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Intel 9th Gen CPUs Are Great...if You Can Find Them

(Image credit: Intel)

The new 9th generation Intel Core processors have been plagued by high prices and a lack of stock at major computer hardware retailers around the U.S. Consumers who want to pick up a new Core i9-9900K or Core i7-9700K today have no alternative but to pay a hefty premium over Intel's recommended customer pricing.

Intel specifies a recommended price for each of its processors, but retailers are still free to slap whatever price tag they want on an item. Also at play is Intel's shortage of 14nm processors, which affects both old and new 9th generation chips. The shortage of stock has contributed to driving up the prices for the Intel Core i9-9900K, Core i7-9700K and, at some retailers, the Core i5-9600K

Recommended Customer PricingActual Pricing
Core i9-9900K$488 - $499$579.99
Core i7-9700K$374 - $385$409.99 - $419.99
Core i5-9600K$262 - $263$259 (Walmart only) - $279.99

According to Intel, the flagship Intel Core i9-9900K processor should retail for around $488 to $499. However, the processor hit the shelves with an overbloated price tag of $579.99, which is around 16 percent higher than the maximum price recommended. The Core i9-9900K isn't just the fastest gaming processor on the planet, but sold out fast too. Sadly, there is no word on when the octa-core processor will come back in stock.

Moving down the processor hierarchy, we find the Core i7-9700K processor with a $419.99 price tag, roughly nine percent more expensive than what Intel suggested. Suffering the same fate as the Core i9-9900K, the Core i7-9700K is also nowhere to be found.

Out of the three K-series processors, the Core i5-9600K is the only part that is widely available. Surprisingly, Walmart (opens in new tab) is selling the Core i5-9600K for $259. On the other hand, Newegg (opens in new tab) has the Core i5-9600K listed for $279.99, when the hexa-core processor's MSRP is between $262 and $263. On Amazon (opens in new tab), $279.99 Core i5-9600K CPUs are out of stock; you'll have to pay over $279.99 if you want one in a timely fashion.

Zhiye Liu
RAM Reviewer and News Editor

Zhiye Liu is a Freelance News Writer at Tom’s Hardware US. Although he loves everything that’s hardware, he has a soft spot for CPUs, GPUs, and RAM.