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on June 1, 2013
Update#3: I spent the last few months testing and analyzing the 4770K and now it's time to share those results with you guys. I have come to the conclusion that the VRM (voltage regulator) that Intel has integrated into the die does more harm than good. Every since I bought this chip and overclocked it, I have noticed that it's been degrading faster than my 2600K and 3770K which both were overclocked to the same frequency (4.6Ghz) as my 4770K. I have noticed that I need to add at least a minimum of 0.007 volts every few months because my CPU starts to crash out of the blue even though it used to be 100% stable when I have tested it. I bought the 4770K the first day it came out and I immediately overclocked it to 4.6Ghz using around 1.34 volts which used to be 100% stable and then it slowly started to degrade. I have kept my 2600K and 3770K overclocked to 4.6Ghz for years and they haven't degraded one bit. I'm still using the same amount of voltage on my 2600K and 3770K that I did when I first got them and they are still going strong. Haswell on the other hand wants more and more voltage to be stable at the same settings that it used to be.

Here are the results that I have recorded these past few months using the 4770K:


June:------4.6Ghz 1.3400 volts | I got the chip the first day it was released and oc'd it to 4.6Ghz using 1.3400 volts and it was 100% stable. I was a happy camper :)

July:------4.6Ghz 1.3400 volts | so far so good but there were some moments when my system would hang but I just ignored it.

August:----4.6Ghz 1.3470 volts | I started getting random crashes even though I had made no changes to my computer or upgraded anything since I bought the chip. The only way to stop those crashes was to add a bit of voltage to the CPU so I added 0.007 volts and my problems went away. That might not seem like a lot of voltage but overtime it accumulates and the temps slowly starts to increase.

Sept:------4.6Ghz 1.3470 volts | so far so good. I didn't experience any hangs or freezes in Sept but then again I didn't use my computer all that much because I was studying for exams.

Oct:-------4.6Ghz 1.3540 volts | My computer started crashing again on October even though nothing was changed from last time. I formatted my computer because I thought maybe I had installed something but it still was crashing. As soon as I added another 0.007 volts, my system stopped crashing.

Nov:-------4.6Ghz 1.3540 volts | My computer seems stable now but there are some random moments where it freezes for no reason or it just hangs during games(BF4, Crysis 3, Batman AO, Metro LL, etc). I feel like I may need to add a bit more voltage to get it again fully stable. I have made no changes/upgrades to my computer since I bought the chip but yet, it still wants more voltage to be stable at the same settings that it used to be.

My 2600K and 3770K haven't degraded since I bought them but my 4770K is degrading faster than any chip I have ever owned. If you Google "haswell degradation", you will see a lot of people that are having the same issue as me. You have to keep in mind that whenever I'm adding ~0.007 volts every few months, the temperatures are also getting harder and harder to control. My advice to anyone who is looking to buy this chip or has already bought it is to not overclock it past 4.2-4.3Ghz or your chip will degrade very quickly. I think I'm going to drop my frequency to 4.2Ghz because the temperatures are getting out of control even though my chip used to be 100% stable at 4.6Ghz when I first got it and my H100i was able to keep the temps low. But now, the temperatures are quickly reaching 90c. And for that specific reason, I'm going to take off another star from my review because Intel has really cut corners on the design of Haswell.

Update#2: I finally overclocked my 4770K to 4.6Ghz using 1.34 volts and the temps stay below 85c. I tried running it at 4.8Ghz like I did with my 3770K (delidded) but the temps go well over 90c so it's not 24/7 stable. I'm using an H100i from Corsair to overclock my 4770K and it keeps it relatively cool at this frequency. The motherboard that I'm using to overclock my 4770K is the Asus Sabertooth Z87. It's an amazing motherboard and I highly recommend it to everyone if you want the best motherboard for LGA 1150 socket. You can get some crazy high overclocks with that motherboard and it has not problems handling volts well over 1.4+. I have posted the link to my review of the Asus Sabertooth Z87 at the bottom of this review in case you guys want to read it.

Update#1: I finally had some time this weekend to do more benchmarks in more games that I play and I was rather disappointed from the results that I got. I have updated my review with more benchmarks from popular games so make sure to look at the results below.

It's been two days since I got my 4770K and I have been testing the hell out of it, from stock speeds to overclocking it to extreme settings. I can safely say that it's not worth upgrading if you have an Ivy Bridge CPU (3570K, 3770K). My previous CPU was the 3770K and I had it overclocked to 4.8Ghz using only 1.38 volts with an H100i from Corsair. I delidded my 3770K and now my temps never go above 80c. Now that I have the 4770K, overclocked to the same frequency, the difference is ~2-3% faster in pretty much everything that I have tested, from games to applications. So far I have not been able to tell a difference in games (BF3, FC3, Crysis 3, Bioshock Infinite, Metro LL etc) except for 3fps extra. Don't expect huge fps improvements in games that's what I'm saying.

If you are a gamer and you have a Sandy Bridge or Ivy Bridge CPU then I don't recommend upgrading because you'd need a new motherboard which isn't worth it in my opinion. Haswell wasn't built for desktop users in mind but instead for laptops/ultrabooks and that's where it shines. The integrated graphics card is much more efficient and faster than what it was in Ivy Bridge but it still doesn't deliver smooth fps in games. I tried playing Team Fortress 2 in 1080P and it started lagging so bad that it wasn't playable. If you are stuck on an old socket such as LGA 1156, 1366 then this CPU is for you. You will notice huge improvements coming from one of those sockets.

Now let's talk about benchmarks and power consumption.

In idle, the CPU consumes roughly 39-41 watts and that's a bit better than my old 3770K which consumed ~70 watts. Under load using Prime95 (smallfft), my 3770K at 4.8Ghz pulled ~260 watts and now the 4770K pulls ~274 watts. 4770K's TDP is 84 watts which is 7 watts higher than the 3770K. I'm not really concerned about power consumption because it's not that big of a difference coming from an Ivy Bridge CPU. With my 3770K @ 4.8Ghz (delidded), the temps never go above 80c but with the 4770K @ 4.8Ghz, the temps are going well above 90c and that's not 24/7 stable for me. I will look more into this later(maybe delid it like I did with the 3770K?)

Cinebench 11.5 (Multi-Threaded)

3770K @ 4.8Ghz = 9.72
4770K @ 4.8Ghz = 9.87

All the games that I have tested so far have been at max Settings @ 2560x1440/GTX780 (Stock).

Far Cry 3

3770K @ 4.8Ghz = 41fps avg
4770K @ 4.8Ghz = 46fps avg

Battlefield 3

3770K @ 4.8Ghz = 63fps avg
4770K @ 4.8Ghz = 68fps avg

Crysis 3

3770K @ 4.8Ghz = 31fps avg
4770K @ 4.8Ghz = 33fps avg

Bioshock Infinite

3770K @ 4.8Ghz = 72ps avg
4770K @ 4.8Ghz = 75fps avg

Hitman Absolution

3770K @ 4.8Ghz = 69ps avg
4770K @ 4.8Ghz = 73fps avg

Metro 2033

3770K @ 4.8Ghz = 78ps avg
4770K @ 4.8Ghz = 77fps avg

Tomb Raider

3770K @ 4.8Ghz = 52ps avg
4770K @ 4.8Ghz = 55fps avg

Borderlands 2

3770K @ 4.8Ghz = 98ps avg
4770K @ 4.8Ghz = 103fps avg

Batman Arkham City

3770K @ 4.8Ghz = 84ps avg
4770K @ 4.8Ghz = 88fps avg

Assassin's Creed 3

3770K @ 4.8Ghz = 58ps avg
4770K @ 4.8Ghz = 56fps avg

Sleeping Dogs

3770K @ 4.8Ghz = 64ps avg
4770K @ 4.8Ghz = 66fps avg

As you can see from my results above, the difference is minimal in games which makes upgrading to Haswell worthless if you are coming from an Ivy Bridge CPU. I noticed an increase in fps by 3 to 5 frames in most games and I even lost a few fps in some games.

Overall, Intel has a done a nice job at improving the integrated GPU and lowering power consumption but it feels like Intel focused too much on laptops/ultrabooks and forgot about the desktop users this time. I'm still testing the CPU and I will update my review once I'm able to do more tests. If you have any questions, please leave a comment and I will be more than happy to reply. I would recommend Haswell for desktop users that are stuck on an old sockets(1366, 1156)but not being backwards compatible is what kills this chip. For those who are on an AMD system and are thinking about upgrading then it will be totally worth it and the difference will be huge both in games and applications. Since Intel has no competition in the desktop realm then focusing on raw performance is not what they are after anymore. I give this CPU a solid 8/10 because of the tiny improvements over Ivy Bridge and the new socket.

If you guys want to read my review of the Asus Sabertooth Z87 then it should be the first one listed there.

My full rig:

Case: Corsair 650D
CPU: Intel Core i7 4770K (still experimenting)
PSU: Corsair AX850
Ram: Kingston 16GB of RAM
SSD: Samsung 840 Pro 256GB
MB: ASUS Sabertooth Z87
OS: Windows 7 64bit
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on January 28, 2014
Haven't seen my son leave his room once he put it in his gaming machine. Starting to wonder what my son looks like. Wish I could give one to my boss at work and get the same effect.
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on June 2, 2013
I picked up this CPU for use in my Home theater setup, so that is what I will focus on... I'll leave the tech specs to others...

**Update: My CPU average temperatures at idle were 35C, using the same cooling setup on the 4770K I am seeing 32C... Also the Case ambient temps were 30C and now are 28C... Under load the CPU used to hit 69C, it now hits only 60C... This is using the same cooler as was used with the 3770K. So this CPU does appear to have a significant thermal advantage over the 3rd Gen i7 3770K...** This might be important if you are building a micro PC... Keep in mind these temps are at stock levels, I did not overclock my 3770K and have not done it on the 4770K... I bought the K option just in case I decided to do it...

This did change my "windows Experience Index" score from a 7.7 for the CPU (on the 3770K) to a 7.8 (on the 4770K)That is on a scale of 1.0-7.9 It did not change any other ratings on the system...
Determine from that what you will, but my actual usage scenario is below...

Keep in Mind, This CPU uses the 1150 Socket, not the 1155, So you will need a Motherboard that supports The 1150 Socket (but will fit CPU coolers designed for 1155 or 1156 sockets)... So if you plan to upgrade you're probably going to need a new Motherboard as well...

This is my real world experience:

I run Windows 7 with Various media programs installed, These include XBMC, MediaBrowser, Media Center Master, Serviio among a few others...

The major task I use this CPU for is simultaneously serving media to 6-8 TVs and keeping my media collection up to date and organized. Honestly an i7 is a bit overkill for this but I wanted to be sure I could handle even the most intense 1080p 3D trans-coding and streaming with all the TVs running at once. I jumped to the i7 4770K from the 3770K and honestly I see no real world difference...

The media does not seem measurably quicker, nor does it raise the quality (I use a discrete video Card for Graphics processing)...

Overall I think this CPU is awesome, but it is a modest jump from the 3770K and if you are on 3rd gen Intel i7 already I would skip the upgrade and stick with what you have, but if you are coming from a Gen 1-2 i7 the upgrade would be worth it... Spending upwards of $400 or more to upgrade (CPU and Motherboard)for a modest improvement just doesn't seem like a great value, but the significant improvements from the older Gen 1/2 i7's would make it worth the upgrade.

4 Stars for the Modest advancement, had this really made an impact in my home theater setup I could have given it 5 stars.

Components in my personal Build:
Silverstone Tek GD-08 Case
Corsair Enthusiast Series TX850 V2 850W 80+ Bronze
Intel Core i7-4770K 3.50 GHz LGA1150
Kingston XMP 16GB 1866MHz DDR3 CL9 (Kit of 4) XMP
Blu-ray Optical Drive
5 Western Digital Red 3 TB NAS Hard Drive: 3.5 Inch, SATA III (12TB Usable with Raid Config)
ARCTIC Freezer 7 Pro Rev. 2, CPU Cooler
EVGA GeForce GTX 650 1024MB GDDR5 DVI mHDMI Graphics Card

Just my thoughts,

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on January 4, 2014
This is the third i7 4770k I am trying.I rate it 5 stars because I knew from the beginning what were my chances to overclock this with low voltage to 4.5 Ghz.This particular CPU was very easily overclocked to 4.5 Ghz at 1.265 volts,which I consider really good and adequate for my needs,using Revit Architecture and rendering models with the best option.I just wanted to advice people that any i7 4770k can either be overclocked easily or cannot,there is no middle situation.If it can overclock to a particular frequency, then by just changing the Vcore,Vciin and may be the ring voltage,then it will,if it cannot whatever you do,whatever settings you manipulate it will not,this my final statement after trying lots of settings and following lots of guides.If it does not overclock easily to your required frequency ,say 4.5 ghz,then either settle for less or sell and take your chances with another.
The previous two that I tried were Malaysian origin,the third and best was Costas Rica,its not the best out there but good enough for me and for 24/7 use.
My settings are
CPU multiplier 45
Ring multiplier 44
Vciin 1.81 v
Vcore 1.265
Vring 1.22
Ram overclocked from 1600 Mhz to 2000 Mhz(some minor fiddling with the timings)
Vram 1.575 (rated at 1.5 v)
All other settings AUTO.

Please my advice is do not loose your time with other settings manipulation,its a waste of time.
I hope the above will help some of you
Thank you
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on December 31, 2013
This i7-4770k was the core of my first computer build - so I was ignorant what to expect. I did an external build first to test the motherboard, RAM and processor - everything worked fine but the Intel processor fan above the processor (that came from Intel with the chip). it would not spin without a "push start" and was noisy when it did spin. So I did some reading on Intel processor fans and some reviewers said they were junk - and based on my limited experience I had to agree. I decided to purchase an after market Master Cooler processor fan to replace the stock Intel fan. As I removed the stock Intel processor fan from the motherboard was where I learned my processor fan lesson - look closely at the fan wires. Intel had clipped the wire for the fan's power so tightly to the perimeter of the fan's plastic exterior that it impeded the fan's ability to spin and caused the noise. Intel gives sufficient fan wire length so there was no need for it to be so tight around the fan's perimeter and as soon as I made the wires longer and away from the fan it started quickly and quietly. But I had already taken the time and spent $35 on the Master Cooler fan, so I installed it anyway rather than taking more time to return it. The Master Cooler processor fan (212 Evo) was much bigger than the stock fan but still incredibly quiet.
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on January 14, 2014
I used to have a i5-3570, I made the step up because I: 1: Wanted to see how much of a difference it makes, and, 2: Planned on using the extra cores for later on advanced courses felt like I needed the extra kick.

+Gives quick boot times with rapid start technology
+Very good for gaming and for those who want to push everything to the max
+Stays cooler than previous generation, even though processors can run the same temps as others and its hard to tell, but I ran this under the same cooler as my last processor and it stayed under 50 C, while the i5 was pushing past 60 C.

In all, I feel like the performance gap between this and the i5 is not too great, but with all of the new programs and games coming out, it feels good to know you'll be ready for what ever it throws at you.
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on November 25, 2013
Background: I upgraded from an entry level machine built around an AMD Phenom II 970 BE. That system was overclocked a bit, so I already knew about overclocking. I decided to use this as the heart of my college machine because most, if not all mini-ITX mobos for AMD are not that overclocking ready. My chip sits inside a Maximus 6 Impact.

Pros: One hell of an upgrade. However, I cannot compare my old system to my new one in all aspects. Nothing can compare to the SSD optimizations on win8 and z87 vs win7 and 880G. This chip is wickedly fast. This can render a 5760x3840 image of a translucent 3D object in about 1.7 hrs. My friend rendered the same object on the same settings on his FX-8320 system in about 2.4 hours. This was back when I was on stock clocks. I haven't tried to render since my latest system tweaks.

Also, I was decently lucky with the silicon lottery. My chip can get to 4.4 GHz stable with 1.2v on the core. I would push more but I'm thermally limited. This brings me to my negative thoughts on this chip.

Cons: This chip is stupidly hard to keep cool. Gotta love intel for using that black gunk to keep their IHS attached... I'm using a Phanteks PC-12DX to keep my chip cool. If you're not familiar with that cooler, it's essentially a push-pull 212 evo on steriods. And no, my case airflow is actually better than most cases. My 200mm intake is unobstructed and blows up to 150 CFM directly to the cooler. Anyways, this is about the chip, not my system. As for the price/performance of this chip, it's pretty pitiful. Unless every second, MHz, or form factor matters to you, there is almost no reason to purchase this chip. AMD's FX-8320 delivers about 70-80% of this chip's performance at quite literally half the price. Also, the 990X/990FX motherboards tend to be much cheaper than similarly performing motherboards on the z87 chipset.

tl;dr - this chip is only meant for those pushing for every last MHz on the Haswell platform. If you're buying this, be ready to drop more than $80 for a decent cooling solution. This is not intel's chip for gaming... Swing over to this chip's little brother, the i5-4670K. Before you start screaming "it's not an i7" remember this. There is basically no stock clock performance difference between this and the i5. Even if you do video editing or some other cpu intensive tasks, you will probably be more than happy on the i5. For a 30% price increase, you earn maybe 5% extra performance in heavily threaded applications.
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on February 16, 2014
I got an about average overclocker. I was able to get 4.5ghz out of 1.285 volts. Running the Corsair h100i cpu cooler and temps during benchmarks still got up around 78c. A little warmer than what I was hoping for so I ended up just backing it down to 4.2ghz to keep temps really low.
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on September 9, 2013
Easy to install, very fast, good overclocking support (which I don't regularly use). At non-OC speeds however, the thermal characteristics of the package are somewhat inadequate - during intensive GPU use the processor package throttles down on heat warning. This is because the heat compound that comes already applied on the unit does not make a great seal (it also requires a lot of pressure to secure the fan on because it is not liquid!). After scraping that junk off and applying some real heatsink compound, heat problem vanished.
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on May 21, 2014
I can't give this thing a drop in stars because it isn't way better than the last few Generations of Intel. It performs very solid and Overclocks very easily. I will always cherish the memory of my 2600k.. but at least this is a worthy replacement. You can see in the benchmarks that this baby shines faster than it's predecessors. Yes, I actually screenshot old benchmarks from my previous CPUs and I have the facts. If you ran an SSD with a decent motherboard and your previous processors, you won't notice much of a difference except in Benchmarks. Maybe next gen Intel will show more difference. I just upgraded because I had the cash and I like to have the newest things. If you have the money, go for it. If you have to save up for a few months.. save your money for the next gen NVidia graphics card line or an upgrade to solid state storage. That will be your next big noticeable bump in performance.
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