Intel Core i9-12900KS, World’s First & Fastest 5.5 GHz Desktop CPU, To Launch on 5th April

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Intel seems to have disclosed the launch date of the world's first and fastest 5.5 GHz CPU, the Alder Lake Core i9-12900KS.

Intel Core i9-12900KS 5.5 GHz Alder Lake CPU, Tackling 3D V-Cache With Frequency For The Gaming Performance Crown

The Intel Core i9-12900KS is designed as a 'Special Edition' CPU, offering one step up over the i9-12900K. It's a chip for the blue team to prove that they still hold the core speed crown and there are two reasons why Intel is launching this chip right now, first and the most obvious is the AMD Ryzen 7 5800X3D which aims to show the benefits of 3D V-Cache in gaming versus frequency and the second is the 5 GHz+ Ryzen 7000 'Zen 4' lineup coming later this year. With the 12900KS, Intel not only wants to offer the best chip to enthusiasts but also showcase how they are already going to achieve 5.5 GHz frequencies on a 16 core part versus Zen 4 and how frequency still matters for gaming.

MSI Breaks Its Own CPU Frequency World Record, Pushes Intel Core i9-12900KS CPU To 7.5 GHz on MEG Z690 Unify-X

Both 3D V-Cache and Higher-Frequency come at a cost. One chip is non-overclockable and comes with reduced clocks while featuring a high price while the other is an enthusiast-priced chip for the LGA mainstream platform that runs hot and consumes lots of power. Intel will be building 4 PCs to showcase the benefits of 12th Gen Alder Lake CPUs including the Core i9-12900KS during the 'Intel Talking Tech' stream on Twitch.

The Intel Core i9-12900KS will retail for a $150 US higher MSRP than the Core i9-12900K & feature a 19W higher maximum turbo power limit than the standard variant. It will feature a much higher all and single-core boost clock of up to 5.5 GHz but will require lots of cooling to keep it under spec. It looks like overclockers will be eyeing for its heavily binned nature to break some world records and it will end up as the fastest clock CPU on the planet but the 12900K will remain the better option for its price and performance.

What It Offers: Key features and capabilities of the i9-12900KS include:

Intel 13th Gen Raptor Lake Flagship, Core i9-13900K, Could Feature Clock Speeds Up To 5.8 GHz

  • Up to 5.5 GHz max turbo frequency with Intel Thermal Velocity Boost.
  • Intel Adaptive Boost Technology for improved gaming performance by opportunistically allowing higher multi-core turbo frequencies.
  • 16 cores (eight P-cores and eight E-cores), 24 threads, 150W processor base power, 30MB Intel Smart Cache, and PCIe Gen 5.0 and 4.0 support.
  • Up to DDR5 4800 MT/s and DDR4 3200 MT/s support.
  • Chipset compatible with existing Z690 motherboards with latest BIOS recommended for the best gaming experience.
  • The i9-12900KS processor allows gamers and overclocking enthusiasts to take performance to the next level.

Intel Core i9-12900KS 5.5 GHz CPU Specifications

The Intel Core i9-12900KS will be the flagship chip in the 12th Gen Alder Lake Desktop CPU lineup. It will feature 8 Golden Cove cores and 8 Gracemont cores for a total of 16 cores (8+8) and 24 threads (16+8).

The P-cores (Golden Cove) will operate at a maximum boost frequency of up to 5.5 GHz with 1-2 active cores and 5.2 GHz with all-cores active while the E-cores (Gracemont) will operate at 3.90 GHz across 1-4 cores and up to 3.7 GHz when all cores are loaded. The CPU will feature 30 MB of L3 cache.

The main change is that to accommodate the higher frequency, Intel has upped the base TDP by 25 Watts over the Core i9-12900K. As such, the 12900KS will feature a base TDP of 150W, and the max turbo power rating has also been bumped by 19W to 260W (vs 241W). Intel has yet to launch the chip officially but that could happen in the next couple of days & motherboard makers have also started releasing their respective support BIOS with updated microcode for the chip.

Intel 12th Gen Alder Lake Desktop CPU Specs

CPU NameP-Core CountE-Core CountTotal Core / ThreadP-Core Base / Boost (Max)P-Core Boost (All-Core)E-Core Base / BoostE-Core Boost (All-Core)L3 CacheTDP (PL1)TDP (PL2)Expected (MSRP) Price
Core i9-12900KS8816 / 243.4 / 5.5 GHz5.2 GHz2.4 / 3.9 GHz3.7 GHz30 MB150W260W$739 US
Core i9-12900K8816 / 243.2 / 5.2 GHz5.0 GHz2.4 / 3.9 GHz3.7 GHz30 MB125W241W$599 US
Core i9-129008816 / 242.4 / 5.1 GHzTBA1.8 / 3.8 GHzTBA30 MB65W202W$489 US
$464 US (F)
Core i9-12900T8816 / 241.4 / 4.9 GHzTBA1.0 / 3.6 GHzTBA30 MB35W106W$489 US
Core i7-12700K8412 / 203.6 / 5.0 GHz4.7 GHz2.7 / 3.8 GHz3.6 GHz25 MB125W190W$419 US
Core i7-127008412 / 202.1 / 4.9 GHzTBA1.6 / 3.6 GHzTBA25 MB65W180W$339 US
$314 US (F)
Core i7-12700T8412 / 201.4 / 4.7 GHzTBA1.0 / 3.4 GHzTBA25 MB35W99W$339 US
Core i5-12600K6410 / 163.7 / 4.9 GHz4.5 GHz2.8 / 3.6 GHz3.4 GHz20 MB125W150W$299 US
Core i5-12600606 / 123.3 / 4.8 GHz4.4 GHzN/AN/A18 MB65W117W$223 US
Core i5-12600T606 / 122.1 / 4.6 GHzTBAN/AN/A18 MB65W74W$223 US
Core i5-12490P606 / 123.0 / 4.6 GHzTBAN/AN/A20 MB65W74W~$250 US
Core i5-12500606 / 123.0 / 4.6 GHzTBAN/AN/A18 MB65W117W$202 US
Core i5-12500T606 / 122.0 / 4.4 GHzTBAN/AN/A18 MB35W74W$202 US
Core i5-12400606 / 122.5 / 4.4 GHz4.0 GHzN/AN/A18 MB65W117W$192 US
$167 US (F)
Core i5-12400T606 / 121.8 / 4.2 GHzTBAN/AN/A18 MB35W74W$192 US
Core i3-12300404 / 83.5 / 4.4 GHzTBAN/AN/A12 MB60W89W$143 US
Core i3-12300T404 / 82.3 / 4.2 GHzTBAN/AN/A12 MB35W69W$143 US
Core i3-12100404 / 83.3 / 4.3 GHzTBAN/AN/A12 MB60W
58W (F)
89W$122 US
$97 US (F)
Core i3-12100T404 / 82.2 / 4.1 GHzTBAN/AN/A12 MB35W69W$122 US
Intel Pentium Gold G7400202 / 43.7 GHzN/AN/AN/A6 MB46WN/A$64 US
Intel Pentium Gold G7400T202 / 43.1 GHzN/AN/AN/A6 MB35WN/A$64 US
Intel Celeron G6900202 / 23.4 GHzN/AN/AN/A4 MB46WN/A$42 US
Intel Celeron G6900T202 / 22.8 GHzN/AN/AN/A4 MB35WN/A$42 US
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