The Bottom Line
Introduction and Pricing
Rocket Lake has been on the market for several months now, and lurking through online forums, the reception has been mixed. For me, my expectations weren't as high as some of yours; even with the new architecture improvements on the new core, backporting to 14nm was going to produce more heat and power consumption; we knew this going in.
Now months later, we were finally able a chance to take a break from our Z590 motherboard reviews to take a look at the CPU we have been using to test with; the Core i7-11700K. This processor will live between the top end 11900K SKU and above the six core 11600K SKU, its an eight-core design just like the 11900K but is toned down with lower base and boost clocks and it doesn't have TVB technology or All Core Boost.
That being said, the 11700K does hold its own with a 3.6GHz base clock along with a 4.9GHz Turbo Boost and 5GHz Turbo Boost Max. The All-Core frequency runs at 4.6GHz.
Memory support includes both JEDEC 3200MHz on Z590 or 2933MHz on Z490 platforms. This CPU has 44 platform PCIe lanes, a 125W TDP, and onboard graphics with Intel UHD 750.
The MSRP of the Core i7-11700K comes in at $449.99.
Packaging and Test System
Intel Core i7-11700K
Our sample of the 11700K was an ES sample, packed alone in a plastic retainer.
The back shows the pinout for the LGA1200 platform.
To test the 11700K, ASUS sent over the Maximus XIII Hero.
The Hero is an excellent-looking board and has been a consistent platform for gamers and enthusiasts alike.
Test system storage is provided by Sabrent, their Rocket 4 Plus being a fantastic Gen4 solution.
Thermaltake is onboard with their Toughram XG for all of our CPU and motherboard testing.
TweakTown Intel CPU Test System
- Motherboard: ROG Maximus Hero XIII (buy from Amazon)
- GPU: ASUS TUF RTX 3080 10GB (buy from Amazon)
- RAM: 2x8GB Thermaltake Toughram XG DDR4 4000MHz (buy from Amazon)
- Cooler: MSI CoreLiquid K360 (buy from Amazon)
- OS Storage: Sabrent Rocket 4 Plus NVMe (buy from Amazon)
- Power Supply: Corsair RM750x (buy from Amazon)
- OS: Microsoft Windows 10 (buy from Amazon)
For those interested in a deeper dive into Rocket Lake, you can check out our review of the Core i9-11900K here.
WPrime, Cinebench, RealBench and AIDA64
Cinebench is a long-standing render benchmark that has been heavily relied upon by both Intel and AMD to showcase their newest platforms during unveils. The benchmark has two tests, a single-core workload that will utilize one thread or 1T. There is also a multi-threaded test that uses all threads or nT of a tested CPU.
Getting right into testing, you can see the 11700K lives within range of the Zen 3 5800X. In single thread, we see 1578 in R23.
nThread R23 gives us 15276.
With RealBench, 11700K passes the 11900K and nudges the 5800X by a hair.
Tasks using AES are significantly quicker on 11th Gen Intel, 11700K, just behind the 11900K at 164531.
SHA3 shows 5338, just behind the 11900K once again.
Memory bandwidth hits 58K read, 57K write, and 51K copy. Right in line with the 11900K.
UL Benchmarks and Puget Systems Benchmarks
PCMark 10 Applications
PCMark 10 Applications
PCMark is a benchmark from UL and tests various workload types within Microsoft Office and Edge.
Application testing in PCMark gave us 12227 overall.
Gaming shows the 11700K slightly better than the Zen 3 5800X with a rough 600 point difference.
PugetBench comes from the fantastic people over at Puget Systems that have done countless hours and years benchmarking hardware. For our testing, we will utilize their Davinci Resolve, Photoshop, and Lightroom benchmarks, you can look into them more here.
Puget Bench for PS gave us a score of 928 for the 11700K.
Puget for Davinci peaks at 1109 for the 11700K, about 100 points behind the 11900K.
Power, Thermals and Final Thoughts
Power consumption is slightly lower than the 11900K at base and boost clocks. We see 210 watts at idle and 462 at load with R23.
Lower power consumption resulted in better thermals. We see 27c at idle and 71c max in testing.
Eight core CPUs have quickly become the mid-range choice for gamers, and the Core i7-11700K is a desirable option given its performance compared to the 11900K or even Zen 3 5800X. What even better is since launch, the price of the 11700K has come down significantly, and there is virtually no scalping going on, so they are likely available at your local Best Buy or Microcenter.
At the time of writing, we are seeing this CPU at $349 at a few online retailers, which brings us to the chart above. At current market prices, this CPU is easily the best bang for your buck in the market segment. Add to this, Z590 is a superior platform for storage and connectivity over B550 and X570.
What We Like
IPC: 19% IPC Gen over Gen pulls Rocket Lake S up close to Zen 3.
In Socket Upgrade: easy upgrade path for 10th Gen users.
Price: While MSRP is $449, we are seeing street pricing $100 cheaper at several retailers.
What Could Be Better
Power: Power Consumption still high due to 14nm design.
Given its current market price and its performance vs competition, the Intel 11700K CPU is a fantastic choice for gamers and enthusiasts.