10th Gen Core Processors; The Skylake Is The Limit
Today we get to see a preview of the new Z490 chipset from Intel as well as the Comet Lake S family of processors, including the 10 core, 5.3GHz peak frequency i9-10900K. To describe the processor more accurately requires a bit more effort as there are a number of important distinctions; that 5.3GHz figure is specifically for a single core using Intel’s Thermal Velocity Boost and would be 5.1GHz using the more familiar Turbo Boost or 5.2GHz with Turbo Boost Max. If you were to look at the performance of all cores, you can get 4.9GHz with the new ITVB mode (we’re going to need new pet names), 4.8GHz with All Core Turbo Boost; no matter how you look at it that is still a nice jump from the 3.7GHz Base clock.
The i9-10900KF offers the same performance without Intel UHD 630 graphics onboard and drops below the already respectable tray price of the i9-10900K to $472, the latter is $488. Unless you are buying 1000 for yourself you won’t get them quite that inexpensively but Intel is continuing their strategy of offering lower prices to consumers. This is not reflected in the Core i3 series, as they priced between $122 to $154 at volume which is a fair jump from the 9th generation of processors. On the other hand it is very nice to see mutlithreading at this level, all are four core eight thread processors and range from 4.3GHz to 4.6GHz Boost clock.
As was expected, Intel retained PCIe 3.0 on this series, as it is at heart a refinement of SkyLake and not a brand new architecture which we would likely need to see in order to add PCIe 4.0 support. However the new LGA 1200 socket does have 49 more pins than the previous generation, which are currently do not seem to be used for anything. Could this imply a newer series of chips will offer PCIe 4.0 and even better, could the Z490 chipset support two generations of Intel processors?
You can see slides covering the rest of the Comet Lake S SKUs, including the low cost Celeron and Pentiums over at ServeTheHome. If you are more interested in the specific performance increases Intel highlighted you can take a look at Gamers Nexus as they have posted additional slides from the launch, including the rather interesting one you can see below. Intel states they have reduced the thickness of the die from 800 microns to 500 microns, including extra thickness on the IHS material under the lid to ensure current coolers will still be fully compatible with the new chips.
You can expect to hear more about these chips from us very shortly, so onto the next update which focuses on the new Z490 boards that were shown off.
Here is an interesting stat for our readers. Intel sees a market of around 4-5 million overclocking CPUs each year. That was a stat casually described during the 10th Gen Intel Core series pre-briefing for “Comet Lake-S” processors. Since this is yet another Skylake iteration, we wanted to focus more on the platform and capabilities before getting to the SKUs.