Intel Core i9-7900X Review: Meet Skylake-X

Civilization VI, Battlefield 1 & Deus Ex: Mankind Divided

Civilization VI AI Test

The stock Core i9-7900X benefits from its dual-core 4.5 GHz Turbo Boost Max 3.0 setting to score well in Civilization VI's AI test. An overclock buys us very little in this situation.

This benchmark typically favors clock rate and IPC throughput over core count, and the Core i7-6950X scales well with increased frequency. Intel's stock Core i7-7700K falls into the middle of the pack, though a bit of tuning would likely propel it into a lead.

Civilization VI Graphics Test

The Core i9-7900X at stock settings tumbles to the bottom of our chart, which runs counter to our expectations. Even 10 cores, 20 threads, lots of L2 cache, and Turbo Boost Max 3.0 can't break past the six-core Ryzen 5 1600X at 4 GHz. Overclocking to 4.5 GHz does little to help. It's clear that the mesh-imposed performance penalty will have a profound effect on some titles.

Battlefield 1 (DX11)

On the other hand, Core i9-7900X wields its Turbo Boost frequencies and adjusted cache hierarchy well in other workloads. The stock Skylake-X CPU leads the test pool, even surpassing an overclocked Core i7-6950X.

Looks like Core i9-7650X is shaping up to have a split personality, right? It'll be interesting to see which one dominates in our application testing.

The Ryzen 7 1800X and Core i7-7700K contribute most to the somewhat messy frame time chart.

Deus Ex: Mankind Divided

The Dues EX: Mankind Divided benchmark results filter into two distinct camps. The Ryzen processors land up top, while Core i9-7900X joins its IA-based counterparts at the bottom. 

MORE: Best CPUs

MORE: Intel & AMD Processor Hierarchy

MORE: All CPU Content