What Generation is the i5-6500 & i5-7500?
- i5-6500 – 6th Generation (Skylake)
- i5-7500 – 7th Generation (Kaby Lake)
(Current Generation: 8th Generation (Coffee Lake))
i5 6500 vs. i5 7500: What’s The Difference For Gamers?
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Intel CPUs absolutely dominate the market, but the yearly upgrades between these CPUs are sometimes negligible. The difference between Intel’s Core i5 6500 and Core i5 7500 seem insignificant on the surface, but there are some crucial differences.
Let’s take a look at how these two chipsets differ and where you will need to be careful when selecting the i5 7500.
Core i5 6500 vs. Core i5 7500: What’s the Difference?
On the surface specification level, these two chips aren’t that much different. The i5 7500 offers about a 10%-15% performance increase over the i5 6500, but the i5 6500 tends to be priced higher.
The main difference comes down to the architecture differences between the two chips.
The Core i5 6500 is based on the older Skylake architecture Intel debuted in 2015. The Core i5 7500 uses Intel’s Kaby Lake architecture that first debuted in 2017.
The i5 7500 Kaby Lake processor is designed to support modern operating systems like Windows 10. The Skylake chip is preferred for its support of Linux distros with version 4.9 or below.
The two processors also have different integrated graphics cards available. The Core i5 6500 features Intel HD Graphics 530, while the Core i5 7500 has Intel HD Graphics 630.
The difference between the two is a slightly higher clock speed at 1.1Ghz for the 630 vs. 1.05 GHz for the 530. If you’re buying this processor for gaming, your dedicated graphics card makes this difference moot.
Kaby Lake Introduces New Motherboard Chipsets
Alongside the launch of the Kaby Lake processor series, Intel introduced new motherboard chipsets. The new motherboard chipsets offer better performance over Skylake motherboards with the LGA 1151 socket.
The Core i5 7500 supports the Z270, H270, B250, and revamped H110 motherboards out of the box. Older motherboards designed for the Skylake processor architecture include the Z170, H170, B150, and the H110. The Core i5 7500 processor is compatible with all of the old architecture, but the Core i5 6500 is not compatible with new motherboards without a BIOS update.
Avoiding Issues With Builds
To avoid buying incompatible parts for your gaming PC build it is recommended you stick with series 200 motherboards for Kaby Lake processors like the Core i5 7500. The Core i5 6500 can used on series 200 motherboards, but the BIOS required makes it harder to install right from the box.
Some motherboard manufacturers like Gigabyte have created tools to make flashing the BIOS easier for the average consumer. With the 8th generation of Intel CPUs out now and the 9th generation on the way, the difference between these two matters less than it did in the past.
Current peripheral prices place the Core i5 7500 much cheaper than its Core i5 6500 counterpart. As long as you make sure you are ordering a series 200 motherboard with your 7500, you’ll have no compatibility issues out of the box.
Both the Core i5 6500 and Core i5 7500 processors are great for playing most modern games @ 1080p on high settings out of the box. You will get marginally better performance out of the Core i5 7500, which supports 4K gaming.