Intel Core i5-8600 3.1 GHz Review 83

Intel Core i5-8600 3.1 GHz Review

A Closer Look »


Intel launched the Core i5-8600 six-core processor just a few weeks ago. It wasn't part of last year's first wave of 8th generation Core "Coffee Lake" processors since Intel probably held back the multiplier-locked i5-8600 and i5-8500 to space the price-performance sweetspot product i5-8600K apart from the $190 i5-8400, which was the company's first sub-$200 six-core processor at the time.

The Core i5-8400 did enough to disrupt AMD's first-generation Ryzen 5 series, particularly the Ryzen 5 1600. With the advent of the second-generation Ryzen 5 2600X and 2600, both priced below the i5-8600K, Intel finds the need to bolster its Core i5 "Coffee Lake" series at newer price points, with the i5-8500 and i5-8600. The i5-8500, priced at $199, reaches the psychological 3.00 GHz barrier for its nominal clock (the i5-8400 is clocked at 2.80 GHz), while the i5-8600 ups that with 3.10 GHz. Both are 6-core/6-thread parts with 256 KB of L2 cache per core and 9 MB of shared L3 cache, and both feature Turbo Boost, which spool up clock speeds to over 4 GHz.

The Core i5-8600, which we're reviewing today, is launched at $229, the same price as the Ryzen 5 2600X. It's interesting to note that its max Turbo Boost frequency of 4.30 GHz is the same as that of the i5-8600K even though its nominal clocks are quite far apart (3.10 GHz vs. 3.60 GHz). You lose out on the unlocked multiplier, meaning its not possible to significantly overclock these chips. What's more, unlike the i5-8600K, its TDP is rated at 65W, and Intel is including a stock cooler, so you don't have to buy one, which lowers overall costs.

The target audience for this chip is gamers who don't plan on overclocking their CPU, and who are looking for a processor that strikes a price-performance sweetspot under $250, and which doesn't bottleneck any high-end graphics card. You should ideally be able to pair the most expensive graphics cards and SSDs on the market with this chip to game at the highest resolutions.

This review uses our updated test suite for processors in 2018, which includes the latest BIOS updates with microcode fixes for recent security issues, Windows 10 Fall Creators Update with all updates, and new software tests and games, which are all using the latest versions, too.

Intel Core i5-8600 Market Segment Analysis
 PriceCores /
Core i5-8500$2056 / 63.0 GHz4.1 GHz9 MB65 WCoffee Lake14 nmLGA 1151
Core i5-7600K$2304 / 43.8 GHz4.2 GHz6 MB91 WKaby Lake14 nmLGA 1151
Core i5-7640X$2004 / 44.0 GHz4.2 GHz6 MB112 WKaby Lake14 nmLGA 2066
Core i5-6600K$2504 / 43.5 GHz3.9 GHz8 MB91 WSkylake14 nmLGA 1151
Core i5-8600$2306 / 63.1 GHz4.3 GHz9 MB65 WCoffee Lake14 nmLGA 1151
Ryzen 5 1600X$2006 / 123.6 GHz4.0 GHz16 MB95 WZen14 nmAM4
Core i5-8600K$2506 / 63.6 GHz4.3 GHz9 MB95 WCoffee Lake14 nmLGA 1151
Ryzen 5 2600$2006 / 123.4 GHz3.9 GHz16 MB65 WZen12 nmAM4
Ryzen 7 1700$2908 / 163.0 GHz3.7 GHz16 MB65 WZen14 nmAM4
Core i7-6700K$3504 / 84.0 GHz4.2 GHz8 MB91 WSkylake14 nmLGA 1151
Core i7-7700K$3404 / 84.2 GHz4.5 GHz8 MB91 WKaby Lake14 nmLGA 1151
Core i7-8700$3006 / 123.2 GHz4.6 GHz12 MB65 WCoffee Lake14 nmLGA 1151
Ryzen 5 2600X$2306 / 123.6 GHz4.2 GHz16 MB95 WZen12 nmAM4
Ryzen 7 1700X$2908 / 163.4 GHz3.8 GHz16 MB95 WZen14 nmAM4
Ryzen 7 2700$3008 / 163.2 GHz4.1 GHz16 MB65 WZen12 nmAM4
Core i7-8700K$3506 / 123.7 GHz4.7 GHz12 MB95 WCoffee Lake14 nmLGA 1151
Core i7-7800X$3806 / 123.5 GHz4.0 GHz8.25 MB140 WSkylake14 nmLGA 2066
Ryzen 7 2700X$3308 / 163.7 GHz4.3 GHz16 MB105 WZen12 nmAM4
Ryzen 7 1800X$3208 / 163.6 GHz4.0 GHz16 MB95 WZen14 nmAM4
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