Intel goes up to 8 cores for mainstream chips, with a 28 core overclockable Xeon

Stylized close-up image of microchip.

Enlarge / Intel 9th generation Coffee Lake-S series 8-core die. (credit: Intel)

NEW YORK—Intel unveiled a range of new processors aimed at the performance-desktop segment today. For the mainstream market, there are three new K-series overclockable chips branded as ninth-generation parts; seven new Core X-series chips are launching for the high-end desktop market, and for those who need still more performance, there's an overclockable Xeon chip.

The ninth-generation parts confirm previous leaks that hyperthreading is now only found on the top-end i9 processor. That part has eight cores and 16 threads, with a base speed of 3.6GHz and a maximum turbo of 5GHz. This marks the first time that Intel's mainstream chips have matched the core and thread numbers that AMD offers in its Ryzen line.

ModelCores/ThreadsClock base/boost​/GHzLevel 3 cache/MBTDP/WDDR4​/MHzPCIe lanesPrice
i9-9900K8/163.6/5.01695dual 2,66640$488
i7-9700K8/83.6/4.91295dual 2,66640$374
i5-9600K6/63.7/4.6995dual 2,66640$262

Intel is (credibly) positioning the 9900K to be the best gaming chip in the world, thanks to its strong per-thread performance and high maximum clock speed. In a break with its recent practices, Intel has reverted to using solder instead of thermal paste between the processor die and the integrated heatspreader. This move will be popular among overclockers, as the better thermal conductivity of solder generally enables reduced temperatures and higher overclocking potential.

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