Intel’s 13th Gen Raptor Lake processors are some of the best CPUs for gaming. There is no mistake.But have you ever wondered which chips do the best overclocking? German publication Igor’s laboratory (opens in new tab) tested up to 480 Raptor Lake processors and published binned data on the silicon quality you can expect from each processor tier.
Intel will do a bit of binning with its Raptor Lake processors before they hit the retail market. During manufacturing, the chip maker evaluates each chip and embeds his own V/F curve into each chip.
The V/F curve contains data for each core in terms of minimum voltage for each frequency. Different V/F curves for different SKUs tell the motherboard what voltage is needed for a particular frequency. Some motherboard manufacturers, such as Asus, use these V/F curves to determine processor quality and chip overclocking potential.
Asus has built a feature into its branded ROG Maximus and Strix branded motherboards called Silicon Prediction (SP), which uses a mathematical formula to assess the quality of silicon based on a processor’s V/F curve. It gives you a simple number that indicates the performance of your processor.
Logically, higher numbers are better because they correlate with better processors. Igor’s Lab’s methodology is simple. The press installed a Raptor Lake processor inside a Maximus Z790 Hero, booted the system, went inside the BIOS, and recorded the SP value for each sample.
|Header Cell – Column 0||Average SP||Median SP||Best SP||Worst SP||CPU tested|
This data shows that the Core i9 model contains the highest quality silicon among all Raptor Lake K-series chips. The Core i9-13900KF is the best overclocker with an average SP of 101.1 out of 164 samples tested. Even the worst Core i9-13900KF scored 91 points. The Core i9-13900K that came with the iGPU lagged slightly behind its KF counterpart. The processor had an average SP of 99.6 points, less than 2% behind the Core i9-13900KF. Interestingly, however, the Core i9-13900K had the highest SP score of 114 points.
The Core i7-13700K and Core i7-13700KF were pretty close in terms of silicon quality. The difference between the two mean SPs was less than 1%. As with the Core i9-13900K and Core i9-13900KF, the KF variant of the Core i7-13700K is slightly better when it comes to overclocking.
When it came to the Core i5-13600K and Core i5-13600KF it was just the opposite. The regular K-series model had a higher average SP (81.8) compared to the KF model (78.5). That’s a 4% difference. Surprisingly, the Core i5-13600KF also had the worst sample of all the Raptor Lake parts tested, scoring just 58 points for that particular sample.
Silicon quality is not a big selling point for the average consumer. Because you usually choose the processor according to your needs. For example, if you want integrated graphics, buy the $599 Core i9-13900K. If you don’t need an iGPU, the Core i9-13900KF retails for $574, saving you $25 to invest in another component. your build. For serious enthusiasts, however, the Core i9-13900KF is more likely to reach higher overclocks like 6 GHz, like Intel’s soon-to-be-released Core i9-13900KS, which retails for $699.