Intel Core i9-10900K Review: Can It Beat Ryzen 9?

Evernessince

Posts: 5,100   +5,345
Pretty impressive, this 10 core is hanging with AMD's 12 core in application benchmarks!
And Intel still rules the roost when it comes to gaming, and now the multi-thread stuff is very close again.
Also, one tidbit....the 8700K is faster then the 3950X for gaming? Yikes!
Is Intel's 10 year old architecture with a paint job battling, beating and matching AMD's new Ryzen? Looks like it!
"When it comes to productivity applications we found that the 10900K was up to 35% slower than the 3900X"

You do realize you qualify that 35% lead AMD has (while being significantly cheaper) as "hanging" while you then go on to bash AMD for having 3% less gaming performance, right?

The top 4 CPUs are within 3 FRAMES or each other, the top 9 are within 3% for gaming. That's with a 2080 Ti at 1080p. Enough said. Intel hasn't improved gaming performance over 3 generations of CPUs.

You had better hope AMD doesn't improve gaming performance of Zen 3 CPUs, otherwise I expect you to tout a 1-3% lead in gaming as "dominating" as you do with every Intel launch.

The most impressive part of this launch is Intel adding those two extra cores at a high frequency without blowing out the power consumption. Not the gaming performance, or it being 35% slower then a 12 core.
 

Lionvibez

Posts: 1,838   +1,067
So we are looking at $530 for the i9-10900k plus $320 for the cooler for a total of $850.

The Ryzen 3900x can be had for $410 (Amazon or Newegg using the promo code) including a useable HSF, so that‘s less than half. And that is not even taking into consideration motherboards, case fans, PSU.....
$320 for a Corsair H150i in what currency?

LTT benchmarks show this processor beating AMD in gaming by a larger margin shown here.
Unless you are playing at 1080p and lower and using a > 200hz monitor it doesn't matter.

Pretty impressive, this 10 core is hanging with AMD's 12 core in application benchmarks!
And Intel still rules the roost when it comes to gaming, and now the multi-thread stuff is very close again.
Also, one tidbit....the 8700K is faster then the 3950X for gaming? Yikes!
Is Intel's 10 year old architecture with a paint job battling, beating and matching AMD's new Ryzen? Looks like it!
lol just what I was expecting from the intel fanboys on this site, waiting for the rest of them to chime in now.
 
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neeyik

Posts: 1,008   +971
Staff member

Lionvibez

Posts: 1,838   +1,067
Crazy prices.

I'm using a H150i Pro which I bought in dec 2019 for $200 CAD / $144 USD

I can still find the H150i Pro/RGB Pro XT at a local computer store in Canada for $229 today.
 
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bluetooth fairy

Posts: 146   +91
What I've learned from this review:
1) shown tasks (software) scale beyond 8 and 10 cores, and modern architectures (hardware) do not bottleneck still;
2) except gaming, or there's no GPU for Intel high-core count chips;
3) Intel ten cores can stay within 125W, what sounds reasonable;
4) but the pricing and probably availability (binning?).
 
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geogan

Posts: 11   +9
Wow! A processor I bought last October beating the hell out of Intels latest and greatest, overpriced, processor.

And to think I was going to buy the 9900K before AMD released the 3900X. Lucky I didn't.

And the previous processor I upgraded from was a first generation 6 core i7 970 - so I did wait a long time for Intel to produce something decent.

Pity for them AMD jumped in with something much better and cheaper before them.

And yes I am using the stock cooler which came with it for FREE and it does a PERFECT job, no reason at all to pay any more for expensive AIO cooler. It even looks amazing!
 

texasrattler

Posts: 900   +392
If by "hanging", you mean losing by a notable margin while costing $100 more, then sure you can interpret that way. Your choice of words is interesting as a smaller margin of victory for Intel in gaming is suddenly "ruling the roost."

So which is it? Does AMD Rule The Roost™ in applications, or is AMD Hanging™ with Intel on gaming?
The person was referring to a old arch that is still maintaining itself amongst AMDs best. While AMD is doing great, Intel while not beating them outright like they once did, it's still impressive to see a arch that's so old but maintaining enough to do the job and in some cases (gaming and some single core) winning out. While I think most know that Intel being on 14+++ is just crazy but it has worked for them and people still buy them. No matter how good AMD get, Intel will still have buyers and even more so if they keep the "GAMING CROWN" which believe it or not, is important to a lot of people.
IMO, both AMD and Intel have great procs out. If you need or want the best overall including the price, then AMD wins out. Does that mean everyone is going AMD, no. Tons and tons of people don't care about any of this or the numbers. They go by what their friends or family say. A lot will still say Intel as that is what they know.

In the end, get what meets YOUR needs not someone else's. If you like Intel, get Intel. If you like AMD, get AMD. Either way I can promise you are going to have a better computer than your last one.
 
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Lew Zealand

Posts: 1,402   +1,375
TechSpot Elite
No matter how good AMD get, Intel will still have buyers and even more so if they keep the "GAMING CROWN" which believe it or not, is important to a lot of people.
Yes, I agree. I think of it this way:

If someone's going to spend $1200 on a GPU, IMO it's foolish not to buy the best CPU to extract the most frames from that hefty purchase. A ~$520 CPU and ~$200 AIO cooler is a very reasonable cost in comparison to make sure you get the most out of that 2080Ti.

Even so, I'm *really* curious how well the i5 and even the i3 do, seeing as the R3 3300X was quite a cheap yet reasonable gaming powerhouse for even a $4-500 GPU.
 
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Lionvibez

Posts: 1,838   +1,067
No matter how good AMD get, Intel will still have buyers and even more so if they keep the "GAMING CROWN" which believe it or not, is important to a lot of people.
What alot of PC Enthusiast forget is the Gaming Market is tiny compared to the Enterprise market and that is where the money is made. While I think Zen 3 will finally make AMD even with intel on that front. I believe their time is better spent in the enterprise sector and working with more OEMs to get into laptops etc. Multi year contracts are something that happends in the business space, consumers are fickle at best and have less money to spend.
 

yeeeeman

Posts: 305   +242
Even if everyone is praising AMD here, truth is lots of people jumped on buying these and they are going out of stock in record time
Intel has gained a userbase that is hard to earn by AMD. Not prices nor better multithreading performance will make them go AMD. Gaming performance is of utmost importance of many users and some people don't really care or believe that AMD could be the better deal. So as long Intel keeps the gaming crown, people will still buy intel. Even if they are basically a rebadged 6950x.
Which tbh is not a bad cpu.
 

Lionvibez

Posts: 1,838   +1,067
Even if everyone is praising AMD here, truth is lots of people jumped on buying these and they are going out of stock in record time
Intel has gained a userbase that is hard to earn by AMD. Not prices nor better multithreading performance will make them go AMD. Gaming performance is of utmost importance of many users and some people don't really care or believe that AMD could be the better deal. So as long Intel keeps the gaming crown, people will still buy intel. Even if they are basically a rebadged 6950x.
Which tbh is not a bad cpu.
Gaming performance only matters to Gamers.

Most people that have careers and are working don't really care about whats inside the box aslong as it allows them to get work done. The whole fanboy nonsense is mostly children and adults that are still children. At the end of the day most people just don't care about it as much as people on the internet like to think.
 
This test is missing a performance rating for games, applications and weighted (combined). In reality people are using the CPU's not only for gaming but also for applications. Having a weighted performance index would show the true dominant product.
On a side note to Intel and AMD fans here, what you're buying now is meant for the FUTURE and not for current games. Same as you would buy the PS5 or Xbox Series X for FUTURE games and not current games. Games like Doom Eternal are using 12 cores already, so prepare yourself for 12+ cores in the next years. Same thing happened with 4 core processors back in 2012 until now.
Can Intel hold up for the future with the 10900k? Sure not. PCIe 4.0 is missing and the heat generated by this CPU is just horrifying (srsly 84° C at max load? holy crap).
 

Nobina

Posts: 2,505   +2,096
Lmao. Intel absolutely rekting AMD (Above Margin Defects) in gaming, even with previous gen CPUz. Uses more power? Ofcourse, this isn't a Toyota Prius ecobox, this is a Lamborghini. Want to save money and power then don't buy anything at all. Nobody cares about WinRAR unzipping speed of your FPS hack and benchmarks that don't translate into real world usage a.k.a. gaming.
 

Achaios

Posts: 21   +72
Even if everyone is praising AMD here, truth is lots of people jumped on buying these and they are going out of stock in record time
Intel has gained a userbase that is hard to earn by AMD. Not prices nor better multithreading performance will make them go AMD. Gaming performance is of utmost importance of many users and some people don't really care or believe that AMD could be the better deal. So as long Intel keeps the gaming crown, people will still buy intel. Even if they are basically a rebadged 6950x.
Which tbh is not a bad cpu.
I am still on Intel Haswell 4770k, but that doesn't mean that I have any kind of loyalty to Chipzilla. Only a fool would think that.

It's only a matter of time before I too buy an AMD CPU for the first time when I ditch this rig.

There are a lot of ppl like me. You really need to wake up, smell the coffee and go out of your mom's basement. The world is changing, and Chipzilla can no longer use every dirty trick in the book to gouge and defraud non-savvy customers.
 

Lew Zealand

Posts: 1,402   +1,375
TechSpot Elite
Even if everyone is praising AMD here, truth is lots of people jumped on buying these and they are going out of stock in record time
Or not.

Did you miss this from the article:

TechSpot said:
There’s been plenty of speculation recently that the 10th-gen Core series release is closer to a paper launch than Intel is willing to admit. We have it on good authority that this is indeed the case with pre-orders opening up a few weeks ago, retailers have very little stock and while the demand hasn’t been crazy, it's heavily outstriped supply, leaving retailers with orders they simply can’t fill.
It's easy to sell out when you only have a tiny amount of stock.
 

Lionvibez

Posts: 1,838   +1,067
I am still on Intel Haswell 4770k, but that doesn't mean that I have any kind of loyalty to Chipzilla. Only a fool would think that.

It's only a matter of time before I too buy an AMD CPU for the first time when I ditch this rig.

There are a lot of ppl like me. You really need to wake up, smell the coffee and go out of your mom's basement. The world is changing, and Chipzilla can no longer use every dirty trick in the book to gouge and defraud non-savvy customers.
Are you planning to hold out to DDR5?

Right now I think is a tough time to plan an upgrade with the COVID stuff and price mark ups.
 

Aryassen

Posts: 31   +37
I am still on Intel Haswell 4770k, but that doesn't mean that I have any kind of loyalty to Chipzilla. Only a fool would think that.

It's only a matter of time before I too buy an AMD CPU for the first time when I ditch this rig.

There are a lot of ppl like me. You really need to wake up, smell the coffee and go out of your mom's basement. The world is changing, and Chipzilla can no longer use every dirty trick in the book to gouge and defraud non-savvy customers.
I was in similar shoes, rocking a 2500K, then a 2600K, not wanting to move on, as it was enough for my needs, and because didn't see the "big upgrade" until the 8th gen Intels (and by then Ryzen has arrived). Then I couldn't resist any longer and went for the 3600 as soon as they came out, and it proved to be a great choice: apart from gaming, I do transcoding and folding, and there the difference is very noticeable. Gaming? Not so much, probably because I still play at 1080p/60, with a GTX 1060 (which I just kept from the previous system), and I don not play multiplayer games (where it is documented that 6 or even 8 cores can be saturated), so for single player, story-driven FPS games (at high details), a 4/8 CPU with a mid-tier (now more like low tier, I know...) GPU is still enough (that can actually be taken as a positive consequence of Intel monopoly for so many years, limiting their desktop line to 4/8)
 

Aryassen

Posts: 31   +37
Considering that the 10900K is still essentially the same microach as a 7700K, the product itself is actually really not that bad, especially from an engineering angle. 10 cores@4.3, produced on 14nm, using an aging architecture, and still fitting into a 125W power envelope, I say it is actually impressive (I for one expected worse, to be honest).
However, I agree with the article's conclusion, that in the end it is hard to recommend it. The cooler is also a factor: 125W would definitely demand a decent cooler, a 'budget champ" 212 Evo variant won't cut it (no matter how much I actually love that cooler). And with a decent cooler taken into consideration, the price gap is getting even larger against a 3900X.
I also agree that for many, the small gaming difference is not going to justify the noticeable price premium (even if they don't care about productvity). And then there is the upgrade path, which is a different matter entirely...
 

RealNeil

Posts: 44   +22
Hi TechSpot team,
Thanks for the review. Great as always.

I too am joining others regarding "cooler solution" omission.

Pricing is important. And cooling that CPU will require some serious cooler. That adds at least 10% to its price.

That skews the whole realistic perfomance/price ratio.
Plus, we do not know, how that CPU would work under 50$ air cooler (cause, there will be people buying this for their 10900K).

I have the I9-9900K CPU here (as well as a Ryzen 3800X) and people warned me that it would run hot. So I bought a Swiftech H280 X3 Edge Prestige AIO for it. (280mm All in one cooler)
$128.00 US
With normal use, it stays in the 30-degree Celcius range +-5 or 6 degrees. Gaming gets a little higher.
I just ran Intel Burn Test and never got any higher than 76C On that program's "high" setting.

A decent AIO will cool these beasts properly, as long as you don't shoot the moon with your overclock.
Mine is at 4700MHz. and bursts to 5100MHz.