Intel Arrow Lake CPU Crushes i9-13900K In Single-Threaded Benchmark Leak, Is It Real?

Closeup of a Core i9-13900K being held, with a punching graphic in the lower right corner.
There's evidence to suggest that Intel's Arrow Lake CPUs are out in the wild in engineering sample form (early ES chips recently showed up for sale in China for $14 a pop), which is to be expected at this stage. Purportedly, someone has posted a couple of benchmarks with mixed results from one of those chips, with single-threaded performance dusting Intel's Core i9-13900K and even its current flagship, the Core i9-14900KS. The model name and specifications of the alleged Arrow Lake part are a mystery, though, and may not even be real.

What we have is a CPU-Z screenshot that was posted to Tieba Baidu. It only shows the 'Bench' tab and there's no accompanying commentary to reveal what specific Arrow Lake SKU this is supposed to represent, let alone things like core and thread counts, clock speeds, TPD, or anything else of interest. Heck, we don't even see any mention of Arrow Lake, though perhaps something is getting lost or dropped in a Google Translation—according to the folks at WCCFTech, the user claims the image is from a different group and allegedly points to an Arrow Lake CPU.

In any event, here's a look...

CPU-Z screenshot showing CPU performance.

According to the screenshot, the unidentified chip scored 1,143.2 in the the single-threaded test and 12,922.4 in the multi-threaded test. The screenshot also shows the average score for a Core i9-13900K, and at least that part we can corroborate—we see the same numbers appear when firing up CPU-Z and selecting that CPU for the reference.

Going from 902 (Core i9-13900K) to 1,143.2 (alleged Arrow Lake part) equates to a sizable 26.7% performance uplift. The single-threaded score is also higher than what the Core i9-14900KS achieves at stock settings (around 967).

Even if we accept that this is an actual Arrow Lake ES chip and not a faked benchmark (the latter of which has been accused in the forum thread), it wouldn't be accurate to dub this an IPC uplift. That's because we have no idea what clocks the mystery CPU is running at to obtain this score.

Interestingly, the multi-core score is around 29.1% lower than the Core i9-13900K. This suggests that the alleged Arrow Lake part is a lower-end SKU, perhaps even an entry-level model, with fewer cores and threads. That would explain the massive disparity in multi-threaded performance.

We caution against reading too much into these benchmark results because there are just too many unknowns, including whether it's even a real benchmark run, the question of which appears to amuse others in the thread. If it is legit, though, and it's not overclocked or otherwise manipulated, it could indicate that a chunky IPC jump is on the horizon. Again, though, it's too early to make that leap, as we just don't have enough information yet.