The Intel Rocket Lake CPU launch is less than a week away, but according to new benchmarks from PassMark, Team Blue’s new best CPUs for desktop may already be having some trouble taking off. Of the two Rocket Lake CPUs that PassMark has tested, the Intel Core i9-11900K and the Intel Core i7-11700K, only the i9 beats the Apple M1 in single-core performance. That’s pretty embarrassing, since Intel’s been targeting Apple hard in its ads lately, and since the M1 is primarily a laptop CPU.
|Row 0 - Cell 0||Single Thread Performance Score|
|Intel Core i9-11900K||3,741|
|Apple M1 8 Core||3,550|
|Intel Core i7-11700K||3,542|
Specifically, PassMark gives the M1 a single-threaded performance score of 3,550. That’s slightly above the Intel Core i7-11700K’s 3,542 score, though it is significantly below the Intel Core i9-11900K’s 3,741 score.
So, we’re not looking at too drastic of a difference here, but given that the i7-11700K has an MSRP of $399 while you can get a full Mac Mini with an M1 for $699 is disconcerting.
Intel’s new desktop CPUs will likely still blaze past the M1 in multi-threaded tests, since Apple’s chip lacks hyperthreading. But Intel still can’t be happy seeing its newest desktop CPUs losing out to a laptop chip in any category. Especially given that the M1’s pro-level successor, the M1X, is already in the works.
Rocket Lake’s already gotten a bit of flack for sticking to a 14nm process, and as more companies move to their own bespoke processors, this is a rough time for Intel to stumble.