Intel Core i9-7900X Processor Review

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Final Thoughts and Conclusions

The Intel Core i9-7900X processor and the associated Intel X299 LGA2066 platform are brand new and still a little rough around the edges. As with all new process architectures and chipsets things will get better with time and they already have. The Intel Core i9-7900X 10-core, 20-thread processor looks great on paper and the price is damn good compared to what Intel brought the Core i7-6950X to market at, but the performance fell a little short of our expectations. We try to go into every review with an open mind and no expectations, but with Skylake-X we expected a beastly processor that would destroy everything on the market. The Intel Core i9-7900X crushed the Core i7-6950X in MOST of the heavily threaded workload tests. The keyword there is most. We expected it to crush it in all those tests. We knew it wasn’t going to lead the gaming benchmarks nor the browsing benchmarks, but we really thought it was going to lead in the others.

If I’m laying down $1000 to buy the flagship Intel Core i9-7900X processor I’m expecting to get the best performance in everything. The problem here is that the Intel Core i9-7900X isn’t really the flagship processor for the Skylake-X processor series. Intel still has the Core i9-7920X (12-core, 24-thread at $1,199), the Core i9-7940X (14-core, 28-thread at $1,399), Core i9-7960X (16-core, 32-thread at $1,699) and the Core i9-7980XE (18-core, 36-thread at $1,999) coming to market in the near future. The real beast is going to be the Intel Core i9-7980XE for two thousand dollars. If you have deep pockets and want the most cores and threads possible then you don’t want the Core i9-7900X that we tested today, but rather the Intel Core i9-7980XE that is still a bit off.

Intel Core-X Series Specifications
Processor Cores/ Threads L3 Cache PCIe Lanes Base Clock Turbo Clock 2.0 Turbo Clock 3.0 Price
Core i9-7980XE
18C/36T
TBD TBD TBD TBD TBD $1,999
Core i9-7960X
16C/32T
TBD TBD TBD TBD TBD $1,699
Core i9-7940X
14C/28T
TBD TBD TBD TBD TBD $1,399
Core i9-7920X
12C/24T
TBD
TBD
TBD TBD TBD $1199
Core i9-7900X
10C/20T
13.75 MB
44
3.3 GHz
4.3 GHz
4.5 GHz
$999
Core i9-7820X
8C/16T
11 MB
28
3.6 GHz
4.3 GHz
4.5 GHz
$599
Core i9-7800X
6C/12T
8.25 MB
28
3.5 GHz
4.0 GHz
N/A $389
Core i7-7740K
4C/8T
8 MB
16
4.3 GHz
4.5 GHz
N/A $339
Core i5-7640K
4C/4T
6 MB
16
4.0 GHz
4.2 GHz
N/A $242

The other big issue or complicating matter with the high-end desktop market is that AMD is back with a viable option thanks to Ryzen Threadripper. If AMD Ryzen Threadripper wasn’t coming to market with up to 16-core, 32-thread models will be available there likely wouldn’t be a second round of Intel Skylake-X processors coming out. The bad news for AMD is that Intel just added these processors on top of the usual product stack and is selling them for more money. It feels like Intel is taunting AMD with this pricing by saying we’ll respect your core count and will beat that, but your product isn’t a big enough threat to adjust our pricing. The AMD Ryzen Threadripper 1950X 16-core, 32-thread processor is going to be $999 and the Ryzen Threadripper 1920X 12-core, 24-thread processor is going to be $799. That means the AMD Ryzen Threadripper 1950X 16-core processor is price comparable to the Intel Core i9-7900X that we reviewed here today. When it comes to multi-threaded tasks that the Intel Core i9-7900X dominated in our testing with 10-cores will it still be on top in early August when Threadripper comes out? It will be interesting to see how this all pans out.

Intel Core i9-7900X Retail Box Processor

The Intel Core i9-7900X is a very powerful processor and it shows that the upcoming Skylake-X processors will be absolutely insane. The smart cache hierarchy changes on Skylake-X and the inclusion of the AVX-512 instruction set look like they will pay off down the road based on what Intel has told us. We need to make some changes to our testing suite for these new processors as with 18-core processors coming we need to get more mega-tasking into the mix. That is something we are currently working on behind the scenes to get ready for the big core Threadripper versus Core i9 battle that will be happening here this summer.

For now we are advising our readers to wait to purchase a a high-end processor that is over $500. Let the Intel X299 platform become more refined and let AMD Ryzen Threadripper come out. We are witnessing the fastest rise in processor core count ever this this release, so grab some popcorn and let Intel and AMD bring out these mega-core processors. The Intel Core i9-7900X is just a little taste of what is to come!

You can purchase the Intel Core i9-7900X Skylake-X processor for $1061.99 shipped and the ASUS X299 Deluxe motherboard we used for testing will set you back $487.30 shipped on Amazon.

 

Legit Bottom Line: The Intel Core i9-7900X processor looks good, but Intel has processors with more cores coming out later this year that are based on the same architecture!

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  • Cyberguy

    Give me a Threadripper any day.

    • arterius2

      Get a real job and you can afford any of those things, kid.

      • Cyberguy

        But I can afford them. A thousand times over. And I don’t even need your “real job”. Why should buy something I don’t need? Grow up junior, you’re out of your league here.

        • arterius2

          Triggered, We got a burger flipper here. ^

        • Cyberguy

          Aww! Jelly much?
          My backyard grill has seen a lot of action this year. You wishing your mama taught you how to cook?

        • arterius2

          Yea go back to flipping those meat loafs, peon.

        • Cyberguy

          That’s it? That’s all you got? I’d hoped you were better at trolling that that.

          So sad. Come back when you get better at it junior.

  • Terry Perry

    These kind of things are for the RICH who can TAX Wright them OFF because it is for their Company or Business.The Average person can’t do that. We just get to drool and Dream some day. BUT NOW there is the 1800 8 core NO MORE Dreaming. See the Price of the M.B.what a Joke.

    • arterius2

      wtf are you on crack? Do you flip burgers for a living? $1000 is not for the rich, that is like couple days of salary, get a real job.

      • Cyberguy

        $1000 is way too much for this junk. Perhaps like you are fond of telling others, you should get a real job yourself if $1000 is all you get for a couple days work.

        Peasant.