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Intel Kaby Lake vs Skylake Desktop: First Impressions

6 January 2017

Intel Kaby Lake vs Skylake Desktop: First Impressions

Intel’s Kaby Lake processors for desktop PC’s are finally here, officially launching in Australia, 6th January 2017.

Today we briefly discuss our first impressions of Intel CPU's Kaby Lake vs Skylake, mainly the flagship i7-7700K vs i7-6700K and the gamer’s champion the i5-7600K vs i5-6600K. We have run a series of tests comparing these Kaby Lake and Skylake CPU’s using synthetic benchmarks (such as Cinebench and 3Dmark suite) and popular games like Overwatch and other eSport titles.

Read on to find out our first impressions on how the latest lineup of Intel CPU’s perform in game (or benchmark) in term of frame rate, load times and overall gaming experience. Hopefully our first impressions will help you to decide whether Intel’s Kaby Lake is what you are after for your next custom PC upgrade. But first a quick overview of the new 7th generation Intel CPU’s i7-7700K and i5-7600K.

The Kaby Lake Series

Kaby Lake is the codename of Intel’s 7th generation CPU. It shares the same 1151 socket as its Skylake predecessor and good news for Skylake owner’s, many z170 motherboards will support the new Kaby Lake CPU’s after upgrading to the latest motherboard BIOS revision.

 

Kaby Lake launches alongside the new z270 chipset and other 200-series chipsets will become available in the near future. With so many new motherboards toting, dual NVMe PCIe ready M.2 slots, USB type-C and RGB features lighting up your PC with every colour of the rainbow, or just your favourite, you decide. Without even checking out our gameplay and benchmarks below you can easily see that out of the box Kaby Lake operates at a faster frequency and draws less power whilst doing so. Looking good for Kaby lake so far.

 

Check out our wide range of z270 motherboard featuring MSI, Gigabyte and ASUS now!

Kaby Lake vs Skylake side by side:

CPU Name Core/Threads Base/Turbo IGP L3 TDP
i7-7700K (Kaby Lake) 4/8 4.2/4.5 MHz HD 630 8MB 91W
i7-6700K (Skylake) 4/8 4.0/4.2 MHz HD 530 8MB 91W
i5-7600K (Kaby Lake) 4/4 3.8/4.2 MHz HD 630 6MB 91W
i5-6600K (Skylake) 4/4 3.5/3.9 MHz HD 530 6MB 91W

Source: Intel

We played a number of games and ran some benchmarks to test the FPS and overall gaming performance between Kaby Lake and Skylake CPU’s.

Core i7 7700K (Kaby Lake) vs Core i7 6700K (Skylake) head to head:

Grand Theft Auto (GTA)

Core i5 7600K (Kaby Lake) vs Core i5 6600K (Skylake) head to head:



Cinebench


Total War: Warhammer

 

A summary of our first impressions:
 

  • Frame rate

    • Kaby lake consistently produces more FPS than its Skylake counterpart
    • Kaby Lake (on the left) generally produces smoother and more consistent scenes then Skylake (on the right), as its range Max vs Min is more consistent. For example, as per the image below, Kaby Lake’s frame range with 66-87 FPS fluctuates less than Skylake’s (43-76 FPS)
       

Frame rate consistency

 

  • Scene transition: while Skylake suffers from the tearing when transitioning from scene to scene, this is not as apparent in the Kaby Lake benchmark run
     

Kaby Lake vs Skylake: Tearing Effect

 

  • Loading time: From our first impressions it looks like Kaby Lake generally loads the game (or scene) quicker than Skylake. Comparing Kaby lake to Skylake load times is very interesting, we are guessing the reason behind these results is probably due to the new Intel Speed Shift v2 technology that Kaby Lake brings with it. Compared with v1 in Skylake, Speed Shift v2 can turbo to a higher frequency faster just like hitting NOS. The best example of this can be seen in GTAV where Kaby Lake loads scenes faster. Check it out here
     

Intel Speed Shift Technology

Source: AnandTech

 

Check out other tests that we run for the comparison as well

Core i7 7700K (Kaby Lake) vs Core i7 6700K (Skylake)

Overwatch

Grid Autosport

CS:GO

 

Core i5 7600K (Kaby Lake) vs Core i5 6600K (Skylake)

GTAV

 

 Product Recommendation: Check out the new Intel Kaby lake CPU's!

Intel Core i7 7700K Quad Core LGA 1151 4.2 GHz Unlocked CPU Processor

Intel Core i7 7700K Quad Core LGA 1151 4.2 GHz Unlocked CPU Processor

Intel Core i7 7700 Quad Core LGA 1151 3.6 GHz Unlocked CPU Processor

Intel Core i7 7700 Quad Core LGA 1151 3.6 GHz Unlocked CPU Processor

Intel Core i5 7600K Quad Core LGA 1151 3.8 GHz Unlocked CPU Processor

Intel Core i5 7600K Quad Core LGA 1151 3.8 GHz Unlocked CPU Processor

Intel Core i5 7600 Quad Core LGA 1151 3.5 GHz CPU Processor

Intel Core i5 7600 Quad Core LGA 1151 3.5 GHz CPU Processor

Intel Core i5 7500 Quad Core LGA 1151 3.4 GHz CPU Processor

Intel Core i5 7500 Quad Core LGA 1151 3.4 GHz CPU Processor

Intel Core i5 7400 Quad Core LGA 1151 3.0 GHz CPU Processor

Intel Core i5 7400 Quad Core LGA 1151 3.0 GHz CPU Processor

Tags: Intel, Kaby Lake, Intel 7th Gen CPU, Processors, CPU, Skylake

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