New Intel 11th-gen leak threatens AMD's new Ryzen 5000 single-core crown

Intel Core i5-10600K
(Image credit: Future)

When AMD launched its Ryzen 5000 processors, it shook the CPU market to the core by toppling Intel when it came to single-core – and thus gaming – performance. However, another leak has surfaced that suggests that Intel could be reclaiming the gaming performance crown. 

A CPU-Z benchmark result for the Intel Core i9-11900K has appeared on bililbili, and spotted by HXL on Twitter. It shows Intel's 11th-gen flagship with a single-core score of 695 and a multi-thread score of 6,522.

The CPU-Z benchmark isn't in our suite of benchmark tests, but according to the folks over at Wccftech, this single-thread score is approximately 5-7% faster than the AMD Ryzen 7 5800X. If this leak is accurate, Intel could very well reclaim its crown of "the best processor for gaming". 

When it comes to multi-core performance, however, it would still be just on par with the AMD Ryzen 7 5800X, thanks to its 8-core design, which means it would lose significant ground to both the AMD Ryzen 9 5900X and Ryzen 9 5950X, which means it wouldn't really appeal to content creators, which are becoming more and more common as powerful hardware becomes more affordable over time. 

Either way, we won't know anything definitive about Intel Rocket Lake performance until Intel is ready to share more details about its upcoming processors. Hopefully we'll hear something about it at CES 2021

Intel is doubling down

Ever since AMD started giving Intel more competition, Team Blue has consistently claimed that clock speed is king, as it's the most important thing when it comes to straight gaming performance. And, for the most part that's absolutely true. 

However, one of the best things about PC gaming in general is the ability to use your gaming rig to do whatever you need to do. Whether you're a professional video editor or if you're just trying to edit together a Call of Duty montage, having the extra multi-threaded horsepower is useful. 

We don't know how these upcoming processors are going to perform, even assuming all of these leaked benchmarks are accurate – which is a pretty big assumption. How Rocket Lake will perform both in games and in creative applications is going to be what makes or breaks the upcoming generation. 

Right now, all the rumors, including this one, are pointing to an 11th-generation Core i9 with 8 cores and 16 threads, rather than the 10 cores and 20 threads of the Core i9-10900K. If nothing else, this upcoming processor generation may serve as an interesting case-study on what is actually more important for games – single or multi-threaded performance. And, with both the PS5 and Xbox Series X both having 8 core, 16 thread processors as the baseline for next-gen gaming, the answer might not be as simple as it's been in the past. 

Bill Thomas

Bill Thomas (Twitter) is TechRadar's computing editor. They are fat, queer and extremely online. Computers are the devil, but they just happen to be a satanist. If you need to know anything about computing components, PC gaming or the best laptop on the market, don't be afraid to drop them a line on Twitter or through email.