News Core i7-11700K Review: The Chip of Last Resort

AgentLozen

Distinguished
May 2, 2011
527
11
19,015
22
Thank for the review!

I think that the conclusion presented in this article is correct. The 11700K is overall less desirable than the 5800X. The 5800X is generally slightly faster and consumes roughly half the power.

With that said, the 11700K still performs admirably. It's not a bad CPU when you consider its performance is just a tick less than 5800X. Sure, it consumes twice the power, but are you going to be thinking about that on a day to day basis? The same heatsink and fan that keeps a 5800X cool will do fine with the 11700K at stock settings. 11700K doesn't require exotic cooling.

I think the "The Chip of Last Resort" title for this article is a little harsh. Maybe a better one would be "Its Pretty Good but You Should Probably Go for the Ryzen 7 5800X if its Available".
 

TJ Hooker

Champion
Ambassador
With that said, the 11700K still performs admirably. It's not a bad CPU when you consider its performance is just a tick less than 5800X. Sure, it consumes twice the power, but are you going to be thinking about that on a day to day basis? The same heatsink and fan that keeps a 5800X cool will do fine with the 11700K at stock settings. 11700K doesn't require exotic cooling.
From the number in this review the 11700K can draw 50-100% (roughly 50-100W) more than a 5800X. That's at "stock" settings, i.e. with whatever power/boost limits the motherboard used in the review came with. Based on that I wouldn't assume any cooler capable of cooling a 5800X is necessarily capable of cooling a 11700K. That might be true if you stick to Intel's official PL2/tau limits, but then your performance is going to be less than what you see in this review, or at least not sustained performance.

Edit: Oops, it looks like they did include results for "power limit enforced", which I'm assuming means using official PL2/tau values. And performance difference was negligible. I find that surprising, and wonder whether that might be different if you were running a long, consistent load. But for now I'll say it seems I was wrong about losing performance if you stick to Intel recommended values for those parameters.
/Edit

Now if you're just doing lightly threaded stuff like gaming then it's a different story. But at that point you're probably better off going for a Ryzen 5/i5 rather than a 11700K/5800X.
 
Last edited:
I still think the 10700K is a better value. Hell, the 10850K is even better
with heavy multi-threaded tasks the 11700K shows ~15% increase over the similar 10700K.
and only a ~7% decrease vs the 10 core 10850K.

with single thread tasks, ~17% over the 10700K.
~20% over the 10850K.

considering the prices of those when they released vs what they are selling at now, i'd say the 11700K is a much better value.
if you main target is to be hot and slow
even after overclocking to 5.2GHz, still only hitting 55-65°C with heavy tasks.
closer to 55° with more demanding games, closer to 65° with stress testing(Cinebench & Prime95).
idles ~25-30°.
 
Last edited:

AgentLozen

Distinguished
May 2, 2011
527
11
19,015
22
I think you hit the nail right on the head TJ Hooker. The 11700K does draw approximately 50% - 100% more power than the 5800X. From that range, reaching 100% more power consumption was pretty rare. I think there were only one or two benchmarks where it got close.

Ignoring the stock power limits dramatically increases the power consumption and lowers efficiency. The article states:
article said:
Keep in mind that increase in power yields less than 1% more performance, at least with our motherboard. That's a terrible tradeoff.
The 11700K is a well behaved processor as long as you keep it on a leash.

If you have $500 and want a balance of multi threaded and gaming performance, the 11700K is a solid chip that competes reasonably well with the 5800X.
 
Reactions: TJ Hooker

Thunder64

Honorable
Mar 8, 2016
14
6
10,515
0
I don't want to come off as too harsh, as there is plenty of useful data here, but could you guys do a once over on your reviews? There is an iGPU listed as cache. You contradict yourselves:

The Core i7-11700K's official top speed for the Gear 1 setting is DDR4-2933, and running DDR4-3200 in lower-latency Gear 1 mode is considered overclocking, which voids your warranty.
Our standard policy is to allow the motherboard to exceed Intel's recommended power limits, provided the chip remains within warrantied operating conditions.
We've found that Gear 1 provides the best all-around performance, so that's all you'll see in our testing for this review.
I'll tell you what though, this is definitely the best CPU to get if you can get one for $0 as listed in your very first image. I appreciate the time and effort you put into this and every other article. I read that proofreaders or editors or whatever they called themselves went away during the recession. Reading old articles here and elsewhere compared to now that sounds plausible. /rant
 

PaulAlcorn

Senior Editor
Editor
Feb 24, 2015
801
166
19,160
0
I don't want to come off as too harsh, as there is plenty of useful data here, but could you guys do a once over on your reviews? There is an iGPU listed as cache. You contradict yourselves:







I'll tell you what though, this is definitely the best CPU to get if you can get one for $0 as listed in your very first image. I appreciate the time and effort you put into this and every other article. I read that proofreaders or editors or whatever they called themselves went away during the recession. Reading old articles here and elsewhere compared to now that sounds plausible. /rant
Thanks for the feedback. A few points of clarification might be a bit helpful:
  • The first image is an automated pricing widget that we have no direct control over. Sorry if that isn't scraping the correct pricing info, we'll report that.
  • Thanks for reporting the error in the table, I'll fix that.
  • Power limits are simple - these are Intel's recommendations, but motherboard makers are free to allow the motherboard to exceed them. The chip remains under warranty if the motherboard exceeds those recommended limits. Our requirement for 'stock' tests is that the chip remains under warrantied operating conditions. The ignored power limits do not void the warranty, and Intel doesn't consider it overclocking. This is an odd Intel policy that has been ranted about ad nauseam.
  • As pointed out in the article, all testing is conducted in Gear 1. That means DDR4-2933 in Gear 1 for stock operation. The chip is also spec'd for DDR4-3200 in Gear 2, but if you run DDR4-3200 in Gear 1 it is considered overclocking. Put simply, Gear 2 is terrible. Everything is slower, so we test under warrantied DDR4-2933 in Gear 1 for the stock config. We also tested the overclocked config in Gear 1, but with memory at DDR4-3600.
 
Reactions: Thunder64

domih

Commendable
Jan 31, 2020
81
43
1,560
0
Rocket Lake, porting a 10nm design to 14nm led to high power consumption, heat and regression from the previous generation in certain cases.

What did you expect?

Go with a Ryzen 5800X(*) plus potential later upgrades to 5900X, 5950X or the upcoming Zen 3+ models (with 3D V-cache?) leveraging a mature architecture.

On the Intel size, this 11th Gen will be replaced with Alder Lake, new unproven architecture, new socket, new motherboard, new PSU. Have fun!

Even with the loudspeakers of the Intel heavy marketing machinery, it's a no brainer to decide in favor of the 5800X(*)... or a 5000 series APU if purchase can be delayed to September.

(*) Find a "cheap" < $200 used RX Radeon card while waiting for the "modern" graphics cards' ridiculous stratospheric prices to come back to planet Earth.

Even better, given the madness and greed in today computer market, the best decision is to wait for better times and a buyer's market while using what you already have and save your hard won pesetas.
 

Thunder64

Honorable
Mar 8, 2016
14
6
10,515
0
Thanks for the feedback. A few points of clarification might be a bit helpful:
  • The first image is an automated pricing widget that we have no direct control over. Sorry if that isn't scraping the correct pricing info, we'll report that.
  • Thanks for reporting the error in the table, I'll fix that.
  • Power limits are simple - these are Intel's recommendations, but motherboard makers are free to allow the motherboard to exceed them. The chip remains under warranty if the motherboard exceeds those recommended limits. Our requirement for 'stock' tests is that the chip remains under warrantied operating conditions. The ignored power limits do not void the warranty, and Intel doesn't consider it overclocking. This is an odd Intel policy that has been ranted about ad nauseam.
  • As pointed out in the article, all testing is conducted in Gear 1. That means DDR4-2933 in Gear 1 for stock operation. The chip is also spec'd for DDR4-3200 in Gear 2, but if you run DDR4-3200 in Gear 1 it is considered overclocking. Put simply, Gear 2 is terrible. Everything is slower, so we test under warrantied DDR4-2933 in Gear 1 for the stock config. We also tested the overclocked config in Gear 1, but with memory at DDR4-3600.
I didn't mention the power limits because I know they are covered. I made a mistake and thought you were running DDR in Gear 1 at 3200MT/s, which would not be covered. I appreciate that you test things under warrantied conditions, many don't do that. That should be the baseline, IMHO. Of course, being an enthusiast site, we all want realistic configs as well, and DDR4-2933 is anything but enthusiast. Thanks for the response.
 
Reactions: PaulAlcorn

SkyBill40

Distinguished
Bought a 5800X at bit less than retail and couldn't be more satisfied. It's been an absolute beast in everything I need or want to use it for and the leap from my old rig to this one has been like moving from the stone age to the atomic age in one generation.
 

punkncat

Distinguished
Ambassador
It's easy to discount the 11th gen chips on the various shortcomings. Even easier to recommend the still hard to find higher end variants of the 5xxx series for performance to power, nevermind cost. But the single most poignant factor to take into account is the lack of GPU availability anything near MSRP and the equal issue faced when trying to put hands on a high end G series Ryzen.

Will 11th gen stand the test of time? Not in my opinion. However...sans a working GPU even a power hungry and hot CPU that can also show you video is a million times better than a CPU only with no way to see it....

Strange times we find ourselves in.
 

Howardohyea

Proper
May 13, 2021
231
57
190
13
Two month late for a review, but excellent as always. I don't see any reason to buy the 11900K with this chip here, but then, for gaming alone I'd go for the 5600X. Maybe for the multi threaded performance and fun of overclocking then the 11700K will appeal to some
 

watzupken

Respectable
Mar 16, 2020
726
335
2,270
1
Thank for the review!

I think that the conclusion presented in this article is correct. The 11700K is overall less desirable than the 5800X. The 5800X is generally slightly faster and consumes roughly half the power.

With that said, the 11700K still performs admirably. It's not a bad CPU when you consider its performance is just a tick less than 5800X. Sure, it consumes twice the power, but are you going to be thinking about that on a day to day basis? The same heatsink and fan that keeps a 5800X cool will do fine with the 11700K at stock settings. 11700K doesn't require exotic cooling.

I think the "The Chip of Last Resort" title for this article is a little harsh. Maybe a better one would be "Its Pretty Good but You Should Probably Go for the Ryzen 7 5800X if its Available".
I agree with the conclusion. Rocket Lake, especially with the 8 cores variants, are hard to recommend given the existence of the Ryzen 7 5800X. Its faster than its predecessor in some cases, but the advantage is not conclusive, i.e. it may regress is some cases. Compared to AMD, there is hardly any advantage, unless one utilizes the AI and AVX512 hardware on it. The worst thing in my opinion is the cost of decent motherboards which bumps prices up. For example, I recently purchased a i5 11500 thinking that I can try and fix up a ITX rig with just the iGPU since I am unable to find an AMD APU. While the 11500 wasn't that expensive, getting a decent ITX board that will not throttle cost almost as much as buying a 11400 on Amazon. In the end, I returned the CPU. The Rocket Lake i7 and i9 is actually very close to "The chip of last resort" in my opinion. Gamers are generally better off with a Comet Lake if they prefer Intel. Otherwise, I would recommend an AMD 5xxx chip which is better overall with half the power consumption.
 
with heavy multi-threaded tasks the 11700K shows ~15% increase over the similar 10700K.
and only a ~7% decrease vs the 10 core 10850K.

with single thread tasks, ~17% over the 10700K.
~20% over the 10850K.
The two extra cores are a better investment for this EOL'ed platform. The per-core IPC/performance deficiency won't be as noticeable down the line as the extra 2 cores and 4 threads. You can still tweak the 10850K and still be a very good bargain for things that need the extra grunt and keep games within decent performance.

And the 10700K is just cheap as hell and a terriffic value. The extra bells and whistles of the 11700K are really moot all things considered, except the slight performance increase in some cases.

I'm not saying the 11700K is a bad CPU per sé, but it has to go down in price a bit more.

Regards.
 

ASK THE COMMUNITY