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Intel 14th-gen Core i5-14600K and i9-14900K review: Slight improvements

Intel 14th-gen Core i5-14600K and i9-14900K review: Slight improvements

Intel 14th-gen Core i9 and Core i5

Intel's latest chips, the Intel 14th-gen Core i5-14600K and the i9-14900K are great chips. But they don't offer that big of a jump over the 13th-gen. If you're still using older chips, then yeah, it makes sense. Otherwise, AMD's chips may offer better choices for gamers, especially the Ryzen 7000X3D range. Both chips are overclockable, with the i9-14900K the top of the line. But that's not to say the i5-14600K is slow, it's pretty zippy. I did not test the i9-14700K, as that was not provided.

Quick specs

  • Six versions: Intel Core i5, i7, and i9. K and KF, KF have no integrated GPU
  • Core i5-14600K: 6 performance cores and 12 threads, 8 efficiency cores, base 3.5GHz (P), 2.6GHz (E), turbo 5.3GHz (P), 4.0GHz (E), max 181W TDP
  • Core i9-14900K: 8 performance cores and 16 threads, 16 efficiency cores, base 3.2GHz (P), 2.4GHz (E), turbo 5.8GHz (P), 6.0Hz (E), max 253W TDP

As per usual, we tested the 14th-gen chips with our Aftershock benchmark PC (which has a slight upgrade to the GPU in the form of the Asus Dual GeForce RTX 4060 OC). Because the 14th-gen chips are a refresh of the 13th-gen, you can use them with 12th-gen compatible motherboards. However, the 14th-gen chips have a new feature called Intel Application Optimization (APO), which boost frame rates for selected games such as Rainbow Six Siege and Metro Exodus. You will need some special drivers, and turn the feature on in your BIOS. Other new features include AI overclocking, but only for the 14900K for now. However, I was unable to test either of these features in my review.

Intel 14th-gen Core i9 and Core i5
Credit: Aloysius Low/Can Buy or Not

What I did test were our standard benchmarks to see how these chips perform. And they honestly performed much like the previous generation processors, with just a bit more speed. The Core i9 CPU still suffers from being thermal throttled, even with a 360mm cooler. That's in artificial benchmarks such as Cinebench R23 and our Handbrake test. However, I did not notice this issue while gaming (it hit 78°C) The i5 also hit 100°C during Cinebench, but ran much cooler for everything else, and just 65°C while gaming. But obviously, performance was just slightly slower for the i5 versus the i9.

Intel 14th-gen Core i9 and Core i5
Credit: Aloysius Low/Can Buy or Not

Based on our test results, the 14th-gen chips are marginally faster. In Cinebench R23, the 14th-gen i9 is 5% faster, while for the i5 the difference wasn't significant. In games such as Cyberpunk 2077 or Marvel's Spider-Man, I didn't see that much of a difference, too. I suppose if Intel's APO gets implemented in more games, than perhaps we will see more significant gains for gaming, too. Similar to the 13th-gen chips, the 14th-gen i9 is about 12% faster than the i5 in games such as Marvel's Spider-Man.

At S$899 for the Intel 14th-gen Core i9-14900K, and S$485 for the 14th-gen Core i5-14600K, Intel has kept prices pretty similar to the 13th-gen chips. But with such minor performance gains, I recommend giving these chips a pass, and hope that the 15th-gen CPUs will offer a massive improvement in performance. Otherwise, AMD's chips are very viable alternatives. Get the i9-14900K from Shopee or Lazada, or pick up the i5 from Shopee or Lazada.

See Also
Can Buy or Not Editors' Choice 2023

Note: Review unit provided by Intel.

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Only slightly faster than 13th-gen

Buy from Lazada (i5)
Get from Shopee (i5)
Available on Lazada (i9)
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