Intel has a new CPU coming out soon. The Core i9-9900KS is an improvement on the Core i9-9900K. And based on initial reports, the Core i9-9900KS could easily become Intel’s response to the Ryzen 3000.
Hawk-eyed followers online have spotted the pricing of the new processor on the website of an Australian tech retailer. The Core i9-9900KS will cost around AU$900. That’s roughly $600. And considering Intel’s claims that this 8-core processor can hit 5GHz on all cores, the price can seem like quite a bargain. The price would probably be much higher if it weren’t for the competition with the generation Ryzen. AMD has plans to release the Ryzen 9 3950X and 2 third-generation Ryzen Threadripper processors in November.
The Core i9-9900KS is coming out on October 30.
Intel Core i9-9900KS: What We Know So Far
Simply put, the Core i9-9900KS is just a cherry-picked version of the best Core i9-9900K chips, released earlier this year. Intel put aside the best version of these chips (ones capable of hitting 5GHz on all cores) and is now going to market them as the 9900KS for about $70 more. The vanilla Core i9-9900K could only be overclocked to 5GHz on a single core.
What this also means is that even between the chips that qualify as the Core i9-9900KS, one can expect a range of performance levels. This will result in some of the 9900KS chips performing abnormally better than others. For instance, here is a report of a Redditor, who claims to have hit 5.2GHz on all cores with just air cooling:
Reports of Hitting 5.2GHz on Air
There is a Redditor who claims that he had purchased Intel’s upcoming processor and overclocked it to an impressive 5.2GHz without any liquid cooling. It is common practice to have a dedicated liquid cooling system aiding the CPU when being overclocked to this degree. This Redditor calls himself a “Total overclocking noob” and claims that he used nothing more than air cooling, via a Noctua NH D15, to overclock the Core i9-9900KS to 5.2GHz on all cores. He had reportedly set the voltage level to 1.36V. Here is how he reports all this:
“Very good chip indeed. In a Prime95 small FFTs 16 thread test it managed to stay at ~5020MHz for the whole test which I terminated after 20 minutes. Cooled with NH-D15, it reached max temperature 83°C and average temperature 75°C in the test. I didn’t touch BIOS settings yet, so these are all out of the box results.”
While 5.2GHz on just air cooling would certainly qualify as pushing it, Intel itself has been advertising the Core i9-9900KS as being able to hit 5GHz on all 8 cores. We are yet to hear any official reports on the thermal performance of this CPU. But regardless, if all this Redditor’s claims are to be believed, what this means is that the Core i9-9900KS could very well establish itself as an Overclocker’s dream.
The Redditor also claims that he ran a bench mark test on his overclocked core i9-9900KS in Cinebench R20. He claims that Intel’s incoming processor scored an impressive 5,356. This isn’t too far from the benchmark score in the test run by Tom’s Hardware on the Core i9-9900K. At stock, the 9900K had gotten a score of 4,984. But when overclocked to 5 GHz (so that it can resemble a stock 9900KS), it scored 5,266.
What these benchmark tests reflect is that for about $70 more, you can get in the Core i9-9900KS a CPU that can perform 5.7% better than the Core i9-9900K at stock. And if the 5.2GHz report is anything to go by, the improvements could rise up to 7.5%.
Integrated Graphics In The Core i9-9900K
We’ve already mentioned above that the i9-9900KS is basically a cherry-picked version of the i9-9900K. And one the best things about the i9-9900K was its integrated graphics processing unit, the UHD Graphics 630.
Here are some basic information:
- Designer: Intel
- Execution Units: 24
- Maximum number of displays supported: 3
- Maximum amount of RAM supported: 64 GiB
- Frequency/Burst Frequency: 350MHz / 1200MHz
- Output: HDMI (max resolution of 4096×2304 @24 Hz), DisplayPort (max resolution of 4096×2304 @24 Hz), Embedded DisplayPort (max resolution of 4096×2304 @24 Hz) & DVI.
The Intel UHD Graphics 630 (GT2) is the integrated graphics card found in the latest gen of Intel CPUs. It doesn’t have its own dedicated graphics memory. Hence, it is allowed access to the main memory of the computer. The clock speeds are dependent on the CPU model. Unlike with a dedicated graphics card, it’s performance is largely dependent on factors like TDP, L3 Cache, Memory and the clock speed of the CPU. The graphics unit in the Core i9-9900K is incredibly well integrated.
Intel last showcased the Core i9-9900KS during September’s IFA event. The IFA is an annual tech conference held in Berlin that showcases the latest in tech. It has established itself as a platform for companies like Intel to make announcements on their upcoming products. Intel’s Chief Performance Strategist Ryan Shrout talked about Intel’s upcoming processors, including the 9900KS in IFA 2019. He has since written an article summarizing Intel’s presentation at the event. Here, he writes about the Core i9-9900KS:
“The new Core i9–9900KS is the first CPU to offer a 5.0 GHz all-core turbo clock speed, taking the gaming performance leadership we have with the 9th Gen desktop product line and making it even better. This capability will allow games that depend on IPC and frequency, more than just raw core count, to offer better and more consistent frame rates. We showed press Hitman 2 running on the new 9900KS with all 16 threads running at 5.0 GHz with a light per-core load, further driving home the point that what gamers need is better overall performance, not just higher core counts.”
The article, which was written on September 04, claims that Intel will be releasing the 9900KS by the end of October. The price is reportedly going to be $150 less (and possibly even lesser) than what AMD has set for the Ryzen 9 3950X. B&H Photo listed an early price of $559.99 for the core i9-9900KS. This is about $70 more than the price of the Core i9-9900K.
Intel vs AMD: Which one should you get in 2020?
It wasn’t that long ago, everyone was certain about where Intel and AMD stood in the CPU market. Intel had the better and more expensive CPUs. AMD on the other hand had the less advanced but more affordable options. All this has changed in the past couple of years, since AMD introduced Ryzen. And the third generation Ryzen that has come out this year is putting the nail in the coffin for Intel. The company has panicked and has drastically reduced the price of its CPUs. But there’s another problem now. It seems as though they’re having a tough time keeping up with AMD’s technological advancements.
But the competition is heating up. Intel’s incoming Core i9-9900KS would theoretically be a better choice over the Ryzen 9 3900X. But compared to AMD’s incoming 16-core Ryzen 9 3950X, it is no match.
One of the biggest plus points of any Intel Core-i9 processor would probably be the integrated graphics. The latest generation of Core-i9 processors can easily handle heavy games without the support of a separate graphics card. This isn’t the case with the Ryzen CPUs. They don’t have integrated graphics, and for most of them, it is actually mandatory to have an external graphics card. So, in case you’re planning on getting an external graphics card anyway, the Ryzen would be a clear choice for you. Otherwise, it would depend on how important graphics processing is to you.
In terms of price, if you had to choose between Intel’s incoming Core i9-9900KS and AMD’s incoming Ryzen 9 3950X, the Intel CPU will be at least $150 less expensive. The tables have clearly turned here for these two companies. It is worth noting however that the 3950X features twice as many cores (16) as the 9900KS (8)
The specs & features boasted by companies usually reflect very differently in real-world situations. So we will be doing more detailed reviews and comparisons once the incoming processors are actually released. The Core i9-9900KS is coming out at the end of October. The Ryzen 9 3950X is coming out in mid-November. It will be unveiled in November 5.