Intel i9 10900K

The new Core Intel i9-10900K is in the market. Meanwhile, the latest Core i7 and Core i5 ranges look very successful not only in terms of specifications and projected efficiency. But most notably against still very tough Ryzen rivals in terms of pricing and reliability.

Intel i9 10900K

Intel provides a new 10-core, 20-thread cpu, or group of processors, at the top of the commodity list.

We are also looking at a 14 nm technology-focused Skylake-derivative architecture, suggesting there are no significant improvements to IPC or CPU functionality. Memory performance on paper is marginally increased, up to DDR4-2933 for Core i9 and Core i7 versions. But Intel CPUs can comfortably accommodate faster ram and have done so for previous generations as well.


Clock speeds have a couple of different parameters that can be confounding or you should just disregard any of them before we study the CPUs and realize where they are. Three parameters for single-core Turbo speeds are what you see in the specifications table anyway: There’s a standard 5.1 GHz Turbo Boost, then a 5.2 GHz Turbo Boost 3.0 and a 5.3 GHz Intel Thermal Boost Turbo. You can see clocks between 5.1 GHz and 5.3 GHz range on these components based on what apps you have open to you, and the temperature of the Processor. The top 5.3 GHz level is only used as part of the Thermal Velocity Increase at temperatures below 70C.

For all-core Turbos, Intel reports those with a Thermal Velocity Increase at 4.8 GHz and 4.9 GHz. The reported TDP for this chip is 125W. But theoretically, the 10900 K and KF would use far more power at an all-core frequency of 4.8 GHz, particularly because Intel would effectively attach two cores to the 9900 K at a similar frequency. The higher TDP does, however, enable a higher base clock.


The Intel i9 10900K and 10900KF are coming in at $490 and $470 for cost, and it slots precisely where the 9900KF and 9900KF were on the list. This firmly positions the 10-core in competition with AMD’s 12-core Ryzen 9 as anticipated.

Although the 10900 series is noteworthy given that Intel now provides 10 cores in a mainstream component. Probably thanks to the Ryzen 9 3900X and 3950X demand — we think the juiciest bits in the lineup are possibly in the Core i7 category, so let’s take a look.

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The configuration is close to the Core Intel i9 lineup at a number of price points, with normal, F, K, and KF SKUs. That is the full 8 cores and 16 threads of all-core turbos up to 4.7 GHz, and a 5.1 GHz peak clock speed.

This will put you back about $480 until the 9900KF did. Today, Intel’s ability to sell the value at only $350, which is a huge change for them.

Currently the 3800X is sold at about $350, while the 3700X is ~$50 cheaper at $300.

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Comparing with previous versionsm

This sounds like a convincing buy on a mere efficiency basis and thanks to these new processors the fight between Core i7 and Ryzen 7 will definitely be heating up. Generally speaking, though bringing improved gameplay performance, the Intel i9 10900K delivers comparable productivity efficiency to 8-core AMD’s. The explanation was so simple to endorse Ryzen 7 was quality, AMD’s bid was clearly cheaper. But that is not the case with the 10700KF dropping in at a 3800X point.

 This is a close rival of Intel to the 3700X. Yeah, it’s a locked processor but clock speeds aren’t that far below the 10700KF. And might also be a decent purchase for those who aren’t involved in overclocking.

The Core i5 range sets up to still be a strong battlefield for Intel, largely thanks to price cuts.

Both sections of the Core i7 come in at $350-380, now we have the Core i5-10600 K for $260 and the 10600KF for $240. That’s a significant price cut that helps Intel to contend against otherwise very competitive Ryzen goods in the Core i5 market.

The unlocked Core i5 models might not be as convincing at these rates as the latest Core i7s because AMD sells their six-core variants for less. The Ryzen 5 3600 is reportedly a $175 product, while the Ryzen 5 3600X is about $200. This places the 10600KF about 37 percent more costly than the 3600. With what is likely to be comparable efficiency output and around 10 percent improved gaming performance if we get performance at 8700 K speeds. Maybe the benefit factor isn’t quite there. But it’s far more than what Intel delivered with the relatively uncompetitive 9700K.

The other possible surprise smash is the i5-10400F version which may carry back the Version i5-8400 performance.

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What to expect?

Intel’s Core i3 lineup stays quad-core, we’re having hyperthreading now, but prices can be found at $120-155 a little too strong. Clock speeds are all-core in the mid to low 4.0 GHz region. But with AMD selling a quad-core with Zen 2 technology for only $100, we don’t believe Intel can provide the greatest performance for the budget here. While User benchmark believes that the Core i3-9350 K is one of the best processors in history. Intel has in reality scrapped this generation of unlocked quad-core.

  • You’ll need to buy a fresh motherboard, so you’ll presumably see plenty of reports regarding the Z490, B460 so H410 offers beginning today.
  • You should expect us to continue checking loads of Intel Z490 boards in the coming weeks.

Which are exactly those boards offering? Apart from stuff that manufacturers monitor like VRMs, networking and so on, Z490 isn’t that much different from Z390.

MSI’s Godlike has 1690A power stations and even the Tomahawk budget has a 12-stage EPS connector with an 8 and 4-pin connector. A number of budget Z390 boards used just 6 or 4 step designs but that appears to improve with Z490 to meet the 10-core specifications.

The more inexpensive motherboards in the Intel B460 do not deliver something that exciting

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Intel has made a few changes to support this condition with the core Intel i9 10900K, given we were reaching heat efficiency limits with the 9900K. They’ve rendered the die itself thinner and the IHS thicker to boost thermal transport. They’re called that “Thin Die STIM”. We’re still having a soldered chip so it’s going to be smoother for the heat to pass out. And then the cooler into the IHS for the thinner silicone die.

In PUBG, for example, you will see 10 percent higher production over the previous gene. It’s going to be fascinating to see if the CPUs stack up unrestricted and if that’s the case for the 10th gen. As all are released, we think the gaps may be narrower.

Intel says the gaming processor with the Core intel i9-10900K is the strongest. We see nothing strange here, it’s just odd an organization will cover the footnotes with these kinds of information. If the processor is, in reality, the fastest in most sports, that’s certainly worth a couple more slides with more detail.

See more specifications: Intel® Core™ i9-10900K Processor (20M Cache, up to 5.30 GHz)

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Video tutorial for Intel i9 10900K


Intel i9 10900K: Overall, that’s turning up to be a more thrilling and fascinating launch than we planned initially. Whether or not vendors are genuinely pricing the chips at such rates is another issue. And may also be underestimated due to competition at launch times, but large price reductions for 8 and 6-core pieces are most welcome.

Intel’s CPUs have been successful in terms of efficiency all along. But due to cost, they have been difficult to recommend, particularly in the mid-range. Intel has done just what they wanted to achieve in this current line-up. They couldn’t afford to pay approximately $500 for 8 cores and hope to remain successful.

In addition, there are also lots of items to learn in our forthcoming posts that we will be digging on. The longevity of the product, in particular, is not played to the benefit of Intel. They have just introduced a new socket and chipset for this 10th gen lineup. And they need to purchase a new motherboard. And it’s for anyone updating from previous chips. Intel still offers no promises about how long LGA1200 and Z490 will run. And we don’t know whether this version will help potential updates to the CPUs.

Another fascinating topic is the 10th gene of Intel and the forthcoming Zen 3 of Enlightened. The latest Intel CPUs seem pretty good against Ryzen 3000. But those have been on the market for more than 9 months already, so in reaction to pressure, AMD continues to slash costs. This is going to be a really fascinating topic to tell at the beginning of 2020.