Intel Core i9-12900KS vs. Core i9-12900K

After the huge success of Intel’s Core i9-12900K, the corporate adopted go well with with a particular model of its flagship chip – the Core i9-12900KS. Clocked at 300MHz above the bottom half, this can be a Halo product that appears to squeeze essentially the most out of Intel’s Twelfth-gen Elder Lake structure.

Intel has given up on these particular version CPUs for a couple of generations, and the Core i9-12900KS isn’t a spectacular return to kind. This can be a problematic CPU with excessive thermal and energy calls for, and in lots of circumstances, it doesn’t supply benefits over the bottom mannequin.

Jacob Roach / Digital Traits

I’ll cowl every thing from specs to benchmarks right here, however make sure you learn our Intel Core i9-12900KS evaluation and Intel Core i9-12900K evaluation for a whole breakdown, and why we rank the latter chip among the many greatest CPUs. can. ,


Core i9-12900KS Core i9-12900K
Nook 16 (8 p-core, 8 e-core) 16 (8 p-core, 8 e-core)
threads 24 24
base frequency 3.4GHz (P-core), 2.5GHz (E-core) 3.2GHz (P-core), 2.4GHz (E-core)
Most turbo frequency (single-core) 5.5GHz 5.2GHz
Max Turbo Frequency (All Cores) 5.2GHz (P-core), 4GHz (E-core) 5.1GHz (P-core), 3.9GHz (E-core)
manufacturing course of, manufacturing course of Intel 7 Intel 7
built-in graphics Intel UHD Graphics 770 Intel UHD Graphics 770
reminiscence assist As much as DDR5-4800, DDR4-3200 As much as DDR5-4800, DDR4-3200
Intel Good Cache 30MB 30MB
base energy 150W 125W
Max Turbo Energy 241W 241W

Pricing and Availability

Jacob Roach / Digital Traits

Intel launched the Core i9-12900K in November 2021 at a listing worth of round $589. The Core i9-12900KS arrived in April 2022 at a considerably greater worth of $739. They could be the worth listed by Intel, however there’s a giant distinction in what you’ll really pay.

The Core i9-12900K runs between $600 and $620, whereas the Core i9-12900KS sells for nearer to $800. There’s a vary of costs, however you’ll be able to anticipate to pay wherever from $150 to $200 extra for the KS mannequin.

It’s essential to keep in mind that the Core i9-12900KS is new, so it’s nonetheless promoting for round $800. I anticipate it to change into less expensive within the coming months. On the time of writing, I bought one in inventory for $780 with a $30 low cost — and it’s lower than two weeks because the CPU launched.

an illustration

I ran the Core i9-12900KS and Core i9-12900K by way of a set of benchmarks to see how they maintain up. All of our exams have been run on an open-air check bench with an RTX 3090 graphics card and 32GB of DDR5-6400 reminiscence. I’ve chosen solely a very powerful benchmarks right here, so make sure you learn our full evaluation (linked above) for the total outcomes.

The Intel Core i9-12900KS and 12900K CPU benchmarks don't show much difference between them.

Beginning with two CPU-focused benchmarks, you’ll be able to see how little distinction there’s between the Core i9-12900KS and the Core i9-12900K. In each the Cinebench R23 and Geekbench 5, the only core outcomes are so shut they barely even report on the graph. The Core i9-12900KS will get a slight 5% uptick in Cinebench, which you’ll simply make up for with overclocking.

The distinction is even nearer in our multi-core outcomes, however they favor the cheaper Core i9-12900K. At Cinebench, the giveaway managed to achieve about 4%. Even so, uncooked CPU efficiency between the 2 chips is basically the identical.

Intel Core i9-12900KS and 12900K PugetBench results.

Actual functions present a transparent distinction. In inventive apps like Adobe Premiere Professional and Photoshop, the Core i9-12900KS is noticeably quicker than its counterpart. It enjoys a rise of about 5% over Premiere Professional, whereas sustaining an enormous 12% lead in Photoshop. These are spectacular advantages, but it surely’s essential to keep in mind that they don’t apply to all functions.

Gaming is a main instance of this. My testing confirmed that there’s solely a 2.2% distinction between the Core i9-12900K and Core i9-12900KS in video games at 1080p. The distinction is definitely in favor of the Core i9-12900K, with greater body charges placing in it. pink useless redemption 2 And Murderer’s Creed Valhalla, whereas barely behind Forza Horizon 4.

Intel Core i9-12900KS and 12900K Gaming Benchmarks.

The one gaming benchmark the Core i9-12900KS clearly received was the 3D Mark Time Spy, besides, it was only one% quicker. For those who’re into gaming, one thing like AMD’s Ryzen 7 5800X3D is the best choice proper now.

thermal and energy draw

A Core i9-12900KS processor sits on its box.Jacob Roach / Digital Traits

The Core i9-12900K and Core i9-12900KS each have greater thermal and energy limits. The quicker KS mannequin is hotter and extra power-hungry because of its 300MHz increase.

Throughout a stress check, the Core i9-12900K peaked at 84 levels Celsius, whereas the Core i9-12900KS climbed all the way in which to 101 levels. I really had a Core i9-12900KS below a 360mm all-in-one liquid cooler—I used a 240mm for a Core i9-12900K—which exhibits how scorching this specific version chip is.

The Core i9-12900KS is hotter, and it attracts extra energy. Each chips have a rated wattage of 241W, however the Core i9-12900KS peaked at 274W throughout the stress check—and that was with Intel’s energy restrict enabled. The Core i9-12900K, on ​​the opposite hand, clocked in at 210W of energy. Eradicating the constraints, the Core i9-12900K climbed nearer to 300W, with huge energy and thermals to match the Particular Version.

The Core i9-12900KS is mainly an overclocked Core i9-12900K, and it exhibits up with elevated energy draw and thermals. This additionally means the Core i9-12900KS has much less overclocking headroom until you go for intensive customized liquid cooling or excessive LN2 overclocking.

save your cash

An Intel Core i9-12900K is housed in the motherboard.Jacob Roach / Digital Traits

The Core i9-12900KS isn’t value the additional $200. Though Intel’s Twelfth-generation Elder Lake structure has been a revolution for Staff Blue, the Core i9-12900KS is its worst performer. It provides peak efficiency, however these margins are slim they usually include huge thermal and electrical issues.

However, the Core i9-12900K is a outstanding processor. It’s cheaper than the most effective AMD proper now whereas providing higher efficiency. And with a little bit CPU overclocking, it may put the Core i9-12900KS again instead.

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