Intel i7-8750H vs i7-8850H Which CPU is better in a laptop?

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Intel i7-8750H vs i7-8850H Comparison and Benchmarks. Which CPU is better in a laptop? The 8750H or 8850H from Intel? We’ll find out in this post with a series of gaming and application benchmarks to see how they perform, and discuss the differences between them to help you decide which you should buy in your next laptop.

Earlier this year Intel launched their new 8th generation Coffee Lake laptop CPUs, which for the first time from Intel gives us up to 6 cores in a laptop. There are a few different chips available though, so let’s compare some and find out how they differ.

First let’s note the similarities between these two mobile chips.

i7-8750H vs i7-8850H
i7-8750H vs i7-8850H

Both have 6 CPU cores with 12 threads, a 45 watt TDP, and 9MB of cache, and no I will not pronounce it as cash, there’s no money inside the CPU. That’s where the majority of important similarities ends, so how do they differ? The main difference is in the clock speeds. The 8750H has a base speed of 2.2GHz, while the 8850H is higher at 2.6Ghz.

The turbo speeds are also different, with the 8750H getting up to 4.1GHz in single core workloads and 3.9GHz with all 6 cores in use, while the 8850H steps things up to 4.3GHz in single core, and 4GHz in all core workloads, so just a little ahead. Here’s where things get interesting though, the 8850H can also be overclocked by increasing the CPU multipliers which I did using Intel XTU software, and I was able to get all cores stable to 4.3GHz, so we’ll see the results of it at both stock speeds and with the overclock applied.

So there are some interesting differences between the two, mainly with the clock speeds and of course the power difference. How much of a performance difference does this make practically? To test this I’ve run some CPU specific benchmarks on two different laptops with these processors to find out.

The 8850H laptop is the Aorus X5 v8 while the 8750H was in the ASUS Zephyrus M. Both laptops are running Windows 10 1803 with all updates to date installed on an SSD. Both laptops are also running with DDR4 memory at 2,666MHz in dual channel, however it’s important to note that the Aorus had two 8gb sticks while the Zephyrus had two 16gb sticks, unfortunately I don’t have spare sticks and I had the laptops at different times so I couldn’t get the same memory, but in any case for gaming we shouldn’t see too much difference going from 16gb to 32gb, the main factors such as the speed and dual channel are most important.

Both laptops also have Nvidia 1070 graphics which ran at similar clock speeds under stress test, so overall the laptops are fairly similar in terms of overall specs, with the exception of the CPU of course. All gaming tests were also run with the 8850H overclocked to 4.3GHz on all cores, as I figure if you’re buying it you’ll probably want the best performance. We’ll first start off with the gaming results and then check out some different applications afterwards.

i7-8750H vs i7-8850H Benchmarks

Starting out with Fortnite we’re seeing much larger differences at the lower settings, which I think is expected as higher setting levels are more GPU dependant. In any case at the higher setting levels there’s only a little improvement, just over 5% better on the 8850H at epic settings.

Fortnite
Fortnite

In PUBG testing with the same replay we’re again seeing a much larger difference at the lower settings with less of a difference at the higher settings, but still that’s a pretty nice boost in performance with almost 15% better average frame rates at ultra on the 8850H.

i7-8750H vs i7-8850H in PUBG
i7-8750H vs i7-8850H in PUBG

CS:GO follows the same pattern, much less of a difference at the higher setting levels, but still a little improvement with the 8850H giving us a 10% boost at max settings in the 1% lows and almost a 20% improvement in the averages.

i7-8750H vs i7-8850H CS GO
i7-8750H vs i7-8850H CS GO

Rainbow Six Siege was tested with the built in benchmark and we only saw a small difference between the average frame rates, and interestingly the 1% lows were slightly ahead with the 8750H.

Far Cry 5 was another that was tested using the built in benchmark, and the results are much closer together here with the 8850H only coming out ahead at high and ultra in the averages and again losing out on the 1% lows.

i7-8750H vs i7-8850H Farcry 5
i7-8750H vs i7-8850H Farcry 5

Rise of the Tomb Raider was also tested with the built in benchmark, and again the difference between the two wasn’t too much and doesn’t really change between setting levels.

Battlefield 1 was tested playing in the first campaign mission, and we’re seeing just under a 17% improvement at ultra settings. Ghost Recon was tested with the built in benchmark and we’re getting a 15% improvement at ultra settings, so pretty decent and once again a much larger difference as we step down in settings.

i7-8750H vs i7-8850H Battlefield 1
i7-8750H vs i7-8850H Battlefield 1

Watchdogs 2 was performing around 20% better at ultra settings with the 8850H, but the 1% lows seem to drop down quite a lot on the 8750H so overall it was running smoother on the 8850H at higher settings.

The Witcher 3 was going slightly better on the 8850H at lower settings, but interestingly at ultra the results were much closer together with the 8750H slightly ahead in this title.

Shadow of War was tested using the built in benchmark, and there’s not much difference at all here, just over 5% of an improvement at ultra settings. In most cases the 8850H laptop was out ahead, but in some games at some setting levels it was either very close or the 8750H was slightly ahead, it really depends on the game and setting level used.

While running the games on the 8750H most of them were averaging 3.9GHz on all CPU cores, while the 8850H was averaging just under 4.3GHz on all cores, so that’s about a 10% clock speed increase. In the following application tests for the 8750H I’ve actually swapped to the Dell G5, this is because the laptop had two 8gb sticks of DDR4 at 2,666MHz in dual channel, exactly the same as the Aorus X5 with the 8850H.

I couldn’t use it for the game benchmarks though as it’s got a different graphics card, the Zephyrus was the only 8750H laptop I’ve had so far with the 1070 so I had to use that for the gaming comparison. In these application tests I’ve also undervolted both CPUs by -0.150v, as I wanted to try and eliminate thermal and power limit throttling as much as possible from the equation, this hopefully allows me to show best case scenarios with these CPUs and remove possible restrictions from each laptops.

Unfortunately undervolting was not tested with the games previously, as I just took those results from past laptop reviews and I do the game benchmarks with the laptop at stock. I’ve also included the 8850H at both stock speeds and with the 4.3GHz all core overclock applied.

In Adobe Premiere I’ve rendered my review video on the ASUS Zephyrus GX501 gaming laptop, which goes for around 10 minutes at 1080p, using the h264 high bitrate preset. No GPUs were in use for the test, these results are CPU tests only. The 8850H is ahead, but interestingly with the overclock applied it’s slightly slower, I think in this test with all cores maxed out it was power limit throttling on the overclock which made it perform slightly worse. A similar result was noted in Handbrake. I’ve encoded a 4K video file to 1080p, and a separate 1080p video file to 720p using the HQ presets.

The stock 8850H was only just barely ahead of the 8750H, and again the overclock made things worse, actually resulting in lower than 8750H performance. Again this also shows itself in the V-Ray results, although this time the 8850H is still faster than the 8750H while overclocked, but it’s getting the fastest score at stock speeds.

I’ve used Veracrypt to test the AES encryption and decryption speeds, and finally this time we’re actually seeing better performance with the 8850H overclock as I guess this particular workload doesn’t cause problems, either way 8750H isn’t too far behind here. The 7-Zip benchmark was used to demonstrate the decompression and compression speeds of both CPUs, and again like Veracrypt we’re seeing a slight boost with the overclock applied, although the 8750H wasn’t too far behind. In Cinebench I’ve tested both single and multi core performance, each test was run 5 times and these are the average numbers, and we’re getting a little improvement to single core and multi core performance with the 8850H, and then a slightly larger improvement with the overclock.

A similar sort of pattern was seen in Geekbench, small improvements with the 8850H and then a little more with the overclock applied. Passmark 9 behaved similarly again, but I believe these benchmarks just test different specific things at a time and are not prolonged workloads like we saw with the first applications.

i7-8750H vs i7-8850H
i7-8750H vs i7-8850H

The Corona benchmark renders a scene using the CPU, and was a bit quicker on the 8850H with the overclock only just shaving off a second. In most cases the 8850H laptop was ahead, although as we saw early on applications like Handbrake and Adobe Premiere that actually use all CPU cores for an extended period of time didn’t go as well with the overclock, likely due to limitations with the specific laptop in use.

Tests that were short bursts like Cinebench though had no problem giving slightly better performance though. It’s important to note that the overclock results on the 8850H may vary between laptops, if you had a laptop with perfect power delivery and cooling perhaps you would see better performance in applications like Adobe Premiere, unfortunately that wasn’t the case on the Aorus X5 that I was testing with, even while undervolted.

In the gaming tests this was less of an issue, as the games aren’t actually maxing out all 6 cores like these CPU demanding applications are. Based on these tests in most cases the 8850H does seem to offer some improvement, which is expected as it’s clocked slightly higher out of the box but can also be raised further with the overclock.

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Which CPU should you get in a laptop? Honestly outside of gaming it doesn’t seem to matter too much in the applications I’ve tested, and in gaming it does appear that in most titles the CPU does give us a little performance boost, although that wasn’t always the case, so when it comes down to it it really depends on how much the laptops with each CPU are, generally the 8850H seems to be in higher end options and will therefore likely come out costing more, the recommended customer price per 1000 units on the Intel website is however $395 for both CPUs, although that could of course vary, but does at least give us the idea that Intel sells them at about the same price to their customers.

I suspect the 8750H is a more popular choice due to less power requirements. I haven’t tested the differences in battery performance or temperatures, as both laptops are from completely different companies and have different sized batteries as well as different cooling solutions, so it wouldn’t be a fair comparison, but expect the 8850H to drain your battery faster, especially if you’re running an overclock on battery power. So what did you guys think about the differences in performance between Intel’s 8750H and 8850H CPUs?

Be sure to let me know your thoughts down in the comments, and leave a share if you found the comparison useful.

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