At the moment marks the discharge of Intel’s thirteenth era Core processor collection, codenamed Raptor Lake. The primary fashions to be unleashed into retail channels are all overclockable elements, with six SKUs throughout the Core i9, i7, and i5 product segments. We’ve seen Intel’s heterogeneous or hybrid design with the launch of Intel’s Alder Lake (twelfth Gen Core) merchandise, and the newest Raptor Lake core brings a really related design to the desk, however with delicate enhancements designed to assist in giving Intel the forefront within the desktop market.

The launch of Intel’s new lineup is actually the second half of this fall’s desktop CPU releases. AMD obtained the primary phrase in a number of weeks again with the launch of their Ryzen 7000 desktop processors, which launched the Zen 4 structure as properly a major platform replace for AMD with Socket AM5. The brand new high-end Ryzen chips had been well-received (if a bit costly), setting a brand new bar for efficiency and placing AMD firmly into the lead, a minimum of for a little bit bit. Now it is time for Intel’s personal CPU launch – their rebuttal – the place they get to point out off what they have been engaged on over the previous few years and whether or not they can retain their edge over AMD for this newest era of processors.

At a excessive stage, Raptor Lake could be regarded as a mid-cycle improve of kinds for Intel’s present LGA-1700 platform. As the corporate launched Alder Lake and LGA-1700 only a yr in the past, they aren’t trying to overhaul the core CPU structure fairly so quickly, nor the platform for that matter. Intel is preserving to their two-year platform cycle right here, so the 13th era of Core processors are designed to deliver extra efficiency to the identical platform as Alder Lake. This makes the Raptor Lake launch considerably extra easy than AMD’s current launch, the place AMD overhauled their total platform whereas additionally making some extra vital CPU structure upgrades within the course of.

As a result of Intel isn’t considerably tweaking their CPU architectures for Raptor Lake, the chip is actually a refined model of Alder Lake. Meaning we’re nonetheless a combination of P(erformance) and E(fficiency) CPU cores, based mostly on totally different CPU architectures and designed to permit Intel to hit excessive efficiency ranges in each single/light-threaded workloads that favor the P cores, and closely multi-threaded workloads that may additionally saturate the E cores. The P cores are based mostly on what’s technically a brand new structure, Raptor Cove, whereas the E cores are nonetheless based mostly on the identical Gracemont structure as what we noticed on Alder Lake.

We’ll dive into the interior bits of Raptor Lake a bit afterward, however at a excessive stage, Intel is enhancing efficiency versus Alder Lake in 3 ways.

  1. Larger clockspeeds, particularly for the P cores, due to some architectural optimization work mixed with additional refinements of the Intel 7 fab course of
  2. Further E cores in all desktop SKUs, to spice up efficiency in multi-threaded workloads
  3. Further L2 cache for each the P and E cores. The L3 cache can also be a bit bigger, primarily to accommodate the bigger variety of E cores.

The upper clockspeeds and extra cache imply that Raptor Lake needs to be quicker in just about all situations in comparison with Alder Lake. For single-threaded and lightly-threaded workloads, the quicker P cores can chew by means of work. In the meantime the total mixture of extra E cores and better clockspeeds signifies that multi-threaded efficiency usually reveals even larger positive aspects.

Raptor Lake will, in time, be a top-to-bottom launch for Intel and its companions. Meaning not solely launching desktop processors, as we’re seeing the primary of right this moment, but additionally an entire stack of cellular elements, with U, P, H, and HX collection processors all deliberate. And whereas cellular elements are a bit trickier close to including clocks and cores whereas staying inside an influence funds, Intel’s design optimizations may also be used to enhance power effectivity as an alternative, which will likely be of larger significance for the cellular market.

Beginning On the Prime: Core i9-13900K, i7-13700K, and i5-13600K

However to begin issues off, let’s discuss right this moment’s launch. Intel has opted for a top-to-bottom, desktop-to-mobile launch technique, pulling the set off on its overclockable desktop elements first. That is typical of Intel’s current desktop launches, and permits them to get their comparatively decrease quantity desktop chips out first whereas persevering with to ramp for increased quantity desktop and cellular elements. Altogether Intel is launching 3 tiers of chips unfold over 6 SKUs, all overclockable (Ok) and coming both with and with out (F) built-in graphics.

Intel thirteenth Gen Core, Raptor Lake
AnandTech Cores
L3 Cache
IGP Base
i9-13900K 8+16/32 3300 5800 2200 4300 36 770 125 253 $589
i9-13900KF 8+16/32 3300 5800 2200 4300 36 125 253 $564
i7-13700K 8+8/24 3400 5400 2500 4200 30 770 125 253 $409
i7-13700KF 8+8/24 3400 5400 2500 4200 30 125 253 $384
i5-13600K 6+8/20 3500 5100 2600 3900 24 770 125 181 $319
i5-13600KF 6+8/20 3500 5100 2600 3900 24 125 181 $294


In comparison with the related 12th Gen Core SKUs, Intel has changed the P cores with new Raptor Cove cores on a 1:1 foundation. In the meantime for the E cores, Intel has successfully doubled the variety of E cores for every corresponding SKU. e.g., the Core i5-13600K now has eight E-cores whereas the Core i5-12600K had 4. In any other case, TDPs stay unchanged from the earlier chips, with Intel formally concentrating on 125W – although PL2 limits have crept up from 241W to 253W.

Intel Core i9-13900K CPU-Z

Focusing first on the flagship chip, the Core i9-13900K has an unbelievable max P-core turbo of 5.8 GHz. This is a rise of 600 MHz over the Core i9-12900K. Though it has the identical efficiency core depend as its predecessor (although with Raptor Cove cores), it now options double the effectivity cores; a complete of 24 hybrid cores comprised of 8P and 16E cores. This makes for eight extra threads, for a complete of 32, up from 24 on the Core i9-12900K. 

One factor to notice concerning the effectivity cores is that Intel has lowered the bottom frequency of those cores to 2.2 GHz base, which is down from 2.4GHz on Alder Lake. However on the similar time, nevertheless, they’ve additionally elevated the E-core max turbo clockspeed to 4.3 GHz, 400Mhz increased than the three.9 GHz cores on Alder Lake.

Intel has made related trade-offs throughout all of its 13th Gen Core SKUs – so this isn’t simply the case for the i9 elements, but additionally the i7 and i5 elements as properly. Finally whereas Intel would ideally prefer to run the E cores at their highest clockspeeds always, the expanded variety of cores makes it more durable to remain inside Intel’s official 125W TDP, necessitating a discount on the bottom clockspeeds.

Intel Core i5-13600K CPU-Z

Transferring down the stack, the Core i7-13700K and KF processors each have a complete of sixteen CPU cores (8P+8E), which is up from 8P+4E on the Core i7-12700K. For these elements the utmost P-core turbo clockspeed is 5.4 GHz, whereas the P-core base clockspeed stands at 3.4 GHz.

Lastly, filling out the i5 spot in Intel’s lineup is the Core i5-13600K, which we will even be testing right this moment. The 13600K elements include a complete of fourteen cores in 6P+8E configuration, 4 extra cores than on the Alder Lake i5-12600K. Each the Core i5-13600K and i5-13600KF function a P-core max turbo of as much as 5.1 GHz (up from 4.9 GHz), and an E-core turbo of as much as 3.9 GHz (up from 3.6 GHz).

Z790 Chipset & DDR5-5600 Help

The launch of the 13th Gen Core chips additionally comes with a brand new era of motherboards from Intel: Z790. As famous earlier, the 13th Gen Core chips are backwards-compatible with 600 collection boards (with the mandatory BIOS replace), to allow them to be used as a drop-in improve or as a part of a contemporary constructed. However for builders on the lookout for one of the best – and even simply assured CPU compatibility out of the field – Intel is hoping to entice you with Z790.

Like the remainder of the Raptor Lake platform, Z790 isn’t a major overhaul of Intel’s current wares. However Z790 does provide perks. Most notable for aspiring builders will likely be that Z790 boards would be the first boards validated for the upper DDR5 reminiscence speeds that Raptor Lake is able to. Whereas Alder Lake formally topped out at DDR5-4800, Alder Lake can run at DDR5-5600, serving to to feed the beast a bit extra with increased reminiscence clockspeeds. Fanatics will probably run overclocked with XMP kits, however for anybody constructing programs to spec – be it OEMs or particular person builders – it is a good bump in bandwidth. In the meantime it needs to be famous that there’s nothing stopping current Z690 boards from being validated for increased speeds as properly, however that will likely be as much as motherboard producers working a contemporary spherical of validation with the brand new Raptor Lake chips.

As for the Z790 chipset itself, it brings a bit extra I/O flexibility in comparison with Z690. Z790 now sports activities 20 PCIe 4 lanes, versus 12 on Z690. That’s augmented with 8 PCIe 3 lanes, 8 fewer than on Z690. Z790 additionally brings assist for another USB 20Gbps (USB 3.2 Gen 2×2) port than its predecessor, making for a complete of 5.

Sizing Up the Competitors: 13th Gen Core vs. Ryzen 7000

With Intel’s shift to a heterogeneous CPU structure, like-for-like comparisons between Intel and AMD have develop into a little bit more durable. None the much less, as AMD and Intel have advanced to have similarly-named product stacks – and for that matter related pricing – it’s not too exhausting to line up what chips are primarily in competitors with one another.

Raptor Lake Competitors
AnandTech Core i9
Core i5
Core i9
Core i5
  Ryzen 9
Ryzen 5
uArch Raptor Cove +
Raptor Cove +
Golden Cove +
Golden Cove +
  Zen 4 Zen 4
Cores 8P + 16E
32 T
6P + 8E
20 T
8P + 8E
24 T
6P + 4E
16 T
  16 C
32 T
6 C
12 T
Base Freq (P) 3300 3500 3200 3700   4500 4700
Turbo Freq (P) 5800 5100 5200 4900   5700 5300
TDP 125 W 125 W 125 W 125 W   170 W 105 W
PL2/PPT 253 W 181 W 241 W 150 W   230 W 142 W
iGPU / Cores Xe-LP, 32 Xe-LP, 32 Xe-LP, 32 Xe-LP, 32   RDNA 2, 2 RDNA 2, 2
L3 Cache 36 MB 24 MB 30 MB 20 MB   64 MB 32 MB
DDR5 2 x 5600 2 x 5600 2 x 4800 2 x 4800   2 x 5200 2 x 5200
CPU PCIe 5.0 x16 +
4.0 x4
5.0 x16 +
4.0 x4
5.0 x16 +
4.0 x4
5.0 x16 +
4.0 x4
  5.0 x28 5.0 x28
MSRP $589 $319 $589 $289   $699 $299

On the high-end, Intel goes up towards AMD’s flagship with fewer P cores (or their AMD equal), however is augmenting that with a a lot bigger variety of E cores. Because of this Intel has extra CPU cores to supply total, however the efficiency implications are very workload dependent. The 13900K shines on duties that may fill all 24 cores/32 threads, and ideally can account for the distinction in efficiency between the core varieties. In any other case, AMD gives fewer complete cores, however extra efficiency on a per-core foundation when 9 to 16 cores are wanted.

In Intel’s favor is a decrease CPU value ($589 vs. $699), in addition to official assist for quicker DDR5 reminiscence (and DDR4, should you want it). Whereas AMD gives extra I/O flexibility with as much as 28 PCIe 5 lanes coming from the CPU, in addition to a bigger total L3 cache.

In the meantime on the different finish of the spectrum, the underside of the stack for the 2 firms is introduced up by the i5-13600K and Ryzen 5 7600X. The Intel chip gives 6 Raptor Cove P cores to AMD’s 6 Zen 4 cores, after which Intel added 8 E cores on high of that. However on this case Intel not has the value benefit, because the 13600K is $20 dearer than its AMD competitors. This provides Intel a probably giant benefit in multi-threaded workloads, although for fewer threads, AMD does have a little bit of a clockspeed lead.

  1. Intel Core i9-13900K and i5-13600K Overview: Raptor Cove, What’s New?
  2. Raptor Lake In Element: Raptor Cove P-Cores, Extra Effectivity Cores
  3. Z790 Chipset: Extra I/O Than Z690, However Similar Efficiency
  4. Take a look at Mattress and Setup: Updating Our Take a look at Suite for 2023
  5. Core to Core Latency
  6. SPEC2017 Single-Threaded Outcomes
  7. SPEC2017 Multi-Threaded Outcomes
  8. CPU Benchmark Efficiency: Energy and Workplace
  9. CPU Benchmark Efficiency: Science
  10. CPU Benchmark Efficiency: Simulation
  11. CPU Benchmark Efficiency: Rendering And Encoding
  12. CPU Benchmark Efficiency: Legacy Exams
  13. Gaming Efficiency: iGPU
  14. Gaming Efficiency: 720p and Decrease
  15. Gaming Efficiency: 1080p
  16. Gaming Efficiency: 1440p
  17. Gaming Efficiency: 4K
  18. Closing Ideas