Intel i7-2600K Blender Benchmark 2017
At stock frequency, the 2600K took 73.9 minutes to render our Blender test. For comparison, that’s about 74.3% slower than the stock i7-7700K, which finished in 42.4 minutes. A 4.7GHz overclock proved a little unstable with Blender--as usual, it’s the longest and most stressful test we perform on CPUs, and the most likely to cause overclocks to fail. With the proper vcore boost, we did manage to complete the whole test at 4.7GHz, bringing render time down to 54.5 minutes on the 2600K. That’s a bit slower than the popular i7-4790K and actually faster than the 7700K without hyperthreading, thanks to Blender’s thread focus, and a 26.3% decrease in render time compared to stock. The 7700K itself only reduced render time by 9.7% through overclocking. Hyperthreading enables the 2600K to exceed any 4 core i5 in render performance, including the overclocked 7600K.
For owners of the 2600K who bought the chip originally for a cheap hedge between gaming and CPU production workloads, now’s not a bad time to upgrade if you’ve become dissatisfied with performance. The R7 1700 completes the same render task in 33 minutes without an overclock, for a time reduction of 40% over the overclocked 2600K. That said, if you only care about gaming, needs and recommendations change. We’ll get to that shortly.
Intel i7-2600K Cinebench 2017
Cinebench multithreaded testing favors physical cores even more heavily than Blender. The overclocked 2600K scored 830.5, much higher than its original score of 622, but much lower than any modern 8-core. A more reasonable comparison to modern i5s reveals the 2600K over the i5-7600K, a 4-core processor released in 2017 that scored 5.1% lower, thanks to its lack of hyperthreading. Our highest scoring 4C/8T i7 (the 5.1GHz 7700K) exceeded the 2600K by 35.1% for a total score of 1122. The R7 1700 at 4.0GHz with 2933MHz memory scored 1764 in this same test, though with lower single-core performance than the overclocked 2600K.
i7-2600K in FireStrike
The 2600K’s original score in FireStrike’s demanding physics test was 9033, sandwiching it between newer i5s in our results. Although it managed to cling on and outperform the stock i5-6600K, the stock i5-7600K finally surpassed it. Once overclocked, though, the score leaped to 12057, just shy of the i7-4790K and higher than every i5 tested (overclocked or not).
Looking at these metrics as FPS numbers rather than scores, the 2600K at 4.7GHz lands at 38.3FPS for the physics CPU test, whereas the stock 2600K runs at 28.7FPS. Between them, the i5-7600K and its overclocked variant land in the 30s, with the 4790K just above the overclocked 2600K. The R7 1700 stock with 2666MHz memory performs around 53FPS, with the newest-gen i7 at 46FPS.
In practice, physical core count carries a greater weight than hyperthreading in TimeSpy, as with most synthetics. The trend of “better than most new i5s, worse than any newer i7” continues, but the stock 7600K did come out ahead in this case.