Intel Core i5-13600K Vs AMD Ryzen 5 7600X And Ryzen 7 7700X: Which Should You Buy?

Intel Core i5-13600K Vs AMD Ryzen 5 7600X And Ryzen 7 7700X: Which Should You Buy?

Intel’s embargo for its 13th Gen ‘Raptor Lake’ desktop processors lifts today and here we’ll be looking at just how fast it’s new Core i5-13600K is against the latest competition from AMD – namely the Ryzen 5 7600X and Ryzen 7 7700X, which sit above and below it in price.

The Core i5-13600K currently retails for $329 while the Ryzen 7 7700x costs $399 and the Ryzen 5 7600X at $299.

Intel’s Core i5’s have been extremely popular in the past and the Core i5-12600K is a still a fantastic CPU in part thanks to its hybrid architecture with a mixture of ‘Performance’ and ‘Efficient’ cores. It had 10 cores made up of six Performance cores and four Efficient cores, but the Core i5-12600K gets an upgrade to 14 cores thanks to an additional four Efficient cores. Like the Core i9-13900K, it too has received cache increases with the L2 rising from 9.5MB to 20MB and L3 from 20MB to 24MB.

As well as a couple of hundred megahertz added to its boost frequencies which sit at a peak of 5.1GHz – a frequency that it was able to hit across all its Performance cores in multi-threaded tests too. Overclocking proved to be very fruitful, with my sample hitting 5.7GHz across all it’s performance cores and I’ve included the results from overclocking too.

Test system and benchmarks

The test system uses the latest drivers and Windows 11 updates that were up to date as of October 15th 2022 and I’ve re-tested every CPU in the graphs too – I’d check every review out there to make sure they state the same as these things do make a big difference to the results. Default BIOS settings were used, but the correct memory settings applied using XMP or AMD EXPO profiles.

The hardware includes an Nvidia RTX 3070, custom water-cooling system featuring Corsair Hydro X components and a Barrow Ropilema test bench. I’ve also used G.Skill Trident Z Neo EXPO 6000MHz DDR5 memory for the AMD Ryzen 7000 system, Corsair 3466MHz Vengeance Pro RGB memory for the socket AM4 system and Kingston 6,000MHz Fury DDR5 memory for the Intel LGA1700 system along with a Corsair RM850x power supply. I used an Asus ROG Maximus Z790 Hero motherboard to test the 12th Gen Intel CPUs, and a Gigabyte X570 Aorus Master motherboard to test the AMD Ryzen 5000 CPUs and ASRock X670E Taichi to test the new Ryzen 7000 CPUs.

Benchmarks

Adobe Premiere Pro prefers lots of cores, threads and high frequencies and the Core i5-13600K sat in the middle of the pack, which was expected. It nearly matched the Ryzen 7 7700X and was slightly ahead of the Ryzen 5 7600X, but for some reason Intel’s older 12th Gen CPUs were faster in this test. Overlocking the CPU had a slight benefit increasing the score from 901 to 954.

The combined Adobe Lightroom and Photoshop test saw AMD in a clear win, with these tests clearly preferring its CPUs, although overclocking the Core i5-13600K saw its score of 9,718 rise to 10,487, leapfrogging the Ryzen 9 5900X.

HandBrake saw a great result for Intel, with the Core i5-13600K beat the Ryzen 7 7700X and even come close to matching the Ryzen 9 5950X, while its overclocked score did just that and was as fast as the Core i9-12900K.

It’s clear Intel wins the single thread performance stakes this time around, with the stock speed Core i5-13600K able to beat the Ryzen 7 7700X and once overclocked, beat every CPU except the Core i9-13900K.

The multi-threaded test below is a huge scalp for Intel, with the Core i5-13600K beating the Ryzen 7 7700X convincingly and cementing that advantage once overclocked where it even beat the Ryzen 9 5950X.

Gaming is a huge focus for AMD and Intel and in Forza Horizon 5, the Core i5-13600K again beat the Ryzen 7 7700X but only by a few frames where it was also a tad quicker than the Ryzen 9 7950X.

Watch Dogs Legion saw very little difference between the top eight CPUs with with the Core i5-13600K sitting amongst them, although it was noticeably quicker than the Core i5-12600K, and slightly quicker than the Ryzen 5 7600X

Far Cry 6 saw it again beat the Ryzen 5 7600X and Ryzen 7 7700X, mostly on the average frame rate where it was 5-10fps faster than all the Ryzen 7000 CPUs as well as the Ryzen 7 5800X3D.

Power efficiency is again not one of Intel’s strong points here – it was certainly faster than the Ryzen 5 7600X and Ryzen 7 7700X too in some tests, but they used 100W and 60W less power under full load by comparison. Still, temperatures were much lower than those CPUs and easily tamed with decent air or liquid cooling.

Conclusion

Like the Core i9-13900K, it’s not a clean sweep for the Core i5-13600K as the Ryzen 5 7600X and Core i7-7700X beat it in a couple of places, most notably in power efficiency. However, much of the rest of the time the Intel CPU is faster and even beats the more expensive Ryzen 7 7700X in many tests too.

Once overclocked, it’s even faster, putting a huge amount more performance on the table compared to the Core i5-12600K. This is exactly the kind of performance we want to see added between generations and the Core i5-13600K is exactly what a Core i5 should be – a fantastic allrounder and probably once of the best CPUs out there right now, especially once overclocked.

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