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3 Posts


February 12th, 2020 19:00

XPS 8700, upgrade to i7-4970K?

I'm hoping to upgrade my trusty an old 8700 with i5-4460 to either i7-4970 or 4790K?  The only post here that went into detail about the 8700 upgrade to 4790K seemed to indicate there might be problems keeping the CPU cool. 

I don't do any gaming - the most intensive work is editing and rendering video in Davinci (after switching recently from Premiere Pro).  I have upgraded gradually over time - I added a Samsung mSATA 500Gb SSD, upped the RAM to 32GB, and I'll probably now replace the old GT720 with the RTX2070.

Has anyone upgraded actually upgraded their 8700 to 4790k?  If so can you recommend a cooler along with it?  I know the 8700 came with the 4790 non-k as stock.  I'm hoping to just swap the CPU and  add a cooler if necessary without problems and if the 4790K is finicky I'll go with the non-k.  Thanks!


7 Technologist


11.7K Posts

February 12th, 2020 19:00

This forum link has a volume of information from users that have installed that same CPU, and it may help.

8 Wizard


17K Posts

February 12th, 2020 20:00

@Mark Amadeo wrote:

old 8700

the most intensive work is editing and rendering video in Davinci (after switching recently from Premiere Pro). 

This work-flow would be greatly helped by a newer machine. I suggest you use your old XPS-8700 as is, and put your money and effort toward something like that.

Maybe even checkout the Precision Fixed Workstation desktops. They are not as expensive as you think.

8 Wizard


47K Posts

February 13th, 2020 04:00

i5-4460 to i7-4970 or 4790k wont be significant

upgrading to newer precision model would be the recommendation


  • Intel Core i7-9700, 8 Core, 12MB Cache, 3.0Ghz, 4.7 Ghz Turbo w/UHD Graphics 630
  • Windows 10 Pro 64bit English
  • 16GB 2X8GB DDR4 2666MHz UDIMM Non-ECC Memory
  • Radeon Pro WX 3100, 4GB, DP, 2 mDP to DP adapter

Something more in line cost wise would be 8930


128 Posts

February 13th, 2020 20:00

I upgraded my 8700 to 4790K.  Upgrade from 4460 is +44% faster at stock clock.  Used stock cpu cooler.  i9 9900K is only 34% faster than 4790K.  Great upgrade.

Also, after you have upgraded to the latest BIOS, consider setting the performance to OC2.  That gives you a bit of Dell overclocking of the 4790K.

After I put in the SSD and the 4790K, it took me between 5 and 10 reboots then pressing the F2 multiple times during bootup to get into settings because the computer is now so fast.

Just kept shutting down and trying again.

We love our 8700 again.


February 14th, 2020 04:00

Thanks!  I'm not gaming so I might just try the stock cooler.  

There are not many (any, really) posts that discuss a successful install.  There's one long post in which the OP seemed to leave open the question of whether the cooling system was doing its job. In that same post another commenter talked about modifying an intel cooler but he/she eventually removed the 4790K out of the 8700 altogether.  So thanks again for responding!  I'll update with results once I do the same.

128 Posts

February 14th, 2020 09:00

The i7-4790K has a TDP of 88W.  The i5-4460 has a TDP of 84W.  So not much difference in power or cooling needs.

Be sure and set OC2 after you complete your update.  Little performance bump for that as well.

I use for evaluating before and after changes.  Consider doing the same on your upgrade.


10 Elder


42.8K Posts

February 14th, 2020 11:00

I don't think anyone mentioned it, but the stock power supply in the XPS 8700 probably isn't sufficient for an RTX 2070 GPU.

From what I see, the stock PSU in the XPS 8700 is 460W and recommendations for the RTX 2070 are for at least a 550W PSU.

Is it worth the money to replace the CPU, PSU and GPU vs a new PC? Only you can decide...

128 Posts

February 14th, 2020 16:00

I like the $80 Corsair 650 Semi Modular PSU.  It can drive a 1080 Ti.  I don;'t know that many new regular PCs have a sufficient PSU for a 1080 Ti either.  So new doesn't necessarily get you the juice you need.

The new vs old is a valid comment.  A Dell XPS 8930 with RTX 2070 and i9-9900 is $2300.  i7-4790K is $190.  Corsair PSU is $80.  Asus 2070 8GB on large online site is $400.  OP already had 32GB RAM and SSD.  So OP would be out $670 and the Dell would still be 25% faster.

$1670 for 25% performance boost.


10 Elder


42.8K Posts

February 14th, 2020 17:00

An XPS 8930 Special Edition -for example- offers optional upgrades for an 850W PSU, and for various CPUs and GPUs...

And sometimes there are discount coupons on the Dell Sales site that can cover the extra cost of that optional PSU upgrade!  

128 Posts

February 14th, 2020 18:00

Or I could take that $400 for the 2070, add $800 of the $1670 to it and get a 2080TI that is more than 60% faster than the 2070.  Have graphics +60%, CPU -25% and $870 in my pocket.

(In fact I just ordered a 2080 Ti and will be moving my 1080 Ti in my XPS 8700 to upgrade a different computer and putting the 2080 Ti in my XPS 8700.)


128 Posts

February 15th, 2020 04:00

I did not change out the CPU cooler when I upgraded to the i7-4790K, but here is what I did.  I put in a $17 Noctua NF-89 PWM Cooling Fan in the computer to replace the factory fan.  Pretty quiet and can move more air.  Took 5 minutes.  Easy remove and replace.


128 Posts

February 15th, 2020 18:00

I tried the 2080 Ti.  It just wasn't that much faster than my 1080 Ti, so I returned it.  Ordered a 1080 for the other computer.

February 20th, 2020 03:00

Thanks for all the upgrade advice-super helpful!

Yeah I thought about getting another desktop altogether but I've only ever had one performance issue with this 8700 and that was just the power button that I replaced pretty easily.  I got mine in 2014 and even the original 1T hard drive is still kicking.  I've moved it over and since added the 500GB ssd, a 2T Seagate and just this week threw in a 4T Seagate Constellation for less than $100.  On the RAM over time I went from 8GB to 16GB and then to 32GB and its only gotten better.  I probably would have to spend $1200k for something that would be marginally faster for my needs (I'm not a gamer) but I don't really need two perfectly working desktops.  Someday the MOBO will give out or get fried, but until then I'll just keep it going.

1 Message

April 23rd, 2020 19:00

i upgraded using same stock cooler from dell.  My 4790 runs cool and you can get them on the cheap at ebay.  don't listen to the guys about buying a new computer.  if you are not gaming or looking to break all the records in benchmarks, then upgrade for 50.00 and enjoy the extra four threads which will drastically help you in your workspace needs.  I am typing this on my dell conversion to HTPC running both Kubuntu and Windows 10 pro. 



1 Message

December 13th, 2020 13:00

I got an i7 4790k to install in the Dell XPS 8700, installed correctly followed directions and it did NOT work. So the answer is no the I7 4790k does not work with the XPS 8700. Naturally it did work with the stock i7 4770. And it did ship with the 4790 so that is the max CPU it will work with.
Regret getting the 4790k. Don't pay attention to those saying that u need a new computer because that is wrong and u don't. A computer from 2013-2014 is fine. Computer evolution is not as fast as it was in the late 90s and early 2000s back when a 5 year old computer was an old computer already.

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