RUN DEVIL RUN (THE BENCHMARKS)
Before we begin with the benchmarks and our testing methodology, below are the barebone details of the new Core i7-4790K processor:
• 4.00GHz base frequency (up to 4.40GHz turbo frequency)
• Unlocked core ratio multiplier
• Intel Turbo Boost Technology 2.0
• Intel Hyper-Threading Technology
• 4 cores, 8 threads
• 8MB Intel Smart Cache
• Dual-channel DDR3 1600MHz native memory support
• 16 PCIe 3.0 lanes
• Intel HD 4600 GPU (Iris Pro)
• 88W TDP
• LGA 1150 socket
One of the things we should make clear about the Core i7-4790K CPU is that unlike the processors we’ve tested in the past, it’s not an extreme processor (see our October and December 2013 issues for our Lab Exams on Intel’s Ivy Bridge-E CPU and AMD’s FX9590 Black Edition processor). However, do note of the fact that it has an integrated GPU in the form of Intel’s Iris Pro integrated graphics. That being said, we still used an external graphics source to aid in our benchmarks.
As mentioned earlier, this is an unlocked processor, which inherently means that the CPU was designed to be overclocked and pushed to the bleeding edge of the high performance line. With a base clock of 4GHz, it’s already attained the status of being the only integrated CPU on the market to actually boast clock speeds which rivals its competitor’s own CPU-only processors.
As we also mentioned before, Intel said that its new and improved CPU could be pushed to a speed of 4.4GHz with its turbo multipliers, and that was as high as it would go. We beg to differ: you see, how much you can overclock a CPU and how far you can push it is solely dependent on the cooling option (e.g. the CPU cooler) you choose. Before you ask: no, we didn’t have a proper water cooler or water block on hand. However, we did have a very powerful fan-based Vapor-X cooler from Sapphire. We managed to overclock and push the Core i74790K’s clock speed all the way up to 4.7GHz before the cooler started to show its limitation in keeping the CPU cool enough to function.