Intel Core i7-12700K leak suggests a seriously fast CPU that could worry AMD

Intel i9-11900K Processor Shown Back and Front
(Image credit: Intel)

Intel’s Core i7-12700K, the next-gen Alder Lake processor which could be out in less than a month, has appeared in a leaked benchmark which points to a promising level of performance.

As spotted by VideoCardz, the CPU-Z benchmark result was posted on Twitter by well-known leaker Tum_Apisak, with the 12700K hitting a single-thread score of 800 and multi-threaded result of 9,423. Remember, the 12700K offers 8-cores (normal performance ones) combined with 4 power-efficient cores, giving it 20-threads in total (the efficient cores don’t have hyper-threading).

Now, before we digest those scores, it’s worth pointing out that we don’t know if this leak could be fabricated, so go pretty heavy on the condiments here. That possibility aside, particularly the single-thread result looks very strong for Intel’s 12700K, which as you’re likely aware, isn’t the flagship (that’s the 12900K).

A tally of 800 for single-thread is a sizable step up from current Rocket Lake chips, looking the best part of 20% faster compared to the 11700K going by previous results from that CPU. It’s also very close to the 12900K’s score, which in a previous leak reached a (purported) 825, and similarly, it compares very well to Ryzen 5000 silicon.

The multi-threaded result of 9,423 is a good deal further behind the 12900K though (which hit 11,900), and also nestles just behind the Ryzen 9 5900X which manages around 9,500 as VideoCardz observes. That said, the 5900X is a 12-core chip with 24-threads in total, so has more raw grunt in terms of pure thread count than the 12700K. All in all, this still seems like a solid result for the Intel Core i7 Alder Lake processor.

Analysis: Exciting hints, for sure – but nothing more than that

Overall, then, this is a promising leak, assuming it’s a genuine benchmark result. There are other caveats here, though, not the least of which is that we shouldn’t put all that much stock in a single pre-release benchmark, and for that matter, CPU-Z isn’t the best benchmarking utility to judge performance by (or the most reliable benchmark metric historically).

We also don’t know anything about the rig which the Core i7-12700K was running in, and whether the 12700K was overclocked at all (which is theoretically possible, even if that’s maybe not typical for leaks of sample chips).

Still, this is an exciting potential glimpse of performance, and we should also bear in mind that it looks like the benchmark was carried out under Windows 10, with Windows 11 offering purported additional performance benefits to Alder Lake. We can but wait and keep our fingers crossed, with AMD perhaps starting to perspire a little as more of these leaks come out suggesting that Intel is really onto something with its 12th-gen silicon.

Darren is a freelancer writing news and features for TechRadar (and occasionally T3) across a broad range of computing topics including CPUs, GPUs, various other hardware, VPNs, antivirus and more. He has written about tech for the best part of three decades, and writes books in his spare time (his debut novel - 'I Know What You Did Last Supper' - was published by Hachette UK in 2013).