An In-Depth Look at Kaby Lake: The New Intel i7-7700K
. Updated January 05, 2017.
Intel has been on the forefront when it comes to performance based processors for gaming or video editing jobs. Is the new Intel i7-7700K processor worth the upgrade? Let's find out.
Specifications and Features
With the introduction of the new Kaby Lake processors, Intel has broken off from its usual "tick-tock" manufacturing cycle for a new "Process-Architecture-Optimization" technology model. The 14nm i7-7700K belongs to the "Optimization" cycle. Keep in mind that the previous 14nm Skylake and Broadwell generation followed the "Tick-Tock" model.
Intel has bumped up the default base clock speeds of the new chip to 4.2 GHz, and turbo boost clocks to 4.5 GHz compared to the Intel i7-6700K processor which had base and boost speeds of 4GHz and 4.2 GHz. The new generation also gets official memory support up to DDR4-2400. On the graphics side, Intel has integrated the HD Graphics 630 GPU on the i7-7700K processor, which replaces the previous HD Graphics 530. The new iGPU can decode 4K video content at 60 frames per second up to 120 Mbps. We are talking about streaming 4K video content on the Microsoft Edge browser.
Additionally, the new Kaby Lake processors, including the i7-7700K, will be the first to support Intel's Optane non-volatile memory technology that allows users to use affordable and high-density memories that's over 1000 times faster than NAND technology. The Intel Optane technology brings in the potential to revolutionize big data and high performance computing, cloud, gaming, virtualization, and more in the near future.
Other new features of the new Kaby Lake processor include 24 PCI-E x16 Gen 3 lanes with support for USB 3.1 Type-C protocol, Thunderbolt and U.2. However, there are still some things that remain the same as the popular Intel i7-6700K processor. The L3 Cache is still 8MB. Both the processors share the same TDP of 91W. Thankfully, previous LGA 1151 based motherboards are fully compatible with the new Intel i7-7700K processor, provided if the vendor rolls out a BIOS update.