Intel Raptor Lake CPU leaks leave some gamers disappointed (again)

Intel’s Raptor Lake processors have witnessed a bunch of fresh leaks, including some game benchmarks, and a hefty overclock to 6GHz for the Core i7-13700K.

Let’s start with those gaming tests which were conducted by Extreme Player, a Bilibili-based leaker who aired benchmarks for the Core i9-13900K a couple of weeks back. This time around, the Core i7-13700K and Core i5-13600K have been put through their paces, although bear in mind all the usual caveats around these being purported early engineering (pre-release) sample chips.

The results have been causing some worry – much like the previous 13900K spillage – as on the face of it, some of the benchmarks feel rather underwhelming. The scores are summarized in some neat charts compiled by @harukaze5719 on Twitter (via VideoCardz).

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So, the upshot is that at Full HD, the 13700K only witnessed gains of around 6% to 7% in average frame rates across a selection of games (including Apex Legends, Far Cry 6, and Red Dead Redemption 2) compared to its Alder Lake predecessor. The 13600K sample chip fared better with a jump of around 10% to 11% when pitted against the 12600K.

Gains at 1440p were more modest for both Raptor Lake processors at 4% to 5%, and at 4K this was even more the case, with improvements to the tune of 2% to 4% (with GPU bottlenecking at 4K meaning there was no difference between the 12th and 13th-gen CPUs with some games).

Some of these results, and some of the individual benchmarks, have had a lukewarm reception as a result – and particularly the performance of the 13700K – but we shouldn’t get carried away by pre-release benchmarking as we’ll discuss shortly.

Furthermore, VideoCardz also spotted another pair of leaks of a purported Core i7-13700K sample CPU where the processor was overclocked to 5.8GHz and 6GHz respectively. In the latter – buckets of salt handy with these – the Intel chip recorded a single-thread result of 983 in CPU-Z, beating out a recent Core i9-13900K leak. Do note, however, that the efficiency cores were disabled in this case, so only the eight performance cores were operational, and therefore the multi-core result was low as you’d expect (7,814 points).

A second leak witnessed the 13700K supposedly running at 5.8GHz, this time with all cores (including efficiency ones) running, and it achieved a single-thread score of 947 and multi-thread result of 12,896. Even that 947 is 12% faster than the 12900K (at 5.2GHz) in CPU-Z single-thread, so that’s impressive stuff.

In other news, as Tweaktown reports, Intel Raptor Lake laptop CPUs have officially been confirmed as arriving before the end of 2022, according to Intel’s CEO Pat Gelsinger (as mentioned on a Q2 earnings call). The 13th-gen desktop processors will turn up first, and are expected to be launched in late September, likely with an October on-sale date.

Analysis: Some mixed signals on Raptor Lake – but don’t get too worried yet

We observed some fears and concerns being aired when leaked benchmarks surfaced for the 13900K recently, also from Extreme Player on Bilibili, indicating around 5% to 7% improvements for average frame rates compared to its predecessor. It’s pretty much the same story for the 13700K here, then, but we have to bear some key points in mind.

First of all, these are just leaks, and as with all pre-release sample chips, they aren’t going to be as fast as the finished product – and they’re also running with early BIOS versions for 13th-gen motherboards. We’re not getting the full story, essentially, on the performance front – and the second (CPU-Z) leak, showing a seriously overclocked 13700K, is entirely more promising anyway (though the same skepticism and caveats must be applied to that, naturally).

It’s actually pretty impressive to see the 13600K offering a 10% uptick in games at this stage, given that Raptor Lake is just a simple refresh of Alder Lake after all. What’s also worth noting is that the game benchmarks show some good improvements in minimum frame rates – the lowest fps recorded, in other words – with both the 13600K and 13700K hiked up to the tune of 11% to 14%. And ensuring those plunges to low frame rates don’t end up as jerky as with their Alder Lake counterparts is a very worthwhile boon.

In summary, let’s not take the wobblier bits of this latest leakage too much to heart, as for us, looking at the overall landscape of Raptor Lake rumors – and leaks have been coming fast of late – it still looks like Intel’s 13th-gen is shaping up nicely enough.

We’ve said before that big gains are anticipated – and needed – from AMD’s next-gen Ryzen 7000 (Zen 4) processors, so the fight between Team Red and Team Blue’s new CPU ranges promises to be a close one.

If performance is indeed a near run thing, though, there could be other deciding factors, including price (obviously), and the maturity of the platform. By the latter, we mean that this is the last outing for Intel’s current (Alder Lake) socket, whereas Zen 4 will be the first incarnation for AM5 motherboards.

What that means is those who buy a new PC with an AM5 mobo can expect to be able to directly upgrade to a future Ryzen CPU without having to switch out that motherboard – which won’t be the case for Intel’s following 14th-gen chips (Meteor Lake, due to arrive in 2023).

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