Intel Core i9-9900K Re-Reviewed, 95-Watt TDP Results

Megalith

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Believing that Intel is “cheating their own spec and pushing board partners to run the i9-9900K at the default clock multiplier table, rather than at the official power spec,” Hardware Unboxed has re-tested the CPU and published benchmarks of how well Intel’s flagship performs at a lower TDP. Some argue the allegations are meaningless, as the part was designed to handle higher wattages (so long as the proper cooling is in place), but the results seem to favor Ryzen 2700x fans who claim the i9 is a poor deal in comparison: at 95-watt TDP, the 9900K appears to perform similarly, but with more power and heat involved.

As we just saw with the 95-watt limit, it’s barely any faster than the Ryzen 7 2700X. In fact, in some tests it’s slower, and that’s an awful result for a CPU that costs ~70% more. This is a big issue for Intel and they’ve painted themselves into a corner here. For the 9900K to make an ounce of sense, for anyone who isn’t an extreme overclocker, it needs to run at around 70 C with a quality aftermarket cooler and for that the TDP can’t really be any higher than about 105 watts.
 

Ocellaris

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E0E62010-496F-4917-B4E5-0868BCA62BC7.jpeg
 

Chebsy

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You can't blame Intel for allowing the board manufacturers to run the 9900 as fast as it will run. I think the competition would do the same if their CPU would clock higher.
 

IdiotInCharge

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You can't blame Intel for allowing the board manufacturers to run the 9900 as fast as it will run. I think the competition would do the same if their CPU would clock higher.

Without a doubt- and the enthusiast consumer wins, so long as the knobs and dials for tinkering remain exposed.
 

Azphira

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I've discovered checkerboard disabling the even cores on my 7960x to 8 cores, it goes from 4.2ghz to 4.7ghz and gets the about the same performance as the 9900k in cinebench and games.
 

Brackle

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I mean they do say it is a 95w CPU, but at the same time there is a reason they sell the CPU Without a retail heatsink. YOU NEED good cooling to run this beast as fast as it can.

I will say at 95w limit, it does about as good as a 2700x and is more efficient, So TBH it isn't all that bad of a CPU at the 95w limit. the 9900k is a beast of a CPU, just the price....Ouch
 

Brackle

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So this effectively means what exactly?

The 8700k and 8086k are still all-around superior CPUs? Especially when delidded?

They have always been superior, The 9900k is Intel's over reaction to the 2700x. Anyone who wants a good gaming CPU would get the 8700k. I mean its freakin over $200 cheaper.
 

sirmonkey1985

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I mean they do say it is a 95w CPU, but at the same time there is a reason they sell the CPU Without a retail heatsink. YOU NEED good cooling to run this beast as fast as it can.

I will say at 95w limit, it does about as good as a 2700x and is more efficient, So TBH it isn't all that bad of a CPU at the 95w limit. the 9900k is a beast of a CPU, just the price....Ouch

agree the cpu's a beast but you can definitely tell that the 9900k was purely released as a response to the 1800x/2700x. for a lot of people here the 95w tdp spec probably won't mean a lot but for the average consumer i could see it being an issue. what did surprise me was the jump in power even for 150mhz going from 95w to 105w limit on the 9900k.

but i agree with the others 8700k's the better buy if you're looking for an intel processor unless you can actually use all 16 threads on the 9900k.
 

JargonGR

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The biggest problem though is the motherboards and there is no perfect one around this time. I want to build a 9900K rig (with custom water) but this thing proves to be a pain in the ass if you want to get the max out of it.

I was disappointed with Asus on their normal line and was looking on Gigabyte Z390 Extreme for the top notch VRMs and the extras that are worth $200 (Thunderblot 3, 10GB NIC, Extra Fan Controller + RGB Controller with 8 Ports doubling as another 8 Fan PWM ports). However, besides those being overkill for the platform their BIOS and memory compatibility with Samsung B-Die memory chips sucks.

So back to square one with Asus that has the best UEFI for me. Now the only worthy boards VRM wise in the Z390 Line are the Gene/Extreme/Apex and feature wise I will need the Extreme to do what I want but Asus cheap-assed on the NIC that is only 5GB.

The fact is that to max out the 9900K you need an expensive motherboard, a custom cooling solution and good memory....

For games only I don't know if it is worth it vs the 8700K / 9700K but if you use it for some work too then maybe.

I've discovered checkerboard disabling the even cores on my 7960x to 8 cores, it goes from 4.2ghz to 4.7ghz and gets the about the same performance as the 9900k in cinebench and games.

I was thinking of trying this with my 7940X but will do so when I delid and go direct die cooling during Christmas - preparing for that right now since I also want to change to hard tubing but after i finish with the CPU. I am also waiting to see how the new SKUs will perform. Hell, I might try it one these days as it is, no harm done.
 

Cranky1970

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This whole fiasco with Intel and all of there BS over the 9000 series, makes me glad with my x470 and 2700x build. Most of us do not need the bleeding edge at the cost of a 60 to 70 % price premium for a few frame rates..
 

Azphira

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Part of me wants to delid, part of me says, you fool, you'll rip off caps. The funny thing is if I do odds disabled, it stops at 4.3ghz
 

trparky

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Intel lies about their performance. News at 11!!!

Let's face it, Intel's been playing these games for years. Intel says my 8700K has a TDP rating of 95 Watts. 95 Watts TDP my ass! Yeah, if you want to run it at its stock speeds without any sort of boost speeds then yeah, you'll have that 95 Watt TDP but really... who the fuck does that? You don't buy these processors from Intel to run them at stock speeds, you buy them to run them at boost speeds or even higher. Just another example of Intel cheating.
 

Gideon

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Nothing like fudging it so benchmarks show better. Games like this were played before as well.
 

Icon_Charlie

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Intel lies about their performance. News at 11!!!

Let's face it, Intel's been playing these games for years. Intel says my 8700K has a TDP rating of 95 Watts. 95 Watts TDP my ass! Yeah, if you want to run it at its stock speeds without any sort of boost speeds then yeah, you'll have that 95 Watt TDP but really... who the fuck does that? You don't buy these processors from Intel to run them at stock speeds, you buy them to run them at boost speeds or even higher. Just another example of Intel cheating.

They have been doing this for years, however when you have advertisers and manufactures in your back pocket you can get away with things.

When I purchased my 1800X last year is was on the mutli core performance that still holds it own against the 2700X (minus 10%) to this day. It sure as hell beat Intel back then and the 2700X is winning against Intel now. The biggest warning signs have been the lack of ability of shrinking the Die size of their CPU. So big fucking deal on the 9900K... A 8700K on steroids essentially except more cores.... that have a stupid high TDP.

BTY I'm still running my 1800X on a Hyper 2 Cooler... just because to prove a point, since I don't overclocked on how cool the Ryzen chipset is on my multimedia rig.

They are just abusing the market for stating something new but really it's not... Still on the 14 mm process. Squeezing as much out of it as possible

Most people,.. normies you might say are completely ignorant on building or the inner workings on the tech today. But they do know the trademark "Intel Inside" when they see a commercial.

Lets hope that Ryzen comes out on the 1st quarter or the early 2nd quarter next year to keep up the pressure against Intel.
 

SickBeast

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It looks as though out of the box the i9 9900K is an OCP. That stands for overclocked processor, right? [H]ard things are [H]ard. But WTF is OCP?

*edit* It means "Overclockers Comparison Page"?
 

BloodyIron

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In the near future I'll probably be snagging a ryzen 2600x, plenty of an upgrade from my i7 980x.

I really don't need to shell out as much as an i9 9900k costs to get my gaming on. Makes better sense to bank the money or spend it on GPU instead. Just doesn't make dollars and cents.
 

SixFootDuo

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All this hate and BS directed at 2080 Ti's and the 9900K ... but when you're number one, better than anyone or anything else, you are a target I suppose. But I love it. Haters can hate but they can't out perform you. So awesome.
 

Brackle

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All this hate and BS directed at 2080 Ti's and the 9900K ... but when you're number one, better than anyone or anything else, you are a target I suppose. But I love it. Haters can hate but they can't out perform you. So awesome.

I don't think its hate at all. The CPU is a beast and #1 when it comes to performance. But, it is not a 95w CPU at all. Sure it can run at 95w like Intel says it is, but at a huge performance loss.

It is more people upset at intel misleading people then it is hate. The only thing to hate on the CPU is the price.
 

SixFootDuo

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I don't think its hate at all. The CPU is a beast and #1 when it comes to performance. But, it is not a 95w CPU at all. Sure it can run at 95w like Intel says it is, but at a huge performance loss.

It is more people upset at intel misleading people then it is hate. The only thing to hate on the CPU is the price.


Upset about what? That a company wants to sell product? Misleading and lies and BS is something all these companies do. Go to your local store and if you're intelligent enough every product out there will be misleading in one way or another. It's to be expected.

It's all posturing and marketing BS. It's fun and I love it. I'm smart enough not to get into too deep that I get my feelings hurt unlike some of you guys. Intel does it, AMD does it, nVidia does it.

You guys need to relax and care less.
 

Brackle

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Upset about what? That a company wants to sell product? Misleading and lies and BS is something all these companies do. Go to your local store and if you're intelligent enough every product out there will be misleading in one way or another. It's to be expected.

It's all posturing and marketing BS. It's fun and I love it. I'm smart enough not to get into too deep that I get my feelings hurt unlike some of you guys. Intel does it, AMD does it, nVidia does it.

You guys need to relax and care less.

It's ok man you dont need to defend your CPU. Good product indeed man! But dont get all butt hurt if someone calls out Intel on their bullshit. Just like people call out AMD and Nvidia...it happens man.

Enjoy your product and go play some games or something laugh.
 

Advil

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When a CPU has a 95W TDP, that number kind of needs to be its maximum possible output. I'd rather see TDP as the max it could possibly draw (hellish scenario, Prime95 or whatever). Ok, in real life it'll never get there. Fine. If they want a number they can market to death, make an AVERAGE TDP for x type of use then they can define the test to get it. That way we can run the same test against another CPU or a different manufacturer's CPU to see how that compares in what they call an "average" use case.

But when I see TDP to me that's an engineering number. Absolute full load power consumption.

How the heck do you spec a power supply or cooling system when you don't know what the limit actually is? It's insane to list a TDP of 95W then have most of the CPUs at ostensibly stock settings drawing 130W regularly. That's the difference between a small 2 heat pipe tower cooling being just barely usable... and NOT. That's enough difference for someone to make a mistake when they are looking for a low profile cooler in an ITX case to fit under a power supply or thin case. That's enough difference for a cheap 120mm AIO with single fan being "enough" to cool it for quiet operation at stock settings... and NOT.

I'm fine with what the CPU is. I'm fine with what it does. The cost doesn't even bother me. But when we reach a point where max power consumption doesn't mean that anymore we need a reset in our dialog and expectations with a CPU maker. We need to be able to read the box and be able to believe what it says about the basic electrical specs such as max power.

You make an air conditioner or something that lists 3000w but it actually draws 4000w+ all the time and sell 200 of them to some use in a large business complex and they're going to have your head on a platter when their design for power delivery isn't up to it.

PC components whether for home or data center deserve the same accuracy for specs.
 

DrBorg

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So, due to the extreme thermal problems with the new CPUs, their answer seems to be "We're doing it Wrong!"

(We, the users, as "It's really really not intel's fault, I'm super serial!")

:rofl:


I've been "backing up' some blue laser disks to HD, and running handbrake on my 3930k setup has made me amazed.

I ran this thing for over a day converting video files, and then between runs, enabled CPUID HW monitor. :)

It's been running 176.75W for two days, maxing out the CPU temp at 87C on one core, the others a few degrees less. That core is always hotter, so IDK why.

I'm using a Captain 360 water loop, which is not Wonderful, and cools about as well as the Heat pipe cooler it replaced. (I never ran it this hard for this long, tho, with that cooler.)

The Hard drives beside it report 29C, so I'm taking that as "Ambient." :)

It's OCed at 4.5GHz, ALL Cores, and maxxed at 1.392V core voltage, but average was 1.38V. (reported, it's actually lower, but the display doesn't save)

I haven't changed this OC in years; It did run cooler before I added the 2400MHz memory, tho.

I'd love to see a similar benchmark ran on one of the 9900 chips, assuming the system didn't melt. :)


I'm going to copy one of the files I processed over to my x5670 system, also running ~4.5GHz on 6/12 cores, and see what it says. It has the heat pipe cooler from this system on it, so it will be interesting.
The x5670 runs quite a bit cooler, but maybe that's the lower memory speed, IDK.

I'm really happy I didn't "upgrade" to another intel processor in the interim; AMD is going to get my money for a while.

:)

It looks as though out of the box the i9 9900K is an OCP. That stands for overclocked processor, right? [H]ard things are [H]ard. But WTF is OCP?

*edit* It means "Overclockers Comparison Page"?


So Kyle: OCP is what? I remember the [H]ard part. :D

That was a Socket 7 K6-III/450 at 550 for me, at the time. It melted the power traces off the motherboard one day, and I got it RMA'ed. DFI K63BV+, IIRC.
I still have that Mobo; it's running now, with a $2000 data aq card in it, lol. (at 450, lol.) I've replaced the caps twice so far.

Kyle, do you even remember now? I've been here since the 90's, iirc, and I don't really remember...


OK, OK, I searched. :)

You don't have to reset my post count, lol.

As SickBeast said, "Overclockers Comparison Page", FTW!
 
Last edited:

kirbyrj

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When a CPU has a 95W TDP, that number kind of needs to be its maximum possible output. I'd rather see TDP as the max it could possibly draw (hellish scenario, Prime95 or whatever). Ok, in real life it'll never get there. Fine. If they want a number they can market to death, make an AVERAGE TDP for x type of use then they can define the test to get it. That way we can run the same test against another CPU or a different manufacturer's CPU to see how that compares in what they call an "average" use case.

But when I see TDP to me that's an engineering number. Absolute full load power consumption.

How the heck do you spec a power supply or cooling system when you don't know what the limit actually is? It's insane to list a TDP of 95W then have most of the CPUs at ostensibly stock settings drawing 130W regularly. That's the difference between a small 2 heat pipe tower cooling being just barely usable... and NOT. That's enough difference for someone to make a mistake when they are looking for a low profile cooler in an ITX case to fit under a power supply or thin case. That's enough difference for a cheap 120mm AIO with single fan being "enough" to cool it for quiet operation at stock settings... and NOT.

I'm fine with what the CPU is. I'm fine with what it does. The cost doesn't even bother me. But when we reach a point where max power consumption doesn't mean that anymore we need a reset in our dialog and expectations with a CPU maker. We need to be able to read the box and be able to believe what it says about the basic electrical specs such as max power.

You make an air conditioner or something that lists 3000w but it actually draws 4000w+ all the time and sell 200 of them to some use in a large business complex and they're going to have your head on a platter when their design for power delivery isn't up to it.

PC components whether for home or data center deserve the same accuracy for specs.

Listening to some people around here, that's a "feature" not a problem.
 

IdiotInCharge

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But when I see TDP to me that's an engineering number. Absolute full load power consumption.

That would be the mistake: while it is an engineering number, it's not 'full load power consumption', though for Intel it's closer to that than AMD.

It's the average power supply and heat load that the system needs to be able to handle over time under load, under bone-stock settings.

That means that even at stock settings, a CPU can spike higher- and we know that enthusiast motherboards run optimized settings, not stock, out of the box.

Now, as the 9900K (and it's ilk) are the most efficient x86 cores currently made, this review shows that when locked down to Intel stock such that the '95W TDP' label applies, the CPU performs as expected- keeping IPC in line while sipping power.

Other reviews such as done here at the [H] show why the 9900k is the very best consumer CPU you can get; part of that is showing that using the optimized defaults on an enthusiast board opens the CPU up a bit when the thermal headroom is available, i.e. when the user installs a decent cooling solution.

As in, the 9900K has headroom above it's 'stock' settings, and do note that I put 'stock' in quotes because it is a 'K' SKU, and that's a win for consumers.

And as an enthusiast gamer myself, given that I could drop a 9900K into my current board, I'm intrigued by the CPU- it looks like it will be the fastest CPU my platform will be able to handle. If only I needed one!
 

Johan Steyn

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So many here are just clueless and probably have not even watched the video. They miss the point. Most people do not build their own systems. They buy OEM systems like Dell or HP. These companies know they have to stick to the specs. The issue is that if you ignore the TDP, you lose your warranty.

So the performance that 90% of the 9900 customers will get, will be the performance you see in this video and NOT the performance Intel advertises. That is misleading, lying and fraud. Not new for Intel though...

When you buy a Dell or HP 9900, it will be very much Iike a Dell or HP Ryzen 2700X. Why pay 70% te for that?
 

IdiotInCharge

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They miss the point. Most people do not build their own systems. They buy OEM systems like Dell or HP. These companies know they have to stick to the specs.

You're missing some context: If you want to see how a 9900K performs in a particular Dell or HP, you go read reviews of those systems. People here are putting them in enthusiast boards.

Further, that's assuming that you'd get one in your garden variety Inspiron or Pavilian- which is unlikely. Nearly all of these OEMs have gaming lines, and can set up the CPUs as they see fit for their systems.
 

misterbobby

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Seems like some people want to make a big deal about basically nothing. If you're an Enthusiast you're buying this CPU to get full use out of it then you're not going to give a rat's ass about it going over 95 Watts. If 95 watts is important to you then you wouldn't be looking at the mainstream flagship unlocked CPU in the first place. I'm pretty sure the first thing that anybody would do when buying a CPU like this is overclock it and/or raise the TDP limits anyway.
 

N4CR

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Lol, when AMD does TDP busting it's literally anudda holodomor.
When Intel does it, it's AMDs fault the numbers are all different, or they measure PMAX for that measurement (insert goalpost shilling here).
Or 'TDP doesn't matter, this is [H]'.
Reality is, [H] is a fraction of a percent of the computer userbase. People always forget that somemany users are limited by TDP, OEMs as Johan Steyn mentioned, tight cases, air cooling, hotter climates, AC load, whatever and for them, 95W TDP is quite important.
And for that 95W TDP, Intel doesn't give you anything for double the price over AMD. In fact, AMD does more with less clocks. Both companies are up against a clock wall but only one has a viable process moving forward in the immediate future.
I can't wait to see the reviews next year 14nm++++ vs 7nm. It's going to be a slaughter.
 

N4CR

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Seems like some people want to make a big deal about basically nothing. If you're an Enthusiast you're buying this CPU to get full use out of it then you're not going to give a rat's ass about it going over 95 Watts. If 95 watts is important to you then you wouldn't be looking at the mainstream flagship unlocked CPU in the first place. I'm pretty sure the first thing that anybody would do when buying a CPU like this is overclock it and/or raise the TDP limits anyway.
Tell Dell that and a large amount of businesses with power users, e.g. smaller editing rigs, image shoop'n etc. There is no 9900 currently that I can see. So if they want the same performance for twice the price of AMD, becoz muh_intel or some shitty software optimisation, or some single thread application while needing mulithreading for others, their only option is a 9900k.
9900k tdp.jpg
 

IdiotInCharge

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Lol, when AMD does TDP busting it's literally anudda holodomor.

AMD tends to be more egregious with their 'TDP-busing'. Regardless, as you can see, both are being called out.

[of course your memory may be a little short, if you don't remember Netburst- and the real concern with AMD's TDP on Ryzen was that it was limiting performance, and further, much of this was traced to the inexplicably poorly designed motherboards available on release...]

Or 'TDP doesn't matter, this is [H]'.

Yup, just like with the 2990WX, right?

Reality is, [H] is a fraction of a percent of the computer userbase. People always forget that somemany users are limited by TDP, OEMs as Johan Steyn mentioned, tight cases, air cooling, hotter climates, AC load, whatever and for them, 95W TDP is quite important.

And they run OEM systems, and should evaluate the performance of the system in addition to what is expected of the CPU.

And for that 95W TDP, Intel doesn't give you anything for double the price over AMD. In fact, AMD does more with less clocks.

At stock, the Intel CPU does more with less watts ;)

Both companies are up against a clock wall but only one has a viable process moving forward in the immediate future.

AMD is entirely dependent on third-parties for production. They don't have a process, they have a contract.

I can't wait to see the reviews next year 14nm++++ vs 7nm. It's going to be a slaughter.

You mean AMD might finally catch up?!?
 
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