Intel shares prices and specifications of Raptor Lake processors for desktops

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Intel introduces its thirteenth generation Core CPUs for desktops. These Raptor Lake processors get double the amount of E-cores, more L2 cache and higher clock speeds than their predecessors. The first processors will be available on October 20.

Intel initially comes with six Raptor Lake CPUs for desktops, which should follow the current Alder Lake processors. The company is introducing a Core i9-13900K, Core i7-13700K and Core i5-13600K. KF variants of those processors will also become available, which do not have an integrated GPU, but are otherwise identical to their K counterparts. All processors are overclockable; non-K processors will follow at a later date.

The Core i9-13900K will be the top model in Intel’s lineup. This processor has 8 P-cores and 16 E-cores for a total of 24 cores and 32 threads. According to Intel, this CPU achieves a Thermal Velocity boost clock of up to 5.8GHz. This CPU has a base TDP of 125W. The ‘maximum’ tdp has been increased slightly to 253W. The Core i9-12900K goes up to 241W.

The Core i7-13700K is positioned below the i9 variant. This processor has 8 P-cores and 8 E-cores, for a total of 16 cores and 24 threads. This gives this CPU a similar configuration to the Core i9-12900K, Intel’s previous top model. This CPU has a maximum boost clock of 5.4GHz and a maximum TDP of 253W. The Core i5-13600K is the lowest-ranking model Intel will introduce on Tuesday. This CPU gets 6 P-cores and 8 E-cores, which comes down to 14 cores and 20 threads. According to Intel, this processor achieves a Thermal Velocity Boost of 5.1GHz and a maximum TDP of 181W.

cores cache Clock Speeds GPU Power usage
Processor p E L2 L3 Base P Turbo P Base E Turbo E Fashion model Base Turbo
Intel Core i9-13900K 8 16 32MB 36MB 3.0GHz 5.8GHz 2.2GHz 4.3GHz UHD 770 125W 253W
Intel Core i9-13900KF 8 16 32MB 36MB 3.0GHz 5.8GHz 2.2GHz 4.3GHz No 125W 253W
Intel Core i7-13700K 8 8 24MB 30MB 3.4GHz 5.4GHz 2.5GHz 4.2GHz UHD 770 125W 253W
Intel Core i7-13700KF 8 8 24MB 30MB 3.4GHz 5.4GHz 2.5GHz 4.2GHz No 125W 253W
Intel Core i5-13600K 6 8 20MB 24MB 3.5GHz 5.1GHz 2.6GHz 3.9GHz UHD 770 125W 181W
Intel Core i5-13600KF 6 8 20MB 24MB 3.5GHz 5.1GHz 2.6GHz 3.9GHz No 125W 181W

Architectural changes: more E-cores, more cache and Intel 7 improvements

Intel gives Raptor Lake several changes compared to the previous generation of Alder Lake chips. For example, the new processors achieve higher maximum clock speeds on both the P and E cores. In addition, Intel doubles the amount of E-cores in its CPUs, as already apparent from the specifications mentioned above. For example, the Core i9-13900K gets 16 E-cores, where the 12900K had 8.

Intel is also increasing the amount of L2 cache in its 13th-generation Core CPUs. Raptor Lake processors get 2MB L2 cache per P-core, while the P-cores in Alder Lake each have 1.25MB. The CPUs also get 4MB L2 cache per E-core cluster; previously it was 2MB per cluster. The total amount of L3 cache is also increased to a total of up to 36MB.

The CPUs are again manufactured on Intel 7, the production process formerly known as 10nm-Enhanced SuperFin. The company also produced Alder Lake on that node. Intel does say that its Intel 7 process for Raptor Lake has been upgraded. Intel claims to journalists, among other things, that the Core i9-13900K at 65W can deliver similar performance as a Core i9-12900K at 241W. According to the company, much of that is due to process improvements, along with general IPC improvements. The company says in a briefing that the improved Intel 7 process delivers better channel mobility, but does not share any concrete details about the changes.

Furthermore, Intel improves the memory support. According to Intel, the Raptor Lake generation officially supports DDR5 speeds of up to 5600MT/s if one dimm per memory channel is used. Alder Lake officially supports up to DDR5-4800. At two dimms per channel, the officially supported speed drops to a maximum of 4400MT/s. In addition, Raptor Lake retains support for DDR4 memory, unlike AMD’s Ryzen 7000 series. To use DDR4, a motherboard with DDR4 support is required.

As for motherboards, Intel is coming with a new Z790 chipset. It will get eight additional PCIe 4.0 lanes, for a total of twenty. Z790 also supports up to five USB 3.2 Gen 2×2 ports with maximum throughputs of 20Gbit/s. The CPU itself retains sixteen PCIe 5.0 lanes and four PCIe 4.0 lanes. Raptor Lake is also backwards compatible with 600 series motherboards, Intel emphasizes again. Motherboards with 600 series chipsets do need a bios update for this.

Performance improvements and the first benchmarks

Intel claims Raptor Lake achieves up to 15 percent better single-threaded performance and up to 41 percent better performance in multithreaded workloads over previous-generation Alder Lake CPUs. According to Intel, the improved single-threaded performance is mainly due to the higher clock speeds, although the larger amount of cache also contributes to this. According to Intel, the better multithreaded performance is mainly due to the increased amount of E-cores in combination with the higher clock speeds.

According to Intel, the Core i9-13900K achieves “up to 24 percent better performance” in games, although that depends on the title. Intel’s slides show that the average improvement compared to the 12900K is much lower. The manufacturer also compares its Core i9-13900K with the 12900K and AMD Ryzen 9 5950X in various content creation software. Naturally, Intel ran these benchmarks itself. Reviews from independent media will follow later. These results should therefore be taken with a grain of salt.

Prices and availability

Intel will release its first six Raptor Lake processors on October 20. For example, the Core i9-13900K has a suggested retail price of $589 and the Core i7-13700K is priced at $409. Those are the prices Intel also charged for its respective Alder Lake counterparts. Only the Core i5-13600K has become more expensive. That CPU gets a suggested retail price of $319, where the Core i5-12600K cost $289 at release.

However, when converted into euros and with 21 percent VAT, the new Intel CPUs cost significantly more than their current Alder Lake counterparts. This is mainly due to the weak exchange rate of the euro against the dollar. However, Intel itself has not yet communicated official euro prices.

Processor MSRP Europrice
(converted, incl. VAT)
Core i9-13900K $589 740 euros
Core i9-13900KF $564 709 euros
Core i7-13700K $409 514 euros
Core i7-13700KF $384 483 euros
Core i5-13600K $319 401 euros
Core i5-13600KF $294 370 euros
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