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Intel Core i7-10700K Review – Still The Best Gaming CPU?

Today we are going to check out and review one of Intel’s latest 10th gen processors – the Intel Core i7 10700K. It’s an 8 core 16 thread CPU, with a base clock speed of 3.8GHz and a maximum turbo speed of 5.1GHz. These new 10th Gen Comet Lake CPUs are designed for the latest Intel Z490 motherboards with socket LGA1200. Unfortunately, these new CPUs are not backwards compatible with previous chipset / socket. Currently this CPU retails for around $410~$426 USD. Considering its price and performance, is it worth to buy one (if you can find one)? Let’s find out in our Intel Core i7-10700K review below.

Intel Core i7-10700K Review

Intel Core i7-10700K Review – Better Than i9-9900K But…

Right off the bat, I’d like to address some things that you might be wondering or asking during the course of this review. I didn’t get a review kit from Intel; thus, I currently don’t have an i9-10900K or the i5-10600K. I have to buy the 10700K and frankly it was quite difficult to get a “K” variant at that time; well, even until today.

So, in this review, it’s more on the performance of the Intel Core i7-10700K when it comes to productivity and gaming. I also have the Ryzen 7 3700X to compare it against the i7-10700K. The Ryzen 7 3700X is also an 8 core 12 thread CPU, but with a (slightly) lower clock speed of 3.6GHz base and 4.4GHz max boost speed. However, the Ryzen 7 3700X retails for just around $275 USD at the time of writing.

I am curious to find out how a cheaper Ryzen 7 3700X would fare against the more expensive i7-10700K. Later, I’ll be comparing the i7-10700K with the two generation older i7-8700K. I primarily use the i7-8700K in benchmarking graphics cards and other components. It would be interesting to see if there’s a significant improvement from the 8700K to 10700K. But that would be a topic for another review article.

For now, let’s see how good, or not, the Intel Core i7-10700K is; and should you even consider getting one instead of a Ryzen CPU counterpart. In this review, I tested the Core i7-10700K in both productivity and in gaming. Below is a specification table of the 10th gen Intel Core CPUs for reference.

If you want to see a specs comparison of the Intel 10th gen vs 9th gen and 8th gen CPUs, you can check out the table here.

10th Gen Intel Core CPU Specifications

SKUCores / ThreadsBase Clock SpeedTurbo Boost Tech 2.0Turbo Boost Max Tech 3.0TVB Single / All Core Turbo FreqAll Core Turbo FreqTDPiGPU
i9-10900K10C / 20T3.7 GHz5.1 GHz5.2 GHz5.3 GHz / 4.9 GHz4.8 GHz125WIntel UHD Graphics 630
i9-10900KF10C / 20T3.7 GHz5.1 GHz5.2 GHz5.3 GHz / 4.9 GHz4.8 GHz125W
i9-1090010C / 20T2.8 GHz5.0 GHz5.1 GHz5.2 GHz / 4.6 GHz4.5 GHz65WIntel UHD Graphics 630
i9-10900F10C / 20T2.8 GHz5.0 GHz5.1 GHz5.2 GHz / 4.6 GHz4.5 GHz65W
i7-10700K8C / 16T3.8 GHz5.0 GHz5.1 GHzNA4.7 GHz125WIntel UHD Graphics 630
i7-10700KF8C / 16T3.8 GHz5.0 GHz5.1 GHzNA4.7 GHz125W
i7-107008C / 16T2.9 GHz4.7 GHz4.8 GHzNA4.6 GHz65WIntel UHD Graphics 630
i7-10700F8C / 16T2.9 GHz4.7 GHz4.8 GHzNA4.6 GHz65W
i5-10600K6C / 12T4.1 GHz4.8 GHzNANA4.5 GHz125WIntel UHD Graphics 630
i5-10600KF6C / 12T4.1 GHz4.8 GHzNANA4.5 GHz125W
i5-106006C / 12T3.3 GHz4.8 GHzNANA4.4 GHz65WIntel UHD Graphics 630
i5-105006C / 12T3.1 GHz4.5 GHzNANA4.2 GHz65WIntel UHD Graphics 630
i5-104006C / 12T2.9 GHz4.3 GHzNANA4.0 GHz65WIntel UHD Graphics 630
i5-10400F6C / 12T2.9 GHz4.3 GHzNANA4.0 GHz65W
i3-103204C / 8T3.8 GHz4.6 GHzNANA4.4 GHz65WIntel UHD Graphics 630
i3-103004C / 8T3.7 GHz4.4 GHzNANA4.2 GHz65WIntel UHD Graphics 630
i3-101004C / 8T3.6 GHz4.3 GHzNANA4.1 GHz65WIntel UHD Graphics 630

The Test Setup Used for this Review


For this review, I am using two test systems; one for the Intel Core i7-10700K and another for the Ryzen 7 3700X for the comparison. Below are their respective specifications.

 Intel Test SystemAMD Test System
SystemWindows 10 Pro 64bit version 2004
ProcessorIntel core i7-10700KAMD Ryzen 7 3700X
MotherboardAsus ROG Maximus XII FormulaMSI MEG X570 ACE
MemoryCrucial Ballistix Elite 16GB DDR4-4000 CL18
Graphics CardNVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Ti Founders Edition
OS DriveCrucial P1 1TB NVMeADATA Spectrix S40G 1TB NVMe
Power SupplySilverstone ST1000-PTSeasonic Primte TX-1000
ChassisThermaltake Core P3Thermaltake Core P5

Here is a CPU-Z screenshot of the Intel Core i7-10700K installed on the Asus ROG Maximus XII Formula:
intel core i7-10700k cpu-z

I tested the i7-10700K in 3 methods: running at stock, MCE enabled and applying a 5.1GHz on all cores.

In stock settings, only XMP is enabled so that the memory would run at 4000MHz. Limits are enforced so the motherboard won’t “enhance” the performance while benchmarking. Meanwhile, MCE meaning I enabled Asus’ multi-core enhancement and any limit has been removed. Finally, during the overclock settings, all cores are set to run at 5.1GHz with a CPU voltage of 1.35v.

I also matched their respective color schemes to make it easier to identify. Blue for the Intel i7-10700K and orange for the Ryzen 7 3700X; since those are the colors that these two CPU companies are currently using. Below are the results that I got.

Intel Core i7-10700K Review – Productivity Benchmarks

intel i7-10700k 3dmark cpu score

First, we look at the CPU scores that I got in 3DMark Time Spy and Time Spy Extreme. The benchmark results are in alphabetical order, by the way. We can see that the i7-10700K is faster than the Ryzen 7 3700X. Enabling MCE didn’t seem to help the 10700K in this test.

intel i7-10700k 7zip benchmark

In 7zip, we can see that the Ryzen 7 3700X outperformed the i7-10700K in decompression. The 10700K needs to be overclock just to match the 3700X in decompression. However, looks like the 10700K is performing slightly better when it comes to compressing files.

intel i7-10700k aida64 gpgpu benchmark

In Aida64 GPGPU benchmark, the i7-10700K is faster in single-precision and double-precision tests.

intel i7-10700k blender benchmark

In Blender test, it took the Ryzen 7 3700X 187 seconds to finish rendering the BWM demo. The i7-10700K was able to finish rendering the image in 173 seconds. Overclocking the CPU, we see that it was able to finish rendering the image faster. The 3700X is at a disadvantage here due to lower clock speeds, despite having similar core and thread count.

intel i7-10700k cinebench r15 benchmark

intel i7-10700k cinebench r20 benchmark

Both in Cinebench R20 and R15, we can see that the i7-10700K performed better than the 3700X. The 10700K outperformed the 3700K thanks to its higher or faster clock speeds.

intel i7-10700k corona benchmark

In Corona 1.3 benchmark, we can see that the i7-10700K is 18 seconds faster than the 3700X. But notice that there is no difference when running the 10700K in stock or when enabling multi-core enhancement.

intel i7-10700k cpu-z benchmark

Again, just like in Cinebench, we can see that the Ryzen 7 3700X is being outperformed by the 10700K. Although, not by a huge margin.

intel i7-10700k geekbench multi-core benchmark

intel i7-10700k geekbench single-core benchmark

In Geekbench benchmark, the Ryzen 7 3700X didn’t stand a chance against the i7-10700K. However, if you look at the single-core crypto test, the 3700X is faster than the 10700K by around 18%. I double checked the numbers, re-run the test and the results were quite similar.

intel i7-10700k pcmark 8 benchmark

In PCMark 8 Creative benchmark, using the conventional method, we can see that the Ryzen 7 3700X outperformed the i7-10700K. The 10700K was able to catch up to the 3700X only after overclocking it to 5.1GHz on all cores. However, overall, the 3700X is still (a bit) faster in this test.

intel i7-10700k pcmark 10 benchmark

PCMark 10 is a newer and more updated benchmark tool than the PCMark 8. Here we can see that the i7-10700K outperforms the Ryzen 7 3700X in productivity and digital content creation. However, the 3700X was a bit faster when it comes to the essentials.

For reference, the essentials include apps start-up, video conferencing and web browsing. Meanwhile, productivity include spreadsheets and writing. Under digital content creation are photo editing, rendering and visualization and video edition.

intel i7-10700k sisoft sandra benchmark

Last but not the least, we tested the CPUs in SiSoft Sandra cryptography benchmark. Remember how the 3700X outperformed the 10700K in Geekbench’s single-core crypto test? Well, it looks like the Ryzen 7 loves cryptographic computations. The 3700X is faster than the 10700K when it comes to cryptographic workloads.

Now, let’s see how the Intel core i7-10700K performs when it comes to gaming on the next page.

Processors’ latest pricing and availability:

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I love computers since I was a kid. I’m always fascinated with new technology, especially in the PC world. Many years ago, I was curious if the reviews I read were true and real. So, why not test them myself and share my first-hand experience? And thus, here we are. Thanks for reading!

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