Micro Center (opens in new tab) has always been known for selling processors at below their official MSRPs. However, the retailer's current pricing for Intel's 9th Generation Coffee Lake processors is so cheap that it's almost as if the company is desperate to clear warehouse space for something else.
Micro Center has been running these bargains for a bit now, but most of the popular models, such as the Core i9-9900K (opens in new tab), Core i7-9700K (opens in new tab) or Core i5-9600K (opens in new tab) are still up for grabs (price list below). To sweeten the deal, the retailer is offering another $20 discount when the processor is purchased with an eligible LGA1151 motherboard.
Admittedly, Intel's Comet Lake-S (opens in new tab) family has superseded the Coffee Lake lineup, but the last-generation chips could prove to be a good deal for existing LGA1151 Intel 300-series motherboard owners who desire a processor upgrade, but don't want to invest in a new motherboard just for for Comet Lake-S. If you're part of that crowd, it might be worthwhile to pay your closest Micro Center a quick visit.
|Processor||Micro Center Pricing||MSRP||Cores / Threads||Base / Boost Clocks (GHz)||L3 Cache (MB)||TDP (W)|
|Core i9-9900||$329.99||$439.00 - $449.00||8 / 16||3.1 / 5.0||16||65|
|Core i9-9900K||$299.99||$488.00 - $499.00||8 / 16||3.6 / 5.0||16||95|
|Core i7-9700F||$229.99||$298.00 - $310.00||8 / 8||3.0 / 4.7||12||65|
|Core i7-9700K||$199.99||$374.00 - $385.00||8 / 8||3.6 / 4.9||12||95|
|Core i5-9600K||$169.99||$262.00 - $263.00||6 / 6||3.7 / 4.6||9||95|
|Core i5-9400||$149.99||$182.00||6 / 6||2.9 / 4.1||9||65|
|Core i3-9100F||$69.99||$79.00 - $97.00||4 / 4||3.6 / 4.2||6||65|
|Pentium Gold G5400||$49.99||$64.00||2 / 4||3.7 / NA||4||58|
The Core i9-9900K was the last-generation flagship for Intel, and the octa-core chip is currently selling for $299.99 at Micro Center. The Core i9-9900K has fallen to the Core i7-10700K (opens in new tab), but the performance margins aren't huge between the two. The Core i7-10700K retails for $377.77 (opens in new tab), so the Core i9-9900K provides $77.78 in savings.
The Core i5-9600K will probably be the most attractive option for budget gamers. The hexa-core chip might lack Hyper-Threading, but it still has plenty of cores to tackle modern titles. At $169.99, the Core i5-9600K is very tempting even for first-time builders. LGA1151 might be a waning platform, but there are still plenty of budget and high-end 300-series motherboards on the market to pair with it.
Micro Center has the ASRock Z390 Pro4 motherboard for $119.99. With the $20 discount, bundle with the Core i5-9600K and ASRock Z390 Pro4 totals up to $269.99 before taxes. If you don't plan on overclocking or need the Z390 chipset's other features, you could get away with the ASRock H310CM-HDV, which only costs $59.99. A Core i5-9600K with the ASRock H310CM-HDV would only set you back $209.98.