There’s no question that AMD has gained ground in the home desktop market recently, but Intel is still sitting the throne for consumer gaming processors, and it’s taking a moment to celebrate by announcing a new version of its most powerful non-X processor to date. Meet the Intel Core i9-9900KS Special Edition processor.
If you want to really boil things down, this is essentially a binned 9900K. The KS can reach 5GHz turbo frequency across all eight cores, and has a base frequency of 4 GHz versus the 3.6 GHz of the 9900K. The chip also has 16 threads and 16MB of Intel Smart Cache like the 9900K. The 9900KS a much hungrier chip with a TDP of 127W versus the 9900K‘s 95W.
Intel drops a bunch of percentages to boast how the Core i9-9900KS compares to older systems, but make sure to read the fine print in the press release. For example, Intel says the 9900KS is 27% faster for simultaneous gaming, streaming, and recording compared to a “3-year-old PC.” By that it means a 6th-gen Intel Core i7-6700 running PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds at 1080p and measuring specifically by FPS. Intel also says that the 9900KS gets 35% more frames per second, and it’s 17% faster with 4K video editing compared to the last generation. Each of these claims has its own specification with it, so make sure to use plenty of salt when reading them.
The chip is, of course, compatible with existing Z390 boards. Intel also expects that if you’re buying a processor like this, you’ll want to overclock it and says as much in the official press release. As a binned chip, Intel will only have so many 9900KS chips; this chip is one to jump on if it fits your needs.
The Intel Core i9-9900KS is out this week. You can get it starting on October 30, and Intel says prices start at $513.