Intel i5-9600K vs i7-9700K Comparison – Which CPU should you pick the Intel i5 9600 K or is it worth paying more for the i7 9700 K. in this detailed comparison you’ll see the difference between them in games and applications. Both it’s stock and while overclocked to help you decide which to get.
Let’s start out with the specs of Intel i5-9600K vs i7-9700K, the key difference is that the i5 9600 K has six cores and 6 threads. While the i7 9700 K has 8 cores and eight threads. Neither has hyper-threading available, the 9600 K has a slightly higher base clock. But at the stock, the single-core turbo boost speed of the 9700 K is 300 megahertz more top.
When all cores are loaded up, the i7-9700K case still has a 300 megahertz higher boost clock. And the 9700 K also has 33% more cache. Both CPUs were tested in the exact same system. So the only difference was the CPUs, making this as apples to apples as possible. Both CPUs were tested with the MSI’s at 390 ace motherboard. With 16 gigs of ddr4 3,200 memory running in the dual-channel at seal 14 with an Nvidia r-tx 2080 TI to reduce GPU bottlenecks. I’ve tested both with the same colour, the fractal s 36 layer width knocked to our nth one paste for both CPUs.
Testing was completed with this same version of Windows, Nvidia drivers and BIOS for each CPU as well. I’ve tested both CPUs and stock and while overclocked to 5.1 gigahertz at one point three five volts. So we can see how this helps improve performance. With that in mind, we’ll first check out the differences in various applications. As well as power draw and thermals followed by gaming tests at 1080p and 1440p resolutions afterwards. Then finish up by comparing some performance per dollar metrics to see which is worth it.
Let’s start out with Cinebench our 20. I’ve got the overclocked results on the upper half of the graph and the stock results on the lower half. In the single-core results, shown by the lighter purple bars. The 9700 K was five point five per cent ahead of the 9600 K. just the three hundred megahertz difference in clock speed under single-core workloads. Once both our overclocked to the same five-point one gigahertz though, there’s less of a difference. With the 9700 K, now just 0.9% ahead.
In terms of multi-core performance, there’s a much more significant difference between the two. Oh into the 9700 K having two more cores available. At the stock, the 9700 K was 43% ahead of the Intel i5-9600K, but once we overclocked them to the same speed, the gap closes, and the difference is closer to 35%.
Although Cinebench R15 has been replaced by the newer r20 just covered. I also wanted to include the results of this too. As many people haven’t moved to 20-year, and this will allow you to compare my findings with others. Again in the single-core, there was a 5% higher score with the 9700 K at stock. Then with both overclocked to 5.1 gigahertz, the same score was achieved with either chip. The multi-core score was 42% higher with the 9700 K at stock. Dropping back a bit to a 35% difference when both are overclocked. So similar differences to our 20.
I’ve tested the blend of BMW and classroom benchmarks. And as a test that works better with more threads. It’s another clear win for the 9700 k. At stock, the 9700 K is completing the BMW test 44% faster, and 45% more quickly in the classroom test. The largest difference out of all the upcoming examinations. Once overclocked although blenders still see some of the most significant differences. These results drop down to a 38 per cent and 35 per cent lead respectively on the 9700 k.
I’ve also tested the warp stabiliser effect in Adobe Premiere. Basically, this processes a video file to smooth it out. This is a single-core workload, which is why the 9700 K was able to complete the task six per cent faster at stock. But then with both CPUs at 5.1 gigahertz. The difference was only a second, as single-core speeds are now the same.
I’ve used 7-zip to test compression and decompression speeds. And at the stock, the 9700 K was 43% faster when it came to decompression, but 30% ahead of compression. I’ve seen many CPUs actually get a lot of results when overclocked in this test. And this was happening to compression speed with the 9700 K. resulting in it only seeing a 10% lead over the 9600 K. However, decompression speed was still a fair bit better with the 9700 K, scoring 31 per cent faster.
These are the differences between the 9600 K and 9700 K CPUs in all of these applications. As we can notice, it actually depends on the specific workload. At stock in all of these tasks, the 9700 K was coming out ahead as expected. Not only does it have two extra cores, but it’s also capable of higher clock speeds and has more cash too.
Most of these are multi-core workloads except the four down the bottom which a single core. Once we overclocked both CPUs to 5.1 gigahertz on all-cause. The difference between the two CPUs narrows in a bit. This is because at stock there’s a 300 megahertz difference between both CPUs. Both under single-core or all core workloads. While overclocked both chips were now running at the same speeds. So the only difference was the increased core count of the 9700 K. this is why the four single-core tests towards the bottom show much less of a difference now. Additionally, the difference in multi-core performance has closed in a little too. Compared to the stock results we just saw.
Out of all six games tested, we’re looking at an 11% higher average framerate with a 9700 K at highest settings at 1080p. Some CPU massive games like watchdogs 2 and Assassin’s Creed Odyssey soar an enormous improvement with the 9700 K. while others like Rainbow six age were much more minimal, it really varies by game. At 1440p, as we typically start to become more GPU bellend. The difference between the two CPUs lowers slightly to around a four-point six per cent improvement with the 9700 K., but again, it really depends on the specific game and even how it was tested.
This does, however, show that there’s far less of a difference between the two CPUs as we step the resolution up. The CPU would be even less important at 4K. That’s stock settings so what about with both CPUs overclocked. As a testing, every single selling level takes a long time. I’ve just picked one setting and tested overclocked results at 1080p. in most cases, I picked one level down from maximum. As we saw in many cases, max was more GPU bound. So there was less of a difference between the CPUs.
Assassin’s Creed Odyssey was tested with the built-in benchmark and is a CPU substantial test. This is why at the stock the 9700 K was scoring 25% higher average frame rate than the 9600 K. however, once we overclocked both CPUs to the same five-point one gigahertz across all-cause. It’s laid lowest to 19%. Farcry new dawn barely saw a difference with the 9700 k once overclocked. And the frame rate was actually lower on the 9600 k. Something I’ve seen from many different CPUs in this particular test.
For that reason, this was the only game tested with a 9700 k’s lead actually grew with both overclocked. Shadow of the Tomb Raider only saw the 9700 k result improved by 3 FPS once overclocked. Meanwhile, the 9600 k had a larger 8 FPS boost. Making the 9700 k 12% faster at stock, lowering to 8% higher FPS with both CPUs overclocked. Watchdogs too saw significant improvements with the 9700 k. With both CPUs, at stock, it was almost 28% ahead of the nice 9600 K and average frame rate. But once both overclocked this lowers to a 17% lead. This is still quite a significant difference, the extra cores really seemed to help this game. But in terms of gains from overclocking the 9600 K does gain more ground there.
In CS: GO, the frame rates are already pretty insane regardless of CPU. However, at stock, the 9700 K was 15% ahead of the 9600 K. but when will you ever clock both of them to the same clock speed. The 9700 K is now just 8.5% ahead of the 9600 K.
These are the differences between these games at stock. Shown by the purple bars and when overclocked shown by the red bars. Basically, in these six games at the stock, the 9700 K is 14.8 per cent faster than the 9600 K. but if we overclock both to the same 5.1 gigahertz speed. The 9600 K catches up a bit. Meaning the 9700 K is now 11 per cent faster. When it comes down to it when pair with a good GPU like we’ve got here. I don’t think there’s really going to be a noticeable difference in games. As we’ve seen through, it does, of course, depend on the specific game. Some seem to really make use of more than six cores. And see a larger advantage with the 9700 K. while with other games it hardly made a difference.
This is only a small number of games, the purpose isn’t to definitively say how much faster the 9700 K is. But to show how it can differ. In both gaming and other application workloads. The 9700 K was almost always ahead of the 9600 K, as expected. It’s got two more cause, more cache and higher clock speed its stock. Though I was able to overclock both to the same speed. Just because it’s better doesn’t mean it’s the best option there. We need to factor in prices.
At the time of this article was published, the 9600 k goes for 245 US dollars on Norweg. while the 9700 K is 120 dollars more at three hundred and sixty-five US dollars. These are the dollar per frame values at 1080p averaged out over all six games tested. Basically, this just shows that the 9600 K is better in terms of value, it’s 120 US dollars cheaper. This doesn’t factor in additional costs such as motherboard or cooling. But given these are costs both CPUs would need as neither includes cooling, I think it’s a fair comparison.
These are the dollar per frame values when we factor in overclocking. The gap between them gets more prominent. As overclocking the 9600 K allows it to improve more than the 9700 K. which already has a higher clock speed out of the box. It’s not all about gaming though, as we saw earlier many applications benefit more from the other cause, the 9700 K has. More so when compared to gaming. These are the cost per frame values while exporting a 4k video file to 1080p with handbrake.
I’ve chosen this particular test as it was around the middle of the applications tested in terms of results. Plus it’s a very real and common workload. Compared to the gaming results, the cost per frame values is closer together here. The other 2 core with the 9700 K help makes up the difference. It might not look like that much has changed. But once overclocked the 9700 K is 15 per cent more expensive compared to the 9600 K in terms of cost per frame in this workload. Is compared to the 8% more it would cost based on the stock results.
So you’ll have to decide if it’s worth paying more for the extra cores. Based on current prices, the 9700 K costs 49% more money than the 9600 K, and we’re only really seeing a similar boost to performance in multi-core workloads like a blender at stock. while six causes fine at the moment for most games. Some games tested here are clearly seeing a benefit from eight cores. And it wasn’t long ago that four-core was plenty for gaming. As this trend of higher core count CPUs continues, games will also continue to take advantage of these resources eventually.
If you only care about the best gaming performance today. The 9700 K will give you that. And due to the extra 2 core, it’s also likely to last longer turn. However, it does cost more. The 9600 K definitely offers better value and still performs quite well. So it’s going to come down to your needs and budget. Otherwise outside of gaming for multi-core workloads such as 3d rendering, the extra cores can be a significant advantage. Let me know which CPU you pick in the comments. The Intel i5 9600 K or the more expensive i7 9700 K with 2 extra Core. I’m really interested to hear which you’d go for.