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

Results: Gaming And Integrated Graphics (iGP)

3D Performance with a Discrete Graphics Card

Of course, gamers want to know just how well Intel’s new Kaby Lake CPUs fare under the latest games. In the next two tests we used an Nvidia GeForce GTX 1080 Founders Edition.

Discrete Graphics: Watch Dogs 2

Watch Dogs 2 likes to have four physical cores, and continues to scale with more threads enabled via SMT. However, the game’s performance doesn’t ramp up linearly with thread count. A fast quad-core CPU without SMT is perfectly ample.

Discrete Graphics: Metro: Last Light

Metro: Last Light uses a lot of computing power for physics, especially since we disabled PhysX. We also skipped any form of anti-aliasing and SSAO to achieve the highest possible frame rate. These CPUs don't bottleneck performance, but the difference between the fastest and slowest ones are approximately 10 percent.

As we've seen already, corresponding Kaby Lake and Skylake CPUs at the same clock frequency perform the same.

3D Performance with Integrated Graphics (iGP)

Nobody’s going to play current games on integrated graphics after spending big bucks on a high-end platform. Still, we tested two titles using settings that provided playable frame rates anyway, even though Intel’s drivers don’t really deal with this kind of task very well. We also want to know if AutoCAD works with an integrated graphics solution. Since AMD’s FX-9590 is the only test CPU without integrated graphics, we used one of AMD’s APUs, the A10-7890K, instead.

Integrated Graphics (iGP): Half Life 2 - Lost Coast

Half Life 2 runs on anything, even the most entry-level GPUs. The only host processing attribute that matters is clock rate and, by extension, IPC throughput. When this game was made, nobody was thinking about four or more x86 cores. Intel’s graphics driver works fairly well in this case. Consequently, the performance of AMD’s APU takes a hit due to its lackluster CPU. The game runs on one core alone, and the graph reflects this.

Integrated Graphics (iGP): Bioshock Infinite

Next, we take a look at what happens when we push the graphics solution harder. Without CPU performance bottlenecking the frame rate, AMD's APU rules supreme. That doesn’t mean it's actually fast, though.

Integrated Graphics (iGP): AutoCAD 3D Performance

All of the CPUs we're testing work well for 2D; the results we generate are almost identical to what we saw from Nvidia's Quadro P5000. The CPU limits performance in every scenario for the reasons we've already covered.

The CPU remains the most important component as we switch over to 3D, translating to similar results. High clock rates and IPC throughput rule once again, and AMD’s APU can’t compete in spite of its better graphics solution and driver. It’s time for Raven Ridge. We can't wait to see how it fares.

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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.