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Intel Alder Lake processors might outperform previous gen by over 50%

Update: Intel’s new line of Alder Lake processors have now been officially launched at the company’s Innovation event. Intel’s claims include the 50% boost in multi-core performance over the previous generation.

Today, new CPU-Z benchmarks emerged, showcasing the performance of the upcoming Intel Core i5-11600K, as part of Intel’s 12th-gen Alder Lake processors. Designed as an affordable mid-tier option, this CPU outperformed the previous generation by miles — and this applies to chips from both Intel and AMD models from the past.

With the expected launch of Intel’s 12th-gen Alder Lake processors in just a bit over a week, new benchmarks emerge every single day. We’ve already seen the performance of Intel’s high-end Alder Lake processor, the Core i9-12900K, and it was impressive. However, Intel’s mid-range CPUs were largely left alone up until now.

An engineer smiles as she holds up two processor chips.
The 12th Generation of Intel processors, Alder Lake, is set to release in the fall. (Image credit: Intel) Image used with permission by copyright holder

Three benchmarks have been submitted to CPU-Z. While early tests are not always accurate, these benchmarks are all quite consistent, suggesting that the results may be close to the real performance of Core i5-11600K. One way or another, it’s important to take these with a grain of salt until the processors are tested after their release.

The Intel Core i5-11600K processor is rumored to have a base clock of 2.8GHz that can be boosted up to 3.7GHz, as well as a single-core boost of up to 4.9GHz. It features six performance cores with hyperthreading and four efficiency cores, adding up to 16 threads. The systems used in the benchmarks included two different Asus Z690 motherboards: the Asus ROG Maximus Z690 Apex and the Asus ROG Maximus Z690 Hero. The DDR5 RAM came from OLOy, Corsair, and TeamGroup, but all three had a frequency of 4800MHz.

In the CPU-Z benchmarks, this Alder Lake processor scored between 760 and 773 in single-core tests and 7,156-7,220 in multi-core. In order to add some context to these numbers, the CPU was pitted against the Core i5-11600K, a comparable processor from the previous Rocket Lake generation.

The result is very favorable for Alder Lake, as its predecessor scored a mere 633 points in single-core and 4731 points in multi-core benchmarks. This means that if the benchmarks are accurate, the new Intel Core i5-12600K is up to 20% faster in single-core tasks and a whopping 52% faster in multi-threaded tasks.

Intel Core 12th-gen processor boxes.
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Outclassing its predecessor is one thing, but Intel Alder Lake also stands victorious against AMD processors of the same price range. Compared to the AMD Ryzen 7 5800X, which has eight cores and 16 threads, Core i5-12600K was around 19% faster in single-core and 9% faster in multi-core tests.

The benchmark results speak very well of the upcoming Intel Core i5-12600K. Of course, it may still be outperformed by more expensive CPUs of the previous generation, but Intel’s pricing is likely to be somewhat competitive for this processor. The comparable Rocket Lake CPU had an MSRP of $262. If this processor remains similarly priced, it may offer great performance for this bracket.

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Monica J. White
Monica is a UK-based freelance writer and self-proclaimed geek. A firm believer in the "PC building is just like expensive…
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