives the developer more time to actually write code, it could easily pay for itself over time.

The system power requirements while gaming aren’t even that bad—the unused cores are able to go into a lower power state and allow the 6950X to use slightly less power than several other high-end parts. Putting a full load on the CPU cores on the other hand can suck down a lot of juice—nearly 60W more than an i7-6700K.

i7-6950X Overclocked Performance

Overclocking a 10-core processor ends up being a rather difficult task, and understandably so. The i7-6950X has a 140W TDP, just like the other LGA2011-3 enthusiast parts, but it hits that TDP by managing clock speeds. The maximum official clock of the 6950X is 3.5GHz, though Turbo Boost Max could potentially take a single core higher. Compare that to the i7-6700K’s 4.2GHz peak clock, or the i7-6850K’s 3.8GHz peak clock, and Intel is obviously lowering clocks on the 10-core part to keep power use in check.

I’ve previously hit 4.5-4.6GHz on the i7-5960X and i7-5930K, using a good liquid cooling solution (Corsair’s h200i v2). I was able to boot Windows at 4.5GHz with the 6950X, however, many of the CPU workloads proved to be too much—either for the cooling solution, the processor cores, or both. Even after dropping to 4. 3GHz, there are a few workloads (like y-cruncher, which uses a lot of AVX code) that push the CPU temperature into the 90C range, so caution is advisable here.

Ideally, you’d load up the CPU cores and check which ones are running hotter than the others, then limit those cores to a lower maximum clock—and perhaps even increase the clocks on the cooler running cores. Combined with Intel’s Turbo Max utility, the most demanding applications could end up seeing even slightly better performance than what I’ve managed. But I settled for a static 4.3GHz maximum clock on all ten cores using 1.375V for these results.

Gaming performance actually sees a slightly better than average improvement from overclocking, since the CPU is going from 3.5GHz to 4.3GHz—a 22 percent jump in clock speed that nets a 3.5 percent increase in frame rates. More impressively, overall CPU performance is 20-22 percent higher, except for y-cruncher where CPU throttling kicked in.

It’s not too difficult to see why throttling might be a problem at the overclocked settings, as AVX instructions traditionally consume more power than non-AVX instructions (many Xeons have a lower maximum clock when running AVX code). None of the tests throttled here, with the exception of y-cruncher, which ends up being the most demanding test I run by a sizeable margin.

Given the only change is CPU clockspeed, seeing the power under load go from 197W to 336W is pretty crazy. The gap between the overclocked 6700K and the 6950X is 150W, enough for an entire second PC for some workloads. Of course, the 6950X is at times more than twice as fast as the 6700K, so perhaps that’s okay.

Dare to Dream

Intel clearly isn’t feeling much of a need to compete against their existing products, and the result is Broadwell-E. Practically speaking, I doubt many people are really considering the i7-6950X. At $1000, it would have been more palatable, and some might have considered the possibility of upgrading from i7-5960X. With only minor changes in performance per core, though, most Haswell-E owners should simply sit tight. Next year’s Skylake-X may provide incentive to upgrade, but if skipping two generations of hardware is good advice for buying graphics cards, with processors you could easily go four or five generations (or more) between upgrades, especially if you buy at the top of the product stack.

Nonetheless, the hardware enthusiast in me loves the performance you get. Watching Cinebench rip through the standard benchmark run with 20 little boxes filling in the details in less than 20 seconds is extremely impressive—I’ve seen the same test take four or five minutes on a modern Ultrabook. Anyone who routinely pushes their CPU to its limits should want one, even if most of us can’t afford the chip. But who can actually use one of these bad boys and make it worth the cost of entry?

The primary beneficiaries are the people who would be looking at buying workstations and servers with Xeon processors. But if you don’t need some of the extra features (remote management, ECC, RAS, etc.) found in such systems, and if you’d benefit more from higher clock speeds rather than pure core counts, the i7-6950X might prove an interesting alternative. It can also save on costs, though that’s not the primary consideration for most workstations.

Whether we’re talking about quad-core consumer desktops vs. 10-core enthusiast chips, or 10-core enthusiast chips vs. 20-core workstations, Amdahl’s Law is a real concern. Put simply, it says that scaling with more cores isn’t 100 percent efficient and at some point you’ll get better performance from using fewer cores at higher clocks instead of more cores at lower clocks. (It also says that at some point adding more cores won’t actually help some algorithms run faster.) I’ve seen benchmarks showing a single 20-core Xeon performing about on par with the overclocked i7-6950X at 4.3GHz, the difference being the i7-6950X will run lighter workloads (that don’t scale with lots of threads) better, not to mention it costs about half as much as the Xeon E5-2698 v4 … though you could run a pair of the Xeons in a dual-socket motherboard, which isn’t something the i7-6950X allows.

The market for the i7-6950X isn’t that large, but as someone who once worked in IT, I wonder how many people might actually benefit from using a desktop built on this chip rather than something with a Xeon. Balancing price against performance, plus taking into account the sometimes significantly higher clock speed on the 6950X, it’s actually a very attractive chip for the professional market. And that’s likely a big part of the reason Intel is pricing it at $1,700—you can have this or the Xeon E5-2690 v4, but either way Intel will get their pound of flesh.

Should you buy the Core i7-6950X? No way! It’s simply too expensive to warrant consideration. Except, if you use your PC to do seriously computationally intensive work that will leverage the extra CPU cores, and you make a significant amount of money doing so, then sure—have at it!

$1,700 spent on this CPU purely for a gaming system is silly. On the other hand, there are jobs out there (e.g. video editor, software developer, Photoshop Jedi, etc.) where salaries are in the $70K+ range. If a faster CPU can shave off just 50 or so hours of waiting and wasted time, it pays for itself. The trick is convincing your boss that you’ll actually be that much more productive, because even if you don’t really need a 10-core monster, admit it: You want one.

Read our review policy

Intel Core i7-6950X Review

The price is a bitter pill to swallow, but for the right type of user, the performance and features are dream worthy.

Jarred’s love of computers dates back to the dark ages when his dad brought home a DOS 2.3 PC and he left his C-64 behind. He eventually built his first custom PC in 1990 with a 286 12MHz, only to discover it was already woefully outdated when Wing Commander was released a few months later. He holds a BS in Computer Science from Brigham Young University and has been working as a tech journalist since 2004, writing for AnandTech, Maximum PC, and PC Gamer. From the first S3 Virge ‘3D decelerators’ to today’s GPUs, Jarred keeps up with all the latest graphics trends and is the one to ask about game performance. 

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Intel Broadwell-E Core i7-6950X vs Core i7-5960X Benchmark Results Leaked

The first benchmarks results of Intel’s flagship Core i7-6950X Broadwell-E processor have been unveiled. The performance results of Intel’s top, high-end desktop chip provide us a detailed look at how the chip performs with stock and overclocked configurations. These performance results aren’t the first to leak ahead of launch since we got to see the benchmarks of the Core i7-6850K and Core i7-6900K a few days ago too.

Intel’s Core i7-6950X is the top dog of the Broadwell-E HEDT family!

The Intel Core i7-6950X is the top gun of the Broadwell-E family which is launching at Computex 2016. Intel is going one step ahead with this SKU, offering consumers 10 cores and 20 threads. The chip was tested against the last flagship offering from Intel, the Core i7-5960X (Haswell-E) which is a 8 core, 16 thread chip.  The CPUs based on Broadwell utilize the modern 14nm process node while the Haswell CPUs utilize the 22nm process node.

The testing was performed by Silicon Lottery at overclock.net forums. Their site has already listed the Core i7-6950X sample on their main page with a price tag of $2099 US. The chip is a engineering sample but does run and can be used on any X99 motherboard.

«This is an pre-release engineering sample (ES) processor. Because Broadwell-E has not yet launched, you may come across various issues if your motherboard bios is not yet compatible.

Returns are NOT ACCEPTED for this processor, all sales are final.» via Silicon Lottery

Intel Core i7-6950X and Core i7-5960X Processor Specifications Comparison:

While the Core i7-6850K and Core i7-5820K comparison was technically justified, the Core i7-6950X to Core i7-5960X comparison is kind of not the same as both processors feature different specs and different price range. The Core i7-6950X is Intel’s latest processor with 10 cores and 20 threads. The processor will run at a base clock of 3.00 GHz and a 3.50 GHz boost clock. The processor will come in an unlocked package to allow overclocking support to enthusiasts. The processor rocks 25 MB of L3 cache (2.5 MB per core) and will be compatible with current generation X99 motherboards that feature the LGA 2011-v3 socket.

Intel Core i7-6950X vs Core i7-5960X Specifications (Image Credits: Silicon Lottery)

The Intel Core i7-5960X is based on the older Haswell architecture and features 8 cores with 16 threads. The chip is clocked at 3.00 GHz base and 3.50 GHz boost clocks which are identical to the Core i7-6950X but the difference is within the core count with Broadwell-E featuring an extra two cores. The Core i7-5960X also has total of 20 MB L3 cache but does feature the same 140W package as the Core i7-5960X. Since there isn’t any deca core processor available on the market, Intel is rumored to bump the price of their Broadwell chip up to 1500 USD which is 500 bucks more compared to the Haswell-E chip.

Intel HEDT Processor Families:

Intel HEDT Family Sapphire Rapids-X? (Sapphire Rapids Expert) Alder Lake-X? (Sapphire Rapids Mainstream) Cascade Lake-X Skylake-X Skylake-X Skylake-X Broadwell-E Haswell-E Ivy Bridge-E Sandy Bridge-E Gulftown
Process Node 10nm ESF 10nm ESF 14nm++ 14nm+ 14nm+ 14nm+ 14nm 22nm 22nm 32nm 32nm
Flagship SKU TBA TBA Core i9-10980XE Xeon W-3175X Core i9-9980XE Core i9-7980XE Core i7-6950X Core i7-5960X Core i7-4960X Core i7-3960X Core i7-980X
Max Cores/Threads 56/112? 24/48 18/36 28/56 18/36 18/36 10/20 8/16 6/12 6/12 6/12
Clock Speeds ~4. 5 GHz ~5.0 GHz 3.00 / 4.80 GHz 3.10/4.30 GHz 3.00/4.50 GHz 2.60/4.20 GHz 3.00/3.50 GHz 3.00/3.50 GHz 3.60/4.00 GHz 3.30/3.90 GHz 3.33/3,60 GHz
Max Cache 105 MB L3 45 MB L3 24.75 MB L3 38.5 MB L3 24.75 MB L3 24.75 MB L3 25 MB L3 20 MB L3 15 MB L3 15 MB L3 12 MB L3
Max PCI-Express Lanes (CPU) 112 Gen 5 65 Gen 5 44 Gen3 44 Gen3 44 Gen3 44 Gen3 40 Gen3 40 Gen3 40 Gen3 40 Gen2 32 Gen2
Chipset Compatiblity W790? W790? X299 C612E X299 X299 X99 Chipset X99 Chipset X79 Chipset X79 Chipset X58 Chipset
Socket Compatiblity LGA 4677? LGA 4677? LGA 2066 LGA 3647 LGA 2066 LGA 2066 LGA 2011-3 LGA 2011-3 LGA 2011 LGA 2011 LGA 1366
Memory Compatiblity DDR5-4800? DDR5-5200? DDR4-2933 DDR4-2666 DDR4-2800 DDR4-2666 DDR4-2400 DDR4-2133 DDR3-1866 DDR3-1600 DDR3-1066
Max TDP ~500W ~400W 165W 255W 165W 165W 140W 140W 130W 130W 130W
Launch Q4 2022? Q4 2022? Q4 2019 Q4 2018 Q4 2018 Q3 2017 Q2 2016 Q3 2014 Q3 2013 Q4 2011 Q1 2010
Launch Price TBA TBA $979 US ~$4000 US $1979 US $1999 US $1700 US $1059 US $999 US $999 US $999 US

Intel Core i7-6950X and Core i7-5960X Processor Performance Comparison:

We are aware that our readers love performance numbers and so we will be providing you with those. The chip tested against the Core i7-6950X is technically not the 5960X but its the Xeon equivalent which provides almost the same performance with a difference under 1% at most. Both processors were tested on a ASUS Rampage V Extreme motherboard which features an X99 socket. As indicated previously, Broadwell-E lineup is compatible with the existing and upcoming X99 motherboards. Cooler used was a Corsair h205 which tired its best to keep the chip cool during the tests and under overclocks.

The Core i7-6950X was tested on ASUS’s flagship X99 Rampage V Extreme motherboard.

The performance results show us a good increase in performance. A clock-to-clock comparison of 4.00 GHz on both chips yields scores of 1904 (Multi-Threading) and 151 (Single Threaded) on the Core i7-6950X while the Core i7-5960X should score 1592 (Multi-Threading) and 160 (Single Threaded) points. In XTU Benchmark, the 6950X scores 2354 marks against the 2001 marks of the 5960X. The Aida64 numbers show an across the board leverage in memory transfer rates. The tester used 16 GB of DDR4 memory clocked at 3.2 GHz.

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Intel Core i7-6950X vs Core i7-5960X Stock Benchmarks (Image Credits: Silicon Lottery)

We also have overclocked numbers for the chip where the 6950X score 2299 points in Cinebench R15 multi-threading test at 4.37 GHz and 2327 points at 4.5 GHz. The tester reports that he managed to get a stable OC around 4.3-4.4 GHz which is pretty impressive given that this is still an engineering sample. You can read the benchmark results in detail below:

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Intel Core i7-6950X vs Core i7-5960X Overclocked Benchmarks (Image Credits: Silicon Lottery)

Intel Core i7-6950X vs Core i7-5960X Cinebench:

CineBench R15 Benchmark Single Threaded Multi-Threaded
Intel Core i7-6950X (4.50 GHz) Not run 2327 Points
Intel Core i7-6950X (4. 00 GHz) 151 Points 1904 Points
Intel Core i7-5960X (4.00 GHz) 160 Points 1592 Points
Intel Core i7-6900K (3.60 GHz) Not run 1471 Points
Intel Core i7-6850K (4.20 GHz) Not run 1311 Points
Intel Core i7-5820K (4.20 GHz) Not run 1191 Points

Intel Core i7-6950X vs Core i7-5960X Aida64:

Processor Name Memory Read Memory Write Memory Copy Memory Latency
Intel Core i7-6950X 71865 MB/s 73505 MB/s 65429 MB/s 55.8 ns
Intel Core i7-5960X 70158 MB/s 53557 MB/s 73098 MB/s 55.0 ns

We also would like you to know that motherboard makers are already prepping up new X99 products for the Broadwell-E launch. We have seen three brand new motherboards from Gigabyte, EVGA has also teased their X99 FTW K motherboard but now we know that ASUS and MSI are also in the bandwagon. MSI is ready with a all new X99 Gaming Pro motherboard that comes with a revised design while ASUS will be deploying the latest X99 A II, X99 Deluxe II and X99 STRIX Gaming series.

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Following is the full list of Broadwell-E processors that will be launching at Computex in a matter of weeks:

Intel Broadwell-E Family

Processor Name Intel Core i7-6950X Intel Core i7-6900K Intel Core i7-6850K Intel Core i7-6800K
Process Node 14nm 14nm 14nm 14nm
Cores/Threads 10/20 8/16 6/12 6/12
Core Clock 3.00 GHz 3.20 GHz 3.60 GHz 3. 40 GHz
Boost Clock 3.50 GHz 3.70 GHz 3.80 GHz 3.60 GHz
L3 Cache 25 MB L3 Cache 20 MB L3 Cache 15 MB L3 Cache 15 MB L3 Cache
Unlocked Multiplier (BCLK OC) Yes, Full Range OC Yes, Full Range OC Yes, Full Range OC Yes, Full Range OC
Chipset X99 X99 X99 X99
Socket LGA 2011-3 LGA 2011-3 LGA 2011-3 LGA 2011-3
PCI-E Lanes 40 40 40 28
Memory Support DDR4-2400 MHz DDR4-2400 MHz DDR4-2400 MHz DDR4-2400 MHz
TDP 140W 140W 140W 140W
Launch Price $1723 US $1089 US $617 US $434 US

Intel’s Core i5-6600K vs i7-6700K vs i7-6900K in Games

Introduction

When it comes to high-performance CPUs, over the past few years there have been a few choices: Intel, Intel, or Intel. Indeed, we haven’t recommended an AMD CPU since early 2013, although it’s possible AMD’s new Zen microarchitecture will deliver on AMD’s promise to reset the price-performance curve. In the meantime, gamers looking to maximize performance should be considering only Intel’s high-end, overclockable offerings.

But which CPU is best? Intel’s enthusiast line starts with the Core i5-6600K quad-core at around $240, and goes all the way up to the Core i7-6950X ten-core at $1,650 or so. When deciding how to allocate a budget for a gaming PC, does it make sense to get the 6600K and pour all the rest of the budget into one or more video cards? Or would a more prudent, long-term perspective be to go for the Core i7-6700K quad-core plus four virtual cores, or perhaps eight real cores with the Core i7-6900K? We’ve actually asked similar questions in the past, for instance in our 2015 showdown between the Core i7-4790K and Core i7-5820K Haswell-based CPUs. In that comparison, we found the two CPUs to be quite evenly matched, with the six-core 5820K surprisingly not pulling ahead in most games. Well, another year has passed, and now we have Skylake-based quad-core CPUs and Broadwell-based six- and eight-core CPUs, so it’s time for another shootout!

Given that we previously found that a six-core CPU wasn’t any faster than a quad-core, we decided to pull out all the stops and go straight for the eight-core i7-6900K this time around. Given that the Broadwell-E chips currently available on Intel’s “Enthusiast” platform actually have a disadvantage in terms of instructions per clock cycle (IPC) versus their more mainstream cousins like the Core i5-6600K and Core i7-6700K, the additional cores may be particularly handy. Right now, Intel’s six-, eight-, and ten-core CPUs use the Broadwell-E design, which offers 5-8% lower IPC than Skylake, and also runs at lower default core clocks due to the heat generated by their greater number of cores. Don’t worry, we’re going to take care of that last minor issue with judicious use of overclocking!

Now, a word on our view of CPU benchmarking. Back when your humble author was a government regulator at the Department of Energy, overseeing standards for a broad array of consumer electronics, we had a term for what happens when the industry asserts a bit too much influence on the regulation-setting process: “agency capture.” We think the same thing happens when companies like Intel, Nvidia, and AMD send out engineering samples to eager journalists to perform performance-based testing. For this reason, The Tech Buyer’s Guru does not seek, nor will it accept, free samples of CPUs or video cards. Instead, we buy all this gear with the proceeds generated by the site. If you’d like to support additional testing of this nature, feel free to browse our Buyer’s Guides and use the links we provide the next time you’re ready to buy a new PC product!

Test Setup

With that explanation out of the way, we can move on to the specs for our two test platforms. First our Z170-based system, using Intel’s quad-core processors:

  1. CPU #1: Intel Core i5-6600K
  2. CPU #2: Intel Core i7-6700K
  3. Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-Z170X-Gaming 6
  4. Video Card: EVGA GeForce GTX 1080 Superclocked 8GB
  5. RAM: Geil 2x8GB Super Luce @ DDR4-3000, 15-17-15-35
  6. SSD #1: Samsung 850 Evo M. 2 500GB
  7. SSD #2: Crucial MX200 1TB
  8. Case: Phanteks Enthoo Evolv
  9. Power Supply: EVGA Supernova 850 GS
  10. CPU Cooler: Noctua NH-U14S
  11. Operating System: Windows 10

And second, our X99-based system, using Intel’s best eight-core processor:

  1. CPU: Intel Core i7-6900K
  2. Motherboard: Asus X99-Pro/USB3.1
  3. Video Card: EVGA GeForce GTX 1080 Superclocked 8GB
  4. RAM: G.Skill 4x8GB Ripjaws4 @ DDR4-3200, 16-16-16-36
  5. SSD #1: Samsung 950 Pro M.2 512GB
  6. SSD #2: Samsung 850 Evo 1TB
  7. Case: SilverStone Primera PM01
  8. Power Supply: EVGA Supernova 1000 PS
  9. CPU Cooler: Corsair Hydro h200i v2
  10. Operating System: Windows 10

A few comments on overclocking here. First, the 6700K comes from the factory running at a much higher clock speed (4. 0GHz) than the 6600K (3.5GHz) or 6900K (3.2GHz). In practice, the difference isn’t quite that large, because under a full load, the 6700K stays at 4GHz (boost to 4.2GHz only occurs on single-threaded workloads), while the 6600K runs at 3.6GHz and the 6900K runs at 3.5GHz fully loaded. We’re therefore including these clockspeeds in all of our charts to remind the reader what “stock” really means. But to even out the mismatch as much as possible, we overclocked all three CPUs to 4.4GHz, which is very easy on the 6700K, relatively easy on the 6600K, and near the limit for the 6900K. Even so, as we’ve already mentioned, the Skylake architecture used by the 6600K/6700K is a bit faster than the 6900K’s Broadwell-E design, meaning the quad-cores still have a slight advantage on a per-core basis. Some may argue that an “equal” overclock would have pushed all CPUs to their maximum overclocks, but because this varies widely depending on luck of the draw (also known as the “silicon lottery”), there is no such thing as a universal maximum overclock.  We had to draw the line somewhere, so we decided to just run them at the same clocks. Another minor point: because the X99 platform can’t run DDR4-3000 memory without an oddball 125MHz motherboard strap, we overclocked our RAM to 3200MHz, 16-16-16-36 on the X99 system to allow it to run at an even 100MHz motherboard strap. The quad-cores ran DDR4-3000, 15-15-15-35, which works out to nearly identical bandwidth.

One other thing that differentiates the hardware: the Core i5-6600K has just four cores to work with, while the Core i7-6700K adds Hyperthreading to give it four “virtual” cores in addition to its physical cores, and the Core i7-6900K has a whopping sixteen total cores, eight physical and eight virtual. We’ll soon see if the extra virtual cores of the Core i7 line make a difference for modern gaming. We’ve found in past benchmarking articles that Hyperthreading doesn’t always provide a boost in gaming.

For our testing, we’re using one benchmark test (3DMark Time Spy) and eight games: Crysis 3, Battlefield 4, Grid AutoSport, Far Cry 4, The Witcher 3, Fallout 4, Rise of the Tomb Raider, and DOOM. All benchmarks were run at a 2560×1440 resolution, which is becoming the new norm for high-performance gaming, and is generally quite easy for our GTX 1080 video card to handle. You might see CPU benchmarks run at 1920×1080 or lower resolutions (like the absurd 800×600), but our feeling is that whether or not these draw out more distinctions between CPUs because they present so little burden to GPUs is irrelevant when it comes to making decisions about products you are actually going to buy. If you’re spending lots of money on CPUs and GPUs to run at 1080p, you’re doing it the wrong way! See our Monitor Buyer’s Guide for more advice on the monitors you should be gaming on today.

The Benchmarks

OK, time to get into some testing. To give us a bit of a baseline, we’re going to give you the numbers generated by 3DMark Time Spy, the newest in a long line of easily-comparable benchmarks from FutureMark. It’s now owned by UL, the respected testing company previously known as Underwriters Laboratories.

3DMark Time Spy

Time Spy is the latest in a long line of system benchmarks in the 3DMark family, and the first ot harness the power of Microsoft’s DirectX 12. DX12 is a lower-level graphics API than its predecessor DX11, which means it’s harder to code, but also allows developers to get “closer to the metal”, i.e., the CPU. It should in theory take better advantage of all of a CPU’s cores, as well as Hyperthreading.

To interpret the results, we suggest you focus on the grey bars (the CPU Score) , as the orange bars (the Graphics Score) are all within the margin of error, as they should be given no change in the video card. In the past we’ve found that Hyperthreading provides about a 50% boost in 3DMark benchmarks, and yet when we look at the 6600K and 6700K at 4.4GHz, the latter is only around 30% ahead. It seems Time Spy isn’t making as much use of Hyperthreading as we would have guessed. Also take a look at the Core [email protected] It’s an impressive 93% faster than the Core i7-6700K, harnessing the power of its eight cores. If it were a Skylake-based chip rather than a Broadwell-based chip, it likely would have been 100% faster. Also note that it picks up 20% from overclocking, while the 6600K picks up 19% and the 6700K picks up just 7%, as the latter was already running at 4GHz to start with. Remember what we said, though: we had to draw the line somewhere, and we drew it at 4.4GHz.

OK, now it’s time to get our game(s) on!

Crysis 3

The oldest game in our test suite, Crysis 3 can still make any system sweat if you turn the details up. In fact, believe it or not, these are the lowest framerates you’ll see from any of our eight game tests! That being said, Crysis 3 has a very sophisticated game engine that uses both GPU and CPU power in rendering its gorgeous graphics, and this is patently clear when you look at the weak showing of our stock Core i5-6600K. This game is simply begging for more CPU power, even at a demanding 2560×1440 resolution. Give the 6600K a healthy overclock, 10% faster than a stock 6700K, and the 6600K still doesn’t have a chance. This has been, and likely will continue to be, the poster child for Hyperthreading’s positive effect in video games. In fact, we found the game’s graphics choppy and distracting on the Core i5-6600K despite the relatively decent averages. It just wasn’t smooth.

And all of this makes the 6900K’s result quite puzzling. If even virtual cores could benefit the 6700K so much, why doesn’t having double the physical cores push the 6900K way ahead? Even when overclocked to 4.4GHz, a speed that actually gives it higher IPC than a stock 6700K, it still loses. This is a pattern we’re going to look for in the rest of the games we’ll be presenting, as it’s a troubling sign of what we’d call “core overload.” Essentially, we believe that the game engine and operating system are miscommunicating, causing the overhead of managing so many cores to overwhelm the benefit of having the cores at the engine’s disposal.

Battlefield 4

We hate to ruin the surprise so early on, but this is going to be the 6900K’s best showing. When all CPUs are overclocked to 4.4GHz, the 6900K is 1.7% ahead of the 6700K and 6600K, despite the 6900K’s IPC deficit. This is a bit odd given that the 6700K’s Hyperthreading actually does not put it ahead of the 6600K. In fact, we think what we’re seeing here is simply standard test-to-test variance, all within the margin of error (which we’d put at about 2%). In other words, we’re GPU bottlenecked in this game, despite the relatively-old engine and high framerates.

Some readers may question why we included games that are GPU-bottlenecked. Well, if we didn’t, we’d be skewing the results, wouldn’t we? The truth is that to get a good sense of how CPUs impact the gaming experience, you have to test a lot of game engines. And some will be like Crysis 3, and others will be like Battlefield 4. Interestingly, when we tested BF4 back in November 2013, just after it was released, we found that it was very CPU-intensive, and more importantly responded negatively to Hyperthreading. Since then Intel’s CPUs have picked up enough extra speed that it’s really all about the GPU at this point. We also have a hunch that DICE, the developer of BF4, has since finessed the game engine to allow it behave better with Hyperthreaded CPUs.

Grid AutoSport

Despite being a completely different game engine, and a very different type of game, Grid AutoSport replicates the results we saw in Crysis 3. The Core i5-6600K is just flailing about here, unable to get its footing even with a massive overclock, while the Core i7-6700K’s Hyperthreading propels it to the win, regardless of clockspeed. Interestingly, the 6900K is far behind at its low stock speed, and still can’t catch up to the stock 6700K even once overclocked 4.4GHz. Considering how effective Hyperthreading is for the 6700K, it’s again surprising that eight real cores don’t give the 6900K a win here. Remember what we said about “core overload.” Yup, it looks like it’s rearing its ugly head again! One technical note: this is the only game for which we used a built-in benchmark, as it actually stresses the CPU quite well, unlike typical built-in benchmarks.

All right, it’s time to jump into our circa-2015 games to see if they can make any better use of the 6900’s extra cores!

Far Cry 4

With Far Cry 4, we see a game engine that can make subtle use of Hyperthreading (as the stock 6700K is able to beat an overclocked 6600K), but again misses a step when eight cores are available. The 6900K’s performance isn’t terrible, and indeed when it’s also overclocked to 4.4GHz, it can just beat the 6600K, suggesting that its extra cores are aiding sufficiently to at least make up for the 6600K’s IPC advantage. Basically, it pulls even with a $250 processor in this game. Compelling? Not exactly!

The Witcher 3

We’ve seen a lot of commentary on the ‘net about how The Witcher 3 is CPU-limited. We figure this might be from folks using really low-powered GPUs, because in our experience, The Witcher 3 is anything but CPU-limited. Even with its clockspeed advantage and Hyperthreading, an overclocked 6700K is so close to a stock 6600K that all the variance we see in the results could just be noise. Unfortunately for the 6900K, in a tight race it again comes in last. Given how little Hyperthreading seems to help in this game, we actually think another factor is in play, one we haven’t discussed yet: the overhead of the X99 platform. We’re pretty sure that running CPUs on the big, hulking chipset leads to more latency. Perhaps it’s managing all those PCIe lanes, or perhaps it’s because the chipset is a generation older than the Z170 chipset powering up our quad-core systems, but we’re pretty sure it’s a factor. We’ve known as much ever since our quad-core 4790K beat our hexa-core 5820K at the same clocks…

Fallout 4

All right, we’ve added this fan-favorite in to appease all the forum-goers who say Fallout 4 makes great use of system assets. Some said we should have included it in our DDR4 Gaming article a while back, so we went out and bought the game just to include it in this roundup. And sure enough, it kicks the 6600K around, clearly leveraging the Hyperthreading on offer with the 6700K. In fact, we’d call this the runner-up poster child for Hyperthreading, right after the long-in-the-tooth Crysis 3. And the 6900K avails itself pretty well here too. Clearly, its IPC disadvantage is affecting average FPS, but take a look at its minimums and you’ll realize that the Creation engine at the heart of Fallout 4 can actually use more than four cores. That’s not too surprising given that it’s a game designed for eight-core consoles.

Just an aside here: we really don’t like benching with Fallout 4. It’s locked at 60fps by the developers, and can only be used for PC benchmarking if a change is made to its configuration file (Fallout4Prefs.ini). We don’t like messing with these files, and given that it’s overwritten every time we change settings, it makes serious benchmarking a royal pain. In fact, we found the game would frequently crash during loading with an unlocked framerate, likely because it was hitting around 3,000fps. Don’t expect to see Fallout 4 in our benchmarks for anything but CPUs in the future. Given that it’s not much of a graphical tour-de-force, it’s not worth messing with to test video cards.

Rise of the Tomb Raider

The next two benchmarks were collected in the latest additions to our game suite, Rise of the Tomb Raider and DOOM, both 2016 titles. We really prefer not to use new games in our benchmarks, as constant patching often leads to the need to re-test midstream, which has in fact happened to us in previous articles using Rise of the Tomb Raider. But we thought it was important to include a few new titles, as they might be more likely to be coded to take advantage of multi-core CPUs.

Well, no surprise here, at least to us. The Tomb Raider series uses an impressive graphics engine that leans entirely on GPUs rather than CPUs. Therefore we see very little variation here, although the 6900K again comes up a little short. Based on this result along with previous results in GPU-limited games, it seems fair to draw the conclusion that the X99 platform does indeed present more overhead versus the Z170 platform, reducing GPU output every so slightly.

DOOM

We’ve got to hand it to Bethesda here: DOOM looks pretty darn good given how well it performs, especially compared to the dog that is Fallout 4. And indeed, it appears to be limited to just four cores, as Hyperthreading does not give the 6700K a boost over the 6600K at 4.4GHz. That being said, clock speed does appear to help, so this game is in part CPU-limited. Owners of the Core i5-6600K will want to take note!

Eagle-eyed readers will probably be puzzled by the results generated with the 6900K. And we were too. Something just wasn’t right here. Even with an overclock that would put it way ahead of the IPC of a stock 6600K, it was losing. We couldn’t take this one sitting down….

And ,indeed, we found the key to the 6900K’s poor performance. By disabling four of its cores, we were able to make the 6900K perform just like a quad-core! Ironic that it requires this step to allow the eight-core CPU to keep pace with its $250 and $350 cousins.

Now, if you’re familiar with DOOM, you’ll know that it runs by default on the ancient OpenGL API, which is clearly unable to make heads or tails of the 6900K’s eight cores. But Bethesda likely knows that, and has endowed it with a brand-new API, Vulkan, which like DX12 is lower-level and thus lets developers get closer to the metal. Unfortunately, our framerate recorder of choice, FRAPS, only works with DX11, but using DOOM’s built-in monitoring tools, we were able to get a rough approximation of the 6900K’s performance with all eight cores beating away at the Vulkan version of DOOM. And the results were nothing less than impressive: 155fps. We couldn’t get a minimum framerates from the onboard monitoring, but it seemed pretty consistent to us.

Interestingly, many budget gamers likely believe that DX12 and Vulkan are aimed at them, allowing newer games to run better on cheaper hardware, like dual-core CPUs. We want to caution gamers about this. In fact, we believe that the true promise of these advanced APIs is in harnessing the power of more cores, not weaker cores. In essence, it allows for more complex game engines, not simpler ones. Our hunch is that once DX12 picks up steam, we’ll start to see a big benefit in games from Intel’s six-, eight-, and ten-core monsters, along with AMD’s Zen, rumored to be appearing by mid-2017. Just as Hyperthreading has finally taken a leading role in accelerating performance, the beyond-quad CPUs will hopefully find their footing in the next year or two thanks to the good graces of advanced APIs.

Average Results

All right, let’s take a look at how the seven DX11 games played on average on our test systems. We’re leaving DOOM out for now as its OpenGL/Vulkan-based game engines aren’t ideal for making comparisons, as shown on the previous page.

Well, there’s no doubt about it: the 6700K is our winner, just edging out the 6900K. The 6600K is several steps behind, and it’s clear to us now that investing in Hyperthreading is the right move for high-end gamers looking for a long-term solution. At the same clockspeed, the 6700K is 7% ahead in terms of the average, and an astonishing 12% ahead in terms of minimums. That translates to smoother gaming, period.

But what about the 6900K? Where does it land in the pantheon of gaming CPUs? Well, assuming you’re willing to push the clocks up from the relatively-low stock 3. 5GHz in order to get past its IPC deficit, it actually looks pretty good. But it cannot beat the 6700K, no way, no how. The only game where it actually placed ahead was in Battlefield 4, and even then it was by such a small margin that it could have been lost in the noise. As we stated a few pages back, it seems “Core overload” may be a real thing in some games, just as the negative impact of Hyperthreading in games was real for many years, and in GPU-limited games, X99 overhead is a real thing too.

One might come to the conclusion, then, that the Core i7-6900K and its multi-core brethren in the Broadwell-E lineup, the 6800K, 6850K, and 6950X, aren’t worthy of gamers’ attention. But we’d strongly disagree. First of all, gamers who are also heavy users of Excel, Photoshop, video conversion software, or other processor-intensive applications should absolutely take a six- or eight-core CPU over the 6700K. Additionally, as we’ve found in SLI testing, the additional PCIe lanes offered on the X99 platform used by Broadwell-E CPUs allows them to get ahead of the Core i7-6700K in dual-card SLI systems.

Conclusion

There are two main takeaways from our latest round of CPU testing. First of all, if you’re serious about gaming but don’t have an unlimited budget, you should be buying the Intel Core i7-6700K. That much is abundantly clear. While the Core i5-6600K is a good lower-cost substitute, in no way is it the equal of the 6700K, which is quite a change from previous generations, when a Core i5 could easily keep up with a Core i7 in games. One area where we see the 6600K playing a big role, however, is in VR gaming, which requires a tremendous amount of GPU power and comparatively-little CPU power. For gamers purchasing an HTC Vive (the only VR system worth considering at this point, based on our industry analysis), it makes a lot of sense to put the extra $100 towards a GeForce GTX 1070 over a GTX 1060, for example.

Second of all, Intel has much work left to do before we can honestly get behind its aggressive marketing campaign touting the power of high-end Core i7 processors for gaming. We’ve been to the trade shows, we’ve seen how heavily Intel is promoting its expensive Broadwell-E-based CPUs to gamers. And we know why its marketing department has come up with this campaign. Intel’s manufacturing process has absolutely stalled out, with new CPU architectures facing one delay after another. Frankly, not only is Moore’s Law and the promise of 50% gains every 18 months dead, but we’re now facing the prospect of zero CPU performance gains year-over-year. Intel’s Kaby Lake desktop CPU, the replacement for 2015’s 6700K, isn’t scheduled to arrive until early 2017. And even it will offer nothing more than a 3-5% boost in IPC. That’s a disappointment for gamers, and a vexing problem for marketers.

Facing this dour outlook, it makes sense for Intel to push its big, expensive multi-core CPUs as an alternative. And in theory, they may hold out much promise to gamers. But again, the flaws we’ve discovered through multiple investigations of gaming performance on Intel’s multi-core CPUs suggests that developers simply do not want, or can’t, develop for six- and eight-core CPUs. Ironically, this bears a striking resemblance to the Hyperthreading debacle a few years ago, when gamers in the know would shut off Hyperthreading on their Core i7 processors to improve performance (or better yet, would buy Core i5 processors and save $100 in the process). While Hyperthreading has clearly come into its own, likely due to Intel’s direct assistance to developers, Intel’s high-end desktop (HEDT) processors have not. Intel, it’s time to do more than talk the talk. Get walking!

Luckily for Intel, there may be good times to come, courtesy of Microsoft’s DX12. While initial attempts by developers to harness the power of DX12 have come up painfully short, if Intel were to devote a bit more of its abundant technical know-how towards helping developers use Microsoft’s latest tool, games would likely be able to better tap into the power of multi-core CPUs. Yes, this will help competitor AMD as well, and no, we don’t think AMD has the cash to devote to similar developer relations, but the CPU market will be healthier in the long run if Intel gets serious about moving us beyond Moore’s law and the company’s defunct tick-tock progress in CPU design.

We hope you’ve learned something new from this in-depth exploration of gaming performance on Intel’s high-end CPUs. As has probably become evident, performance cannot be gleaned simply from core counts or marketing material. If you’re ready to put together a balanced gaming system of your own, check out our monthly PC Buyer’s Guides, which take into account the findings in this article as well as all of our previous Gamer’s Bench investigations!

Intel Core i7 6950X Extreme Edition Broadwell-E Overclocked Testing: Gaming & Conclusion

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Intel Core i7 6950X Extreme Edition Broadwell-E Overclocked: Testing

Part first-person shooter, part survival horror, Metro: Last Light is the follow-up to the extremely popular game Metro 2033. Developed by 4A games and published by Deep Silver, this game uses the 4A game engine. In this game, set a year after the missile strike on the Dark Ones, you continue on as Artyom as he digs deeper into the bowels of the Metro.

 

 

Settings:

  • DirectX 11
  • Global settings = Very High
  • PhysX = Off
  • SSAA = Yes

 

 

 

Metro: Last Light is a graphically intense game that will in most cases see the GPU become the limiting factor in performance rather than the CPU. The Core i7 6950X does deliver FPS performance closer to the top than the bottom of a very defined FPS window at both 1680 x 1050 and 1920 x 1080. Overclocking does not really add much in terms of gaming FPS performance when you are GPU limited. A result that differs slightly in our Batman testing.

 

Batman: Arkham Origins is the third installment of the Batman: Arkham series, released in October 2013. This action-adventure game, based on the DC Comics Batman super hero, was developed by Warner Bros. Games Montréal and released by Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment. Batman: Arkham Origins uses the Unreal 3 game engine just like its predecessors.

 

Settings:

  • DirectX 11
  • 8x MSAA
  • 16x AF
  • Global settings = Very High
  • PhysX = Normal

 

 

 

In this game with the eye candy turned up, the FPS delivered by the combination of the GTX 770 and the Core i7 6950X again delivers gaming performance at the top of the FPS window at stock speeds. Cranking the core up another 700MHz has a positive impact on perforamance even when GPU limited.

 

3DMark: The just-released version of Futuremark’s popular 3DMark suite is designed to let a wider range of the user base make a comparative analysis of the gaming prowess of their systems from entry level PCs, to notebooks, to extreme gaming PCs.

 

Settings

  • Default test settings
  • Cloud Gate
  • Fire Strike
  • Physics 

 

 

 

 

 

In the 3DMark testing, you can see that the better your CPU is, the better your overall results will be. That said, the CPU Physics scores are impressive whichever way you want to look at them. Overclocking adds a significant gain in overall performance scoring in this set of tests.

Intel Core i7 6950X Extreme Edition Broadwell-E Overclocked: Conclusion

If you put in the tuning and testing time, you can maximize the performance of Intel’s 14nm 10-core beast, the Core i7 6950X. With the CPU you get a couple of new options with by-core overclocking using the best cores to eek out the top level performance. You can overclock by using traditional methods that may not pay as handsome a clock speed dividend, but nevertheless you get improved performance. By using the AVX workload offset, you can drop the core clock speed ratio at a user defined level that helps drop down the clock speed under heavy AVX related workloads. The goal with using this strategy is that you reduce the clock speed and the associated voltage needed to run the lower clock speed number. The one caveat here is that you need to be running the voltage on auto.

The single biggest hurdle when running higher voltages and clock speeds is thermal management. A nice air cooler or even some of the nicer AIO kits are going to be fully overwhelmed with the thermal load displaced by the Core i7 6950X when overclocked and over volted. I had to resort to a full on water cooling setup to reach the observed 4.34GHz and 4.28GHz speeds I ran in my testing. Usually the hefty 240mm radiator I use for overclocking processors is sufficient to handle the typical load. Not so with this beast. I had to back up and put in a second radiator to handle the load discharged into the liquid. By doing so, I was able to keep the processor from throttling and bouncing off the 99 °C max temperature before the chip could throttle.

Overall, most of your usual overclocking tools and methods that we have worked with over the past few generations of Intel processors work well with this generation of Intel’s Extreme series chips. The new flexibility adds some wrinkles, but nothing that cannot be easily overcome. The Intel Core i7 6950X Broadwell-E processor is one hell of a processor.

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Intel Core I7 6950X Extreme Edition Broadwell-E Overclocking Review

Haswell-E or Broadwell-E? Intel i7-5960X vs. i7-6900K vs. i7-6950X

What is the best high-end CPU? The 3 best consumer-grade options are the Broadwell-E i7-6900K and i7-6950X, and the older Haswell-E  i7-5960X. We previously recommended the i7-5960X over the newer i7-6900K in our build guide for NVIDIA’s GTX 1080, because of the older CPU’s superior overclocking potential. Here we will compare the pros and cons of these CPUs in more detail, so that you can make the best choice.

The Line-Up

All of these are extremely high-end CPUs. They all retail for $1,000+, fit into the LGA 2011-v3 socket X99 platform, and use DDR4 RAM.

These processors are for enthusiasts and professional workstation users. All three chips are unlocked and can be overclocked.

That is where the similarities end. Let’s examine the specifications:

i7-5960X i7-6900K i7-6950X
Family Haswell-E Broadwell-E Broadwell-E
Chipset X99 X99 X99
Lithography 22 nm 14 nm 14nm
Memory Support DDR4-2133 DDR4-2400 DDR4-2400
Base Core Clock 3.0 Ghz 3.2 Ghz 3.0 Ghz
Max Turbo Core Clock 3. 5 Ghz 4.0 Ghz 4.0 Ghz
# Cores 8 8 10
# Threads 16 16 20
Cache 20 MB 20 MB 25 MB
TDP 140W 140W 140W>
Recommended Price $1049 $1109 $1743

(source: http://ark.intel.com/)

The Broadwell-E family released earlier this year, while Haswell-E was released back in 2014. The Broadwell processors support faster memory. While all three chips support XMP profiles and memory overclocking, baseline 2400Mhz support is nice. The newer i7-6900k also features a higher base and turbo clock than its older cousin, the i7-5960X.

The 6950X costs $600 more than either Haswell’s 5960X or Broadwell’s 6900K. This puts it out of reach for many of us, but that extra money provides an additional 5MB L3 Cache, and two more cores (four extra threads). These can provide a large performance increase if your software can take advantage of the extra resources. It borders the Server/Workstation segment both in price and features, and is designed for enthusiasts looking to get the maximum performance possible.

Overall Performance

According to AnandTech, the i7-6900k is better than the i7-5960X at single threaded applications by 9%. The 6950X does fall slightly behind the 6900k in these benchmarks, but still manages to stay ahead of its predecessor. High-end Skylake chips are still the top single-threaded performers to date by at least 13%.

The i7-6950X is better than any other consumer CPU in multi-threaded applications that can take advantage of all 10 cores. It bests the 6900k by 20%, and has a whopping 38% greater CineBench score than the 5960X. In multi-threaded applications, the 6950X is in a class of its own.

Overclocking Capabilities

The 5960X is still the best overclocker.

It is still possible to gain generous overclocks of up to 4. 3GHz depending on the silicon lottery with the 6950X. Even so, the 5960X at the same clock speeds is more power efficient than the 6900K at base clock. TomsHardware showed that at an overclock of 4.0GHz, the 5960X used 124W under load. Despite it being only 0.8GHz of an overclock instead of a full gig, the 6900K managed to draw 148W at 4.0GHz.

The gap only grows wider as the overclock increases. Overclocking Broadwell-E requires a beefy power supply and cooling.

Gaming Performance

At base clocks, Broadwell-E processors are better by 0.5-2fps at best in most games according to AnandTech‘s benchmarks. If gaming is your only desire, all three CPUs essentially perform the same. However, if you want to overclock, the 5960X gains the advantage. Most games don’t effectively use more than a few threads, and thus depend on higher clock speeds to perform better.

Winner: Depends on your needs

For the intended audience of enthusiasts and professionals needing as much processing power as possible out of their workstation who don’t want to mess with overclocking, the newer chips are the best choice. The 6900K and 6950X have slightly better performance than the older 5960X. In any application that can take advantage of the the extra cores of the 6950X, such as video editing, it is the clear winner. However, for anyone who wants to overclock, the 5960X becomes a better choice than the 6900K at similar prices.

Intel Core i7-6950x or Intel Core i7-6700K

  • Come
  • >
  • Processors
  • Comparison
  • >
  • Intel Core i7-6950x VS Intel Core
    • Core i7-6800k
      Compare
    • Core i7-6850K
      Compare
    • Core i7-6900K
      Compare

    Family

    • Core I7-6700
      Compare
    • Core Core i7-6700T
      Compare

    Game speed

    Core i7-6950X

    73. 5 (+2.3%)

    Core i7-6700K

    71.8

    The performance of 4 cores, if any, and performance per core has the greatest impact on the result, since most games do not fully use more than 4 cores.

    The speed of caches and working with RAM is also important.

    Speed ​​in office use

    Core i7-6950X

    72

    Core i7-6700K

    73.7 (+2.3%)

    Performance in everyday work such as browsers and office programs.

    The performance of 1 core has the greatest impact on the result, since most of these applications use only one, ignoring the rest.

    Similarly, many professional applications such as various CADs ignore multi-threaded performance.

    Speed ​​in heavy applications

    Core i7-6950X

    56.1 (+21.4%)

    Core i7-6700K

    44.1 maximum

    The performance of all cores and their number have the greatest impact on the result, since most of these applications willingly use all the cores and increase the speed accordingly.

    At the same time, certain periods of work can be demanding on the performance of one or two cores, for example, applying filters in the editor.

    Data obtained from tests by users who tested their systems with and without overclocking. Thus, you see the average values ​​corresponding to the processor.

    Speed ​​of numerical operations

    Simple household tasks

    Core i7-6950X

    67.1

    Core i7-6700K

    71.5 (+6.2%)

    Demanding games and tasks

    Core i7-6950X

    55.1 (+16.5%)

    Core i7-6700K

    46

    Extreme

    Core i7-6950X

    25. 6 (+55.1%)

    Core i7-6700K

    11.5

    Different tasks require different CPU strengths. A system with few fast cores and low memory latency will be fine for the vast majority of games, but will be inferior to a system with a lot of slow cores in a rendering scenario.

    We believe that a minimum of 4/4 (4 physical cores and 4 threads) processor is suitable for a budget gaming PC. At the same time, some games can load it at 100%, slow down and freeze, and performing any tasks in the background will lead to a drop in FPS.

    Ideally, the budget shopper should aim for a minimum of 4/8 and 6/6. A gamer with a big budget can choose between 6/12, 8/8 and 8/16. Processors with 10 and 12 cores can perform well in games with high frequency and fast memory, but are overkill for such tasks. Also, buying for the future is a dubious undertaking, since in a few years many slow cores may not provide sufficient gaming performance.

    When choosing a processor for your work, consider how many cores your programs use. For example, photo and video editors can use 1-2 cores when working with filtering, and rendering or converting in the same editors already uses all threads.

    Data obtained from tests by users who tested their systems both with overclocking (maximum value in the table) and without (minimum). A typical result is shown in the middle, the more filled in the color bar, the better the average result among all tested systems.

    Benchmarks

    Benchmarks were run on stock hardware, that is, without overclocking and with factory settings. Therefore, on overclocked systems, the points can noticeably differ upwards. Also, small performance changes may be due to the BIOS version.

    Cinebench R23 Single Core

    Intel Core i7-6950X

    1091

    Intel Core i7-6700K

    1124 (+2.9%)

    Cinebench R23 Multi Core

    Intel Core i7-6950X

    12713 (+55. 6 %)

    Intel Core i7-6700K

    5640

    Cinebench R15 Single Core

    Intel Core i7-6950X

    152

    Intel Core i7-6700K

    180 (+15.6%)

    Cinebench R15 Multi Core

    Intel Core i7-6950X

    1819 (+51.2%)

    Intel Core i7-6700K

    888

    Geekbench 5 Single Core

    Intel Core i7-6950X

    974

    Intel Core i7-6700K

    1151 (+15.4%)

    Geekbench 5 Multi Core

    Intel Core i7-6950X

    8993 (+50.4%)

    Intel Core i7-6700K

    4459

    Geekbench 3 Single Core

    Intel Core i7-6950X

    3387

    Intel Core i7-6700K

    4757 (+28.8%)

    Geekbench 3 Multi Core

    Intel Core i7-6950X

    32399 (+47.4%)

    Intel Core i7-6700K

    17028

    Cinebench R11.5

    Intel Core i7- 6950x

    1.61

    Intel Core i7-6700K

    2.19 (+26.5%)

    Cinebench R11.

    5

    Intel Core I7-6950X

    19.08 (+48%) 9004

    .

    Passmark

    Intel Core i7-6950X

    17040 (+47.3%)

    Intel Core i7-6700K

    8973

    Specifications

    Data is not yet complete, so tables may be missing information or existing features.

    Basic

    Manufacturer Intel Intel
    DescriptionInformation about the processor, taken from the official website of the manufacturer. Intel® Core™ i7-6950X Processor Extreme Edition (25M Cache, up to 3.50 GHz) Intel® Core™ i7-6700K Processor (8M Cache, up to 4.20 GHz)
    ArchitectureCode name for the microarchitecture generation. Broadwell E Skylake
    Process The manufacturing process, measured in nanometers. The smaller the technical process, the more perfect the technology, the lower the heat dissipation and power consumption. 14 nm 14 nm
    Release dateMonth and year of the processor’s availability. 09-2018 09-2018
    Model Official name. i7-6950X i7-6700K
    Cores The number of physical cores. 10 4
    ThreadsNumber of threads. The number of logical processor cores that the operating system sees. 20 8
    Multi-Threading Technology With Intel’s Hyper-threading and AMD’s SMT technology, one physical core is recognized as two logical cores in the operating system, thereby increasing processor performance in multi-threaded applications. Hyper-threading (note that some games may not work well with Hyper-threading, you can disable the technology in the BIOS of the motherboard for maximum FPS). Hyper-threading (note that some games may not work well with Hyper-threading, you can disable the technology in the BIOS of the motherboard for maximum FPS).
    Base frequencyGuaranteed frequency of all processor cores at maximum load. Performance in single-threaded and multi-threaded applications and games depends on it. It is important to remember that speed and frequency are not directly related. For example, a new processor at a lower frequency may be faster than an old one at a higher one. 3GHz 4 GHz
    Turbo frequencyThe maximum frequency of one processor core in turbo mode. Manufacturers allow modern processors to independently increase the frequency of one or more cores under heavy load, due to which performance is noticeably increased. It may depend on the nature of the load, the number of loaded cores, temperature and the specified limits. Significantly affects the speed in games and applications that are demanding on the frequency of the CPU. 4 GHz 4.2 GHz
    L3 cache size The third level cache acts as a buffer between the computer’s RAM and the processor’s level 2 cache. Used by all cores, the speed of information processing depends on the volume. 25 MB 8 MB
    Instructions 64-bit 64-bit
    Extended instruction set Allows you to speed up calculations, processing and execution of certain operations. Also, some games require instruction support. SSE4.1/4.2, AVX 2. 0
    Embedded Options Available Two enclosure versions. Standard and designed for mobile devices. In the second version, the processor can be soldered on the motherboard. No No
    Bus frequency The speed of communication with the system. 8 GT/s DMI3
    Number of QPI links No data
    TDPThermal Design Power is an indicator that determines heat dissipation in standard operation. The cooler or water cooling system must be rated for a larger value. Remember that with a factory bus or manual overclocking, TDP increases significantly. 140 W 91W
    Cooling system specifications PCG 2015D (130W)

    Video core

    Integrated graphics core Allows you to use your computer without a discrete graphics card. The monitor is connected to the video output on the motherboard. If earlier integrated graphics made it possible to simply work at a computer, today it can replace budget video accelerators and makes it possible to play most games at low settings. None Intel® HD Graphics 530
    GPU base clockFrequency in 2D and idle. No data 350
    Max GPU ClockMaximum 3D clock. No data 1150
    Intel® Wireless Display (Intel® WiDi) Supports Wireless Display technology over Wi-Fi 802.11n. Thanks to it, a monitor or TV equipped with the same technology does not require a cable to connect. No data
    Supported monitorsThe maximum number of monitors that can be connected to the integrated video core at the same time. 3

    RAM

    Maximum amount of RAMThe amount of RAM that can be installed on the motherboard with this processor. 128 GB 64 GB
    Supported type of RAM The type of RAM depends on its frequency and timings (speed), availability, price. DDR4 2400/2133 DDR4-1866/2133, DDR3L-1333/1600 @ 1.35V
    RAM Channels The multi-channel memory architecture increases data transfer speed. On desktop platforms, two-channel, three-channel and four-channel modes are available. 4 2
    RAM bandwidth 34.1 GB/s
    ECC Memory Support for error-correcting memory that is used in servers. Usually more expensive than usual and requires more expensive server components. However, second-hand server processors, Chinese motherboards and ECC memory sticks, which are sold relatively cheaply in China, have become widespread. No data No data

    PCI

    PCI-E PCI Express computer bus version. The bandwidth and power limit depend on the version. There is backward compatibility. 3 3
    PCI configuration options
    Number of PCI lanes 40

    Data Security

    AES-NI The AES command set extension speeds up applications that use appropriate encryption. No data No data
    Intel® Secure Key An RDRAND instruction that allows you to create a high performance random number generator. No data No data

    Decoration

    Dimensions No data No data
    Supported sockets No data No data
    Maximum processors per motherboard No data No data

    Which is better

    Intel Core i7-6950X

    • On average, gaming performance is 2% better.
    • In complex multi-threaded applications, faster and outperforms by 14%.
    • The number of physical cores is 6 more.
    • The number of threads is 12 more.
    • Price down $137.
    • Base frequency up 1 GHz.

    i7-6950X vs i7-875K — PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds vs R5 performance comparison

    R5 with

    Intel Core i7-6950X @ 3.00GHz

    PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds

    R5 with

    Intel Core i7-875K @ 2.93GHz


    i7-6950X
    i7-875K

    Multi-Thread Performance

    19974 Pts

    5445 Pts

    Single-Thread Performance

    2151 Pts

    1293 Pts

    PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds

    i7-6950X vs i7-875K in PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds using R5 Quality vs. Low08 resolution, Ultra, High08 resolution , 1440p, Ultrawide, 4K

    i7-6950X
    i7-875K


    Ultra quality
    Resolution Frames per second
    1080p

    30. 5 FPS

    1080p

    19.5 FPS

    1440p

    23.1 FPS

    1440p

    14.8 FPS

    2160p

    13.2 FPS

    2160p

    8.5 FPS

    w1440p

    19.4 FPS

    w1440p

    12.5 FPS

    High quality
    Resolution Frames per second
    1080p

    57.1 FPS

    1080p

    38.7 FPS

    1440p

    44.9 FPS

    1440p

    30.4 FPS

    2160p

    27.5 FPS

    2160p

    18.6 FPS

    w1440p

    38.5 FPS

    w1440p

    26. 2 FPS

    Medium quality
    Resolution Frames per second
    1080p

    83.7 FPS

    1080p

    57.9 FPS

    1440p

    66.6 FPS

    1440p

    46.0 FPS

    2160p

    41.8 FPS

    2160p

    28.8 FPS

    w1440p

    57.6 FPS

    w1440p

    39.9 FPS

    Low quality
    Resolution Frames per second
    1080p

    136.9 FPS

    1080p

    96.3 FPS

    1440p

    110.1 FPS

    1440p

    77. 2 FPS

    2160p

    70.3 FPS

    2160p

    49.0 FPS

    w1440p

    95.9 FPS

    w1440p

    67.3 FPS

    i7-6950X
      i7-875K

        i7-6950X i7-875K
        i7-6950X vs i7-875K Cache
        i7-6950X i7-875K
        i7-6950X vs i7-875K Cores
        i7-6950X i7-875K
        i7-6950X vs i7-875K Features
        i7-6950X i7-875K
        i7-6950X vs i7-875K Performance
        i7-6950X i7-875K
        i7-6950X vs i7-875K Physical
        i7-6950X i7-875K

        Share your comments 28

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        Intel Core i7-6950X vs Intel Core i7-7800X: What is the difference?

        smartphonesgraphic cardswireless headphones CPU

        46points

        Intel Core i7-6950X

        46points

        Intel Core i7-7800X

        vs

        64 facts in comparison

        Intel Core i7-6950X

        Intel Core i7-7800X

        • 42. 86% higher CPU speed?
          10 x 3GHz vs 6 x 3.5GHz
        • 8 more CPU threads?
          20 vs 12
        • 16.8MB more L3 cache?
          25MB vs 8.2MB
        • 128KB more L1 cache?
          320KB vs 192KB
        • 1.2MB/core more L3 cache per core?
          2.5MB/core vs 1.3MB/core

        Why is Intel Core i7-7800X better than Intel Core i7-6950X?

        • 3.5MB more L2 cache?
          6MB vs 2.5MB
        • 0.8MB/core more L2 cache per core?
          1MB/core vs 0.2MB/core
        • Has F16C?
        • Has FMA3?

        What are the most popular comparisons?

        Intel Core i7-6950X

        vs

        Intel Core i9-9900K

        Intel Core i7-7800X

        vs

        AMD Ryzen 7 5800X

        Intel Core i7-6950X

        vs

        Intel Core i7-8700K

        Intel Core i7-7800X

        vs

        Intel Core i9-7920X

        Intel Core i7-6950X

        vs

        Intel Core i9-10900K

        Intel i07-830044

        vs

        Intel Core i7-7700

        Intel Core i7-6950X

        vs

        AMD Ryzen 5 3600

        Intel Core i7-7800X

        vs

        Intel Core i7-7700K

        Intel Core i7-6950X

        vs

        Intel Core i7-5820K

        Intel Core i7-7800X

        vs

        Intel Core i7-6800k

        Intel Core i7-6950X

        vs

        AMD Ryzen Threadripper 1920X

        Intel Core i7-7800X

        vs

        AMD Ryzen 7 3700X

        Intel Core i7-6950X

        vs

        AMD Ryzen 5 3600X

        Intel Core i7-7800X

        vs

        AMD Ryzen 7 3800X

        Intel Core i7-6950X

        vs

        Intel Core i9-7960X

        Intel Core i7-7800X

        vs

        AMD Ryzen Threadripper 2920X

        Intel Core i7-6950X

        vs

        Intel Core i7-5960X

        Intel Core i7-7800X

        vs

        2. processor thread of execution

        More threads result in better performance and better multitasking.

        3.Turbo clock speed

        When the processor is running below its limits, it can jump to a higher clock speed to increase performance.

        4. Unlocked

        ✔Intel Core i7-6950X

        ✔Intel Core i7-7800X

        Some processors come with an unlocked multiplier and are easier to overclock, allowing for better performance in games and other applications.

        5.L2 cache

        More L2 scratchpad memory results in faster results in CPU and system performance tuning.

        6.L3 cache

        More L3 scratchpad memory results in faster results in CPU and system performance tuning.

        7.L1 cache

        More L1 cache results in faster results in CPU and system performance tuning.

        8. core L2

        0.2MB/core

        1MB/core

        More data can be stored in L2 scratchpad for access by each processor core.

        9.core L3

        2.5MB/core

        1.3MB/core

        More data can be stored in the L3 scratchpad for access by each processor core.

        Memory

        1.RAM speed

        2400MHz

        2400MHz

        Can support faster memory which speeds up system performance.

        2.max memory bandwidth

        Unknown. Help us offer a price. (Intel Core i7-6950X)

        Unknown. Help us offer a price. (Intel Core i7-7800X)

        This is the maximum rate at which data can be read from or stored in memory.

        3.DDR memory version

        Unknown. Help us offer a price. (Intel Core i7-6950X)

        Unknown. Help us offer a price. (Intel Core i7-7800X)

        DDR (Double Data Rate Synchronous Dynamic Random Access Memory) is the most common type of RAM. New versions of DDR memory support higher maximum speeds and are more energy efficient.

        4 memory channels

        More memory channels increase the speed of data transfer between the memory and the processor.

        5.maximum memory capacity

        Maximum memory capacity (RAM).

        6.bus baud rate

        Unknown. Help us offer a price. (Intel Core i7-6950X)

        The bus is responsible for transferring data between various components of a computer or device.

        7. Supports memory debug code

        ✖Intel Core i7-6950X

        ✖Intel Core i7-7800X

        Memory debug code can detect and fix data corruption. It is used when necessary to avoid distortion, such as in scientific computing or when starting a server.

        8.eMMC version

        Unknown. Help us offer a price. (Intel Core i7-6950X)

        Unknown. Help us offer a price. (Intel Core i7-7800X)

        A newer version of eMMC — Built-in Flash Memory Card — speeds up the memory interface, has a positive effect on device performance, for example, when transferring files from a computer to internal memory via USB.

        9.bus frequency

        Unknown. Help us offer a price. (Intel Core i7-6950X)

        Unknown. Help us offer a price. (Intel Core i7-7800X)

        The bus is responsible for transferring data between various components of a computer or device

        Geotagging

        1. PassMark result

        Unknown. Help us offer a price. (Intel Core i7-6950X)

        Unknown. Help us offer a price. (Intel Core i7-7800X)

        This benchmark measures processor performance using multithreading.

        2nd PassMark result (single)

        Unknown. Help us offer a price. (Intel Core i7-6950X)

        Unknown. Help us offer a price. (Intel Core i7-7800X)

        This benchmark measures processor performance using a thread of execution.

        3.Geekbench 5 result (multi-core)

        Unknown. Help us offer a price. (Intel Core i7-6950X)

        Unknown. Help us offer a price. (Intel Core i7-7800X)

        Geekbench 5 is a cross-platform benchmark that measures the performance of a multi-core processor. (Source: Primate Labs, 2022)

        4. Cinebench R20 result (multi-core)

        Unknown. Help us offer a price. (Intel Core i7-6950X)

        Unknown. Help us offer a price. (Intel Core i7-7800X)

        Cinebench R20 is a benchmark that measures the performance of a multi-core processor by rendering a 3D scene.

        5.Cinebench R20 result (single core)

        Unknown. Help us offer a price. (Intel Core i7-6950X)

        Unknown. Help us offer a price. (Intel Core i7-7800X)

        Cinebench R20 is a test to evaluate the performance of a single core processor when rendering a 3D scene.

        6.Geekbench 5 result (single core)

        Unknown. Help us offer a price. (Intel Core i7-6950X)

        Unknown. Help us offer a price. (Intel Core i7-7800X)

        Geekbench 5 is a cross-platform benchmark that measures the single-core performance of a processor. (Source: Primate Labs, 2022)

        7. Blender test result (bmw27)

        Unknown. Help us offer a price. (Intel Core i7-6950X)

        Unknown. Help us offer a price. (Intel Core i7-7800X)

        The Blender benchmark (bmw27) measures CPU performance by rendering a 3D scene. More powerful processors can render a scene in a shorter time.

        8. Blender result (classroom)

        Unknown. Help us offer a price. (Intel Core i7-6950X)

        Unknown. Help us offer a price. (Intel Core i7-7800X)

        The Blender (classroom) benchmark measures CPU performance by rendering a 3D scene. More powerful processors can render a scene in a shorter time.

        9.performance per watt

        Unknown. Help us offer a price. (Intel Core i7-7800X)

        This means that the processor is more efficient, giving more performance per watt of power used.

        Functions

        1.uses multithreading

        ✔Intel Core i7-6950X

        ✔Intel Core i7-7800X

        physical processor core into logical cores, also known as threads. Thus, each core can run two instruction streams at the same time.

        2. Has AES

        ✔Intel Core i7-6950X

        ✔Intel Core i7-7800X

        AES is used to speed up encryption and decryption.

        3. Has AVX

        ✔Intel Core i7-6950X

        ✔Intel Core i7-7800X

        AVX is used to help speed up calculations in multimedia, scientific and financial applications, and to improve the performance of the Linux RAID program.

        4. Version SSE

        SSE is used to speed up multimedia tasks such as editing images or adjusting audio volume. Each new version contains new instructions and improvements.

        5. Has F16C

        ✖Intel Core i7-6950X

        ✔Intel Core i7-7800X

        F16C is used to speed up tasks such as image contrast adjustment or volume control.

        6 bits transmitted at the same time

        Unknown. Help us offer a price. (Intel Core i7-6950X)

        Unknown. Help us offer a price. (Intel Core i7-7800X)

        NEON provides faster media processing such as MP3 listening.

        7. Has MMX

        ✔Intel Core i7-6950X

        ✔Intel Core i7-7800X

        MMX is used to speed up tasks such as adjusting image contrast or adjusting volume.

        8. Has TrustZone

        ✖Intel Core i7-6950X

        ✖Intel Core i7-7800X

        The technology is integrated into the processor to ensure device security when using features such as mobile payments and streaming video using digital rights management technology ( DRM).

        9.interface width

        Unknown. Help us offer a price. (Intel Core i7-6950X)

        Unknown. Help us offer a price. (Intel Core i7-7800X)

        The processor can decode more instructions per clock (IPC), which means that the processor performs better

        Price comparison

        Cancel

        Which CPUs are better?

        X5680 vs i7 6700k

        Contents

        • 1 advantages
          • 1.1 reasons to choose Intel Core i7-6700k
          • 1.2 reasons to choose Intel Xeon X5680
        • 2 Benchmarks comparison
          • 9000
          • 2.0.1 Advertising
          • 2.0.2 Advertising
          • 2.0.0.0.0.0.0.0.0.0.0.0ARA
          • 2.0.4 ad
          • 2.0.5 ad
      • Performance, Memory, Graphics, Graphical Interfaces, Picture-in-Graphics Quality, Graphics API Support, Compatibility, Peripherals, Security and Reliability, Technologies, Virtualization. Analysis of processor performance by benchmarks: PassMark — Single thread mark, PassMark — CPU mark, Geekbench 4 — Single Core, Geekbench 4 — Multi-Core, 3DMark Fire Strike — Physics Score, CompuBench 1. 5 Desktop — Face Detection (mPixels/s), CompuBench 1.5 Desktop — Ocean Surface Simulation (Frames/s), CompuBench 1.5 Desktop — T-Rex (Frames/s), CompuBench 1.5 Desktop — Video Composition (Frames/s), CompuBench 1.5 Desktop — Bitcoin Mining (mHash/s), GFXBench 4.0 — Car Chase Offscreen (Frames), GFXBench 4.0 — Manhattan (Frames), GFXBench 4.0 — T-Rex (Frames), GFXBench 4.0 — Car Chase Offscreen (Fps), GFXBench 4.0 — Manhattan (Fps), GFXBench 4.0 — T- Rex (Fps).

        Benefits

        Reasons to choose Intel Core i7-6700K

        • Newer processor, release date difference 5 year(s) 6 month(s)
        • Processor unlocked, unlocked multiplier allows easy overclocking
        • Approximately 17% higher clock speed: 4.20 GHz vs 3.60 GHz
        • A newer manufacturing process for the processor allows it to be more powerful, but with lower power consumption: 14 nm vs 32 nm
        • Approximately 43% less power consumption: 91 Watt vs 130 Watt
        • Performance in PassMark — Single thread mark about 59% better: 2354 vs 1477
        • Performance in PassMark benchmark — CPU mark about 33% higher: 11108 vs 8354
        • Approximately 86% better performance in Geekbench 4 — Single Core benchmark: 1153 vs 619
        • Approximately 24% better performance in Geekbench 4 — Multi-Core benchmark: 4476 vs 3605
        • Performance in CompuBench 1. 5 Desktop — Face Detection (mPixels/s) 2 times better: 6.217 vs 3.09
        • Performance in CompuBench 1.5 Desktop — Ocean Surface Simulation (Frames/s) about 78% better: 101.885 vs 57.101
        Features
        Production date 5 August 2015 vs February 2010
        Unlocked Unlocked / Locked
        Maximum frequency 4.20 GHz vs 3.60 GHz
        Workflow 14 nm vs 32 nm
        Power consumption (TDP) 91 Watt vs 130 Watt
        Benchmarks
        PassMark — Single thread mark 2354 vs 1477
        PassMark — CPU mark 11108 vs 8354
        Geekbench 4 — Single Core 1153 vs 619
        Geekbench 4 — Multi-Core 4476 vs 3605
        CompuBench 1. 5 Desktop — Face Detection (mPixels/s) 6.217 vs 3.09
        CompuBench 1.5 Desktop — Ocean Surface Simulation (Frames/s) 101.885 vs 57.101

        Reasons to choose Intel Xeon X5680

        • 2 more cores, run more applications simultaneously: 6 vs 4
        • 4 more threads: 12 vs 8
        • Approximately 23% higher maximum core temperature: 78.5°C vs 64°C
        • The L1 cache is approximately 50% larger, which means more data can be stored in it for quick access
        • The L2 cache is about 50% larger, which means more data can be stored in it for quick access
        • The L3 cache is about 50% larger, which means more data can be stored in it for quick access
        • Maximum memory size is 4.5 times larger: 288 GB vs 64 GB
        • Performance in CompuBench 1.5 Desktop — T-Rex (Frames/s) about 1% better: 0.75 vs 0.744
        • Performance in CompuBench 1.5 Desktop — V >
        Features
        Number of cores 6 vs 4
        Number of threads 12 vs 8
        Maximum core temperature 78. 5°C vs 64°C
        Level 1 cache 64 KB (per core) vs 256 KB
        Level 2 cache 9009eight

        256 KB (per core) vs 1 MB
        Level 3 cache 12288 KB (shared) vs 8 MB
        Maximum memory size 288 GB vs 64 GB
        Maximum number of processors per configuration 2 vs 1
        Benchmarks
        CompuBench 1.5 Desktop — T-Rex (Frames/s) 0.75 vs 0.744
        CompuBench 1.5 Desktop — Video Composition (Frames/s) 4.967 vs 2.978
        CompuBench 1.5 Desktop — Bitcoin Mining (mHash/s) 15.131 vs 7.352

        Benchmark comparison no rival. In this article I will try to correct my omission. There was much more time and the material turned out to be much more voluminous, we will test both the operation of one processor and a bunch of two Xeon

        X5660 with and without Hyper-Threading enabled. This time a rival appeared, comrade OXOTHUK responded to my request to run the same tests as me, for which many thanks to him. In this clash, the results were very unexpected for me. My system has not changed since the release of the previous material and is the following configuration:0631

        The following system will be the enemy:

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        RAM: 16GB DDR3 1333MHz 2 channels

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        We will move to the tests:

        All tests were carried out in resolution 1920×1080, were installed on RAID0 from 2x HDD WDD GREEN , on a system with Core i7 on SSD 250Gb

        3DMark Fire Strike 1.1

        Everything is expected here, the result grows from an increase in the number of cores and threads, after all, this is a synthetic test. There are no Core i7 results yet, but I think they will be added later.

        Final Fantasy XV

        The benchmark was launched with the maximum preset settings (manually did not change anything) But Xeon, from increasing the number of cores from 6 to 12, gets an increase of only 250 points, and when NT is turned on, it is generally inferior to one processor. The load on the processor with the activity of 6 cores was almost constantly kept at the level of 100%, with 12 cores it fluctuated from 70% to 90%, graphics card utilization was almost always at the level of 95-99%. If last time the frequency of the processors ranged from 1.5GHz to 2.93GHz, this time it stood at 2933MHz throughout the entire test, hence the increase of 150 points compared to the previous article. With active 6 and 12 cores, there were no friezes, but when NT was activated, drawdowns slipped several times.

        Deus Ex: Mankind Divided

        Built-in benchmark, maximum settings, no anti-aliasing.

        Here I was very surprised, one processor confidently outperforms two, with the inclusion of NT the situation gets even worse, the Core i7 is again in unconditional leadership, even without overclocking it confidently wins, but overclocking almost did not bring an increase in results. I did not notice freezes and FPS drawdowns in any configuration, the game went smoothly. The processor load for 6 cores is almost constantly 100%, for 12 from 70 to 90%, the video card is 75-95%.

        Far Cry 5

        Maximum settings, built-in benchmark.

        Here I still didn’t understand what was happening, the video card load did not exceed 70%, and sometimes the processor load dropped to 30% in all configurations from 10 to 30%, with an increase in the number of cores, the result only worsens, the tests ran several times, the result is the same, why such a low load on the video card is not clear. Core i7 in a strong lead.

        Total War: Warhammer II

        Battle benchmark, max settings

        Here the old guys showed themselves well, the result increased significantly from doubling the number of cores, but again sank when the NT was turned on. In a 12-core configuration, the system is almost equal to the stock Core i7, but when overclocked, the latter still lags behind. The load on both the processors and the video card throughout the test and in all modes was constant, without jumps, processors 70-95%, video card 80-99%.

        World of Tanks enCore

        Benchmark, ultra settings.

        The situation repeats itself again, one processor is faster than two, and with the inclusion of NT the result drops even more. The system for this game is redundant, not a single freeze, the load on the video card did not exceed 70%, on the processors it barely reached 30%. Unfortunately, there are no Core results.

        In the next two games, I decided not to do graphics, there are too many parameters, they are not readable. There will be screenshots with test results.

        Tomb Raider

        90 to 100%, only when NT was activated, the load on the processors dropped to 30%, this can be seen from the numbers, the screenshots show that sometimes FPS drops slipped, I did not notice them by eye. The performance is very close to the overclocked Core i7, sometimes even higher, but the minimum FPS spoils everything.

        Assassin’s Creed Origins

        Built-in benchmark, maximum settings.

        X5660

        X5660 x2 HT off

        Conclusions:

        Now I agree with those who said that a system with two processors is not for games, in most games it lags behind or equals the old Core i7 2600k, although its frequency is noticeably higher, the results vary too much. In half of the games, in general, one processor is faster than 2, maybe games can’t work with so many cores, but it seems to me that the slow QPI bus is to blame: it’s impossible to overclock it on this board, and its bandwidth is not enough. Back in 2010, when these processors appeared, they were a dream, but now they are already rather weak, although after 8 years they can still do something, even in games. For professional tasks, they are not bad even now. In the previous article, I noted frequency jumps and frequent friezes in tests, at a fixed frequency, these friezes disappeared, the picture became noticeably smoother. For games, the GTX 1080 is clearly a lot here, it does not reveal its full power, but some 6 GB 1060 will be just right.

        Well, criticism and suggestions are welcome. Honestly, I didn’t want to do this part, but by the number of comments in the last one, I realized that it was needed, and in the comments I promised to do it, I think I didn’t waste 3 days in vain. Even for myself, I learned a lot of new things.

        When it comes to the x86 performance of today’s Intel chips, picking a winner is easy. Whoever has more cores (threads) is the dad. However, the LGA2011-v3 platform is positioned as a gaming one. Extreme gaming. Extremely expensive. Therefore, it has certain advantages over the mainstream LGA1151. As part of today’s Iron Experiment, we will compare the performance of the Core i7-6800K and Core i7-6700K in conjunction with a powerful gaming graphics card GeForce GTX 1080.

        Iron experiment: Core i7-6800K versus Core i7-6700K in games and more

        Comparison of processors, platforms and architectures

        Quite often I see comments on the topic of the number of cores in modern Intel processors: nuclear scientists? Where are the more powerful chips? So here they are! This year, Intel first released the 10-core desktop model Core i7-6950X (review). And also an eight-core “stone” and two six-core models. Come on, come on! What? Expensive? Well, that’s the flip side of the coin. There is no competition after all. In fact, the youngest chip in the line for LGA-2011-v3, Core i7-6800K, costs an average of 9$0 is more expensive than the older 4-core Core i7-6700K. But six-core!

        Intel Core i7-6800K Intel Core i7-6700K
        Codename Broadwell-E Skylake-S
        Process 14 nm 14 nm
        Socket LGA2011-v3 LGA1151
        Supported logic sets X99 Express Z170 Q170 Q150 B150 h210 h270
        Number of cores/threads 6/12 4/8
        Clock speed (in Turbo Boost mode) 3.4 (3.6) GHz 4.0 (4.2) GHz
        Unlocked multiplier Yes Yes
        L3 cache 15 MB 8 MB
        Memory controller DDR4-2400 Quad Channel Up to 128 GB DDR4-2133 Dual Channel DDR3L-1600 Dual Channel Up to 64 GB
        Integrated PCI Express 3. 0 controller 28 lines 16 lines
        Integrated graphics No HD Graphics 530, 1150 MHz
        TDP level 140 W 91W
        Price $441 $350
        Buy

        We see that the Broadwell-E and Skylake chips, in addition to the notorious difference in the number of cores / threads, although they belong to the 6000th Core series, have much more differences. The main thing is not architecture. For in terms of progress, Intel solutions add a teaspoon a year. The most important difference is, of course, the LGA2011-v3 platform and the functionality of the built-in controllers. The X99 Express chipset was developed for Broadwell-E. Quad-channel RAM is supported up to a maximum of 128 GB. Specifically, the Core i7-6800K has 28 PCI Express lanes. The older Broadwell-Es have 40. But the Core i7-6700K has a very high clock speed. At nominal, it keeps stable 4 GHz, in boost — 4.2 GHz. The memory controller is dual-channel, but works with both DDR4 and DDR3. The faster Skylake architecture is used.

        Intel core i7 6700k comparison

        When it comes to x86 performance of today’s Intel chips, picking a winner is easy. Whoever has more cores (threads) is the dad. However, the LGA2011-v3 platform is positioned as a gaming one. Extreme gaming. Extremely expensive. Therefore, it has certain advantages over the mainstream LGA1151. As part of today’s Iron Experiment, we will compare the performance of the Core i7-6800K and Core i7-6700K in conjunction with a powerful gaming graphics card GeForce GTX 1080.

        Iron experiment: Core i7-6800K versus Core i7-6700K in games and not only

        Quite often I see comments on the number of cores in modern Intel processors: “How many can these 4-cores be produced already? Where are the more powerful chips? So here they are! This year, Intel first released the 10-core desktop model Core i7-6950X (review). And also an eight-core “stone” and two six-core models. Come on, come on! What? Expensive? Well, that’s the flip side of the coin. There is no competition after all. In fact, the youngest chip in the line for LGA-2011-v3, Core i7-6800K, costs an average of 9$0 is more expensive than the older 4-core Core i7-6700K. But six-core!

        Intel Core i7-6800K Intel Core i7-6700K
        Codename Broadwell-E Skylake-S
        Process 14 nm 14 nm
        Socket LGA2011-v3 LGA1151
        Supported logic sets X99 Express Z170 Q170 Q150 B150 h210 h270
        Number of cores/threads 6/12 4/8
        Clock speed (in Turbo Boost mode) 3.4 (3.6) GHz 4.0 (4.2) GHz
        Unlocked multiplier Yes Yes
        L3 cache 15 MB 8 MB
        Memory controller DDR4-2400 Quad Channel Up to 128 GB DDR4-2133 Dual Channel DDR3L-1600 Dual Channel Up to 64 GB
        Integrated PCI Express 3. 0 controller 28 lines 16 lines
        Integrated graphics No HD Graphics 530, 1150 MHz
        TDP level 140 W 91W
        Price $441 $350
        Buy

        We see that the Broadwell-E and Skylake chips, in addition to the notorious difference in the number of cores / threads, although they belong to the 6000th Core series, have much more differences. The main thing is not architecture. For in terms of progress, Intel solutions add a teaspoon a year. The most important difference is, of course, the LGA2011-v3 platform and the functionality of the built-in controllers. The X99 Express chipset was developed for Broadwell-E. Quad-channel RAM is supported up to a maximum of 128 GB. Specifically, the Core i7-6800K has 28 PCI Express lanes. The older Broadwell-Es have 40. But the Core i7-6700K has a very high clock speed. At nominal, it keeps stable 4 GHz, in boost — 4.2 GHz. The memory controller is dual-channel, but works with both DDR4 and DDR3. The faster Skylake architecture is used.

        Yesterday the first detailed reviews of the recently announced Intel Core i7-9700K came out. Let me remind you that the i7-x700K line is very popular among gamers as fast and at the same time relatively affordable processors, so it is of particular interest to compare the new product and its three predecessors, i7-8700K, i7-7700K and i7-6700K. The table below shows the results of testing (in conjunction with the Nvidia GTX 1080 graphics card, at 4K resolution) these models, as well as two of the top processors for gaming PCs from Intel and AMD, Core i9-9900K and Ryzen 7 2700X:

        Oct 2018 October 2018 October 2017 January 2017 August 2015 April 2017
        TDP 95W 95W 95W 91W 91W 105W
        Launch day price $488 $374 $349 $339 $350 9009eight

        $329
        Number of cores / threads 8 / 16 8 / 8 6 / 12 4 / 8 4 / 8 8 / 16
        Ashes Classic 68. 0 68.6 68.6 66.4 67.3 61.5
        Civilization 6 102.2 104.7 102.5 97.4 92.0 99.5
        GTAV 23.4 23.4 23.4 23.3 23.2 23.3
        Shadow of the Tomb Raider 33. 2 32.9 33.2 32.9 33.0 33.3 1
        Shadow of War 47.7 48.0 47.3 46.5 47.6 47.5
        Strange Brigade 53.5 53.2 52.8 52.3 51.9 52.7 2
        Far Cry 5 45. 0 45.0 45.0 44.0 44.0 45.0
        Final Fantasy XV 42.8 42.8 42.6 42.5 42.1 42.5
        F1 2018 62.7 62.3 62.7 58.6 59.1 59.9
        World of Tanks 62. 9 62.7 62.8 62.3 62.0 62.4

        1 according to Ryzen 7 2600X
        2 according to Ryzen 7 1800X

        As you can see, the processor did not become a bottleneck, and the 2015 4-core model shows approximately the same result as this year’s 8-core model. At lower resolutions, in particular Full HD (1080p), the result is more inconsistent. In some games, the performance of these processors is almost the same, while in others — the following spread between the i7-6700K and i7-9700K:

        • Civilization 6 — 40% (from the minimum value)
        • Ashes Classic — 32%
        • GTA V — 29%
        • Far Cry 5 — 24%
        • F1 2018 — 23%.

        Another game, Strange Brigade , has a large spread only at HD (720p) — 41%.

        Thus, despite the nominally 2x difference in performance (8 cores vs 4 cores), upgrading from i7-6700K to i7-9700K only makes sense if you play at Full HD and HD resolutions, and even then not in all games. Perhaps in the future the situation will change — as developers optimize games for the growing number of cores in the processor.

        Contents

        Introduction

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        They were followed by the Ivy Bridge models (22 nm). At that time, many potential users literally prayed in anticipation of a miracle for a new process technology. Basically, the hopes were for another achievement in terms of maximum frequencies. The processors also spoke for themselves, reaching the maximum frequency in the nominal mode of almost 4 GHz (more precisely, 3.9 GHz). But in reality, Iviki was not so generous in megahertz and, on average, repeated the results of Sandy Bridge, but with an amendment of 200-400 MHz. And the bulk of the CPU stopped in the region of 4. 5-4.6 GHz.

        In general, the transition from the i7-2600K to the i7-3770K didn’t change much in games and everyday tasks. It was impossible to significantly save on power consumption (95 W versus 77 W). True, in terms of graphics capabilities, the integrated video core has slightly increased in speed. The only problem was that even at the minimum settings, HD Graphics was not something outstanding. As a result, the CPUs were formally endowed with integrated graphics compatible with Klondike Solitaire.

        The Haswell generation, as well as its subsequent Haswell refresh, became the next hope for overclockers. According to the proverb that a projectile does not fall into the same hole twice, we were waiting for an improvement in the accelerating potential. New models were still being produced at 22 nm standards, and according to Intel developers, Haswell processors should have received noticeable improvements in the field of automatic and manual overclocking.

        To do this, they introduced high coefficients for the bus, up to 44x, expanded the maximum limits for power and voltage. In addition, the possibility of overclocking the system bus frequency has been added. But all efforts resulted in the next 4.5-4.7 GHz in the air. Nevertheless, it must be admitted that in terms of overclocking, Haswell is the leader in terms of specific performance. In other words, they really work out every megahertz of their price.

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        Intel Skylake and its features

        What’s so special about the Skylake architecture? Let’s start with the obvious. The most radical decision for Intel was the transition from the DDR3 memory standard to DDR4. This entails replacing not only the motherboard, but also the RAM modules. Fortunately, now the cost of both types of memory is equal.

        The second innovation is the graphics core with 48 execution units. It migrated from the Broadwell processors, but there was no place for the L4 cache in the Skylake CPU. More precisely, such versions will be released only for laptops and embedded solutions, and this is sad. Ideally, Intel should release several versions of energy-efficient CPU models with similar graphics and cache memory. Without it, Skylake will lose all the advantage that Broadwell managed to achieve.

        There are four video configurations prepared for Skylake: GT1 (12 execution units), GT2 (24 units), GT3 (48 units) and GT4 (72 units). Each of the varieties will receive additional modifications that differ in clock frequencies. And the names of the integrated Intel graphics themselves are becoming more and more confusing year by year. It will not be easy to tell the difference between the 6th generation Iris Pro and the HD Graphics Skylake right off the bat.

        But the big question is how many blocks do the enthusiast solutions have, i7-6700K and i5-6600K? It is not so easy to answer it due to the fact that Intel has not provided exact data. And you don’t need to trust GPU-Z and CPU-Z yet, they are often wrong. However, based on test results in games, we can assume that both processors are equipped with GT2 graphics with 24 execution units.

        The third innovation is a return to the roots of overclocking. Now you can change the bus frequency, of course, under certain conditions and within certain ranges. Theoretically, this should help with overclocking locked processors. But how it will be in practice is still difficult to understand. Motherboard BIOS firmware has not yet been brought to mind and does not always adequately respond to changes in bus frequency.

        But even in such conditions, for the sake of experiment, it was possible to increase the frequency of the base bus to 200 MHz. Another question is whether it was worth doing it when the difference in the performance of processors operating with different system bus frequencies is within the measurement error? But now the memory dividers work fine. The minimum step is greatly reduced, there are many dividers themselves — a paradise for an overclocker.

        G.Skill’s 3600 MHz RAM bench kit didn’t reveal all its abilities, freezing at 3200 MHz.

        And finally, Intel got rid of the built-in voltage regulator in the processor. All input data, as before, are set by the power system of the motherboard. In principle, before that we could turn off the built-in converter.

        And now the not so happy news about the thermal paste under the protective cover. Nobody will get rid of it, and Skylake models will continue to work with such a regular thermal interface.

        Comparative Specifications

        Intel Skylake generation: Core i7-6700K and i5-6600K.

        First desktop Intel Core i7-6950X (Broadwell-E) 10-core processor

        and other models for LGA2011 and LGA115x platforms

        ) processors in general-purpose applications, we studied less than a year ago and came to the conclusion that, in general, they are simply not needed for such conditions of use. The reasons for this are trivial — after all, software manufacturers mainly focus on the general average level of equipment already in operation, and dual-core processor models are still selling well there. And no one is eager to change the software (if only because it is too expensive) without a significant change in the tasks solved on the computer, and this has not happened for a long time. However, even among the «typical programs» there are those capable of utilizing any reasonable number of cores, but they do this only sporadically. Most of the time, a modern computer is generally idle, waiting for user actions. But the latter, having taken some action, does not like to wait for the result. The problem is that all «serious» tasks that really require high computing power still generate long-term processes. Thus, it is possible to achieve only a quantitative, but not a qualitative effect — the process took an hour, and started half an hour. So what? It’s good if such tasks arise daily, but after all, this is only 30 minutes of savings in a few hours. But you have to pay for them in full. On servers, by contrast, the workload is constant. Often it can be generally close to 100%, which is bad, because it does not leave a performance margin, i. e. the next client accessing the server will make everyone “slow down”. Therefore, the paths of client and server systems have long been separated. Actually, in the foreseeable historical period, they did not coincide at all — even 10-15 years before the appearance of the first multi-core processors (more or less mass-produced), two, four, or even more single-core processors were often used in server platforms. So there is nothing surprising in the fact that server manufacturers have warmly welcomed the opportunity to «shove» not one, but 2-4 (and then more) cores into one socket. At the moment, the number of cores in the corresponding processors has already exceeded two dozen, and in one system there may be more than a hundred of them — the tasks for utilizing such 9There are 1477 endless expanses of , and there is always the opportunity to simultaneously use not one program, but a whole bunch of them (after all, virtualization also came from this market, so that one physical server can successfully “appear” to the outside world with a dozen other virtual ones, which would be, let’s say, not very comfortable on a pair of computing cores). The “client” computer, on the other hand, works with one, less often two or three active programs at any given time. As a result, in general, for several years a slightly strange situation developed, when it was difficult to load at least those cores that were already present in mass processors. And even now, in general, there are not so few “single-threaded” applications. It is clear that the performance of the latter is most often not very important, but it is in such conditions that most computers work most of the time. In the end, we have what we have. And they had previous years — without significant changes.

        On the other hand, you still have to return to the question. And right now is the time to do it. First, earlier we only measured the performance of processors, leaving their power consumption behind the scenes, although many people are interested in it — especially when applied to multi-core platforms, where the TDP of processors is one and a half to two times higher than that of mass solutions. Secondly, our last year’s testing did not affect the current mainstream Intel platform, namely the LGA1151. Thirdly, there was an update in the «High End Desktop Processors» segment (as it is called in Intel). The truth about replacing the platform is still out of the question — everything necessary from the point of view of the «infrastructure component» was introduced into LGA2011-3 the year before last, and the «party policy» implies the compatibility of each socket with a couple of generations of processors. For LGA1150, these were Haswell and Broadwell, and for LGA2011-3, Haswell-E and Broadwell-E. As you can see, there is no Skylake in this segment yet, so the history of 2013 is formally repeated: with Ivy Bridge-E, which came later than Haswell. But there are some nuances — at that time the number of cores on the «adult» platform did not increase, and it itself was somewhat archaic, but there is no last complaint about LGA2011-3, and the processors formally improved. In particular, now the company’s top solution is not an eight, but a ten-core processor. When preliminary information about this only leaked into well-known narrow circles, they perceived it there with optimism. As the initial data were refined, they quickly resolved, and for a very banal reason.

        The first Extreme Edition processors (then still Pentium 4) started at recommended prices around $999. There was a time when their successors went far beyond this value: for example, the Core 2 Extreme QX9775 and QX9770 that existed almost simultaneously (but had different designs) could «boast» at $1499 and $1399. However, by the time the Core i7 trademark appeared, Intel decided to move away from this practice, returning to a round value of $999. The “extremals” for LGA1366 cost so much — only at first they had four cores, and then six. Two generations of six-core processors for LGA2011 followed «under the sign» of the same numbers. Two years ago, «conditionally desktop» eight-core processors for LGA2011-3 debuted at the same recommended price. And today the company offers to buy for the same money. .. another eight cores, which are no longer extreme, but have retained their price. But the new Extreme Edition, which already contains 10 cores, «pulls» to a higher level — $ 1569, i.e. by as much as $ 70 «beats» the previous record set by QX9775. The family now includes not three models, as before, but four, but, in fact, we are only talking about its expansion upwards, and not about lowering the price of “multi-core for the people”, since at the same price levels as before «live» two six-core and one eight-core processor. Their clock speeds have grown a little, support for DDR4-2400 has appeared, there are architectural changes — one cannot say that nothing has changed. But some were waiting for price cuts. Which, in principle, also exists — a processor with 10 (and even more) cores could be bought earlier (in the form of Xeon), but more expensive (if you do not consider completely outdated models from five years ago) and running at a lower clock frequency. However, it is clear that at such a price level for most buyers, such processors are still only of theoretical interest. But this is already enough to study how it works, at the same time answering those questions that have not been raised before.

        22 nm 22 nm 14 nm 0/3.5 3.0/3.5 Kolo nuclei/Streams 4/8 6/12 8/16 10/20

        L1 cache (total), I/D, KB0099

        cache L2, KB 4 × 256 6 × 256 6 × 256 8 × 256 10 × 256 CASH L3, MIB 9009EN

        20 25 RAM 4 × DDR3-1866 4 × DDR3-1866

        4 × DDR4-2133 4 × DDR 24 × DDr TDP, W 130 130 140 140 140 price T-10531106 T-10531094

        T-11008379

        T -1008382

        9003 N/d. 6950X, but it would be wrong to do without its «relatives» of the previous generation — especially since it, in fact, complements them. As well as the younger models of the line, which we don’t really need so far: as mentioned above, they are only slightly ahead of their predecessors in terms of clock frequency, so the performance will not change much. As a result, for example, the same i7-5820K may turn out to be more interesting than before — if you manage to get on some kind of sale. True, and its power consumption will be higher than that of the 6800K that will replace it, but buyers of multi-core processors (and requiring the use of a discrete video card without fail) usually do not worry too much about this issue. And at the same time, we added the already familiar pair of Ivy Bridge-E models to the subjects — in order to evaluate the “progress” over a slightly longer period of time: we recall that only two years ago (since 5 3.4/3.9 4.0/4.4 4.0/4. 2 Cores/Threads 4/8 4/8 9009 /8 L1 cache (sums.), I/D, KB 128/128 128/128 128/128 CASH L2, KB 4 × 256

        9009 4 × 256 4×256 L3 cache (L4), MiB 8 8 8 RAM5 Price T-7959318 T-10820114 T-12794508

        And since Ivy Bridge-E and Haswell-E are involved in testing, it is logical to compare them with the older Ivy Bridge and Haswell. But not Broadwell, despite the fact that the new line of processors is Broadwell-E: the desktop models of this family are too specific, and the top mass processor is already the Core i7-6700K of the Skylake line.

        Since none of the «High End Desktop» platforms has integrated video, all test subjects were tested using a discrete graphics card based on AMD Radeon R9380 (which, however, is of no particular importance in mass-purpose applications, and game questions themselves need a separate check; if they do, of course). The amount of RAM in all cases was also the same — 16 GB, but its type and effective frequency were the maximum officially supported.

        One more thing about testing. All processors of the new family officially support the new Turbo Boost Max 3.0 technology. Formally, it allows in single-threaded mode to automatically select the «best» of the processor cores to complete the task and increase its frequency to 4 GHz (which is especially true for older models, since the «regular» Turbo Boost by 6950X, for example, is limited to 3.5 GHz). True, for its functioning at the moment it is necessary to use a special driver, which is (possibly) incompatible with some programs. In general, it seems to us that it is better to investigate this issue separately — how well (and in general — how often) this solution works. Therefore, we conducted the first testing, limiting ourselves to the “normal” mode of the system, leaving the subtleties “for later”.

        Test Method

        The method is described in detail in a separate article. Here we briefly recall that it is based on the following four pillars:

        • 2016 iXBT.com Performance Measurement Methodology Based on Real Applications
        • 2016 iXBT.com Gaming Performance Measurement Methodology
        • 2016 iXBT.com Gaming Performance Monitoring Methodology
        • Processor Performance Monitoring Methodology

        A detailed results of all tests are available in the form of a complete table with the results (in Microsoft Excel 9 format).7-2003). Directly in the articles, we use already processed data. In particular, this applies to application tests, where everything is normalized relative to the reference system (as last year, a laptop based on Core i5-3317U with 4 GB of memory and a 128 GB SSD) and grouped by the areas of application of the computer. We decided not to use the results of gaming tests in this particular article — simply because the video card we used has a «saturation point» somewhere in the region of modern Core i3, i. e. any faster processors obviously lead to results determined by it and only to her. So the question of «multi-core in games» as having an increased specificity is better to be postponed for the future — in the form of a special study (and, possibly, using a special methodology).

        iXBT Application Benchmark 2016

        Quite a noticeable breakthrough compared to the previous generation (fortunately, models for mass platforms have already begun to “push” it), which, in fact, could be even greater. Why didn’t this happen? The culprit again turned out to be one program, namely Adobe After Effects. Previously, it had problems with a lack of RAM when using the Multiprocessing technology, however, in previous versions of the program, it could at least be turned on / off manually. In the new one, the user was deprived of such a choice. Accordingly, the program always «chooses» itself — which optimizations to use depending on the available hardware resources, but very often «mistakes» (so you can not be afraid of machine uprisings yet :)). This, however, is not surprising in such cases: after all, the market share of «truly multi-core» systems is so small that few people attach significant importance to full-fledged software testing in such an environment (with the exception, of course, of server applications, but the latter also have their own nuances). ). As a result, the speed of solving a test problem on top processors often turns out to be lower than on some Pentium. The problem can certainly be solved by a significant increase in the amount of memory, which, however, is not free, and there is no research on how much RAM this program needs and under what conditions in the vastness of the network. If we follow the earlier recommendations of the developer in the form of 2 GB per thread, it becomes clear that even 32 GB is not enough for ten-core processors. Such is the feature of top solutions — in order to use all the capabilities of the latter, it may very well be that you will have to pay for the improvement of those components that do not immediately come to mind. So the pleasure is expensive, even if the processors themselves suddenly become cheaper.

        In this group of programs, «pests» were not found, but two applications that distribute work well over processor cores with any number of the latter, starting from a certain moment, simply reduce the load on each of the threads. However, the Core i7-6950X still almost never lags behind the Core i7-6700K, outperforming it by 1.7 times in Lightroom (as expected) and even slightly (thanks to some filters) overtaking it in Photoshop. The previous «flagship» (and, most likely, for the i7-6900K this will be true) there is no such success: it is faster only in Lightroom. Interestingly, the «old» Core i7-4960X is also capable of this, i.e. if the computer is «fed» regularly and often hundreds of photos, the multi-core processor will justify itself and will do this for many years from the date of purchase. But this is just a batch mode of operation in essence — similar to the operation of server software.

        A classic example of a single-threaded application optimized mainly for older processors. Such applications may even suffer from an increase in the number of cores in the processor — if the scheduler starts moving them from core to core, which is what we have in this case. However, the performance of modern processors on such code is still quite high — it’s just that mass solutions are higher. But there, just in recent years, the main trend has been an increase in the very “single-threaded performance” that is needed.

        Almost two years ago, studying the features of the functioning of mass software depending on the number of active processor cores, we made sure that on the Core i7-5960X, the maximum performance of the current version of Audition at that time is achieved … if two of the eight cores are disabled for the processor. To all appearances, the features of the program’s optimization have not changed, so the speed of its operation on the processors of this segment, in fact, even decreases as their potential power increases. But on older mass models, on the contrary, it grows due to microarchitectural changes and an increase in the clock frequency. Slowly, of course, but in the end we can say that sometimes these families of processors just go in different directions.

        Again we return from interactive to batch mode, and in its “good” version: quite old integer algorithms (mostly) with a high degree of parallelism unambiguously vote for multi-core — so unambiguously that here the Core i7-6700K still cannot equal with six-core models from three years ago, although the quad-core models of the same architecture outperform by 20%. We saw the same thing above in Lightroom, i.e. in mass-purpose application programs, such behavior of processors is by no means an isolated case. But it’s not the only one possible.

        Data compression is well parallelized, the reverse process is single-threaded. Thanks to the second, modern top-end quads generally easily overtake younger or older six-core processors. Thanks to the first — Core i7-6950X is the best. Although the victory is not so convincing — less than 25% with a 2.5 times larger number of cores. But, in general, it is clear that for those who archive hundreds of gigabytes of information every day, there is no choice. If you meet them, introduce them 😉

        Multi-core processors have fairly low clock frequencies, especially compared to older mass processors. However, as we can see, this does not lead to any significant problems with “typical everyday” tasks: a normal level of performance.

        As expected, the program “likes” the increase in the number of cores — after all, this is just a “guest” not from the world of mass software, but closer to the HPC area, etc. But also a “desktop” one, not a server one, so when In such loads, the advantages of eight to ten cores can be neglected: they are not so great. Even if such calculations had to be done for hours, the Core i7-6700K will do the job a little slower. Moreover, the position of the Core i7-6950X is also greatly spoiled by the fact that it is, after all, Broadwell-E, and not Skylake-E — within the same generation of microarchitectures, the usefulness of increasing the number of cores is more significant than when comparing different ones. In any case, in those programs that are well optimized for architectural improvements.

        What do we come to in the end? Despite the presence of tasks in which the Core i7-6700K lagged behind even the old Core i7-4960X, it is able to bypass the i7-5960X too — situations are too frequent in mass software when you need not many of some cores, but two ( rarely four) very fast . However, despite this, the Core i7-6950X is still the fastest processor to date, justifying the Extreme Edition status. True, its superiority over the old «extreme», or over the best processors for mass platforms, turns out to be too insignificant — clearly inappropriate for the price. But we’ll talk about this a little later.

        Power consumption and energy efficiency

        Formally, LGA2011 platforms of all modifications are considered «very hot», which is directly hinted at by the manufacturer’s requirements for cooling systems — to maintain Intel’s warranty obligations, the processor must be able to remove 140 W of heat. However, in fact, such figures are not dictated by necessity, but rather, , so it happened . Anyway, no one will cram a top-end platform into a cramped case and install a fan for $20 (although, by the way, such fans were once bundled with many multi-core processors, but the so-called «enthusiasts» ignored them with contempt anyway). In reality, as we see, the power consumption of such solutions can only be considered high in comparison with mass platforms of the same time and the same manufacturer — the struggle for energy efficiency is reflected in them. As a result, we get that even top-end solutions for LGA2011-3 consume energy at the level of the once massive LGA1155. Yes, and adding the number of cores is usually well coordinated with the improvement of technical processes, for example — therefore 69The 50X didn’t become more voracious than the 5960X was.

        And compared to LGA1155, the performance increase is more noticeable, so once again we are seeing an increase in “energy efficiency”. Insufficient, however, to compare with mass platforms of the same time, but this is easily explained — the same crystals that are used to produce 4790K / 6700K are also used in laptops, monoblocks or mini-PCs. Moreover, noticeably more of them are sent to such harsh operating conditions than to spacious desktops. Accordingly, it is energy efficiency that is the priority, or even efficiency at all costs (although this is more applicable to dual-core models), even to the detriment of potential performance. Server solutions (and for this platform this is the main goal) have no such restrictions. Desktops and workstations are currently the only segment where both technological branches intersect, but behave differently, which is natural: they are developed for different purposes. Therefore, some processors benefit from the degree of integration and energy efficiency, while others have greater potential performance. What outweighs when choosing — depends on the tasks. However, in general, almost everything depends on them, to which we turn.

        Total

        In principle, even at the recommended prices, it is clear that this platform is still positioned as a solution “not for everyone”. In fact, for the price of just a ten- or even eight-core processor, you can get a powerful gaming computer. Perhaps paired with a good laptop. Moreover, the matter is not limited to the processor alone — motherboards for LGA2011-3, for objective reasons, are more expensive than for mass platforms. And you will have to pay attention to other peripherals — otherwise the potential capabilities of such systems will simply disappear. For example, in order to fully utilize the advantage in the number of PCIe lanes, in a good way, it is worth installing not one, but a couple of top-end video cards, adding one or more NVMe SSDs. Memory not only can be installed more, but also needs to do this: otherwise, as we have seen, performance in solving some problems can easily turn out to be not only lower than it could potentially be, but also lower than cheaper computers provide.

        But the main thing is just the software. The main problem is not even that many applications are in principle unable to “load” a multi-core processor well. Rather, it is that, if such loads are encountered in the life of a “spherical user”, he does not spend so much time on them. For example, the time it takes to render and export a video clip in Adobe Premiere Pro can be greatly reduced, but the original footage still has to be shot and selected first, which takes much more time. Or the same batch text recognition — we use a 500-page PDF document, which initially needs to be obtained somehow. Even the final rendering of scenes in 3D modeling packages, so beloved by many as an example, is good for comparing computer performance, but it leaves behind the question how and for how long these scenes were obtained: in practice, it can easily turn out that speeding up this work by five times reduces the total time spent by ten percent, or even less.

        Actually, this is why positioning is “not for everyone”.