While the headlines were all about Intel’s 10th Gen Ice Lake architecture reveal this week, it did also reveal an all-new high-end 9th-gen processor. The Intel Core i9-9900KS sounds like a bit of a monster, improving on the Core i9-9900K with an all-core clock speed of 5.0 GHz.
On paper, the special edition Intel Core i9-9900KS sounds like one hell of a CPU. The Intel Core i9-9900K can boost up to 5GHz on just a single core, while the 9900KS can achieve this across all eight cores simultaneously.
It stands to reason then that Intel is calling the i9-9900KS “the world’s best gaming desktop processor”, and it’s difficult to argue with this position. It’s the first CPU to deliver 5GHz all-core turbo and should offer blistering gaming performance. It’ll largely be going to waste of course, but for those who demand the absolute best then the answer is here.
Beneath the hood, the Core i9-9900KS is based on the Core i9-9900K, which operates with a 3.6 GHz base clock, single-core 5.0 GHz boost clock, and 4.7 GHz all-core turbo.
Unfortunately, some of the finer details are still missing. Intel hasn’t said just yet what TDP the 9900KS will be rocking, nor how much it’s going to retail for. Our best guess would be somewhere in the region of $500-600. Improved thermal performance and cooling would seem to be a necessity if Intel wants this processor to be running at 5 GHz indefinitely. Intel’s test rig used a 240mm ROG Ryujin 240 for cooling purposes, as well as a Gigabyte Aorus Pro motherboard and an 850W Corsair HX850i PSU.
The Intel Core i9-9900KS is shaping up to be a bit of an odd processor, in truth. High-end workstation users will be craving more cores, but any applications that top out at 8 cores could stand to benefit from the high clock speeds. It’s a marketing piece more than anything; something for Intel to get out there and guarantee it’s got the best gaming processor in the world today.