Is 8th gen Intel still good in 2024? – How well does older hardware perform today?

A retrospective look at the 8th generation of Intel CPUs

Two 8th gen Intel Core i5 processors standing upright on a desk with detailed model information visible on the front.

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The 8th generation of Intel processors was the last to end at the i7 variant, it was the 9th generation that brought the i9 processors into the world, fitting if you ask us, but why is that relevant? Well, It’s just one of the ways that the 8th generation of intel processors are shocking for new builders in 2024, but that doesn’t mean they’re completely useless. In fact, the 8th generation still holds its own in certain tasks, but how exactly does the 8th generation of Intel processors stack up in 2024?

Coffee Lake S was once the pinnacle of technical advancement, as were all new CPUs when they were first released, but the 9th generation quickly outshined them with the introduction of the i9-9900K as the new flagship. This unfortunately meant that the 8th generation of Intel processors seemed to be quickly forgotten about, but they shouldn’t be overlooked too quickly.

Should you buy an 8th-generation Intel processor as a new builder?

No. There are so many better options out there in terms of power, performance, efficiency, features, technology, and more. We’re not saying they’re bad processors, in fact, we’re about to list exactly why they’re fantastic, under the right conditions.

If you get an old PC as a hand-me-down, you might discover that it has an 8th-generation processor occupying the CPU slot. But before you throw it in the bin, you should consider that, depending on the model, you could have 6 cores and 12 threads at your disposal, all at a max frequency of 4.70GHz. And that’s on all cores, way before Intel spit into the big.LITTLE architecture.

Is Intel 8th Gen still usable in 2024?

Yes, the Intel 8th generation is still very much viable in today’s computing landscape. Gaming and productivity workloads are vastly different, but based on specs alone, the higher end of the 8th generation should be able to handle gaming just fine, and the lower end of the generation will eat productivity tasks for breakfast – as long as you have a decent supporting kit of memory.

Intel 8th generation motherboard compatibility

There’s still a wide range of motherboards available for 8th-generation CPUs. We’re currently on the 700 series of Intel motherboards, which is LGA 1700, the 8th generation was reared on the 300 series, which is socket LGA 1151. This single chipset motherboard generation was revered for its compatibility with multiple generations of Intel CPUs, and its plethora of connectivity.

Sadly, in modern times, these connectivity options and “modern advancements” don’t really stack up to what we have available to us today. This is one of the reasons why building a brand new PC on this platform using 8th-generation CPUs isn’t very value-focused.

Uses for 8th generation Intel processors

Two 8th gen Intel Core i5 CPUs, models i5-8400 and i5-8600K, displayed side by side on a desk next to boxes.
Two 8th gen Intel Core i5 CPUs, models i5-8400 and i5-8600K, are displayed side by side on a desk next to boxes.

It’s not recommended that you go out and buy a brand new 8th-generation processor, no matter how cheap they are, your best bet is to find one that’s already in a system. There are plenty of applications for these outdated systems, and depending on your hardware knowledge, you can really make these older CPUs work for you. Here are some examples of what you can use old 8th-generation CPU systems for.

  • Game server – dedicated Minecraft servers are all the rage these days.
  • NAS – Network accessable Storage can be crucial if you do a lot of content creation, or have a lot of photos you want to keep long term.
  • Media server – Similar to a NAS, you can access the media server from any machine on your network and stream movies or music from that device.
  • Custom Firewall – Protect your network with a custom firewall or global AD blocker, saving you from installing an ad blocker on every system on your network.

These are just some examples of what can be done with older 8th-generation Intel hardware, the possibilities are endless, but then again, it depends on your application.

When did the 8th generation Intel processors launch?

The 8th generation of Intel processors launched on October 5th, 2017, and the processors were discontinued on June 4th, 2021. The launch consisted of 6 processors, with the most powerful of which being the i7-8700K. It seems strange to think that we weren’t always graced with the i9 variant to serve as the flagship. If you want to have a little cry, the i7-8700K was launched for $359, which was about right for a processor of the time. Intel had to do something as the first ever Ryzen processors launched out of nowhere in Q1 of 2017.

Conclusion

If you’re looking for a budget CPU to purchase in today’s market, you don’t quite have to go as far back as the 8th generation to find some affordably. Building a new PC with the 8th generation probably isn’t the best idea, it’d be quicker to just give your money to me. However, if you find yourself being gifted a system that already contains one of 2017’s best CPUs, then there’s much value to be had. Nothing grants a better return than the stuff you get for free.

There are many different uses for old machines and hardware, and repurposing them is one step closer to reducing electrical waste, and helping save the planet. Now that’s pretty rewarding.

Maria is a full-stack digital marketing strategist interested in productivity and AI tools.