Finding The Best Intel Core i7 Processor

The Intel Core i7 line is among the most popular of Intel’s Core series, and for good reason. Prior to the recent release of the i9 alongside the X-series, the i7 offered the best CPU performance in the hands of consumers. It became particularly popular among career YouTubers, Twitch streamers, and professional gamers.

Today, we’ll be discussing the Intel Core i7 series in detail, telling you everything you need to know before buying one. We’ll also dive deep into our top selections for those buying an i7 today, so you can find the right i7 for you.

Where does the Intel Core i7 excel?

The Intel Core i7 series excels in the following scenarios:

  • General usage and heavy multitasking. The i7 will blast through not only general usage but heavy multitasking as well (provided the rest of your system can back it up). Thanks to its high core count and the addition of hyperthreading, your CPU will never be overwhelmed with all the things that you’re doing, provided you aren’t intentionally trying to overload it.
  • High-level productivity. If you’re using applications with high CPU requirements and utilization, the i7 will function perfectly. It’s made specifically to handle intensive CPU-centric workloads, and as long as there isn’t a bottleneck elsewhere in your system, you’ll be fine.
  • Hardcore gaming. Provided you have the GPU to match, the i7 is perfect in any high-end gaming rig, often leaving plenty of CPU resources unused by the games themselves. When this happens, you can dedicate those extra resources to things like live-streaming, which we’ll discuss in more detail below.
  • Live-streaming on Twitch and other platforms. If you want to stream your gameplay in real-time without making dramatic sacrifices to your in-game settings and performance, an i7 is a great fit for you. While some adjustments may still be necessary for especially demanding titles, most of the time you should be able to live stream with no noticeable loss in performance.
  • Frequent video rendering. If you need to edit and render videos on a regular basis- especially as an independent creator- an i7 is exactly what you’re looking for. Its high number of hyperthreaded cores will be utilized completely by any modern editing software, allowing for quick renders, quick iteration, and seamless editing.

Is the Intel Core i7 overkill for my usage scenarios?

If you are only doing the following, you should consider downgrading to an i5 processor:

  • Gaming non-professionally. If you’re just someone playing video games, and you don’t particularly care for pushing ultra-high frames, live-streaming or making videos…you can probably go without this. We recommend downgrading to an i5 to maintain the same (rough) level of in-game performance.

If you are only doing the following, you should consider downgrading to an i3 processor:

  • General usage. If you’re just doing regular stuff with your PC- web browsing, media consumption, etc- you really do not need an i7. You should downgrade to an i3, which will be amazing at those very tasks while only costing you a small portion of the money you’d have spent on an i7.
  • Home theater PC. If you want a home theater PC setup, there are way cheaper ways to go about it than with an i7 processor. We recommend a modern i3 processor and a low-midrange low-profile GPU to do the job, like a GTX 1050 or GTX 1060. An i7 is for much more hardcore purposes than watching 4K Netflix.
Everyone else

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