In context: Intel’s new Core i9-10900Ok CPU comes outfitted with 10 cores, 20 threads and new Turbo frequencies to go face to face in opposition to the Ryzen 9 3900X and presumably turn out to be the brand new gaming flagship processor. Meanwhile, the brand new Core i7 and Core i5 vary look very aggressive not simply when it comes to specs and anticipated efficiency, however most significantly, in pricing and worth in opposition to in any other case very aggressive Ryzen rivals.
This has been a very long time coming and right now we will lastly share with you the official info on Intel’s 10th gen desktop processors of their Comet Lake lineup. No extra leaks, that is the official information, and we’ll be sharing just a few of our ideas on what Intel is providing alongside the way in which.
At the highest of the product stack, Intel is providing a brand new 10-core, 20-thread processor or set of processors. The flagship Core i9-10900Ok is a totally unlocked chip with an built-in GPU, and alongside it we’ve the i9-10900KF which is similar with no iGPU, and two extra locked fashions within the i9-10900 and i9-10900F.
We’re nonetheless taking a look at a Skylake-derivative structure constructed on 14nm expertise, which means there’s no main modifications to IPC or CPU options. There’s a minor enchancment to reminiscence assist on paper, as much as DDR4-2933 for Core i9 and Core i7 fashions, although Intel CPUs simply assist sooner reminiscence and have achieved so with earlier generations, too.
Clock speeds get just a few totally different specs which might both be complicated or you may merely disregard most of it till we assessment the CPUs and know the place they stand. Either method, what you see within the specs desk are three metrics for single-core Turbo speeds: there may be the traditional Turbo Boost pace of 5.1 GHz, then the Turbo Boost 3.zero pace of 5.2 GHz, and the Intel Thermal Velocity Boost Turbo of 5.Three GHz. Depending on what options you’ve gotten accessible to you, and the temperature of the CPU, you’ll see clocks between 5.1 GHz and 5.Three GHz peak on these elements. The high 5.Three GHz pace will solely be seen at temperatures beneath 70C as a part of Thermal Velocity Boost.
For all-core Turbos, Intel is itemizing that at 4.Eight GHz and 4.9 GHz with Thermal Velocity Boost. The listed TDP for this chip is 125W, although realistically the 10900Ok and KF will use way more energy at a 4.Eight GHz all-core frequency, particularly as Intel are principally including two cores to the 9900Ok at an analogous frequency. That greater TDP does enable for a better base clock although.
For pricing, the 10900Ok and 10900KF are coming in round $490 and $470, so slotting precisely the place the 9900Ok and 9900KF had been within the lineup. This locations the 10-core squarely in competitors with AMD’s Ryzen 9 12-core as anticipated.
While the 10900 collection is attention-grabbing in that Intel are actually providing 10 cores in a mainstream half — positively because of the strain of the Ryzen 9 3900X and 3950X — we expect essentially the most juicy elements within the lineup are literally within the Core i7 vary, so lets have a look.
The setup is much like the Core i9 vary with customary, F, Ok and KF SKUs at a spread of value factors. But the massive story right here comes within the type of the Core i7-10700Ok and 10700KF, that are primarily providing 9900Ok specs at a a lot cheaper price level. This is the complete Eight cores and 16 threads with all-core turbos as much as 4.7 GHz, and a max clock pace of 5.1 GHz.
Before the 9900KF would set you again round $480. Now, Intel shall be providing that efficiency at simply $350, which is a big transfer for them. We suppose there have been a number of query marks over whether or not Intel would decrease pricing with this technology and by shifting down what was a Core i9 half into the Core i7 vary, they’ve achieved simply that.
In phrases of competitors, the 10700KF, which in our eyes is extra interesting than the marginally dearer 10700Ok, goes up in opposition to the AMD Ryzen 7 3800X and Ryzen 7 3700X. The 3800X is presently priced round $350, whereas the 3700X is ~$50 cheaper at $300.
On a pure efficiency foundation, this seems like a compelling buy and positively the battle between Core i7 and Ryzen 7 shall be heating up thanks to those new processors. Generally talking, the 9900Ok provides comparable productiveness efficiency to AMD’s 8-cores whereas packing higher gaming efficiency. The motive why it’s been really easy to advocate Ryzen 7 has been value, AMD’s providing has merely been cheaper, however that’s not the case with the 10700KF coming in across the mark of a 3800X.
It’s additionally price mentioning the Core i7-10700F which brings Eight cores, 16 threads and a 4.6 GHz all-core turbo at round $300. This is Intel’s direct competitor to the 3700X. Yes, it’s a locked processor, however clock speeds aren’t too far behind the 10700KF, so for people who aren’t enthusiastic about overclocking this is also a very good purchase.
The Core i5 collection is shaping as much as be a good battleground for Intel as effectively, principally as a result of value reductions. The CPUs on provide aren’t something new when it comes to expertise or efficiency, however Intel has introduced down what was Core i7 efficiency into the Core i5 vary.
The configuration is slightly totally different, Intel are actually providing 6 cores and 12 threads, relatively than Eight cores and eight threads, however no matter that, the Core i5-10600Ok principally turns into what the Core i7-8700Ok was and what the Core i7-9700Ok provided in efficiency. Those Core i7 elements got here in at $350-380, now we’re getting the Core i5-10600Ok for $260 and the 10600KF for $240.
That’s a considerable value discount which permits Intel to be aggressive within the Core i5 vary in opposition to in any other case very aggressive Ryzen merchandise.
At these costs, the unlocked Core i5 fashions is probably not as compelling as the brand new Core i7s as AMD is providing their six-cores for much less: the Ryzen 5 3600 is presently a $175 half, whereas the Ryzen 5 3600X is about $200. This places the 10600KF round 37% dearer than the 3600, for what’s doubtless comparable productiveness efficiency and about 10% higher gaming efficiency if we get 8700Ok-level efficiency. The worth equation won’t be fairly there, nevertheless it’s rather a lot higher than what Intel was providing with the largely uncompetitive 9700Ok.
The different potential sleeper hit is the Core i5-10400F which is perhaps bringing again the success of the Core i5-8400. At $160, the 10400F provides 6 cores, 12 threads and a locked clock pace that tops out at 4.zero GHz. With a price ticket decrease than the Ryzen 5 3600, it’ll be actually attention-grabbing to see the place this falls within the efficiency stack, particularly for gaming.
Intel’s Core i3 vary stay quad cores, we do get Hyperthreading now, however pricing could also be thought of slightly excessive at $120-155. Clock speeds are within the mid to low 4.zero GHz vary all-core, however with AMD providing a quad-core for simply $100 with Zen 2 expertise, we don’t suppose Intel will provide one of the best finances worth right here. Despite Userbenchmark claiming the Core i3-9350Ok is without doubt one of the greatest processors in historical past, Intel have really scrapped the unlocked quad-core this technology.
Similar story with the Pentium and Celeron traces, at $90 we’re taking a look at only a dual-core processor with Hyperthreading, after which for Celerons round $50 are two-core, two-thread designs.
Intel’s 10th gen lineup would require a brand new LGA1200 socket, so there is not any backwards compatibility with older motherboards. You’ll have to seize a brand new motherboard, and beginning right now you’ll most likely see quite a lot of information about Z490, B460 and H410 choices.
You can count on us to start testing many Intel Z490 boards within the subsequent few weeks.
What do these boards really provide? Aside from issues makers management like VRMs, connectivity and so forth, Z490 isn’t that a lot totally different to Z390. We’ll see extra 2.5 Gb Ethernet options as Intel are formally supporting it this technology with their Foxville chip, in addition to extra Wi-Fi 6 assist.
Other than you can count on beefy VRMs and energy supply programs with Z490 boards to accommodate 10 cores working at 4.Eight GHz or extra. MSI’s Godlike, for instance, has 16 90An influence levels and even the finances Tomahawk has a 12 stage with an Eight and 4-pin EPS connector. A number of finances Z390 boards used simply 6 or Four part designs, however that appears to be altering with Z490 to accommodate the necessities of the 10-core.
The extra reasonably priced Intel B460 motherboards do not provide something too attention-grabbing. We noticed some rumors claiming B460 would assist overclocking however we checked with Intel, and confirmed, they don’t.
Considering we had been hitting warmth output limits with the 9900Ok, Intel has made just a few tweaks to assist this case with the Core i9-10900Ok. They’ve made the die itself thinner and the IHS thicker to enhance thermal switch, they’re calling this “Thin Die STIM,” so we’re nonetheless getting a soldered chip however with the thinner silicon die it’ll be simpler for the warmth to switch out and into the IHS then the cooler.
A refreshed Intel Extreme Tuning Utility will enable higher voltage-frequency curve controls in addition to PEG and DMI overclocking and the distinctive skill to disable Hyperthreading on a per-core foundation. Intel had some unusual justifications for why you may want this for working functions that solely use a sure variety of threads, however this appears extra like an fanatic overclocking function for maximizing efficiency.
Intel is making just a few claims about the place they count on new 10th gen elements to fall relative to earlier technology CPUs and three yr previous PCs. You can see 10% sooner efficiency in PUBG, for instance, over the earlier gen. Checking the configurations used, Intel is evaluating the Core i9-10900Ok to the Core i9-9900Ok, though on this slide it seems Intel is energy limiting each CPUs to a PL1 of 95W for the 9900Ok and 125W for the 10900Ok, the default TDPs for every processor. While you could possibly argue about in-spec versus out-of-spec conduct, with Ninth-gen elements, most motherboards ignored these limits by default. It’ll be attention-grabbing to see how the CPUs stack up when limitless and whether or not that’s the default for 10th gen as effectively. We suspect the margins might be narrower when each are unleashed.
Intel claims the Core i9-10900Ok is the quickest gaming processor. In their very own exams, they in contrast the 10900Ok to the 9900Ok and AMD Ryzen 9 3950X in 25 video games with a GeForce RTX 2080 Ti, claiming that the 10900Ok carried out higher within the majority of titles. We noticed nothing suspicious right here, it’s simply uncommon an organization would bury these kinds of particulars within the footnotes. If the processor is definitely the quickest within the majority of video games, absolutely that’s price a pair extra slides with extra info.
Overall, that is shaping as much as be a extra thrilling and attention-grabbing launch than we initially anticipated. The Core i7 and Core i5 vary specifically, are higher than we thought they is perhaps, particularly contemplating the record costs. Whether or not retailers really promote the chips at these costs is one other query, and sometimes at launch costs will be inflated as a result of demand, however important value cuts for Eight and 6-core elements are very welcome.
Intel’s CPUs have been aggressive when it comes to efficiency all alongside, however they’ve been arduous to advocate due to pricing, particularly within the mid-range. With this new line-up, Intel has achieved precisely what they wanted to do. They couldn’t proceed providing Eight cores at almost $500 and count on to be aggressive.
Of course, there’s nonetheless loads of issues to find that we’ll work by way of in our upcoming opinions. Platform longevity specifically doesn’t play to Intel’s benefit. They have simply launched a brand new socket and platform for this 10th gen lineup, so these upgrading from earlier chips want to purchase a brand new motherboard. Intel is not making any commitments on how lengthy LGA1200 and Z490 will final both, so we don’t know whether or not this technology will assist future CPU upgrades.
Another attention-grabbing dialogue shall be Intel 10th gen versus AMD’s upcoming Zen 3. The new Intel CPUs look fairly aggressive in opposition to Ryzen 3000, however these have been in the marketplace for over 9 months now, and AMD loves to scale back costs in response to competitors. That’ll be a really attention-grabbing story to cowl all through the remainder of 2020.