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Intel Core i9-7900X ‘Skylake-X’ 10C20T CPU Indepth Analysis

The market for people buying an almost £1000 CPU and using it for gaming at 1080p is likely to be very slim. What 1080p does is give a good indication of the CPU’s raw gaming performance as GPU power is sufficient to push frame rates to a level where the CPU and memory limitations can be observed.

We supplement the 1080p gaming results with a pair of games tested at 1440P and 4K. We chose Ghost Recon Wildlands and GTA V as they are computationally-heavy, open-world games with good built-in benchmarks.

Ghost Recon Wildlands

We run the built-in benchmark using a 1440P and 4K resolution and the same settings as the 1080p test (Very High preset).

Grand Theft Auto V

We run the built-in benchmark using a 1440P and 4K resolution and the same settings as the 1080p test (generally Maximum quality settings including Advanced Graphics).

1440P and 4K Gaming Performance Overview:

Ghost Recon Wildlands continues to scale primarily with CPU frequency when tasked with a 1440P gaming resolution. As such, Skylake-X puts in a decent showing but the differences are slim between all CPUs. Crank the GPU workload up to a 4K rendering resolution and all CPUs, bar the 6800K which shows odd behaviour, perform practically the same.

Even a 1440P resolution is not quite demanding enough to mask the CPU-induced bottlenecks in GTA V. If you want a high-refresh rate gaming experience in GTA V and have the GPU horsepower to push that, Skylake-X does a decent job when overclocked but is still outpaced by Broadwell-E’s 6950X and the speedy 7700K. Switch up to 4K and the Intel CPUs show similar performance across the board. Even a GTX 1080 Ti can’t take this ageing title to 90+ FPS where CPU-induced bottlenecks, even at 4K, would start to rear their ugly heads.

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