Intel Kaby Lake Core i7-7700K, i7-7700, i5-7600K, i5-7600 Review

Results: DTP And Multimedia

We're often asked which CPU or graphics card is best for intensive Adobe CC workloads, and we're ready to answer the question as far as CPUs are concerned.

Once again, we leave the provisioning and automation of the benchmarks, as well as the computation of the geometrical mean (GEOMEAN), to PCMark 8 Professional.

Adobe Photoshop CC (64 Bit)

We have two different Adobe Photoshop benchmarks to run. The top of the chart stays the same, but the lower rungs change places depending on the workload. We start with the light version.


PicturesFile Size
Picture Size
Source
143.9 - 17.6MB2500 x 1677
6048 x 4032
Target
14388 - 778KB1200 x 800
Actions
- Start Application and Load Data File
- Change Color Balance
- Add Auto Level
- Adjust Shadows and Glare
- Downscale with Bicubic Interpolation
- Compute and Add Unsharp Mask
- Save Results in Files and Close Application


Using additional functions, which includes output in different compressed file formats, puts even more strain on the hardware. Taken together, the two tests provide a fairly complete picture of any bottlenecks that would be encountered in daily usage. The filters used here don’t include GPU acceleration, which means that we're measuring CPU and platform performance.


File Size
Picture Size
Resolution
Layer
Source PSD
113MB5184x7744
300 DPI  
1
PSD Export
1320MB7000x10457
300 DPI 4
TIFF Export
476MB7000x10457
300 DPI
None
JPEG Export
177KB1000x1494
300 DPINone
Actions
- Start Application and Load PSD File
- Upscale with Bicubic Interpolation
- Change Color Depth to 16-bit per Channel
- Create Color Range and Copy to New Layer
- Merge Two Picture Layers and Insert as New Layer in Front
- Compute and Add Unsharp Mask to this Foreground Layer
- Create and Delete Elliptical Selection in this Layer
- Merge All Layers into One Layer
- Add Gaussian Blur
- Add and Delete Gradient Mask
- Decrease Layer's Opacity
- Export File to PSD, TIFF and JPEG
- Flatten Picture and Downscale with Bicubic Interpolation
- Compute and Add Unsharp Mask
- Export as JPEG and Close Application


We don't see the usual order due to the Core i7-7700’s surprisingly bad performance. We repeated the benchmark run several times, but, for whatever reason, the result stayed the same. Still, the differences are tiny. None of the CPUs, not even AMD’s FX-9590, are actually slow.

Adobe InDesign CC (64 Bit)

Adobe InDesign emphasizes IPC throughput, as evidenced by its sensitivity to clock rate. It’s interesting that the Kaby Lake CPUs end up being slower than the corresponding Skylake models at the same frequencies.


File Size
Pages
Pictures
Source File
385MB40
42
Target File
378MB40
40
PDF Export64.7MB40
40
Actions
- Start Application and Load Data File
- Change Picture Size and Reposition Pictures
- Add Colored Rectangle as Decorative Element
- Change Border Settings
- Insert Text
- Save Document as New File
- Export as PDF File and Close Application



Adobe Illustrator CC (64 Bit)

For Adobe Illustrator, CPU and storage performance are the deciding factors. The hardware’s particularly important when it comes to writing operations.


Original File
Saved File
Exported PDF
File
733KB6.2MB
5.6MB
Actions
- Start Application and Load Data File
- Change Picture Sizes and Reposition Pictures
- Add Translucent Filled Rectangle for Color Effect
- Vectorize Pictures in Document
- Add Text Fields, Lines, Rectangles, Ellipses, Stars and Spines
- Save the Documents in a New File
- Export as PDF
- Close Document and Application


Adobe After Effects CC

Adobe After Effects is able to schedule tasks like vector conversion in parallel. This is reflected in the results from CPUs with SMT that achieve better multi-threading performance, placing them above their competition. Uncompressed AVIs drive home the point that a higher clock rate can compensate for the lack of SMT.


File Size
Resolution
Data Rate
Audio
File 1
890MB1080p, 30 FPS
1458 Mb/s
1536 Kb/s
48 KHz
Stereo
OutputAERender (Uncompressed AVI)
File 2
5.64MB1080p, 30 FPS0.9 Mb/s
256 Kb/s
44 KHz
Stereo
Output Settings
Windows Media Video 9 Advanced Profile
- Constant Bitrate: 0.9 Mb/s
- Image Quality: 98
- Keyframe Interval: 1 Second
- Buffer Size: 1 Seconds

Windows Media Audio 9.2
- Constant Audio Bitrate: 256 Kb/s, 44 KHz, Stereo (A/V) CBR


Bottom Line

Adobe CC doesn’t demand a CPU with SMT at this point. In the end, any good quad-core processor will do, with the largest gains observable from high IPC throughput and clock rates. Processors that can hit even higher clock rates via Turbo Boost/Core across four cores have an advantage.

A direct comparison shows that Kaby Lake CPUs aren’t any faster than Skylake CPUs at the same clock rate. It’s actually the opposite in some situations, with the Skylake CPUs edging out Intel’s new processors. In order to achieve this, the older CPUs first need to be manually overclocked, though.

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126 comments
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  • Based on our initial testing, we can confirm that HD Graphics 630 does not function correctly under Windows 7 and 8.1. Both operating systems install generic drivers for the display adapter, even after applying the latest drivers and updates, so many core features remain unavailable. We also experienced stability issues with Windows 7 that might even negate using an add-in GPU as a workaround.

    Not true, i setup Kaby Lake in my lab and everything works fine under Windows 7. Did you guys even try to apply drivers for HD Graphic 630?
  • adgjlsfhk
    It would have been kind of nice to see igpu vs gtx 750 and other low end discrete graphics cards, but other than that, great review.
  • cknobman
    Boooooooooooooooooring.

    Bring on the new AMD cpu's!!!

    Oh, nice review the boring is not Toms fault ;)
  • Jim90
    "Intel’s slow cadence of incremental upgrades hasn’t done much to distance its products from AMD's.
    "...Obviously we need a competitive AMD to help reinvigorate the desktop PC space."

    Without real competition the only risk Intel takes with the Desktop market is to loose sight of (i.e. actively ignore) the performance jump the consumer expects in a new release. Continual and lengthy minor incremental updates (pretty much what we've seen since the 2000 series) may well lead to consumer apathy. I certainly haven't upgraded 'as much as I could!' recently. Absolutely no justifiable need.

    Then again, perhaps we've all had access to enough power we need? We used to talk about 'killer apps/software' to drive consumers into making a purchase. This certainly did work. Maybe new tech (currently available) isn't killer enough? We need another '3dfx Voodoo' experience?
    VR is certainly (definite?) a potential driver...here's hoping for speedy and significant updates here.
  • PaulAlcorn
    2164959 said:
    Based on our initial testing, we can confirm that HD Graphics 630 does not function correctly under Windows 7 and 8.1. Both operating systems install generic drivers for the display adapter, even after applying the latest drivers and updates, so many core features remain unavailable. We also experienced stability issues with Windows 7 that might even negate using an add-in GPU as a workaround. Not true, i setup Kaby Lake in my lab and everything works fine under Windows 7. Did you guys even try to apply drivers for HD Graphic 630?


    Hello, yes we did test and attempt to install the HD Graphics 630 drivers. We are working with early BIOS revisions, so it is possible that we encountered a platform-specific issue. Can you share which motherboard you used for your testing? Any feedback is welcome.
  • ohim
    Why are they even releasing this ? It makes absolutely no sense to release such a product ...
  • redgarl
    I am concerned about Quality Assurance issue more than small performance increment.
  • redgarl
    216536 said:
    Why are they even releasing this ? It makes absolutely no sense to release such a product ...


    Probably to make a statement of some kind.
  • FormatC
    2164959 said:
    Not true, i setup Kaby Lake in my lab and everything works fine under Windows 7. Did you guys even try to apply drivers for HD Graphic 630?
    You really have drivers for the Z270 chipset with official support of Windows 7 from intel and Microsoft? I tried it also and was not able to run KL with all features on a W7 installation. It runs, somehow. :)
  • valeman2012
    Just notice that people that are using these CPU you need Windows 10 to have everything working 100%.
  • Dosflores
    Intel's non-E CPUs are great for laptops, but it seems that they'll become irrelevant for desktops with dedicated graphics. Skylake-E will surely be much more interesting for top performance. For gaming, an eight-core Ryzen seems more attractive than buying a CPU with four ultra-fast cores, and hundreds of millions of transistors destined for graphics that you won't ever use.
  • valeman2012
    Kaby Lake is good if you upgrading something from AMD FX...lol
    Kaby Lake best use in Windows 10
    Kaby Lake Perfromance it better than what AMD FX Provides so goodluck to far range upgraders.
  • ac13044
    not much difference between kaby and skylake. skylake il stick too till cannonlake comes about. for those amd airheads come on it runs hot at stock settings also intel are not bothered about amd and what they have to offer as intel rises up more people using intel than amd imo
  • mavikt
    I was expecting to see a definitive, albeit small efficiency improvement over Sky lake.
    That's what I read into the 14nm+ label they're using. Atleast with a "14nm+" process you'd think they should've ironed out alot of the production process variability.
    I can only conclude that the production process variations of the 14nm+ is greater that the improvement of "going from 14nm to 14nm+".

    Is the 14nm+ just a marketing gimmick?
  • FormatC
    It is in the first line a very welcome cost-down for Intel. ;)
  • weilin
    I'm sticking to my guns on this one

    it's not "tick -> tock -> tock" it's "tick -> tock -> tweak"
  • Sakkura
    43465 said:
    I'm sticking to my guns on this one it's not "tick -> tock -> tock" it's "tick -> tock -> tweak"


    I'll go with "tick-tock-toe" because this is nowhere near as interesting as a real tock.
  • Martell1977
    A few more "incremental" performance increases and I might find it worth the money to upgrade...my i7-950(@ stock speed) lives on, lol!
  • mac_angel
    great work showing the previous generation at the same clock speeds for an actual comparison.
  • SteelCity1981
    the only diff between kaby lake and skylake is kaby lakes igpu supporgs vp9 and hvec 10 codecs. that's it and has e saw here a skylake clocked at the same speed as kaby lake shows no performance diff.
  • 482859 said:
    2164959 said:
    Not true, i setup Kaby Lake in my lab and everything works fine under Windows 7. Did you guys even try to apply drivers for HD Graphic 630?
    You really have drivers for the Z270 chipset with official support of Windows 7 from intel and Microsoft? I tried it also and was not able to run KL with all features on a W7 installation. It runs, somehow. :)


    I did not use Z270 chipset but Z170. Kaby Lake with Z170 works fine under Windows 7. Again, don't have Z270 motherboard.

    I used this board

    http://www.asrock.com/mb/Intel/Z170%20Extreme4+/index.us.asp

    The latest UEFI update supports Kaby Lake. Works fine under Windows 7 so MS. story of Windows 7 not able to fully support Kaby Lake is a B.S. For Z270 i would wait Intel to release an appropriate drivers and it will happen.
  • Sam Hain
    My 4790K's still viable for a while longer I guess... That is, if I'm solely looking at the Blue-Team's latest.
  • uglyduckling81
    They really should just be called i7-6750k and i56650k seeing as all they are is a stock speed bump.
    Basically meaningless to anyone that overclocks on Skylake already.
    I'm still going to upgrade my 2500k this year but to what exactly I'm not sure.
    Hopefully AMD give us a better showing, though I doubt they can match the 7700k in games, and I'm a gamer so it's probably where I'm looking.
  • 464372 said:
    They really should just be called i7-6750k and i56650k seeing as all they are is a stock speed bump. Basically meaningless to anyone that overclocks on Skylake already. I'm still going to upgrade my 2500k this year but to what exactly I'm not sure. Hopefully AMD give us a better showing, though I doubt they can match the 7700k in games, and I'm a gamer so it's probably where I'm looking.


    I agree. For someone who is about to buy a brand new system, this is a good option but for people who are coming from older generation no need to upgrade. Intel needs to step up but it won't happen until AMD does something. I do hope that new Ryzen costs same as 7700k but being 8/16 and beating high end x99 CPU in business scenarios and 7700K in gaming. It will force Intel to maybe merge x99 and z270 platform into one and lower the price.