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Gaming Performance Comparison

Recommended System Requirements
Game Core i9-9900T 8-Core 2.1GHz Core i5-7600K 3.8GHz
Red Dead Redemption 2 28% 9%
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 46% 19%
Cyberpunk 2077 39% 7%
Fortnite: Chapter 2 60% 40%
Need For Speed Heat 39% 8%
The Outer Worlds 22% 18%
Microsoft Flight Simulator 22% 18%
Zombieland: Double Tap - Road Trip 28% 9%
Borderlands 3 28% 9%
FIFA 20 48% 22%

In terms of overall gaming performance, the Intel Core i9-9900T 8-Core 2.1GHz is massively better than the Intel Core i5-7600K 3.8GHz when it comes to running the latest games. This also means it will be less likely to bottleneck more powerful GPUs, allowing them to achieve more of their gaming performance potential.

The Core i9-9900T 8-Core was released over a year more recently than the Core i5-7600K 3.8GHz, and so the Core i9-9900T 8-Core is likely to have better levels of support, and will be more optimized for running the latest games.

Both CPUs exhibit very powerful performance, so it probably isn't worth upgrading from one to the other, as both are capable of running even the most demanding games at the highest settings (assuming they are accompanied by equivalently powerful GPUs).

The Core i9-9900T 8-Core has 4 more cores than the Core i5-7600K 3.8GHz. 8 cores is probably excessive if you mean to just run the latest games, as games are not yet able to harness this many cores. The cores in the Core i5-7600K 3.8GHz is more than enough for gaming purposes. However, if you intend on running a server with the Core i9-9900T 8-Core, it would seem to be a decent choice.

The Core i9-9900T 8-Core has 12 more threads than the Core i5-7600K 3.8GHz. The Core i5-7600K 3.8GHz has one thread per physical core, whereas the Core i9-9900T 8-Core uses hyperthreading and has 2 logical threads per physical core.

Multiple threads are useful for improving the performance of multi-threaded applications. Additional cores and their accompanying thread will always be beneficial for multi-threaded applications. Hyperthreading will be beneficial for applications optimized for it, but it may slow others down. For games, the number of threads is largely irrelevant, as long as you have at least 2 cores (preferably 4), and hyperthreading can sometimes even hit performance.

More important for gaming than the number of cores and threads is the clock rate. Problematically, unless the two CPUs are from the same family, this can only serve as a general guide and nothing like an exact comparison, because the clock cycles per instruction (CPI) will vary so much.

The Core i9-9900T 8-Core and Core i5-7600K 3.8GHz are not from the same family of CPUs, so their clock speeds are by no means directly comparable. Bear in mind, then, that while the Core i5-7600K 3.8GHz has a 1.7 GHz faster frequency, this is not always an indicator that it will be superior in performance, despite frequency being crucial when trying to avoid GPU bottlenecking. In this case, however, the difference is probably a good indicator that the Core i9-9900T 8-Core is superior.

Aside from the clock rate, the next-most important CPU features for PC game performance are L2 and L3 cache size. Faster than RAM, the more cache available, the more data that can be stored for lightning-fast retrieval. L1 Cache is not usually an issue anymore for gaming, with most high-end CPUs eking out about the same L1 performance, and L2 is more important than L3 - but L3 is still important if you want to reach the highest levels of performance. Bear in mind that although it is better to have a larger cache, the larger it is, the higher the latency, so a balance has to be struck.

The Core i9-9900T 8-Core has a 1024 KB bigger L2 cache than the Core i5-7600K 3.8GHz, which means that it, at worst, wins out in this area, and at best, will provide superior gaming performance and will work much better with high-end graphics cards.

The maximum Thermal Design Power is the power in Watts that the CPU will consume in the worst case scenario. The lithography is the semiconductor manufacturing technology being used to create the CPU - the smaller this is, the more transistors that can be fit into the CPU, and the closer the connections. For both the lithography and the TDP, it is the lower the better, because a lower number means a lower amount of power is necessary to run the CPU, and consequently a lower amount of heat is produced.

The Core i9-9900T 8-Core has a 60 Watt lower Maximum TDP than the Core i5-7600K 3.8GHz (though they were created with the same size 14 nm manufacturing technology). What this means is the Core i9-9900T 8-Core will consume significantly less power and consequently produce less heat, enabling more prolonged computational tasks with fewer adverse effects. This will lower your yearly electricity bill significantly, as well as prevent you from having to invest in extra cooling mechanisms (unless you overclock).

The Core i9-9900T 8-Core has an on-board GPU, which means that it will be capable of running basic graphics applications (i.e., games) without the need for a dedicated graphics card. The Core i5-7600K 3.8GHz, however, does not, and you will probably have to look for a dedicated card if you wish to use it at all.

For in-depth GPU comparisons with the Intel UHD Graphics 630, click on the following GPU overview comparison icon (visible throughout Game-Debate), and choose a GPU from the list to compare against:

On-board GPUs tend to be fairly awful in comparison to dedicated cards from the likes of AMD or Nvidia, but as they are built into the CPU, they also tend to be cheaper and require far less power to run (this makes them a good choice for laptops). We would recommend a dedicated card for running the latest games, but integrated GPUs are improving all the time and casual gamers may find less recent games perform perfectly acceptably.

CPU Core Details

CPU CodenameCoffee Lake RKaby Lake
MoBo SocketFCLGA1151LGA 1151
Notebook CPUnono
Release Date23 Apr 201905 Jan 2017
CPU LinkGD LinkGD Link
Approved

CPU Technical Specifications

CPU Cores8vs4
CPU Threads16vs4
Clock Speed2.1 GHzvs3.8 GHz
Turbo Frequency4.4 GHzvs4.2 GHz
Max TDP35 Wvs95 W
Lithography14 nmvs14 nm
Bit Width64 Bitvs64 Bit
Virtualization Technologynovsno
Comparison

CPU Cache and Memory

L1 Cache Size512 KBvs256 KB
L2 Cache Size2048 KBvs1024 KB
L3 Cache Size16 MBvs6 MB
Max Memory Size-vs32 GB
Memory Channels-vs2
ECC Memory Supportnovsno
Comparison

CPU Graphics

GraphicsIntel UHD Graphics 630
Base GPU Frequency350 MHzvs-
Max GPU Frequency1150 MHzvs-
DirectX12vs-
Displays Supported-vs-
Comparison

CPU Package and Version Specifications

Package Size37.5mm x 37.5mmvs-
Revision-vs-
PCIe Revision-vs-
PCIe Configurations-vs-

Gaming Performance Value

Performance Value

CPU Mini Review

Mini ReviewThe Core i9-9900T 8-Core 2.1GHz is a high-end CPU based on a refinement of the 14nm++ Coffee Lake microarchitecture. As a 'T' CPU this is a low-power desktop variant. It offers 8 physical cores (16 logical), initially clocked at 2.1GHz, which may go up to 4.4GHz using 8 cores with Turbo Boost. The i9-9900T has 16MB of L3 Cache. Among its many features, HyperThreading, Turbo Boost 2.0, and Virtualization are activated, although this processor does not have its multiplier unlocked. This Core i9-9900T CPU offers fast gaming performance and will not be the bottleneck in any modern gaming PC. It will be able to play all modern games comfortably on ultra graphics performance at any supported resolution without being a hindrance to the accompanying GPU.The specific performance specs for this high end Intel CPU are still unconfirmed, but some benchmarks are starting to appear.
The Core i5-7600K 4-Core 3.8GHz is a high-end CPU based on the 14nm, Kaby Lake micro architecture. It offers 4 physical cores (8 logical), initially clocked at 3.8GHz, which may go up and 8MB of L3 Cache. Among its many features, HyperThreading, Turbo Boost 2.0 and Virtualization are activated and the processor has its multiplier unlocked. This CPU is likely to offer exceptional computational performance and will not be the bottleneck in any modern gaming PC. It will be able to play all modern games comfortably on high/ultra graphics performance without being a hindrance to the accompanying GPU.

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