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Intel Core i9-9900K 9th Gen Processor: Best Intel CPU for Gaming in 2019

Isaac is a tech enthusiast who enjoys following top brands and closely reviewing new gadgets in both the PC and smartphone markets.

When the Intel Core i9-9900K processor came out in 2018, it was described as the next level of desktop processors. Supporting systems with 64 GB of RAM and packing a ton of power, it was designed with gamers, creators and 4K UHD entertainment in mind.

The mesmerizing component can be overclocked to unlock even higher potentials—an advantage that is highlighted by the “K” letter in the processor’s name. If you are planning to build your custom gaming desktop, however, just keep in mind that, for now, all 9th Generation Intel Core desktop CPUs require a motherboard based on the Intel 300 series chipset.

The i9-9900K makes use of advanced technologies such as Intel® Quick Sync Video, made to smoothen and improve live streaming whilst multitasking. In this era where YouTube Gaming and Twitch are dominant online platforms among gamers of all ages, the importance of quality during real-time transmission of visual content cannot be overlooked.

Intel's 9th Generation of Core processors introduces the i9-9900K, a new must-have CPU for high-end gamers.

Intel's 9th Generation of Core processors introduces the i9-9900K, a new must-have CPU for high-end gamers.

But, perhaps, what truly gives the i9-9900K processor an edge when compared with other powerful Intel Core processors such as the 8th Gen i7-8700K—a remarkable 6-core gaming CPU in its own right with 12 MB of cache and a maximum Turbo frequency at 4.70 GHz—is the data acceleration technology it supports. Known as the Intel® Optane™ memory technology, it pushes the i9-9900K to new limits in CPU benchmark tests.

The i9-9900K CPU crushes all other processors in benchmark results, performance-wise.

The i9-9900K CPU crushes all other processors in benchmark results, performance-wise.

What Is Intel® Optane™ Memory?

In a nutshell, it is a technology that allows computer users to access their files and accelerate common tasks faster. On PCs with an HDD drive as secondary storage, superior responsiveness is unlocked by enabling the HDD drive to access and retrieve data at optimal speeds. This results in accelerated games, better storage management, as well as significant reduction in the time it takes to open large media files.

Even after powering up the computer from a shut down, Intel® Optane™ memory keeps improving responsiveness by remembering frequently used files and applications. For both hardcore gamers and professional content creators using 8th Gen Intel Core i7 or i9 processors, the benefits of this smart technology greatly enhance their experience as they don’t only get a CPU that is capable of computing information at blazing speed. They also get to complete repetitive tasks in relatively shorter amounts of time, as Intel® Optane™ memory recognizes their patterns over time.

Intel Optane Memory technology reduces loading time and improves execution times when playing games or multitasking.

Intel Optane Memory technology reduces loading time and improves execution times when playing games or multitasking.

The compromise on quality for reduced file size—say, for photographers and video creators—is taken care of by Intel® Optane™ memory’s ability to boost the capacity of HDD drives for SSD-like responsiveness. It therefore no longer really matters which file goes in the SSD and which one lands on the HDD; the difference in retrieval times is cut down to an arguably negligible figure.

Who Is the 9th Gen Intel Core i9-9900K Processor For?

Built for the most demanding high-end gamers looking to play online and record themselves while live streaming, the revolutionary desktop CPU seeks to make the most out of 2019 PC games such as The Division 2, Grand Theft Auto V and Assetto Corsa. But the i9-9900K isn’t just the best gaming CPU of 2019. Technically, its robust configurations may also provide the perfect experience to other intense PC users in need of high-performance desktop processors, including:

  • Photographers looking to process and render ultra-high resolution graphics quickly, or in batch.
  • Video makers editing and rendering large video files in 4K resolution.
  • 3D art makers having to render large objects or animations.
  • Music producers working with advanced digital audio workstations (DAW)—such as FL Studio, Logic Pro X or Ableton Live—on music tracks making use of numerous VST plugins, automations and patterns.
  • Data scientists or data analysts working on very large datasets—for instance, in CSV format—requiring high computational power for intense data processing and the implementation of complex models.
  • Software developers or programmers working with advanced integrated development environments (IDE) such as Android Studio, containing robust emulators and multiple processes running at the same time.
2019 high-end PC games with advanced graphics such as Assetto Corsa should operate smoothly on desktops with the i9-9900K.

2019 high-end PC games with advanced graphics such as Assetto Corsa should operate smoothly on desktops with the i9-9900K.

What Are the i9-9900K Specs?

The 9th Gen Intel i9-9900K CPU blows other Core processors out of the water with 16 MB of cache and a maximum Turbo frequency clocked at 5.00 GHz. It has support for 4K resolution at 60Hz, as well as other technologies including Turbo Boost, Hyper-Threading, Virtualization, and Thermal Monitoring. Below are more technical and graphics specifications of the i9-9900K processor.

Specs namesSpecs values

Processor number:

i9-9900K

Launch date:

2018, Q4

Lithography:

14nm

Number of Cores:

8 (octa-core)

Number of Threads:

16

Base Frequency:

3.60 GHz

Maximum Turbo Frequency:

5.00 GHz

Cache:

16 MB SmartCache

Bus Speed:

8 GT/s DMI3

TDP:

95 W

Max Memory Size:

128 GB

Memory Types:

DDR4-2666

Maximum number of Memory Channels:

2

Maximum Memory Bandwidth:

41 GB/s

Graphics:

Intel® UHD Graphics 630

Graphics Base Frequency:

350 MHz

Graphics Maximum Dynamic Frequency:

1.20 GHz

Graphics Video Maximum Memory:

64 GB

Maximum Resolution:

4096x2304

Poll For Gamers

How Much Does an i9-9900K Processor Cost?

The i9-9900K’s starting price is $524.99 on Intel’s official website, though some authorized resellers may list a higher price at up to $660. With such value, a budget desktop equipped with that processor is virtually impossible to find. Then again, this is a high-end CPU at the top of the chain of 9th Generation processors—the most sophisticated range for desktops ever released by the California-based company.

If you are after the best PC experience you can have, having your sight directed towards the expensive side is logical. There is no doubt, after all, that the Intel Core i9-9900K is the best gaming CPU you can get in 2019.