Intel Corporation in October 2019 announced full details and availability for the new 9th Gen Intel Core i9-9900KS Special Edition. The processor delivers up to 5 GHz all-core turbo frequency for the ultimate gaming experience. (Credit: Intel Corporation)

Intel i9-9900KS Special Edition CPU to be Available Oct. 30th

We’ve been waiting all month for the availability date of the Intel i9-9900KS, the “out-of-the-box all-core 5.0 GHz” version of the i9-9900K that was announced early September as part of Intel’s response to the recently-released Ryzen 3000-series CPUs. Now we know we’re just a couple days away from the official availably date of October 30th. We also get the MSRP of the new CPU: $513 USD, which is a $29 over the current price of the i9-9900K. Intel also mentions this is a special edition CPU, similar to the i7-8086K, and will only be available for a limited time.

The i9-9900KS will feature a 5.0 GHz all-core turbo frequency and “up to 4.0 GHz base frequency.” (we’ll have to see why the base frequency is listed as “up to” when it becomes available to test). It has a 127W TDP, as was leaked by ASUS at the end of September, and notably has a reduced warranty of only one year, as opposed to the three-year warranty we’re used to seeing. Intel cites the limited volume as the reason to only offer a one-year warranty. The onboard UHD Graphics 630 GPU remains unchanged from the standard i9-9900K.

Additionally, while the press release didn’t mention this, something to be aware of is Intel’s ARK page for the i9-9900KS lists Intel Trusted Execution Technology and Intel Stable Image Platform Program as “No” (not supported) vs the i9-9900K’s “Yes.”

i9-9900KSi9-9900K
LaunchedQ4’19Q4’18
Cores/Threads8c/16t8c/16t
Base Frequency“Up to” 4.00 GHz3.60 GHz
Max Turbo Frequency5.00 GHz5.00 GHz
Cache16 MB16 MB
TDP127 W95 W
Price ($USD)$513$484

The press release provides a bullet point list of key features and marketing numbers, with an appropriately detailed “Small Print” following, which I’ve provided before for completeness. We’ll see soon enough how well this beast of an 8-core CPU performs when the reviews pour in.

Intel Corporation in October 2019 announced full details and availability for the new 9th Gen Intel Core i9-9900KS Special Edition. The processor delivers up to 5 GHz all-core turbo frequency for the ultimate gaming experience. (Credit: Intel Corporation)

Key Features and Capabilities:

  • Up to 5.0 GHz all-core turbo frequency; up to 4.0 GHz base frequency, which allow games to run faster when they scale across more cores for higher frame rates
  • Eight cores, 16 threads, 127W TDP, 16 MB Intel Smart Cache, and up to 40 platform PCIe lanes
  • Compatible with existing Z390 motherboards
  • Up to 27%2 faster mega-tasking when you simultaneously game, stream and record compared with a 3-year-old PC
  • Up to 35%3 more frames per second compared with a 3-year-old PC
  • Up to 17% faster4 4K video editing compared with the previous generation and up to 78% faster5 compared with a 3-year-old PC
  • One-year warranty6
  • Overclock1 confidently with new and enhanced features like Intel® Performance Maximizer, which makes it easy to dynamically and reliably custom-tune the unlocked processor based on the processor’s individual performance DNA

The Small Print:

Performance results are based on testing as of August 10, 2019 and may not reflect all publicly available security updates. See configuration disclosure for details. No product can be absolutely secure. Software and workloads used in performance tests may have been optimized for performance only on Intel microprocessors. Performance tests, such as SYSmark and MobileMark, are measured using specific computer systems, components, software, operations and functions. Any change to any of those factors may cause the results to vary. You should consult other information and performance tests to assist you in fully evaluating your contemplated purchases, including the performance of that product when combined with other products. For more complete information about performance and benchmark results, visit http://www.intel.com/benchmarks.

As measured by in-game benchmark mode performance (score or frames per second) where available, or frames per second where benchmark mode is unavailable. PC Gaming Processors Compared: 9th Gen Intel® Core™ i9-9900KS, 9th Gen Intel® Core™ i9-9900K, Intel® Core™ i9-9980XE Extreme Edition, Intel® Core™ i9-9960X X-series, Intel® Core™ i9-9940X X-series, AMD Ryzen™ 9 3900X, AMD Ryzen™ 7 3800X, AMD Ryzen™ 7 3700X, AMD Ryzen™ 5 3600X, and AMD Ryzen™ 7 2700X. Prices of compared products may differ. Configurations: Graphics: Nvidia GeForce RTX 2080 Ti, Memory: 2x8GB DDR4 or 4x4GB DDR4 (2666, 2933 or 3200 per highest speed of the corresponding processor), Storage: Intel Optane SSD 900P, OS Windows 10 Pro 1903 v175 19H1(RS6). Results: 9th Gen Intel® Core™ i9-9900KS scored better on the majority of the 20+ game titles tested.Intel® Core™ i9-9900KS is a special edition of Intel® Core™ i9-9900K, with even better performance.

1Altering clock frequency or voltage may damage or reduce the useful life of the processor and other system components, and may reduce system stability and performance. Product warranties may not apply if the processor is operated beyond its specifications. Check with the manufacturers of system and components for additional details.

2As measured by gameplay FPS on PUBG (Season 4 – “PC Update 4.1”) – 1080p High Settings comparing 9th Gen Intel® Core™ i9-9900KS vs. 6th Gen Intel® Core™ i7-6700K. Measured on platforms with Intel® Core™ i9-9900KS Processor, PL1=127W TDP, 8C16T, Turbo up to 5.0GHz, Motherboard: MSI Z390 A Pro, Graphics: NVIDIA GTX 2080Ti , Gfx version: 430.86, Memory: 2x8GB DDR4 2666, Storage: 480GB Intel Optane SSD 900P, OS: Windows* 10 Pro 1903 v175 19H1(RS6), BIOS Version 1105 vs. Intel® Core™ i7-6700K Processor, PL1=95W TDP, 4C8T, Turbo up to 4.2GHz, Motherboard: MSI Z170MPLUS A Pro, Graphics: NVIDIA GTX 2080Ti , Gfx version: 430.86, Memory: 4x4GB DDR4 2133, Storage: 480GB Intel Optane SSD 900P, OS: Windows* 10 Pro 1903 v175 19H1(RS6), BIOS Version 3805

3As measured by gameplay FPS on Total War: 3 Kingdoms – Campaign – 1080p High Settings comparing 9th Gen Intel® Core™ i9-9900KS vs. 6th Gen Intel® Core™ i7-6700K. Measured on platforms with: Intel® Core™ i9-9900KS Processor, PL1=127W TDP, 8C16T, Turbo up to 5.0GHz, Motherboard: MSI Z390 A Pro, Graphics: NVIDIA GTX 2080Ti , Gfx version: 430.86, Memory: 2x8GB DDR4 2666, Storage: 480GB Intel Optane SSD 900P, OS: Windows* 10 Pro 1903 v175 19H1(RS6), BIOS Version 1105 vs. Intel® Core™ i7-6700K Processor, PL1=95W TDP, 4C8T, Turbo up to 4.2GHz, Motherboard: MSI Z170MPLUS A Pro, Graphics: NVIDIA GTX 2080Ti , Gfx version: 430.86, Memory: 4x4GB DDR4 2133, Storage: 480GB Intel Optane SSD 900P, OS: Windows* 10 Pro 1903 v175 19H1(RS6), BIOS Version 3805

4As measured by Adobe Premiere Pro CC Transcode4Kvideo SW workload comparing 9th Gen Intel® Core™ i9-9900KS vs. Intel® Core™ i7-8700K. Measured on platforms with: Intel® Core™ i9-9900KS Processor, PL1=127W TDP, 8C16T, Turbo up to 5.0GHz, Motherboard: MSI Z390 A Pro, Graphics: NVIDIA GTX 2080Ti , Gfx version: 430.86, Memory: 2x8GB DDR4 2666, Storage: 480GB Intel Optane SSD 900P, OS: Windows* 10 Pro 1903 v175 19H1(RS6), BIOS Version 1105 vs. Intel® Core™ i7-8700K Processor, PL1=95W TDP, 6C12T, Turbo up to 4.7GHz, Motherboard: MSI Z390 A Pro, Graphics: NVIDIA GTX 2080Ti , Gfx version: 430.86, Memory: 2x8GB DDR4 2666, Storage: 480GB Intel Optane SSD 900P, OS: Windows* 10 Pro 1903 v175 19H1(RS6), BIOS Version 1105

5As measured by Adobe Premiere Pro CC Transcode4Kvideo SW workload comparing 9th Gen Intel® Core™ i9-9900KS vs. 6th Gen Intel® Core™ i7-6700K. Measured on platforms with: Intel® Core™ i9-9900KS Processor, PL1=127W TDP, 8C16T, Turbo up to 5.0GHz, Motherboard: MSI Z390 A Pro, Graphics: NVIDIA GTX 2080Ti , Gfx version: 430.86, Memory: 2x8GB DDR4 2666, Storage: 480GB Intel Optane SSD 900P, OS: Windows* 10 Pro 1903 v175 19H1(RS6), BIOS Version 1105 vs. Intel® Core™ i7-6700K Processor, PL1=95W TDP, 4C8T, Turbo up to 4.2GHz, Motherboard: MSI Z170MPLUS A Pro, Graphics: NVIDIA GTX 2080Ti , Gfx version: 430.86, Memory: 4x4GB DDR4 2133, Storage: 480GB Intel Optane SSD 900P, OS: Windows* 10 Pro 1903 v175 19H1(RS6), BIOS Version 3805

6Intel is providing a one-year warranty on both the box and tray versions of this processor due to its limited volume.

The Recommended Customer Price (“RCP”) is pricing guidance for Intel products. Prices are for direct Intel customers and are subject to change without notice. Taxes and shipping, etc. not included. Prices may vary for other package types and shipment quantities, and special promotional arrangements may apply. Listing of these RCP does not constitute a formal pricing offer from Intel. Please work with your appropriate Intel representative to obtain a formal price quotation. Purchases of Intel products are subject to Intel’s Standard Terms and Conditions of Sale.

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