Non-K models for Intel Core i9, i7, i5, and i3 are now available! With the release of the 13th generation, aka Raptor Lake, of the Core I processors, Intel has made it back to the single-core and gaming throne.
The new CPUs are all faster in games than the previous leader, the AMD Ryzen 7 5800X3D. It is positive that a new mainboard with a Z790 chipset is not absolutely necessary. Where available, motherboards from the previous 600 series are compatible via a bios update. But even with the new Z790 chipset, you still have the choice between models with DDR4 or DDR5 support.
With the new Raptor Lake CPUs, Intel has made it back to the top in terms of gaming performance. The previous frontrunner, AMD Ryzen 7 5800X3D, can be clearly beaten in some cases. The performance in applications is also impressive. Intel’s top model Core i9-13900K is only just beaten the AMD Ryzen 9 7950X. Overall, the Core I models of the 13th generation have more cores and a significantly higher turbo clock.
in direct comparison to the Alder Lake predecessors, which is not least the result of the new 7nm production. Since the rest is very similar to the Alder Lake series, you can use the same RAM and cooler for the Socket 1700 accordingly. Appropriate recommendations can be found in the article below.
The Alder Lake series will replace the Rocket Lake series as the new processor generation. The 12th Intel Core I series will be named Core I 12xxx. In our FAQ about the Alder Lake processor, we have compiled all the information so far and answered the most important questions.
Meanwhile, the 12th generation of Intel’s Core I processors will be available from the beginning of November. Together with the Z690 mainboards presented at the same time, the new generation should not only stand up to AMD but even buy the punch again.
As usual with Intel, only the K(F) models intended for enthusiasts, the Core i5-12600K(F), Core i7-12700K(F), and the Core i9-12900K(F) will be on the market at the start. However, if you want to buy one of the new processors, you have to consider more than usual.
Because in addition to a new mainboard with a Z690 chipset, you may also have to buy new DDR5 RAM and/or a new CPU cooler. Since the beginning of January 2022, non-K CPUs have also been presented, which are gradually becoming available in stores.
The new H670, B660, and H610 mainboards come in line with this, which, compared to the Z690 chipset, have cutbacks in the connections and, above all, in the OC options of the CPU. Overclocking the RAM is still possible with H670 and B660 motherboards.
The H610 models support RAM up to a maximum of DDR4-3200.
What is Intel Alder Lake?
Alder Lake is the internal name of the 12th generation of the Intel Core i series and is intended to replace the predecessor Rocket Lake in the mainstream area. Intel uses a 10 nm process for production.
As an answer to AMD’s Ryzen Zen3, which now beats the Intel processors in most applications and games, Intel relies on more cores and threads for the 12th generation and brings interesting innovations such as DDR5 and PCIe 5.0 with it.
Intel is once again confidently promoting the Core i9-12900K as the “best gaming processor in the world”. A new hybrid architecture of P and E cores is said to significantly increase multi-thread performance. The flagship will reach up to 5.2 GHz in Turbo Boost.
As usual from Intel’s mainstream CPUs, most CPUs from the Alder Lake series will come with an internal graphics unit. The designation will be UHD770 unless the model name ends with F. In this case, the CPUs do not have an internal graphics unit.
When will the Alder Lake processors be released?
The Alder Lake CPUs including Z690 mainboards were officially presented on October 27, 2021, and have been listed in our price comparison since then. The new generation should then be sold from November 4th. This also applies to the Z690 mainboards.
How does Alder Lake perform in the benchmark?
The first official tests confirm that Intel’s new CPU generation hasn’t promised too much. When it comes to single-core performance and gaming, Intel has fought its way back to the throne with the Core i9-12900K. Even the Core i5-12600K still delivers the gaming performance of an AMD Ryzen 9 5900X. AMD is still ahead in terms of application performance.
Although Alder Lake can consistently assert itself in single-core performance, Intel’s new CPU generation has to admit defeat in multi-core applications. The biggest disadvantage is the higher current consumption in direct comparison to the AMD competition and thus also the resulting higher heat development and poorer efficiency.
The flagship, the i9-12900K in particular, should be cooled as best as possible. The benchmarks also show that DDR5 is still in its infancy. An Alder Lake system with DDR4 at 3800 MHz delivers roughly the same performance as a system with significantly more expensive DDR5-6200 RAM.
Do I need a new motherboard for the Alder (Raptor) Lake?
A new mainboard is absolutely necessary to operate an Intel CPU of the 12th generation. Only mainboards from different manufacturers with Z690 chipsets are available for the new CPUs at the time of release.
Later, as usual, the mainboards with H and B chipsets will follow. In principle, one of the mainboards mentioned is also sufficient for Raptor Lake CPUs.
However, a bios update is then necessary. If this is too cumbersome for you, you can of course go directly to a Z790, B760, or H770 mainboard that supports the new 13th generation CPU ex works.
ASUS PRIME Z790-P (90MB1CK0-M0EAY0) Best offer of:236.00€incl. Shipping 28 other prices and providers ASUS TUF GAMING Z790-PLUS D4 (90MB1CQ0-M0EAY0) Best offer from: 273.39 € incl.
Shipping 29 other prices and providers GIGABYTE Z790 AORUS MASTER Best offer from:523.68€incl. Shipping 25 more prices and providers Here you can find all mainboards with a Z790 chipset in a price comparison
GIGABYTE B760 DS3H AX DDR4 Best offer from:150.88€incl. Shipping 16 other prices and providers ASUS PRIME B760-PLUS D4 (90MB1CW0-M0EAY0) Best offer from: 136.57 € incl.
Shipping 28 more prices and providers MSI MAG B760 TOMAHAWK WIFI DDR4 (7D96-001R) Best offer from: 185.88 € incl. Shipping 24 other prices and providers Here you can find all motherboards with a B760 chipset in price comparison
Depending on the equipment, the Z690 mainboards offer DDR5 memory support for up to 4800 MT/s, PCIe 5.0 (up to 16 lanes and backward compatible), integrated high-speed LAN, and Thunderbolt 4. Still standing USB 3.1 Gen2 (10 Gbit/s) or USB 3.2 Gen2x2 ports are of course also available.
In addition, some models already have integrated high-speed WLAN. Depending on the mainboard series, there is a model with DDR5 or DDR4 support. The latter is particularly useful if you want to take the DDR4 memory from the old one, which is ideally fast, and thus saves a little money.
In addition, the Z690, B660, and H670 mainboards are compatible with the 13th Intel Core I generation via a bios update.
Z690 motherboards with DDR5 support
GIGABYTE Z690 UD Best offer from:234.20€incl. Shipping 2 more prices and providers MSI PRO Z690-A WIFI (7D25-017R) Best offer from: 210.49 € incl.
Shipping 21 other prices and providers ASUS ROG STRIX Z690-F GAMING WIFI Best offer from: 349.00 € incl. Shipping 31 more prices and providers Here you can find all mainboards with a Z690 chipset and DDR5 in price comparison
Z690 motherboards with DDR4 support
MSI PRO Z690-A DDR4 (7D25-002R) Best offer of:224.50€incl. Shipping 7 more prices and providers GIGABYTE Z690 AORUS ELITE DDR4 Best offer from: 224.00 € incl.
Shipping 31 other prices and providers ASUS PRIME Z690-A Best offer from: 256.00 € incl. Shipping 33 other prices and providers Here you can find all mainboards with a Z690 chipset and DDR4 in price comparison
With the launch of non-K CPUs, B660 motherboards are now also available. Depending on the price, there are also models with DDR5 and PCIe 5.0 support. However, the cheaper mainboards with a B660 chipset all rely on DDR4 and PCIe 4.0.
In further direct comparison to the Z690 chipset, there are fewer lanes and therefore fewer connections available, and overclocking the CPU is no longer possible, but overclocking the RAM is. ASUS ROG STRIX B660-F GAMING WIFI (90MB18R0-M0EAY0) Best offer of:228.19€incl.
Shipping 21 other prices and providers ASUS TUF GAMING B660M-PLUS D4 (90MB1940-M0EAY0) Best offer from: 150.89 € incl. Shipping 29 other prices and providers ASUS PRIME B660M-K D4 Best offer from: 116.47 € incl. Shipping 30 more prizes and providers
H670 and H610 chipset
These chipsets are intended for users who want to adjust as little as possible but simply need the cheapest possible platform for the new Intel generation. While the connections on the H670 models are still relatively generous and you can still adjust the RAM clock, the equipment on the H610 chipset is limited to the bare essentials.
ASUS PRIME H670-PLUS D4 (90MB18W0-M0EAY0) Best offer of:144.49€incl. Shipping 24 more prices and providers ASUS PRIME H610M-A D4 (90MB19P0-M0EAY0) Best offer from: 98.89 € incl.
What socket and chipset does Alder Lake need?
At launch, Alder Lake will only be supported by the new Z690 chipset. This chipset is ideal if you want to overclock. The new socket 1700 is significantly larger than the socket 1200 from its predecessor. Accordingly, older Intel CPUs are of course completely incompatible with the new generation.
What RAM do I need for Alder Lake?
When it comes to RAM, you should at least use DDR4 bars with 3200 MHz if you choose a mainboard with DDR4 support. As the benchmarks show, DDR4 boards with Alder Lake are no slower than those with DDR5 support. However, DDR5 RAM is quite a bit more expensive. 16GB (2x 8GB) G.Skill Ripjaws V Black DDR4-3200 CL16 (F4-3200C16D-16GVKB) Best offer of:42.99€incl.
Shipping 31 more prices and providers 32GB Crucial Ballistix DDR4-3200 memory 32GB G.Skill Ripjaws V Black DDR4-4000 memory Best offer from:87.89€incl. Shipping 60 more prizes and providers All DDR4 memory in price comparison
If you want a board with DDR5, you should get a dual kit with at least 4800 MHz. However, you should make sure that you install a maximum of two bars. Because when fully equipped, the maximum RAM clock is throttled and you have a low performance.
32GB G.Skill Ripjaws S5 DDR5-5600 memory Best offer from:111.89€incl. Shipping 77 more prices and providers 16GB Kingston FURY Beast DDR5-4800 CL38 (KF548C38BB-16) Best offer from: 61.44 € incl.
Shipping 23 other prices and providers 32GB G.Skill Trident Z5 DDR5-6000 memory Best offer from: 121.89 € incl. Shipping 69 more prices and providers All DDR5 memory in price comparison
Do I need a new CPU cooler for 12th Gen Intel?
If you want to be absolutely sure, you can buy a new cooler with the new CPU. After all, the Z690 mainboards for the 1700 socket have different drill holes for the cooler brackets. Asus offers an interesting solution here and has integrated the drill holes from socket 1200 onto its boards.
So you can take your old CPU cooler with you into the new Intel system, but the contact pressure may be too low due to the holes being closer together. Wicneeded! The new 12th-generation Intel CPUs have a TDP of over 240 watts in some cases. That means that depending on the CPU, you should install a very powerful CPU air cooler.
All-in-one water cooling is ideal for the Core i9 in particular. Some cooler manufacturers such as Enermax, be quiet, Arctic, Noctua, Scythe, Alpenföhn, and SilentiumPC offer conversion kits for their current CPU coolers. The best CPU air coolers for socket 1700
Does Intel Alder Lake work with Windows 11?
Of course, Intel Alder Lake in combination with Windows 11 is not a problem. The required hardware and security requirements are of course supported by the latest Intel CPU generation. So nothing stands in the way of running Windows 11.
The hardware Scot says:
There can be nothing better for end customers than competition between Intel and AMD. Due to the pressure from the very successful AMD Ryzen CPUs, Intel not only has to react with improved processors but also make them more attractive in price.
Because as of now, the new 12th Gen Intel CPUs will cost a lot more than AMD CPUs. The same applies to the mainboards. Let’s hope that the performance will be right then. Do you have any other questions about the Intel Alder Lake? Then write a comment.