Overclocked Results

As part of our reviews here at AnandTech we have recently been including a section on overclocked results, because in the end a +10% overclock does not always mean an extra +10% on performance. For our overclocking escapades mentioned earlier in the review, while we were able to achieve 4.6 GHz on the Core i7-5960X, the sweet spot was around 4.3 GHz at a very comfortable temperature. This leads to a +43% overclock over the base frequency, similar to what we saw with Sandy Bridge-E overclocking.

For our overclocking tests, we are using the same graphs as in the last two pages, but adding the data from our overclocked Sandy Bridge-E, Ivy Bridge-E, Haswell and Haswell-E CPUs as well, tested fresh for this review on our latest benchmark suite.

In the past overclocking was all about getting the same or better performance for a lower cost, however with Ivy Bridge-E due to its lower frequency, it was a battle to keep on par with Sandy Bridge-E. Now that Haswell-E has the same frequency deficit (200 MHz) but a +8% increase in IPC, it begs the question if Sandy Bridge-E users with good 4.8 GHz+ CPUs should consider upgrading (for anything other than more cores and an upgraded chipset).

SYSmark 2014

SYSmark 2014 - Overall, Overclocked

SYSmark sees the biggest uplift in its media and office benchmark suites when overclocked, although the financial suite does enjoy the more cores to put the 5960X ahead.

HandBrake v0.9.9: link

HandBrake v0.9.9 LQ Film, Overclocked

HandBrake v0.9.9 2x4K, Overclocked

Interestingly the overclocked 5960X does aid low quality conversion, showing that with enough frequency all the cores can be constantly fed with data. The 5960X takes the top two spots for 4K conversion.

Agisoft Photoscan – 2D to 3D Image Manipulation: link

Agisoft PhotoScan - Total Time, Overclocked

Photoscan also enjoys overclocking in combination with the cores, but the 3960X overclocked will beat the 5960X at stock despite the extra cores of the 5960X.

Dolphin Benchmark: link

Dolphin Emulation Benchmark, Overclocked

Dolphin prefers single threaded speed, so the Haswell CPUs at 4.7 GHz win here. Haswell does well in Dolphin's emulation overall, hence why the older extreme processors, even when overclocked, are further down.

WinRAR 5.0.1: link

WinRAR 5.01, 2867 files, 1.52 GB, Overclocked

More top spots for the 5960X, with the two extra cores at stock beating the other extreme processors.

Hybrid x265

Hybrid x265, 4K Video, Overclocked

Cinebench R15

Cinebench R15 - Single Threaded, Overclocked

Cinebench R15 - Multi-Threaded, Overclocked

3D Particle Movement

3D Particle Movement: Single Threaded, Overclocked

3D Particle Movement: MultiThreaded, Overclocked

FastStone Image Viewer 4.9

FastStone Image Viewer 4.9, Overclocked

When overclocked to 4.3 GHz, the 5960X would seem to produce a similar experience in FastStone to the 4790K at stock. This makes sense as the 4790K at stock is 4.4 GHz in turbo mode.

POV-Ray 3.7 Beta RC14

POV-Ray 3.7 Beta RC4, Overclocked

Gaming Benchmarks

F1 2013

F1 2013 SLI, Average FPS, Overclocked


The overclocked 5960X scores a few points in minimum frame rates, giving another +20% while in SLI.

Bioshock Infinite

Bioshock Infinite SLI, Average FPS, Overclocked


Bioshock average frame rates seem to get a small boost when overclocked, but minimum frame rates are more responsive to the 84W and 88W parts. The variation might be more indicative of the benchmark as a whole, as it only takes one errant slow frame to produce a low result in the minimum FPS results.

Tomb Raider

Tomb Raider SLI, Average FPS, Overclocked


Sleeping Dogs

Sleeping Dogs SLI, Average FPS, Overclocked


Battlefield 4

Battlefield 4 SLI, Average FPS, Overclocked


Gaming Benchmarks Intel Haswell-E Conclusions
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  • designerfx - Thursday, September 04, 2014 - link

    Gaming was the first area I wanted to look at, so seeing all the comments and review messages saying this is a skip for gaming is great, actually. It means prices will probably drop soon for the gaming parts, hopefully. Reply
  • SirMaster - Friday, August 29, 2014 - link

    Well there is a LOT more to computing than gaming so this is exciting for a lot of us. Reply
  • Daniel Egger - Friday, August 29, 2014 - link

    Not at all, if you're into computing then you'll more than likely buy Xeon anyway. Reply
  • gilles3000 - Friday, August 29, 2014 - link

    Not really, xeons can't be overclocked, even the new 6C 5820K will give you a lot more bang for your buck. Xeons are great for Professional or Enterprise solutions(And are very expensive because of that). But if you need 6-8C and no ECC ram, I'd take a Haswell-E I7 over a Haswell-EP Xeon anyday. Reply
  • Samus - Saturday, August 30, 2014 - link

    ECC RAM is pretty nice though, even on a prosumer PC. Reply
  • TelstarTOS - Saturday, August 30, 2014 - link

    I agree, most xeons are too expensive for all but the most multithreaded jobs. Reply
  • jbruner007 - Saturday, August 30, 2014 - link

    actually we overclock Xeon's all the time... see Supermicro Hyperspeed. we OC all the E5-2600v2 we use - 2650v2, 2670v2 and 2690v2. Reply
  • willis936 - Friday, August 29, 2014 - link

    One could put together a HEDT system with OC headroom, tons of RAM, and a fancy GPU for the price of an entry level xeon processor, let alone full on server. Xeons aren't for people, they're for companies. HEDT are for prosumers and I think I'm right in saying a lot of people reading anandtech fall into that category. Reply
  • Spirall - Friday, August 29, 2014 - link

    Exactly. This is the platform for professional computing home stuff. Reply
  • actionjksn - Saturday, August 30, 2014 - link

    Unless you require ECC memory and-or the ability to install two processors on one motherboard, the Xeon processors are a waste of money. You can also do a modest overclock on the i7 Extreme edition and get some really good performance compared to an 8 core Xeon that costs probably twice as much and can not be overclocked.

    And if you're getting ECC memory that you don't really need, it costs a lot more too. The money you save on the i7 Extreme over the Xeon can also be put towards extra big and or fast solid state storage. The people who do need ECC ram or dual processors tend to know it and they are not even looking at these i7's anyway. There are a lot of things that a lot of power users do that do not need or benefit from ECC ram. That's who these processors are marketed to.
    Reply

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