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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  • mapesdhs - Saturday, August 30, 2014 - link


    I agree; I'd been hoping for a midrange 8-core of some kind, but Intel's once
    again shoved up the peformance/price scale purely because it can. Shame.

    And IMO the PCIe provision chop with the 5820K is in the wrong direction;
    by that I mean the 5820K should have 40, the 5930K have 60 and the 5960X
    given 80, something like that. Supporting 4-way native x16 with enough left
    over for good storage at the top-end of the CPU range would make its price
    much more tolerable, but now the price difference is really just the +2 cores,
    at a time when the mid-range chip ought to be an 8-core anyway (remember
    the 3930K was an 8-core but with 2 cores disabled, ie. Intel could have
    released a consumer 8c a long time ago).

    Ian.

    PS. twtech, I've benched oc'd 3930Ks quite a lot. What do you use your system for?
    Reply
  • garadante - Friday, August 29, 2014 - link

    Sheesh... Looking at these performance reviews, I'm questioning whether or not I'll even go for an -E series when I invest in a full upgrade from my 2500k in 2-3 years. In many scenarios the 4790k is at the top or near the top of the rankings due to the higher clock speeds stock/overclocked, yet the platform is much cheaper. Perhaps the 4790k equivalent 2-3 generations from now will be 6-cores, or the IPC will start going up if Intel focuses on it (I hope, but unlikely...). Otherwise these systems are just too expensive for little gain except in CPU bound workloads. Reply
  • l_d_allan - Friday, August 29, 2014 - link

    same, with 2600k Reply
  • StevoLincolnite - Friday, August 29, 2014 - link

    Same, I'll stick with my Core i7 3930K which happily hits 5ghz.

    Years ago I never would have thought a CPU released 3 years prior to the latest and greatest would still be able to compete/beat the top chips in most scenarios.

    Hopefully Haswell-E's successor gives me the upgrade itch and maybe DDR4 drops in price by then, by then my platform would be 4+ years old.
    Intel sure does make it hard to justify plonking down a few grand though. :(
    Reply
  • Mithan - Friday, August 29, 2014 - link

    I am waiting for skylake next year. Reply
  • Samus - Saturday, August 30, 2014 - link

    i7-920 at 3.5GHz/X58 here (first DDR3 chipset)

    I was going to hold out for the first DDR4 chipset to replace this thing, but...maybe I'll wait for DDR5. Even 5 years later, my first-gen i7 is faster than like 90% of the desktop CPU's out there TODAY. Intel really outdid themselves with Nehalem.
    Reply
  • xrror - Saturday, August 30, 2014 - link

    Anyone still on 1366, I'd recommend searching around on ebay for xeon X5650 's that are getting dumped for less than $100. If your motherboard is alright with a 191BCK guess what - 4.2Ghz Gulftown with full 6(12) cores. Yeay =) Reply
  • DPOverLord - Sunday, August 31, 2014 - link

    I upgraded from a i7 930 to a xeon 5650. Its at 4.6ghz with sli titans in surround (4800 x 2560). Based on this x99 seems to be a worthwhile upgrade albeit an expensive one. Anyone else in my boat? Reply
  • getho - Tuesday, September 02, 2014 - link

    So is it worth upgrading an i7 @3.2 GHz to the x5650? My bottleneck is single thread performance (light room likes fast chips). Reply
  • xaml - Saturday, September 27, 2014 - link

    I might give this a try once I stuff that Studio XPS 435 MT motherboard sporting an i7 940 into a Prodigy M. I actually had a look at compatible new processors, but they were too expensive. I am not sure if I am going to trust a used offer though. Reply

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