Published in PC Hardware

Intel’s new chip is comparable to AMD's

by on14 November 2018

But overpriced

Intel’s new Core i9-9980XE is the fastest many-core desktop processor Intel has released to date but the 18-core Core i9-9980XE still trails AMD's 24 and 32-core Threadripper WX series processors in key areas and is overpriced.

For those who came in late, the Core i9-9980XE is the new top-end CPU that supplants the Core i9-7980XE at the top of Intel's stack. The chip features 18 Skylake-X cores (36 threads) with a base clock of 3.0GHz that's 400MHz higher than the previous gen. The Core i9-9980XE has max Turbo Boost 2.0 and Turbo Boost Max 3.0 frequencies of 4.4GHz and 4.5GHz, which are 200MHz and 100MHz higher than Intel's earlier gen Core i9-7980XE, respectively.

The Core i9-9980XE offered a better single-threaded performance, with an IPC advantage that's superior to any AMD Ryzen processor currently.

But Hot Hardware's benchmark shows that Intel is behind on a lot of its readings.

While It outpaced all previous-gen Intel processors and AMD Threadripper X series processors in all of the heavily threaded applications we tested. The 18-core Core i9-9980XE typically trailed the 24 and 32 core AMD Threadripper WX series processors in those same tests.

Only the higher-clocked, Coffee Lake-based Core processors beat out the 9980XE in the lightly threaded tests. The Core i9-9980XE also overclocked well. Power consumption, while significantly higher than the previous-gen Core i9-7980XE due to the 9980XE’s higher clocks, is not out of line with expectations, and came in lower than the Threadripper WX CPUs.

The benchmark comments that Intel appears to have significantly overpriced the chip in comparison to the AMD spec.

AMD’s sub-$900 16-core Threadripper 2950X and $1,300 Threadripper 2970WX, the $1,979 price tag on the Core i9-9980XE rather strange.

While they thought that the Core i9-9980XE offers a more well-rounded experience versus a Threadripper WX series processor, due to Intel’s higher IPC, strong multi-threaded performance, and more forgiving memory setup, “we’re not sure a 54 per cent higher asking price than the 2970WX and over 2X the asking price of a Threadripper 2950X will be justifiable”.

Last modified on 14 November 2018
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