C 2018
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Intel Core i7-8550U

Intel 8550U

The Intel Core i7-8550U is a power efficient quad-core SoC for notebooks and Ultrabooks based on the Kaby Lake Refresh generation and was announced in August 2017. Contrary to its direct predecessors Core i7-7500U and i5-7260U, respectively, which were still dual-cores, the i7-8550U is equipped with four cores but at a lower base frequency of 1.8 GHz. The Turbo Boost is not specified yet, but should be at least 3.7 - 4 GHz and therefore also offer good short term single core speeds. The GPU is now named Intel UHD Graphics 620 but otherwise identical to the Intel HD Graphics 620. The integrated memory controller supports DDR4-2400 / LPDDR3-2133 and dual channel memory.

Architecture

Intel basically uses the same micro architecture compared to Skylake, so the per-MHz performance does not differ. The manufacturer only reworked the Speed Shift technology for faster dynamic adjustments of voltages and clocks, and the improved 14nm process allows much higher frequencies combined with better efficiency than before.

Performance

The performance of the i7-8550U depends on the cooling solution of the laptop and the defined TDP limits for short and long term performance. This leads to big differences in our benchmark scores ranging from the 15 Watt reference by Intel up to the 23% higher score of the Inspiron 17-7773 in the Cinebench R15 Multi benchmark. Especially when taxing the CPU for longer periods, these differences can be even higher.

In our usual benchmarks, the average i7-8550U is as fast as the 35 Watt rated Core i5-7440HQ. For single thread performance, the high Turbo Boost frequency helps achieving one of the highest scores for mobile CPUs.

Graphics

The integrated Intel UHD Graphics 620 (Intel Gen 9.5) is untouched from the 8th Gen Kaby Lake chips. With fast dual-channel memory it can reach the performance of a dedicated GeForce 920M.

Contrary to Skylake, Kaby lake now also supports H.265/HEVC Main 10 with a 10-bit color depth as well as Google's VP9 codec. The dual-core Kaby Lake processors announced in January should also support HDCP 2.2.

Power Consumption

The chip is manufactured in an improved 14nm process with FinFET transistors (14nm+), the same as the 7th Gen Kaby Lake processors. Intel still specifies the TDP with 15 Watts, which is typical for ULV chips. Depending on the usage scenario, the TDP can vary between 7.5 (cTDP Down) and 25 Watts.

SeriesIntel Core i7
CodenameKaby Lake Refresh
Series: Core i7 Kaby Lake Refresh
Intel Core i7-8650U (compare)1900 - 4200 MHz4 / 88 MB
» Intel Core i7-8550U1800 - 4000 MHz4 / 88 MB
Clock Rate1800 - 4000 MHz
Level 1 Cache256 KB
Level 2 Cache1 MB
Level 3 Cache8 MB
Number of Cores / Threads4 / 8
Max. Power Consumption (TDP = Thermal Design Power)15 Watt
Manufacturing Technology14 nm
SocketBGA1356
FeaturesDual-Channel DDR4 Memory Controller, HyperThreading, AVX, AVX2, Quick Sync, Virtualization, AES-NI
GPUIntel UHD Graphics 620 (300 - 1150 MHz)
64 Bit64 Bit support
Starting Price$409 U.S.
Announcement Date08/21/2017

Benchmarks

Cinebench R15 - CPU Multi 64Bit
min: 301     avg: 570.6     median: 556 (18%)     max: 761 Points
Cinebench R15 - CPU Single 64Bit
min: 108     avg: 159.7     median: 163.5 (79%)     max: 172 Points
Cinebench R11.5 - CPU Multi 64Bit
min: 4.38     avg: 6.3     median: 6.1 (23%)     max: 8.56 Points
Cinebench R11.5 - CPU Single 64Bit
min: 1.43     avg: 1.8     median: 1.9 (81%)     max: 1.95 Points
Cinebench R10 - Rendering Single 32Bit
min: 4202     avg: 6330.5     median: 6423 (70%)     max: 8211 Points
Cinebench R10 - Rendering Multiple CPUs 32Bit
min: 11694     avg: 17890.5     median: 17321.5 (35%)     max: 24180 Points
Cinebench R10 - Rendering Multiple CPUs 64Bit
min: 12279     avg: 23152.8     median: 22717 (30%)     max: 31667 Points
Cinebench R10 - Rendering Single CPUs 64Bit
min: 6737     avg: 8064.8     median: 8370.5 (87%)     max: 8436 Points
wPrime 2.0x - 1024m *
min: 257.514     avg: 352     median: 366.7 (4%)     max: 435 seconds
wPrime 2.0x - 32m *
min: 7.047     avg: 9.8     median: 9.9 (2%)     max: 12.7 seconds
wPrime 1.55 - 1024m *
847.3 seconds (3%)
WinRAR - Result
min: 3847     avg: 4487.1     median: 4374 (52%)     max: 5287 KB/s
X264 HD Benchmark 4.0 - Pass 2
min: 32     avg: 35.3     median: 33.1 (23%)     max: 41 fps
X264 HD Benchmark 4.0 - Pass 1
min: 143.6     avg: 153.9     median: 147.9 (63%)     max: 178 fps
HWBOT x265 Benchmark v2.2 - 4k Preset
min: 3.88     avg: 4.2     median: 4.2 (24%)     max: 4.43 fps
TrueCrypt - Serpent Mean 100MB
min: 0.357     avg: 0.4     median: 0.4 (0%)     max: 0.469 GB/s
TrueCrypt - Twofish Mean 100MB
min: 0.583     avg: 0.7     median: 0.7 (25%)     max: 0.793 GB/s
TrueCrypt - AES Mean 100MB
min: 3.3     avg: 4.2     median: 4.3 (22%)     max: 4.6 GB/s
Blender 2.79 *
min: 841.1     avg: 888.9     median: 888.9 (14%)     max: 936.7 Seconds
3DMark 06 - CPU
min: 4534     avg: 5951.3     median: 5845 (46%)     max: 7795 Points
Super Pi mod 1.5 XS 1M *
min: 9     avg: 10.7     median: 9.3 (2%)     max: 17.455 Seconds
Super Pi mod 1.5 XS 2M *
min: 20     avg: 23.2     median: 21.1 (1%)     max: 32.72 Seconds
Super Pi Mod 1.5 XS 32M *
min: 509.5     avg: 575.1     median: 533 (2%)     max: 740.35 Seconds
3DMark 11 - Performance Physics 1280x720
min: 3961     avg: 6771.2     median: 6773.5 (38%)     max: 9527 points
3DMark - Ice Storm Standard Physics 1280x720
min: 16314     avg: 42667.8     median: 43987 (28%)     max: 55226 Points
3DMark - Ice Storm Extreme Physics 1920x1080
min: 16312     avg: 37855.6     median: 37073.5 (48%)     max: 51937 Points
3DMark - Ice Storm Unlimited Physics 1280x720 offscreen
min: 27917     avg: 50350.2     median: 53090.5 (67%)     max: 58213 Points
3DMark - Cloud Gate Standard Physics 1280x720
min: 3437     avg: 5761     median: 5695 (14%)     max: 7725 Points
3DMark - Fire Strike Physics 1920x1080
min: 3961     avg: 8295.6     median: 8820 (33%)     max: 11110 Points
Geekbench 3 - 32 Bit Multi-Core Score
min: 8918     avg: 12394.6     median: 12858.5 (41%)     max: 14144 Points