Is Intel Core i7 good for streaming?
Is Intel Core i7 good for streaming? We find out
WePC is reader-supported. When you buy through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission. Prices subject to change. Learn more
Streamers need powerful processors to be able to stream at high quality and consistent framerates and provide their viewers with an enjoyable experience. If you’re looking for a capable processor, you may have been considering one from the Intel Core i7 lineup. Today, we find out: is Intel i7 good for streaming?
Now Read: Best CPU for gaming 2023
What makes a processor good for streaming?
A CPU must be able to accomplish two things for a seamless stream. First, it needs to be able to run the games you intend to play at high framerates, and without any lag or stuttering. For this purpose, it’s preferable to have a processor with decent single-thread performance, which stems from having a high maximum core clock speed.
Secondly, the CPU needs to achieve a high level of performance in your desired games while also having some resources to spare, so it can dedicate them to the streaming software.
Streaming in itself is a moderately demanding workload that your processor will need to handle in addition to serving the demands of your game. Therefore, we also want our processor to have plenty of cores and threads, so it has a healthy capacity for multitasking.
Factors such as power consumption, thermal performance, compatibility, and usability in other scenarios are also secondary factors to consider. This is the criteria we’ll be running the Intel Core i7 lineup by.
Are Intel Core i7 processors good for streaming?
To tell you right off the bat, yes – Intel Core i7 processors are great for streaming, especially the newer ones.
Intel Core i7 features powerful processors with leading specs. These processors usually have top-notch clock speeds and a ton of cores and threads, which is exactly what we’re looking for in a streaming processor.
An i7 processor will be able to run your games at a high FPS and have enough resources left over to capture and stream your screen to your audience.
The newer Core i7 CPUs are strong enough that you don’t have to utilize hardware encoding, in which the GPU does more of the work involved in streaming. You can simply let your CPU take on the streaming workload and let your GPU focus on delivering frames for your game, better utilizing your system resources.
The only downside to Core i7 processors for streaming is their high power usage and high-end price. It is possible to get by with a less powerful and less expensive Core i5 or Ryzen 7 CPU if streaming and gaming are your only goals.
But the thing is, a lot of streamers are also content creators or end up having to deal with very CPU-intensive workloads such as video editing and rendering as well. For these tasks, the extra performance offered by Core i7 processors is well worth it, even if you end up having to pay a bit extra.
Should I get an Intel Core i7 processor for my stream?
If you’re looking for a high-end processor for your stream, Core i7 processors are definitely a great option for you. The most recent Core i7-13700K offers performance that’s comparable to the much more expensive Ryzen 9 and Core i9 processors in realistic use cases while costing a whole lot less.
Older Core i7 processors are good for streaming too, but they may not offer you the best value. In any case, I would recommend sticking with CPUs 10th generation and above if you’re looking to get something from the Core i7 lineup. Dropping to 9th gen and below is a huge drop in multicore performance.
If you’re looking for a more budget-friendly option, going for a 13th-generation Core i5 processor is fine, also. Streaming performance will drop slightly (and not at all if you utilize hardware encoding on a powerful GPU), but your productivity in content creation will take a noticeable hit.