Review: Intel Core i3 7350K Kaby Lake

Intel’s latest generation of processor has now seen the light of day. While hardcore (and deep pocketed) enthusiasts would flock to the flagship Kaby Lake Intel Core i7 7700K, we have our eyes on a much lower end (and cheaper) option, the Intel Core i3 7350K. Yes folks, finally unlocked multiplier has come to the i3 range. How well would it perform? Let’s find out.

Low Thermal Performer
The Intel Core i3 range is usually Intel’s entry level range of processor for the Core range. So seeing an unlocked option was quite a surprise for us. Clocked at 4.2Ghz, it’s the fastest of all the Kaby Lake i3. Heck, it’s as fast as the flagship Core i7 7700K and faster than all of the Kaby Lake i5, meaning it should have high single core performance. Unlike Core i5 and i7, there is no Intel Turbo Boost.

The processor is physically dual core with four working thread thanks to Intel’s Hyper Threading, meaning your OS will see four cores. With a TDP of 60W, it’s lower than the 91W on an unlocked i5 or i7, but is much cooler.

Socket Rocket
The processor can be installed in a motherboard with LGA 1151 socket, hence it should work with any motherboard featuring not only the latest Intel 200 chipset, but also the last generation Intel 100, albeit with a bios update.

The Core i3 7350K also features Intel HD630 graphics, with hardware HEVC 4K encoding which means this is one of the few processors that supports Netflix native 4K streaming.

We tested the processor with an MSI Z270 Krait Gaming motherboard, with 16GB of Kingston HyperX Fury DDR4 RAM. Starting at 4200Mhz, we slowly clock up the multiplier 200Mhz at a time until we can’t boot into windows.

The processor seems to achieve a stable overclock at 4.8Ghz with 1.3V core voltage. In terms of temperature, the Core i3 7350K was quite cool, not really going over 65 celcius during benchmark with our third party cooler, and hovering around 80 celcius with an intel stock cooler.

If you are looking for a processor to overclock without having to spend a bomb, then the Intel Core i3 7350K might be the one for you. It’s good enough for gaming, with HyperThreading helping a bit with games that utilises multi-core. That being said, you need a high end motherboard to actually let you overclock so you might not be saving that much money as you might think.

Byline: by Din

Processor: i3 7350K Kaby Lake
Speed: 4.2Ghz
Socket: 1151
TDP: 60W
Cache: 4MB L3
Graphics: Intel HD630

PC Mark Home: 3440
PC Mark Creative: 3300
PC Mark Work: 3556
Geekbench Single: 4832
Geekbench Multi: 8613
Cinebench: 355CB

Benchmark (4.8Ghz OC)
PC Mark Home: 3609
PC Mark Creative: 3711
PC Mark Work: 3721
Geekbench Single: 5008
Geekbench Multi: 12100
Cinebench: 492CB

MSRP: RM3719

Value: 8
Features: 8
Performance: 8
Design: 8
Usability: 8

Verdict: The Little Soldier that Could
Total Score: 8

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