The Intel Core i7-8700K Hexa-Core Processor Review

The 8th Generation Intel Core processors, codenamed Coffee Lake, are the first Intel processor family to garner so much interest in recent history. Thanks to the Ryzen Effect, Intel is finally increasing the number of processor cores across the board. FINALLY. In this review, we are going to take a close look at the new Intel Core i7-8700K processor that boasts 6 cores capable of handling 12 simultaneous threads.


The 8th Generation Intel Core Processors

The Intel Core i7-8700K headlines the new 8th Generation Intel Core processor family. Here is a table comparing their key specifications :

SpecificationsCore i7-8700KCore i7-8700Core i5-8600KCore i5-8400Core i3-8350KCore i3-8300Core i3-8100
Base Clock3.7 GHz3.2 GHz3.5 GHz2.8 GHz4.0 GHz4.0 GHz3.6 GHz
Boost Clock4.7 GHz4.6 GHz4.4 GHz3.9 GHzNoneNoneNone
L1 Cache384 KB384 KB384 KB384 KB256 KB256 KB256 KB
L2 Cache1.5 MB1.5 MB1.5 MB1.5 MB1 MB1 MB1 MB
L3 Cache12 MB12 MB9 MB9 MB8 MB6 MB6 MB
Multiplier UnlockedYesNoYesNoYesNoNo
TDP95 W65 W95 W65 W91 W65 W65 W


The Intel Core i7-8700K Hexa-Core CPU

The Intel Coffee Lake (8th Gen) processors are built on the same 14 nm process technology as the Intel Skylake and Kaby Lake processors, albeit refined. In addition to the two extra processor cores, it packs a 50% larger L3 cache and support for faster DDR4-2666 memory.

Even with the two additional cores and a larger L3 cache, the Intel Core i7-8700K looks like any other LGA 1151 processor that have come out of Intel’s factories in years past. However, it cannot be used in older Intel 100-series or 200-series motherboards. Even though it uses the same LGA 1151 socket, its pin configuration has changed. It must be installed in an Intel 300-series motherboard.

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Benchmarking The Intel Core i7-8700K

In this review, we will take a look at the work and gaming performance of the Intel Core i7-8700K processor. We will compare it to the Ryzen 7 1800X (Price Check), the Intel Core i7-6700K, the Ryzen 5 1500X (Price Check) and the Ryzen 3 1300X (Price Check) processors. Here is a table comparing their key specifications.

AMD Ryzen 7 1800X Intel Core i7-8700K Intel Core i7-6700K AMD Ryzen 5 1500X AMD Ryzen 3 1300X
Cores / Threads 8 / 16 6 / 12 4 / 8 4 / 8 4 / 4
Base Clock 3.6 GHz 3.7 GHz 4.0 GHz 3.5 GHz 3.5 GHz
Boost Clock 4.0 GHz 4.7 GHz 4.2 GHz 3.7 GHz 3.7 GHz
L2 Cache 4 MB 1.5 MB 1 MB 2 MB 2 MB
L3 Cache 16 MB 12 MB 8 MB 16 MB 8 MB
Memory Speed DDR4-2666 DDR4-2666 DDR4-2133 DDR4-2666 DDR4-2666
Current Price US$ 499 US$ 339 US$ 298 US$ 189 US$ 129

Here are the specifications of the testbeds we used :

Intel Testbed AMD Testbed
Processors Intel Core i7-8700K
Intel Core i7-6700K
AMD Ryzen 7 1800X
AMD Ryzen 5 1500X
AMD Ryzen 3 1300X
Motherboard ASUS ROG Strix Z370-F-Gaming
ASRock Z170 Extreme4
ASRock AB350 Gaming K4
Memory Speed Corsair Vengeance LPX
DDR4-2666 (4 GB x 2)
Corsair Vengeance LPX
DDR4-2666 (4 GB x 2)
Graphics Card AMD Radeon RX 480 AMD Radeon RX 480
Storage Western Digital Black² Western Digital Black²
Operating System Microsoft Windows 10 (64-bit) Microsoft Windows 10 (64-bit)

The Intel Core i7-8700K has 2 extra cores and handles 50% more threads than the Intel Core i7-6700K, but has a slightly lower base clock speed. However its boost clock goes all the way to 4.7 GHz, if a single core is used. Let’s see how it performs against the field!

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