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Rocket Lake promises up to 14% faster gaming performance than Comet Lake from $182
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Rocket Lake promises up to 14% faster gaming performance than Comet Lake from $182

by Vyncent ChanMarch 16, 2021
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The 11th Gen Intel Core processors are finally official. As previously revealed, the 11th Gen Rocket Lake processors are based on the Cypress Cove core architecture, which is Ice Lake’s Sunny Cove core architecture backported for the 14nm node. This affords for a nice improvement in IPC to the tune of 19%, but more importantly, a notable gaming performance uplift.

New CPU and GPU cores for Rocket Lake

11th Gen Intel Core rocket lake architecture

The top of the line 11th Gen Intel Core processor, the Intel Core i9-11900K, is somewhat of a step backwards when it comes to core count, topping out at just 8 cores and 16 threads. However when paired with the IPC improvements brought by the newer core architecture, it still promises an upgrade for gamers who will benefit more from the enhanced single-core performance on tap.

Intel boasts 14% better FPS in Microsoft Flight Simulator with the 11th Gen Intel Core i9-11900K vs the Core i9-10900K, while the i5-11600K promises up to 7% better FPS vs its predecessor. Even when pitted against the Ryzen 9 5900X, the i9-11900K boasts of 11% better FPS in the same game, despite the AMD CPU coming with 4 additional cores.

On top of the new CPU architecture, Intel also used the latest Intel Xe graphics architecture here to offer up to 50% better integrated graphics performance. The newer integrated graphics brings with it improved Intel Quick Sync capabilities and hardware 10-bit AV1 and 12-bit HEVC decode.

Improved memory overclocking

TEAMGROUP T-FORCE XTREEM ARGB DDR4-3600 CL14-9

Intel has also updated the memory overclocking on the 11th Gen Intel Core processors. With an all-new integrated memory controller, the 11th Gen Intel Core processors can now run in two gearing modes, Gear 1 and Gear 2, which allows the IMC to decouple from the memory frequency to allow for greater memory overclocking potential. The officially supported memory frequency has also been bumped up to 3200MHz, from 2933MHz in the previous generation.

An interesting thing to note is that only the Intel Core i9-11900K and i9-11900KF officially support DDR4-3200 in Gear 1, while the rest of the product stack supports DDR4-3200 in Gear 2, which will see the IMC run at a half the speed and thus incur higher latencies than the 1:1 ratio of the Gear 1 mode.

Upgraded Intel 500 Series Chipset

Another main highlight of course has to be the PCIe 4.0 support. Intel has finally embraced PCIe 4.0 in their desktop platform with the 11th Gen Intel Core processors offering 20 PCIe 4.0 lanes. The processors still communicates with the Intel Z590 chipset over PCIe 3.0 lanes, but this time the interconnect has been widened to 8 lanes for double the bandwidth of previous generations.

Intel added support for discrete WiFi 6E, Thunderbolt 4 to the chipset, with integrated Wireless-AX CNVi across the Intel 500 series chipsets. There’s also support for USB 3.2 Gen 2×2 20Gbps baked into the chipset. Also new is the support for memory overclocking on Intel H570 and Intel B560 motherboards, which allows gamers to opt for more affordable motherboards and not sacrifice on faster memory speeds.

11th Gen Intel Core “Rocket Lake” Processors Specs and Pricing

Base Clock (GHz) Max Boost (GHz) Max All Core Boost (GHz) Cores/Threads Cache TDP Graphics Price
Core i9-11900K 3.5 5.3 4.8 8C/16T 16MB 125W Intel UHD Graphic 750 (32 EU) $539 (~RM2218)
Core i9-11900KF 3.5 5.3 4.8 8C/16T 16MB 125W N/A $513 (~RM2111)
Core i9-11900 2.5 5.2 4.7 8C/16T 16MB 65W Intel UHD Graphic 750 (32 EU) $439 (~RM1807)
Core i9-11900F 2.5 5.2 4.7 8C/16T 16MB 65W N/A $422 (~RM1737)
Core i9-11900T 1.5 4.9 3.7 8C/16T 16MB 35W Intel UHD Graphic 750 (32 EU) $439 (~RM1807)
Core i7-11700K 3.6 5.0 4.6 8C/16T 16MB 125W Intel UHD Graphic 750 (32 EU) $399 (~RM1642)
Core i7-11700KF 3.6 5.0 4.6 8C/16T 16MB 125W N/A $374 (~RM1539)
Core i7-11700 2.5 4.9 4.4 8C/16T 16MB 65W Intel UHD Graphic 750 (32 EU) $323 (~RM1329)
Core i7-11700F 2.5 4.9 4.4 8C/16T 16MB 65W N/A $298 (~RM1226_
Core i7-11700T 1.4 4.6 3.6 8C/16T 16MB 35W Intel UHD Graphic 750 (32 EU) $323 (~RM1329)
Core i5-11600K 3.9 4.9 4.6 6C/12T 12MB 125W Intel UHD Graphic 750 (32 EU) $262 (~RM1078)
Core i5-11600KF 3.9 4.9 4.6 6C/12T 12MB 125W N/A $237 (~RM975)
Core i5-11600 2.8 4.8 4.3 6C/12T 12MB 65W Intel UHD Graphic 750 (32 EU) $213 (~RM877)
Core i5-11600T 1.7 4.1 3.5 6C/12T 12MB 35W N/A $213 (~RM877)
Core i5-11500 2.7 4.6 4.2 6C/12T 12MB 65W Intel UHD Graphic 750 (32 EU) $192 (~RM790)
Core i5-11500T 1.5 3.9 3.4 6C/12T 12MB 35W Intel UHD Graphic 750 (32 EU) $192 (~RM790)
Core i5-11400 2.6 4.4 4.2 6C/12T 12MB 65W Intel UHD Graphic 730 (24 EU) $182 (~RM749)
Core i5-11400F 2.6 4.4 4.2 6C/12T 12MB 65W N/A $157 (~RM646)
Core i5-11400T 1.3 3.7 3.3 6C/12T 12MB 35W Intel UHD Graphic 730 (24 EU) $182 (~RM749)

The 11th Gen Intel Core processors should be available starting 30th March.
Pokdepinion: I do think that six to eight cores is the sweet spot for gaming PCs, but I wonder how much it will affect workloads that prefer more cores.

About The Author
Vyncent Chan
Technology enthusiast, casual gamer, pharmacy graduate. Strongly opposes proprietary standards and always on the look out for incredible bang-for-buck.