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Rocket Lake Engineering Samples Benchmarked Against Zen 3

New Rocket Lake IHS
(Image credit: Chiphell.com)

As outlined in a recent post on Chip Hell, one of its users reportedly grabbed an early B560 motherboard and engineering samples of three of Intel's new Rocket Lake CPUs, including the Core i7-11700, Core i9-11900, and Core i9-11900K. 

The tested pitched each processor against AMD's Zen 3-powered Ryzen 7 5800X to see just how they compare to AMD's best eight-core chip. Since these are engineering samples, the Intel chips' clocks speeds are significantly lower than we would likely see with retail models. The poster also threw in Intel's previous-gen Core i9-9900K and Core i7-10700K as well to compare gen-on-gen performance gains.

The testbed used the same B560 board discussed above, a B550 Taichi Razer Edition for the AMD tests, ASRock Radeon RX 6800 Taichi, 2x8GB kit of ZADAK Spark DDR4-3600 RAM, 1000W Antec HCG-X1000 power supply, and a 360mm AIO liquid cooler.

Here are the Rocket Lake engineering samples tested:  

  • QV1J, Core i7-11700 ES -- 1.8GHz base frequency, 4.4GHz boost frequency.
  • QVTE, Core i9-11900 ES -- 1.8GHz base frequency, 4.5GHz boost frequency.
  • QV1K, Core i9-11900K ES -- 3.4GHz base frequency, 4.8GHz boost frequency.

Even though there is a wide selection of benchmarks posted at Chip Hell, we're only covering the locked 4GHz benchmark results. We chose to focus on this test because the engineering samples for Rocket Lake are clocked so low that any performance benchmarks from these samples are specific to these samples alone, and will not represent actual Rocket Lake performance when the retail SKUs hit shelves this year.

The "Locked at 4GHz" Benchmark

4GHz Locked R15 Benchmark

4GHz Locked R15 Benchmark (Image credit: Chiphell.com)

Chip Hell ran the Core i9-9900K, Core i7-10700K, Core i9-11900K ES, and Ryzen 7 5800X in Cinebench, but with all the chips locked at 4GHz, allowing us to see how much of an IPC gain Rocket Lake-S has purely from an architectural standpoint, as clock speed is no longer the deciding factor to performance.

ProcessorCinebench R15 Single-ThreadedCinebench R15 Multi-Threaded
Ryzen 7 5800X2211,121
Core i9-11900K ES2001,029
Core i7-10700K176888
Core i9-9900K168852

We can see the gains from Comet Lake to Rocket Lake are quite decent; Rocket Lake commands a 13% lead over its predecessor. Compare this to the generational leap from Coffee Lake to Comet Lake at just 4%.

However, despite the architectural gains, it's not enough for Intel to beat AMD's Ryzen 7 5800X, which wins by 8%.

It appears that Intel will use clock speed rather heavily to try to gain an advantage over AMD's Zen 3 architecture, as AMD still appears to win on clock-for-clock performance. But at least the architectural changes were significant enough to give Rocket Lake a decent IPC increase over Comet Lake. The overall performance gap should also widen rather significantly if clock speeds are higher on shipping Rocket Lake models.

However, Intel will continue to struggle against AMD's Zen 3 platform, whether or not Intel manages to beat AMD in the single-threaded battle, as Rocket Lake will be severely behind in core count and that won't change until Intel's 12th-Gen Alder Lake architecture arrives.

  • JfromNucleon
    Seems promising
    Reply
  • frogr
    I suggest that you look over the original article on chiphell.
    https://www.chiphell.com/thread-2290061-1-1.html With PBO overclocking, the 5800x maintains its 10% lead over the 11900K ES overclocked at 4.3 GHz.

    It also shows power consumption and temperature data. The author speculates: "... you are likely to be See the power consumption of the CPU above 300W, and then ascend to the sky with the fireworks from your motherboard. "
    Reply
  • HideOut
    You can't go by power consumption this early. They will likely be far more efficient by then
    Reply
  • FakeMike
    I hope Intel catches up to AMD as this is the only way to lower prices.
    Reply
  • jeremyj_83
    HideOut said:
    You can't go by power consumption this early. They will likely be far more efficient by then
    We know the power consumption of the 9900k which is on the same process tech and same core count. Rocket Lake will only be worse due to it being a larger chip and possibly higher clocked.
    Reply
  • JfromNucleon
    jeremyj_83 said:
    We know the power consumption of the 9900k which is on the same process tech and same core count. Rocket Lake will only be worse due to it being a larger chip and possibly higher clocked.
    I'm pretty new to this, so correct me if I'm wrong but wouldn't the new uarch help in terms of power consumption and heat?
    Reply
  • spongiemaster
    jeremyj_83 said:
    We know the power consumption of the 9900k which is on the same process tech and same core count. Rocket Lake will only be worse due to it being a larger chip and possibly higher clocked.
    Why are you picking the 9900k as your reference? The 10700k is measurably more efficient than the 9900k. With comparable clocks, I would expect the 11900k to draw more than the 10700k, but probably just bring it in line with the 9900k, while offering much better performance.
    Reply
  • ottonis
    Admin said:
    Rocket Lake engineering samples have been benchmarked against the AMD Ryzen 7 5700X and previous-gen Intel Core i7-10700 and i9-9900K.

    Rocket Lake Engineering Samples Benchmarked Against Zen 3 : Read more

    This is great news because it will heat up competition in the most relevant segment, which is the midfield of 6-8 core CPUs.

    I expect significant price drops from AMD if Intel's corresponding Rocket Lake CPUs don't really win in relevant benchmarks against their AMD- counterparts. In this case, Intel would have to go the route of the underdog: generate sales by improving on the performance per Dollar metric, or in other words: significant price reductions.

    This would certainly stimulate AMD to reduce their prices as well, so spring 2021 will be a great time to jump on the Zen 3 bandwagon!
    Reply
  • JfromNucleon
    ottonis said:
    In this case, Intel would have to go the route of the underdog: generate sales by improving on the performance per Dollar metric, or in other words: significant price reductions.
    I certainly hope so
    Reply
  • jasonf2
    FakeMike said:
    I hope Intel catches up to AMD as this is the only way to lower prices.
    I follow this quite a bit and I highly doubt that Intel catching up performance wise is going to lower pricing at all. Intel already has dropped prices somewhat to compete, but AMD having the performance and process lead right now has given them the ability to raise their prices. Unless Intel comes out with something truly earth shattering, which is pretty unlikely considering AMD and TSMC have both dropped the hammer down on R&D (and aren't letting up) along with Intel's continued inability to get back on top of fab node dominance, AMD and Intel are going to tit for tat for a while. This will be really good for generational IPC gains but price more than likely will actually go up due to shortages and fab costs skyrocketing.
    Reply