Intel Coffee Lake i7 8700K Review
It can't have escaped your attention - particularly as we've been previewing it all week - that there is a new Intel 8th Generation CPU and attendant chipset released today.
Recently Intel has been focussing largely upon their high end products with the X299 chipset and a whole host of high-core number CPUs that has everyone from the postman to the lady next door salivating over its capabilities. Whilst we all dream of thread numbers so high that they could buy a beer in a pub without ID, the reality is that the majority of us invest our money into the more affordable models in the middle of the Intel range.
For a long while, since the X58 chipset and i7-920, these mainstream Intel CPUs have been four cores with hyperthreading. With the i7-950 we saw a six core, but since then it's been quad core after quad core. If you brought an i5 you got four cores and no threading, and the i7s brought the extra threads to the party. However you sliced it though you got a quad core CPU. In fact you're probably reading this on a quad core, it's certainly being written on one. With the new Coffee Lake-S range of CPUs though Intel have broken with this tradition - in PC hardware terms 9 years is definitely a tradition - to up the core count from four to six, but retaining the hyperthreading difference betwixt the i5 and i7.
Elsewhere a lot of the features of the Kaby Lake CPUs have been retained. We still have the 14nm lithography process, we still have DDR4 support, still the same 16 PCI Express 3.0 lanes. What has changed is that the i7-7700K boosted to 4.5 GHz whilst the i7-8700K we're reviewing today boosts all the way up to 4.7 GHz. Yes, that is on all cores, as we will be seeing in our benchmarks. Intel have definitely been working hard on the efficiency side of things with the i7-8700K being 95W TDP compared to the 91W TDP of the quad core i7-7700K. Two extra hyperthreaded cores for only a 4W TDP increase is something impressive in any book.