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Intel Core i5-11400 Evaluation: Unseating Ryzen's Funds Gaming Dominance – Tom's {Hardware}


The Intel Core i5-11400 slots into the Rocket Lake household as a surprisingly well-priced and nimble chip with six cores and 12 threads for a mere $182, or you may go for the graphics-less F-series mannequin for as little as $157. Surprisingly, AMD does not have a contemporary chip to fend off the 11400, so it squares off with AMD’s two-year-old $199 Ryzen 5 3600 that is not aggressive with the 11400 in gaming. That makes for a one-sided battle, leaving Intel to reign uncontested within the entry-level PC gaming market and incomes the Core i5-11400 a spot on our listing of Finest CPUs.

After a number of years of heated competitors, the $150 to $200 worth vary now delivers unbelievable worth with six-core twelve-thread fashions from each AMD and Intel in a phase the place quad-core chips used to dominate. Nevertheless, AMD has largely deserted delivering new merchandise for this worth bracket, as a substitute specializing in constructing out its premium lineup with a Ryzen-refresh XT sequence final yr that did not deal with the sub-$250 market. AMD adopted with the Ryzen 5000 sequence with an extremely steep $300 worth of entry with the beastly Ryzen 5 5600X, once more not refreshing its sub-$200 lineup.

That leaves the Zen 2-powered Ryzen 5 3600 to soldier on because the premiere AMD competitor on this phase although it debuted almost two years in the past. Sadly for AMD, the corporate has grappled with provide points as a result of pandemic and unprecedented demand. Meaning the getting old Ryzen 5 3600 can also be exhausting to search out wherever close to acceptable pricing.

Intel’s Rocket Lake launch introduced the corporate’s first new structure in six years to the desktop PC. Nonetheless, the burden of the getting old 14nm course of proved to be an excessive amount of for the highest-end Rocket Lake fashions, leaving them inadequately geared up in opposition to AMD’s core-heavy Ryzen 5000 flagships. Nevertheless, the brand new Cypress Cove structure does grant a 19% IPC improve, and the ultra-mature 14nm course of additionally hits excessive enhance clocks (albeit on the expense of energy consumption), permitting the Rocket chips to rival AMD’s most interesting in single-threaded work.

Rocket Lake Headliners
Recommended Worth Cores / Threads Base (GHz) Peak Enhance (Twin/All Core) TDP iGPU
RKL-S Core i9-11900K (KF) $539 (Ok) – $513 (KF) 8 / 16 3.5 5.3 / 4.8 125W UHD Graphics 750 Xe 32EU
RKL-S Core i7-11700K (KF) $399 (Ok) – $374 (KF) 8 / 16 3.6 5.0 / 4.6 125W UHD Graphics 750 Xe 32EU
RKL-S Core i5-11600K (KF) $262 (Ok) – $237(KF) 6 / 12 3.9 4.9 (TB2) / 4.6 125W UHD Graphics 750 Xe 32EU
RKL-S Core i5-11400 (F) $182 – $157 6 / 12 2.6 4.4 (TB2) / 4.2 65W UHD Graphics 750 Xe 24EU

Because of this, Rocket Lake is mostly aggressive with Ryzen 5000 chips with the identical variety of cores. Intel’s pricing can also be aggressive, resulting in unexpectedly good offers for Intel’s mainstream chips. However whereas the Core i5-11600K is a beautiful chip, its $262 worth level is a bit steep for extra value-conscious consumers, particularly as a result of the continued GPU scarcity means they’re going to must dedicate extra of their price range to a graphics resolution.

Given what you will see in our testing under, the Core i5-11400 is certainly one of the best entry-level gaming chip available on the market, significantly when paired with a B-series motherboard. Actually, in the event you aren’t occupied with overclocking to the intense, the Core i5-11400 can also be a much better deal than the Core i5-11600K. You will not have the ability to overclock the 11400’s cores or graphics like you may with the 11600K, and you may lose a few of the 11600K’s peak frequency headroom as a result of 11400’s decrease 65W TDP ranking, however you will acquire an additional $80 you could spend on different components, like a graphics card.

Regardless of its seemingly-low frequency vary, the Core i5-11400 nonetheless beats all comparably-priced CPUs. It may well simply push alongside most graphics playing cards available on the market, particularly at heightened resolutions and constancy settings, and Intel additionally added assist for reminiscence overclocking to B-series motherboards for all SKUs. As we’ll present under, it’s also possible to toggle a number of energy settings within the BIOS to get a sizeable overclock-esque enhance for threaded workloads.

AMD desperately wants a Zen 3 chip on this worth bracket to be aggressive, however it’s hamstrung with Zen 2 processors for now. AMD will not have a solution to the Core i5-11400 till it releases its non-X model of the 5600X to retail, or perhaps a souped-up Ryzen 3 mannequin you could truly purchase (in contrast to the legendary 3300X). Even AMD’s Ryzen 5000G ‘Cezanne’ APUs would possibly make some sense on this worth bracket given the crushing graphics card shortages. These chips aren’t even out there but, although, as a result of AMD has restricted them to the OEM market till later this yr.

All of which means, for now, AMD has utterly ceded the entry-level mainstream gaming phase to Intel.  Let’s have a look at how the tables have turned. 

Intel Core i5-11400 Specs and Pricing 

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