Test Bed and Setup

As per our processor testing policy, we take a premium category motherboard suitable for the socket, and equip the system with a suitable amount of memory running at the manufacturer's maximum supported frequency. This is also typically run at JEDEC subtimings where possible. It is noted that some users are not keen on this policy, stating that sometimes the maximum supported frequency is quite low, or faster memory is available at a similar price, or that the JEDEC speeds can be prohibitive for performance. While these comments make sense, ultimately very few users apply memory profiles (either XMP or other) as they require interaction with the BIOS, and most users will fall back on JEDEC supported speeds - this includes home users as well as industry who might want to shave off a cent or two from the cost or stay within the margins set by the manufacturer. Where possible, we will extend out testing to include faster memory modules either at the same time as the review or a later date.

Test Setup
Intel 9th Gen Intel Core i9-9900KS
Motherboard MSI Z390 Gaming Edge AC (A.60 BIOS)
CPU Cooler TRUE Copper
DRAM Corsair Vengeance 2x8 GB DDR4-2666
GPU Sapphire RX 460 2GB (CPU Tests)
MSI GTX 1080 Gaming 8G (Gaming Tests)
PSU Corsair AX860i
SSD Crucial MX200 1TB

Many thanks to...

We must thank the following companies for kindly providing hardware for our multiple test beds. Some of this hardware is not in this test bed specifically, but is used in other testing.

Hardware Providers
Sapphire RX 460 Nitro MSI GTX 1080 Gaming X OC Crucial MX200 +
MX500 SSDs
Corsair AX860i +
AX1200i PSUs
G.Skill RipjawsV,
SniperX, FlareX
Crucial Ballistix
DDR4
Silverstone
Coolers
Silverstone
Fans
The Intel Core i9-9900KS Review Going for Power: How to Manage 5.0 GHz Turbo
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236 Comments

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  • amnesia0287 - Saturday, November 16, 2019 - link

    Can’t tell if playing stupid or srs.

    The IPC advantage is 10%, the clock speed advantage is >10%.

    Intel chips all the cores are able to boost to the same levels. AMD chips now have varying spec cores and only the best 1-2 hit the advertised speeds and only when there are only a few threads running. If you are doing heavy multitasking, most of the AMD cores will be dramatically slower than those of the 9900ks.

    That said the AMD chips still have a number of other advantages such as more pci bandwidth and no tiny DMI bottleneck. Lower cost, lower power use and generally more cores.

    Right now it really comes down to what you plan to use it for. There is little doubt AMD is in a better spot right now, but it remains to be seen if they can hold it past 2021 as intel transitions to 7nm and MCM.
    Reply
  • Korguz - Saturday, November 16, 2019 - link

    " The IPC advantage is 10%, the clock speed advantage is >10%." and WHY do you think intel has the lead, even barely, in some cases. because of the clock speed advantage. Intel's cpus NEED this advantage just to keep the performance they have. think about it, a LOWER clocked chip over all is performing about the same,( depending on usage ) and in some cases better, then the higher clocked equivalents clock these chips the same, and i bet the story would be quite different. " Intel chips all the cores are able to boost to the same levels " at quite a bit more power usage too.
    " 2021 as intel transitions to 7nm and MCM. " more like IF intel can transition to 7nm by then, look how long it has taken them to get to 10nm..
    Reply
  • shaolin95 - Monday, November 11, 2019 - link

    *cough, cough* butthurt AMD fanboy detected *cough, cough* Reply
  • Qasar - Monday, November 11, 2019 - link

    how so ??? seems there are more intel fans but hurt lately... Reply
  • peevee - Friday, November 1, 2019 - link

    :)
    Funny, I had exactly the same thought.
    But honestly, for many real world uses (games etc) 4 cores at even faster frequency would be even better. Physically separated on the die as far as possible (in the corners) by huge amount of shared L3.
    I guess 5GHz base/6GHz turbo is not out of the question within the same TDP with liquid cooling.
    Reply
  • eva02langley - Thursday, October 31, 2019 - link

    A joke of a CPU. How can this cost more than a 3900x? Reply
  • eva02langley - Thursday, October 31, 2019 - link

    Not to mention that with the price gouging, you are almost near the MSRP of the 3950x. Reply
  • prophet001 - Thursday, October 31, 2019 - link

    People want this for clock speed.

    12 slow cores aren't helpful if you need a few fast ones.
    Reply
  • eva02langley - Thursday, October 31, 2019 - link

    AHAHAHA... okay, we have a blind fanboy here. Do you know anything about IPC? This CPU get destroyed in EVERYTHING except old games running outdated engines at 1080p. SO unless you buy this with a 2080 TI and a 240Hz 1080p monitor, you are not going to benefit from it.

    Basically, with a budget, the 9900KS is a waste of money, period. The money you save buying a 3700x and investing in your GPU will give you some serious gaming performances increase.
    Reply
  • xenol - Thursday, October 31, 2019 - link

    Honestly anything more than a midrange CPU and GPU is a waste of money for most people. Reply

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