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Intel Core i7-5960X, -5930K And -5820K CPU Review: Haswell-E Rises

Battlefield 4, Grid 2, And Metro: Last Light

Battlefield 4

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I knew the content creation, productivity, and media encoding benchmarks would make the Core i7-5960X look good. After all, a great many of those tests were selected months and years ago for their ability to isolate host processor performance. But I’m counting on the games to show value in the six- and even four-core processors, since they often favor architecture and clock rate over core count.

Battlefield 4 gives us an early taste of that hypothesis in practice; the Core i7-5820K and -5930K take first and second place. More surprising is that the Core i7-4790K falls to last. It centers on Haswell and sports the highest clock rate in our comparison. Big L3 caches have to be giving the eight- and other six-core CPUs their advantage.

Grid 2

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Known for its host processor and memory dependency, Grid 2 might have been expected to exhibit a wider delta between first and last place. But all of these CPUs feed a single GeForce GTX Titan quickly. The Core i7-5820K notably claims its second first-place finish, followed by Intel’s Core i7-4790K. It’s good to know you don’t need to drop disgusting amounts of cash on your next platform to get great frame rates, right? Invest in your graphics subsystem instead.

Metro: Last Light

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Even though Metro is a GPU showcase, we can’t help but notice the Core i7-5820K in first place again. The -4790K and -5930K following it are just slightly faster than three generations of Extreme Edition processors, plus a $2000 Xeon.

  • dovah-chan
    Oh boy here we go...
    Reply
  • Merry_Blind
    Affordable 8-cores from Intel are finally coming. Awesome.
    Reply
  • B4vB5
    Chris and Igor @ TomsHW,

    Bit disappointed to not see a comparison with the Xeon E5-1650v2(or 1660v2), as the 2600 is a bit overkill comparing prices. Some of us just need a workstation with ECC ram and not just a free-for-all(ie someone else is paying) Xeon 2600 fest.
    Reply
  • JamesSneed
    Out of curiosity why were so many of the gaming tests only done at 2560x1440? Seems like you would be more GPU bound at this resolution. I'm not sure it really matters but I do like gaming at 1080p for the very high frame rates was curious if these would push frame rates higher. Otherwise nice review.
    Reply
  • ohim
    14063555 said:
    Affordable 8-cores from Intel are finally coming. Awesome.

    1000$ is affordable to you ? :))

    14063653 said:
    Out of curiosity why were so many of the gaming tests only done at 2560x1440? Seems like you would be more GPU bound at this resolution. I'm not sure it really matters but I do like gaming at 1080p for the very high frame rates was curious if these would push frame rates higher. Otherwise nice review.


    Though you have a point here, the guy buying such CPUs most likely will game at above 1080p .. but this would have implied using 2 GPUs at least in the test.
    Reply
  • chiefpiggy
    Why do they call these their "5th generation" of Intel core processors if they're refreshes of the Haswell processors? I get that they have revolutionary technology within but with the release of broadwell so soon I doubt that anyone would buy these processors..
    Reply
  • envy14tpe
    I need this system to play Minecraft. with that aside, Intel finally has made a jump in i7s value and performance.
    Reply
  • therogerwilco
    Meh, looks like I'll be keepin my uber delid'd oc'd 4770k a bit longer
    Reply
  • srap
    "Single-threaded software is so last decade, though."
    I have a hunch that we will never see anything like this in the comment sections of AMD reviews. Not sure why :D
    Reply
  • CaptainTom
    Yeah the real winner of a cpu here is definitely the 5820K. If I were building now, that is what I would use.
    Reply