Today marks a milestone for Intel with the release of the first mainstream six-core CPUs in the Core i5 and Core i7 segments and the first quad-core Core i3 CPUs. Core counts have skyrocketed this year across the board, first with High-End Desktop segments hitting a staggering eighteen cores, and now mainstream platforms finally breaking away from a quad-core ceiling. We have Intel’s six-core, six-thread Core i5-8400 on hand, and we’ll put it through its paces and see if more cores actually matter to anything more than benchmarking. Last generations i5-7400 had 4 cores, 4 threads, and has a 3.0 GHz clock speed that could Turbo Boost to 3.5 GHz. This generation, you get 6 cores at a slightly reduced 2.8Ghz, but Turbo Frequencies can hit 4.0 GHz, all while staying in the same 65W TDP window.
Do two extra cores really make much difference for mid-range mainstream platforms? We think you’ll be surprised at the answer.
ProClockers would like to thank Intel for sending the i5-8400 over to check out!
8th Generation Processor segment comparison.
Intel’s take on the 8th Generation Core CPU's
The 8th Generation Intel® Core™ processors redefine mainstream desktop PC performance with up to six cores for more processing power—that’s two more cores than the previous generation Intel® Core™ processor family—Intel® Turbo Boost Technology 2.0 to increase the maximum turbo frequency up to 4.7 GHz, and up to 12 MB of cache memory.1 Intel® Hyper-Threading Technology (Intel® HT Technology)1 delivers up to 12-way multitasking support in the latest generation of Intel® Core™ processors. For the enthusiast, the unlocked 8th Generation Intel® Core™ i7-8700K processor provides you the opportunity to tweak the platform performance to its fullest potential and enjoy great gaming and VR experiences.
The new 8th Generation Intel® Core™ processor family delivers:
- An impressive portfolio of standard and unlocked systems for a broad range of usages and performance levels
- New system acceleration when paired with Intel® Optane™ memory to deliver amazing system responsiveness1
- Intel® Turbo Boost Technology 2.0 to give you that extra burst of performance when you need it
- Intel® Hyper-Threading Technology (Intel® HT Technology), which allows each processor core to work on two tasks at the same time, improving multitasking, speeding up workflows, and accomplishing more in less time
- DDR4 RAM memory technology support, which allows systems to have up to 64 GB of memory and up to 2666 MT/s memory transfer speeds
- The ability to set an overclocked ratio per core with unlocked processors,1 when paired with select chipset SKUs, to provide you more control and more granularity for overclocking2 your platform
Die Shot of Intel’s 8th generation Core processors.
Eighth generation CPU’s will not work on older chipsets such as Z270 and Z170, and conversely, 6th and 7Th generation CPU’s will not work on 300 series boards, despite using the exact same socket. Peak power draw is significantly higher after the jump to 6 cores. Increased power delivery capabilities are one major reason for lack of backward compatibility. The next major reason is improved memory routing for out of the box support of up to DDR4-2666Mhz over last generations DDR4-2400. While XMP speeds can easily surpass the 4000 MHz mark, those speeds are technically a factory supplied overclock, with no guarantee of support or compatibility. Intel has also updated the memory subsystem to expand the memory multipliers to support up to 8400 MT/s and added a real-time memory latency control, a feature previously only found on HEDT platforms.