While we are all focused on the i9-12900K and i5-12600K whose excellent results you could discover, it is possible that the best choice of this Alder Lake range is much cheaper. Indeed, according to a recent leak, the i5-12400F could be traded for less than 200€ and promise, with its 6 high-performance cores and 12 threads, to make the Ryzen 5 5600X suffer. The latter is currently one of the best choices, but is priced above 300€.
The i5-12400F would have some advantages, especially the price. Indeed, without graphics and with “only” 6 P-Core cores (Golden Cove architecture) and no low performance E-Core, it allows Intel to be aggressive.
i5-12400F: the best choice… But in 2022?
So obviously, if we want to make an objective comparison, we will have to take into account the price of the motherboard and the memory. At this moment only Z690 are available and their price is for the moment too high. But in the near future (beginning of 2022), cards like the B660 will allow Intel to have a more aggressive complete solution. The DDR4 can also be combined without any problem to further reduce the price.
Finally, at this time we should also see the arrival of the Core i3-12100F, which will offer 4 high performance cores and 8 threads. Although the frequencies are unknown, it has appeared in Canadian store price listings around $148 CAD (103 euros / attention to taxes). You can nevertheless get an idea of the specifications of all Alder Lake-S CPUs with the table below: