When selecting a CPU for gaming, the most important characteristics are the frequency (clock speed), core/thread count, cache size, and supported memory type. Additional considerations, such as integrated graphics and overclocking needs, may also influence your selection.
In addition to discussing the characteristics of the 11500T for gaming, this article will discuss recommendations for compatible CPU coolers and memory.
When using Intel's Core i5 11500T CPU for gaming, you can expect good gaming performance with a high-performance CPU cooler or mediocre gaming performance with a basic or stock CPU cooler. This performance is based on the following characteristics of the CPU and their relevance to the latest graphics-intense games:
- 12 MB of L3 cache is mediocre for performance
- 6 cores allow for good performance
- 1.50 GHz base frequency is poor for performance
- 3.90 GHz single-core max turbo frequency is good for performance (requires a high-end cooler)
- Max stock DDR4 speed of 3200 MT/s can be good for performance
- Lack of overclocking support cannot benefit performance
- PCIe 4.0 support can be excellent for performance (with the fastest SSDs and GPUs)
The 11500T has integrated graphics support, but this performance assessment assumes you will use a graphics card. Integrated graphics support is mediocre or worse with the latest graphics-intense games.
A CPU's cache is a small amount of memory, close to the CPU cores, containing recently used data.
Games performance can improve as cache size increases, as it will reduce delays when retrieving commonly used game assets from memory.
An L3 cache capacity of at least 20 MB is ideal for game performance.
The Intel Core i5-11500T has an L3 cache capacity of 12 MB.
The 11500T's 12 MB of L3 cache is mediocre for performance with the latest graphics-intense games.
Increased core counts can improve the performance of games that use them, but most modern games don't benefit from having more than 6–8 cores. Remember that cache sizes often increase along with core counts, so if you want to increase your L3 cache, you may need to get a CPU with more cores. Intel's 11500T CPUs have 6 cores.
The 11500T's 6 cores allow for good performance with the latest graphics-intense games.
Single-core performance is essential for some games, as many don't take full advantage of multiple cores.
Turbo boost frequencies are only achieved under ideal circumstances. The safest strategy for consistent gaming performance with a basic cooler is to get a higher base clock speed processor. However, with adequate cooling, you may be able to maintain speeds near the max boost frequency.
The 11500T CPU's lack of support for overclocking cannot benefit performance with the latest graphics-intense games.
The processor has a 1.50 GHz base frequency and supports a 3.90 GHz single-core max turbo frequency.
The 11500T's 1.50 GHz base frequency is poor for performance with the latest graphics-intense games. You can reach these base frequencies even without a high-end cooler.
With a high-end cooler, the 11500T's 3.90 GHz single-core max turbo frequency is good for performance with the latest graphics-intense games. You can maintain these frequencies with a high-end cooler.
The 11500T CPU's support for DDR4 with a max stock speed of 3200 MT/s can be good for performance with the latest graphics-intense games.
Faster PC memory can improve game performance and frame rates, but using the fastest RAM may not have as much of an impact as upgrading your CPU and graphics card or adding more RAM.
Learn about our recommended RAM for the 11500T in Choosing the Best RAM for Intel's Core i5-11500T CPU.
|Processor Name Suffix||Meaning|
|T||"T" means it is a power-optimized lifestyle CPU. In other words, it is designed not to use as much power and thus not generate as much heat. These CPUs are ideal for lower-performance small form factor PCs and are sold as part of a pre-built system.|
The 11500T model name doesn't have an F suffix. Non-F CPUs contain integrated graphics, and a separate graphics card isn't required if your motherboard includes video-output connectors (e.g., HDMI).
The 11500T model name doesn't have a K suffix. Non-K CPUs can not be overclocked.
A CPU cooler's TDP (Thermal Design Power) rating indicates how much heat it can dissipate in watts. If the cooler can't keep your CPU cool enough, your CPU may throttle (slow down), and your cooler will constantly run at full speed.
Intel CPU specifications indicate this power dissipation number as "Processor Base Power."
The Core i5-11500T has a TDP of 35 watts.
A CPU cooler can still work with a lower TDP rating than the TDP of a CPU. However, the CPU will eventually throttle itself to a lower frequency to allow itself to cool.
The CPU may not achieve or maintain maximum turbo speeds without adequate cooling.
Learn more in What is the Best Type of CPU cooler for a Gaming PC?.
Locked Intel CPUs may come with a stock CPU cooler. These CPU models do not have a "K" in the name. While stock coolers will prevent your CPU from overheating, your CPU will throttle its performance during games and other intensive tasks. Higher TDP coolers will keep your CPU at turbo speeds for longer durations. Stock coolers are often quite loud at their maximum speed.
Best AIO Liquid Cooler: Enermax Liqmax III 360
- This Enermax liquid cooler has an excellent cooling capability with a 360-watt TDP (Thermal Design Power).
- Supports a variety of CPU sockets, including Intel LGA 2066, 2011-3, 2011, 1700, 1200, 1366, 1156, 1155, 1151, 1150 and AMD AM4, AM3+, AM3, AM2+, AM2, FM2+, FM2, FM1.
- Quiet operation at 14-27 dBA.
- Make sure your computer case dimensions support this, as it will take up a decent amount of space!
Best Dual-Fan Air CPU Cooler: Noctua NH-D15
- Dual 140 mm fans provide 220-watt TDP (183 NSPR) of cooling capability.
- Supports a variety of CPU sockets, including Intel LGA 1700, 1200, 1156, 1155, 1151, 1150, 2011, 2066 and AMD AM4, AM3, AM3+, AM2, AM2+, FM2, FM2+.
- Quiet operation at 24.6 dBA.
Runner Up - Dual-Fan Air CPU Cooler: Thermaltake TOUGHAIR 510
- This CPU cooler doesn't have any fancy LED lights, but the dual 120 mm fans do a great job of cooling LGA 1200 CPUs.
- Suppose you think this cooler will take up too much space. In that case, Thermaltake has a few single-fan TOUGHAIR variants which use different orientations.
- This CPU cooler has a 2000 RPM max speed for optimal cooling.
- 180-watt TDP (Thermal Design Power).
Before purchasing memory, review your motherboard specification to verify which speeds are supported. For example, if a DDR4 motherboard stated that it supports "DDR4 3400(O.C.) / 3333(O.C.) / 3300(O.C.) / 3200 / 3000," that would mean that it could support DDR4-3400, DDR4-3333, and DDR4-3300 with memory overclocking, and DDR4-3200 and DDR4-3000 at stock speeds. Motherboard specifications also indicate the maximum capacity per stick of RAM (DIMM) and across all slots.
Recommended Stock-Speed DDR4
- At an effective frequency of 3200 MHz, this memory hits the fastest DDR4 speed supported by Intel's Core i5 11500T CPU without overclocking.
- The low-profile form factor ensures that the heat spreaders don't get in the way of other devices, including your CPU heatsink.
Recommended DDR4 for Overclockers
- This DDR4 memory is designed for overclocking to an effective frequency of 3600 MHz.
- Supports XMP 2.0.
- Compact heat spreaders avoid conflicting with a CPU cooler.
- Choosing the Best RAM for Intel's Core i5-11500T CPU
- Choosing the Best Motherboard for Intel's Core i5-11500T
- How Many Cores Do Intel Core i5-11500T CPUs Have?
- What Is the TDP of the Core i5-11500T CPU?
You can find detailed 11500T specifications on Intel's site.
Want to brush up on other new technologies to consider when building a computer? Check out these articles:
- CPU Coolers:
- Graphics Cards:
- Power Supplies: