Alleged Alder Lake-S Series Benchmarks Leak, Lead By Impressive Core i9-12900K

Intel Alder Lake
Intel is close to releasing its first batch of processors based on its hybrid Alder Lake architecture, at which point we will finally have some definitive answers about how it performs. Until then, we're left to leaks and rumors. In theory, leaks should be a little more reliable since we're so close to a retail release. And if that is the case, a new batch of benchmark data for a trio of Alder Lake CPUs bodes well for Intel's upcoming launch.

The big deal with Alder Lake is the mixing of high performance Golden Cove cores with power efficient Gracemont cores in the same package, though that fact alone only tells a small portion of the story. During its Architecture Day 2021 event a few weeks ago, Intel shared some more details about the architecture, a key component of which is Intel's Thread Director technology.

Intel Thread Director Technology Gives Alder Lake An Edge

Thread Director is a hardware-level thread analyzer scheduler that "provides runtime feedback" to the operating system to benefit any time of workload. This will work in conjunction with Windows 11, which is due to release on October 5. Here's a short video on the technology...

Thread Director also dynamically adapts to thermals, load, and power requirements on the fly without any user input. That means there are no Thread Director dials to fiddle with, it's just part of the architecture and underlying technology that works its magic on the heterogeneous makeup that is at play with Intel's Alder Lake lineup.

How will it actually fare, though? We'll have answers soon enough. For now, though, some newly leaked benchmarks obtained by Persian site Sakhtafzarmag provide some interesting potential hints of what is to come.

Leaked Intel Alder Lake Benchmarks

The site got its hands on Alder Lake benchmark data for the Core i9-12900K, Core i7-12700KF, and Core i5-12600K with the following specifications...
  • Core i9-12900K: 8 big cores, 8 small cores, 24 threads
  • Core i7-12700KF: 8 big cores, 4 small cores, 20 threads
  • Core i5-12600K: 6 big cores, 4 small cores, 16 threads
And here is a look at how they fared in Geekbench...
Intel Alder Lake Leaked Geekbench Results
Source: Sakhtafzarmag

One thing to keep in mind is that we have no idea what the testing conditions consisted of, including the amount of RAM, what motherboard and chipset drivers were in play, and even whether the scores were obtained at stock settings.

Caveats out of the way, all three Alder Lake CPUs posted impressive single-threaded metrics that are a few hundred points higher than AMD's Zen 3 processors, And in the multi-threaded arena, the Alder Lake CPUs also performed well, especially the Core i9-12900KF, which brought parity between it and AMD's flagship 16-core/32-thread Ryzen 9 5950X.

Intel Alder Lake Benchmarks
Source: Sakhtafzarmag

A spattering of other benchmarks paint a similar picture. We're not going to re-post all of the performance graphs (that would just be rude), but as shown above, all three Alder Lake chips are adept at encoding, if these results are accurate. Spotlighting the Core i9-12900K again, it bested the Ryzen 9 5950X in X264 HD and X265 HD, though AMD's finest won out in HWBot X265.

The site also posted some supposed pricing details, saying the Core i9-12900K will sell for $599, the Core i9-12900 for $509, the Core i7-12700K for $429, the Core i7-12700 for $359, the Core i5-12600K for $279, the Core i5-12600 for $249, and the Core i5-12400 for $203.

Even if those figures are accurate, pricing can (and often does) vary by territory, so keep that in mind. That said, this is yet another leak that suggests Alder Lake is a step in the right direction as Intel tries to right its ship amid increased competition from AMD.