Intel's Core i5-9600K is a fine pick for a gaming CPU
AMD-instigated price crash pushes Intel’s value gaming chip down to just £224
It’s happening already folks. Amazon Prime day might only be around the corner, yet the release of AMD’s new third-gen Ryzen CPUs are pushing the prices of everything down. That includes this fantastic Intel Core i5-9600K processor, now available for less than £230.
The Intel Core i5-9600K is a six-core chip with good clockspeeds, Intel’s latest 9th-gen architecture and its latest CPU production process. Granted, it doesn’t have hyperthreading enabled, so you’re limited to six simultaneous threads. But for most games, that’s just fine as they don’t scale terribly efficiently beyond six threads in any case.
- The Intel Core i5-9600K processor is available now from amazon.co.uk for £224 (18% off)
Beyond the six cores, the important speeds and feeds include a baseclock of 3.7GHz and a Max Turbo frequency of 4.6GHz. There’s 9MB of cache and a 95W TDP. Oh, and this is a K series chip of course. So, that means it’s fully unlocked for easy overclocking. Most reviewers have found that the 9600K will happily run at 5GHz given suitable cooling, which makes for an extremely speedy gaming CPU.
|Cores / Threads||6/6|
|Base / Turbo Clock||3.7 / 4.6 GHz|
|Graphics||Intel UHD 630|
It may be a bit old school compared to the latest AMD Ryzen processor, however it still holds its own in game.
What about those pesky new AMD Ryzen CPUs?
At this new price, the 9600K finds itself slap bang in between the new AMD Ryzen 3600 and 3600X chips. Both are six core model with multi-threading and thus 12 threads overall. For multi-threaded apps like video encoding, the Ryzen CPUs are the chips of choice.
However, for gaming it’s a different story. Intel’s architecture remains the more consistent performer for smooth gaming performance. What’s more, the Intel Core i5-9600K is significantly higher clocked than either of the AMD CPUs, and especially so versus the AMD Ryzen 3600. If you factor in overclocking, which the 9600K does very nicely indeed and the Ryzen chips do very badly indeed, the Intel option looks even more appealing from a gaming perspective.
It’s not an absolute slam dunk, of course. Those new AMD CPUs present a much stronger gaming proposition than before, and may be outselling the competition, yet if you lean towards Intel and care much more about gaming than anything else, the 9600K at this new low price looks like great value, even in the context of AMD’s latest processors.
Image Credits: Tom's Hardware/Intel