Test Bed and Setup

As per our processor testing policy, we take a premium category motherboard suitable for the socket, and equip the system with a suitable amount of memory running at the manufacturer's maximum supported frequency. This is also typically run at JEDEC subtimings where possible. It is noted that some users are not keen on this policy, stating that sometimes the maximum supported frequency is quite low, or faster memory is available at a similar price, or that the JEDEC speeds can be prohibitive for performance. While these comments make sense, ultimately very few users apply memory profiles (either XMP or other) as they require interaction with the BIOS, and most users will fall back on JEDEC supported speeds - this includes home users as well as industry who might want to shave off a cent or two from the cost or stay within the margins set by the manufacturer. Where possible, we will extend out testing to include faster memory modules either at the same time as the review or a later date.

Test Setup
Intel 9th Gen Intel Core i9-9900KS
Motherboard MSI Z390 Gaming Edge AC (A.60 BIOS)
CPU Cooler TRUE Copper
DRAM Corsair Vengeance 2x8 GB DDR4-2666
GPU Sapphire RX 460 2GB (CPU Tests)
MSI GTX 1080 Gaming 8G (Gaming Tests)
PSU Corsair AX860i
SSD Crucial MX200 1TB

Many thanks to...

We must thank the following companies for kindly providing hardware for our multiple test beds. Some of this hardware is not in this test bed specifically, but is used in other testing.

Hardware Providers
Sapphire RX 460 Nitro MSI GTX 1080 Gaming X OC Crucial MX200 +
MX500 SSDs
Corsair AX860i +
AX1200i PSUs
G.Skill RipjawsV,
SniperX, FlareX
Crucial Ballistix
The Intel Core i9-9900KS Review Going for Power: How to Manage 5.0 GHz Turbo
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  • imaheadcase - Thursday, October 31, 2019 - link

    So he makes a point about why people want a CPU and he is instant fanboy? Well you certainly got the boy part down pat..
  • Jorgp2 - Thursday, October 31, 2019 - link

    What are you talking about?

    Zen 2 only has a tiny IPC advantage over Skylake.
  • Spunjji - Friday, November 1, 2019 - link

    10% isn't tiny, especially when boosting clock speeds by 10% is no longer trivial.
  • Korguz - Friday, November 1, 2019 - link

    imagine what it would be like if the clock speeds were higher... if zen 2 is this close, or faster with the clockspeed disadvantage it has now.. what will it be like if zen 2 was hitting 4.6+ ghz ???
  • outsideloop - Friday, November 1, 2019 - link

    We have a few months until Zen 3 clocks will leak.
  • MDD1963 - Thursday, November 7, 2019 - link

    Don't a full 10% of the 3900X samples actually have a core or two hit their advertised 4600 MHz for about 5 full consecutive seconds....sometimes? :)
  • Korguz - Friday, November 8, 2019 - link

    dont intel cpus NEED the higher clocks in order to have the performance they get ? clock them at the ryzen equivilents.. and see how well they perform.. when will people realize clock speed isnt everything ??
  • amnesia0287 - Friday, November 8, 2019 - link

    What would it be like if it hit 6ghz?

    Does it matter since it can’t?

    I am very eager to see Zen 3 tho. Regardless of all the fanboys. I feel like it’s very much a mixed bag to chose between intel and amd just cause of some of the instruction sets and #of threads used by various things.

    But if even half of the stuff about Zen3 is true 2020 should be AMDs year as I don’t believe anything intel launches until 2021 is really gonna be competitive.
  • rocky12345 - Tuesday, November 5, 2019 - link

    Zen 2 has more like 13%-15% IPC gain over released Intel CPU's right now at same clock speeds depending on work load. There was a video on Youtube where one of the bigger YT channels did a side by side of AMD Zen 2 CPU and Intel 9900K both @4GHz and I was surprised that the AMD chip was ahead in most everything by a fair amount.

    When it came to gaming though Intel had a slight lead in a few games that seemed to favor Intel. But there were also games that AMD got wins from a s well. This would explain why AMD with a CPU with same core count is now able to match Intel even though AMD has a lower clock speed and even come close or match in a lot of games. I am no fanboy for either camp I currently only own Intel based systems but would be more than willing to look at either camps hardware when I do my next set of upgrades. That is just how good things are now on either side ans with AMD finally back in the game and putting pressure on Intel prices are also now getting better on the Intel side of the street as well. It is a win for everyone when things like this start happening.
  • AshlayW - Friday, November 1, 2019 - link

    Hey, it's a good thing the 3900X doesn't have slow cores then, does it :)

    Seriously, though. i3-9350KF exists, go buy that if you want clock speed :P

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