The Core i5 13600K looks mighty in this early leak

Intel LGA 1700 CPU render
(Image credit: Intel)

As the launch of Intel's 13th Gen Raptor Lake CPUs draws closer, the leaks are getting… leakier. The high-end Core i9 13900K earns attention as you'd expect, but the real star of the show may end up being the Core i5 13600K. A new leak suggests the 13600K is shaping up to be mighty.

China-based user Enthusiastic Citizen (via Nordic Hardware) got hold of an ES3 13600K, which is a third revision engineering sample, and probably the last before Qualification Samples and final silicon. The chip is made up of six performance cores and eight efficiency cores, giving it a total of 20 threads.

The ES3 chip has turbo clocks of 5.1/4.9GHz with the E cores at 3.9GHz. Enthusiastic Citizen slightly overclocked the ES3 in order to match the expected 5.1GHz all core turbo clock of the final 13600K, while also setting the E cores at 4.0GHz.

The CPU-Z benchmark screenshot shared below shows the 13600K destroying the 5950X in single-core performance, scoring 830 to 648. In the multithreaded test the higher core count of the 5950X keeps it in front by almost 20%, but that's not as much as you'd expect given its 32-thread to 20-thread advantage. For a further comparison my 12600K scores are around 760/7000. In CPUZ at least, the 13600K is very strong.


Best CPU for gaming: Top chips from Intel and AMD
Best gaming motherboard: The right boards
Best graphics card: Your perfect pixel-pusher awaits Best SSD for gaming: Get into the game first

Enthusiastic Citizen tested the 13600K in Cinebench R23 where it scored 1387 in the single-core test and 24420 in the multithreaded test. A 12600K score is around 1880 and 17100. The extra E cores deliver a very impressive multithreaded bump, but the 13600K's single core score is a long way off. That's probably due to an immature BIOS.

Much like we saw in the recent 13900K leak, the power consumption figures of the 13600K appear to be high, recording a full package power consumption of 176W. But again, that may be down to pre-release silicon or an immature BIOS. I'll hold judgement until I see how the retails chips do.

(Image credit: Enthusiastic Citizen)

As the tested CPU is not final silicon, and given the Cinebench 1T low score issue, it's important to take these results with the requisite pinch of salt. But that’s a good thing. Once the final retail CPUs land and the BIOS of 600 and 700 series motherboards is fine-tuned, we can expect even better performance.

If the 13600K is priced within an acceptable range above the 12600K, it will be an even better gaming CPU than the the 12600K is. I can't wait to get my hands on one.

Chris Szewczyk
Hardware Writer

Chris' gaming experiences go back to the mid-nineties when he conned his parents into buying an 'educational PC' that was conveniently overpowered to play Doom and Tie Fighter. He developed a love of extreme overclocking that destroyed his savings despite the cheaper hardware on offer via his job at a PC store. To afford more LN2 he began moonlighting as a reviewer for VR-Zone before jumping the fence to work for MSI Australia. Since then, he's gone back to journalism, enthusiastically reviewing the latest and greatest components for PC & Tech Authority, PC Powerplay and currently Australian Personal Computer magazine and PC Gamer. Chris still puts far too many hours into Borderlands 3, always striving to become a more efficient killer.