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Rocket Lake Core i9-11900K Is A Strong Rival For Ryzen 7 5800X

Image of a CPU on a motherboard.
(Image credit: Shutterstock)

Update 12/03/2020 6:00 pm PT: Hardware detective Tum_Apisak just unearthed two Ashes of the Singularity (AoTS) entries for the Intel Core i9-11900K. The processor purportedly sports a 3.5 GHz base clock, which could be the mysterious octa-core chip that appeared earlier today.

Original Story:

A new octa-core Rocket Lake processor has graced Geekbench 5's benchmarking grounds. The submission (via Tum_Apisak) looks promising as the unidentified chip appears to be a serious opponent for the Ryzen 7 5800X (codenamed Vermeer)

Unlike Comet Lake, Rocket Lake will go back to Intel's past practices of maxing out at eight cores. Therefore, the chip from the Geekbench 5 submission is more than likely to be an 11th Generation Core i9, although it remains to be seen whether it's the unlocked "K" model or one of those locked non-K or T-series parts. In either case, the Rocket Lake processor comes armed with Cypress Cove cores, and Intel has gone as far as promising a two-digit instruction per cycle (IPC) uplift.

Although the multi-core performance wasn't up to par, a previous octa-core Rocket Lake processor bested the Core i9-10900K by up to 18% in single-core performance. It would appear that the Cypress Cove microarchitecture could be a major gamechanger, just like AMD's Zen 3 microarchitecture. We've already confirmed AMD's IPC claims, while Intel's numbers still need to be verified.

Intel 11th Generation Rocket Lake Benchmarks

ProcessorSingle-CoreMulti-Core
Ryzen 7 5800X1,66110,367
Rocket Lake (8 Cores)1,6459,783
Core i9-10900K1,40711,014
Core i7-10700K1,3518,991

The Rocket Lake processor reportedly features eight cores, 16 threads, and 16MB of L3 cache, identical to the previous Core i9-9900K. This has been the maximum configuration pre-Comet Lake days. According to Geekbench 5, the Rocket Lake chip finished the benchmark run with a 3.41 GHz base clock and 4.98 GHz boost clock. These could be early specifications for an engineering sample, so treat the values with caution.

In addition to the core difference, the Core i9-10900K has an 8.5% faster base clock than the Rocket Lake processor. Assuming that the Rocket Lake's maximum boost clock is 4.98 GHz, the Core i9-10900K's boost clock is around 6.4% faster. If we pitch the Rocket Lake processor against the Core i7-10700K, the latter flaunts an 11.4% and 2.4% better base and boost clock speeds, respectively.

At least for the moment, Rocket Lake doesn't seem to have high clock speeds as the boost in performance will come from the new Cypress Cove cores.

(Image credit: Primate Labs Inc.)

The Rocket Lake processor's single-core score was up to 16.9% higher than the average single-core for the Core i9-10900K. The difference between the Rocket Lake chip and the Ryzen 7 5800X was less than 1%, suggesting that both processors' single-core performance might be in the same alley if benchmarked under the same system with equal specifications.

As per Geekbench 5's data, the Core i9-10900K's average multi-core score was around 12.6% higher than the Rocket Lake. Nonetheless, the margins are less if we compare the octa-core Rocket Lake against other rivals with a similar eight-core, 16-thread configuration, like the Ryzen 7 5800X and Core i7-10700K. The Rocket Lake lost to the Ryzen 7 5800X as the Zen 3's average multi-core score was 6% better. However, Rocket Lake did outperform the Core i7-10700K by up to 8.8%.

Barring any misfortunes, Intel aims to unleash Rocket Lake in the first quarter of next year. If the whispers are accurate, we could be looking at a potential late March launch, which, of course,  will likely be accompanied by a new legion of Intel 500-series motherboards.

  • Makaveli
    Will be interesting to see Rocket lake vs 5800X but I need more than geekbench scores. That benchmark like the userbenchmarks site are not on my list for go to info.
    Reply
  • Math Geek
    is this still 14nm+++++++++++++ with 300w+ power draw?

    or is this finally a new smaller node with reduced power consumption?

    simply matching single core ipc is not a bad thing but doing it while using 3x the power makes it a non-starter in my simple logical way of looking at things.
    Reply
  • logainofhades
    Only 8 cores max? Is Intel even trying at this point?
    Reply
  • Makaveli
    logainofhades said:
    Only 8 cores max? Is Intel even trying at this point?

    This has been known for months now.

    going over 8 cores with blow up the power budget they are still on 14+++
    Reply
  • Late_Apex
    Parity with a chip already in possession (5800x) with yet another new motherboard requirement. Hard pass. Also picked up 5900x in my transition away from Intel.
    Reply
  • TerryLaze
    Math Geek said:
    is this still 14nm+++++++++++++ with 300w+ power draw?

    or is this finally a new smaller node with reduced power consumption?

    simply matching single core ipc is not a bad thing but doing it while using 3x the power makes it a non-starter in my simple logical way of looking at things.
    Stop propagating misinformation.
    The only way to get power draw that high is to use a terribly miss configured bios.
    4th6YElNm5wView: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4th6YElNm5w

    logainofhades said:
    Only 8 cores max? Is Intel even trying at this point?
    Just like with disabling HTT from gen to gen, going with 8 cores will allow them to release a second gen or refresh with 10 cores, double the money.

    Makaveli said:
    This has been known for months now.

    going over 8 cores with blow up the power budget they are still on 14+++
    They could do the same thing AMD does and run 10 cores at just above 4Ghz having higher IPC they would need less clocks.
    Reply
  • spongiemaster
    Late_Apex said:
    Parity with a chip already in possession (5800x) with yet another new motherboard requirement. Hard pass. Also picked up 5900x in my transition away from Intel.
    New motherboards are for PCIE4 support among other things and are not required. Rocket Lake is supposed to be compatible with existing LGA1200 motherboards.
    Reply
  • jeremyj_83
    TerryLaze said:
    Stop propagating misinformation.
    The only way to get power draw that high is to use a terribly miss configured bios.
    4th6YElNm5wView: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4th6YElNm5w
    Will the chip even in perfectly stock configuration draw up to 250W? Yes. Therefore it isn't misinformation at all. The chip can and will draw that much power in a fully stock situation for a maximum of 56 seconds. If it cools down the the boost budget, for lack of a better term, will be refilled and it could boost to 250W again. That said if you just set it to 100% utilization for an hour, the average power draw will not be 250W if everything is at stock settings. However, what is stock for Intel as they pretty much look away the entire time for any BIOS configuration that will put them in a better light. That means that you will find that the CPU will probably be running close to 200W the entire time if you just plug the CPU in to the motherboard and leave it like 99% of people do.
    Reply
  • NightHawkRMX
    With all limits enabled, the 10900k PL2 is set at 250w, meaning it can draw 250w stock, for a limited duration at least.

    If 250w wasn't bad enough, many motherboards exceed these power limits out of the box, meaning that the chip can draw 300+ watts with completely out of the box stock settings. OUCH.

    To quote toms launch review of the 10900k:
    To find the power limit associated with our chip paired with the Gigabyte Aorus Z490 Master motherboard, we ran a few Prime95 tests with AVX enabled (small FFT). During those tests, we recorded up to 332W of power consumption when paired with either the Corsair H115i 280mm AIO watercooler or a Noctua NH-D15S air cooler. Yes, that's with the processor configured at stock settings.
    Reply
  • thisisaname
    669JANzeAo0
    I wonder if Steve also considers the Rocket Lake Eight Core CPU to be an equal waste of Silicon.
    Reply