Rumor mill: Intel's Alder Lake desktop processors aren't here yet, but that doesn't stop leakers from spoiling whatever surprises Team Blue may have in store, particularly when it comes to its budget-oriented 12th generation offerings. So far most leaks have been related to the flagship Core i9-12900K CPU, which could be a serious competitor for AMD's Ryzen 9 5950X, but it looks like Alder Lake could be competitive at multiple price points.
If a new leak from a Bilibili user is anything to go by, Intel's upcoming Core i5-12400 processor will also be a compelling alternative to existing value options such as the Core i5-10400F, or AMD's Ryzen 5 3600 and Ryzen 5 5600X CPUs. Notably, the Core i5-12400 doesn't utilize the big.LITTLE configuration of higher-end Alder Lake parts --- instead this is a six-core, 12-thread CPU that is only equipped with Golden Cove cores.
The new CPU will come with 18 megabytes of L3 cache (three megabytes per core) and has a base clock of 2.5 GHz. When it comes to boost clocks, the Core i5-12400 appears to go up to 4.0 GHz on all cores or up to 4.4 GHz in workloads that peg only one core. Interestingly, the engineering sample in the leak doesn't need more that 78.5 watts during full load and will be able to stay relatively cool. The leaker said they were able to keep it at 60 degrees Celsius when stress testing using an air cooler they had laying around.
When it comes to performance, the Core i5-12400 scored 681.7 points in the single-core CPU-Z test and 4,983.8 points in the multi-core test. These results are better than its predecessor, which is only able to score around 530 points in the single-core test and 4,000 points in the multi-core one. The Alder Lake part is also better than both the Ryzen 5 3600 and the the Ryzen 5 5600X, with the latter scoring 630 points in the single-core test and 4871 in the multi-core one.
The leak also includes a screenshot of Cinebench R20 test results, where we see the Core i5-12400 scoring 659 points in the single-core test --- slightly higher than the Core i9-11900K, which is Intel's Rocket Lake flagship CPU. This result is also higher than the Ryzen 9 5950X, which is only able to score around 640 points without an overclock. As you'd expect, the Core i5-12400 is able to best its predecessor in the multi-core test, with 4,784 points as opposed to 3,954 for the Core i5-11400F. However, it also beats the Core i5-11600K and the AMD Ryzen 5 5600X CPUs.
As always, take these results with a healthy does of salt. That said, if Intel is able to come up with a sub-$200 six-core Alder Lake CPU that can best our current top recommendations in the value segment, then it would lend some credibility to CEO Pat Gelsinger's claim recently that AMD's performance lead in the desktop space will come to an end with the arrival of the Alder Lake family. It won't be long before we'll be able to put that claim to the test.