Intel inadvertently reveals 9th generation CPU lineup but no 8-core chip in sight

(Image credit: Intel)

Intel appears to be readying a new round of processors that will be marketed as 9th generation parts. While nothing has been officially announced, several new 9000-series SKUs appear on a couple of Intel documents that were recently made public, one of which Intel promptly pulled offline.

That would be the Microcode Revision Guidance (PDF), a document that was updated with a bunch of 9th generation processor models, including the Core i5-9600K, Core i5-9600, Core i5-9500, Core i5-9400T, Core i5-9400, Core i3-9100, Core i3-9000. No other details were listed, and trying to load the document now brings up an error page.

However, there is a separate document (PDF) that is still viewable (at the time of this writing), and it lists some actual specs. Interestingly, they're listed in the June 2018 8th Gen Core Family, even though they are 9th generation processors.

Here's a breakdown:

  •  Intel Core i5-9600K: 6 cores / 6 threads, 3.7GHz to 4.5GHz, 9MB L3 cache, 95W TDP  
  •  Intel Core i5-9600: 6 cores / 6 threads, 3.1GHz to 4.5GHz, 9MB L3 cache, 65W TDP
  •  Intel Core i5-9500: 6 cores / 6 threads, 3GHz to 4.3GHz, 9MB L3 cache, 65W TDP
  •  Intel Core i5-9400T: 6 cores / 6 threads, 1.8GHz to 3.4GHz, 9MB L3 cache, 35W TDP  
  •  Intel Core i5-9400: 6 cores / 6 threads , 2.9GHz to 4.1GHz, 9MB L3 cache, 65W TDP
  •  Intel Core i3-9100: 4 cores / 4 threads, 3.7GHz, 6MB L3 cache, 65W TDP
  •  Intel Core i3-9000: 4 cores / 4 threads, 3.7GHz, 6MB L3 cache, 65W TDP

As Videocardz points out, these new CPUs are 100MHz to 200MHz faster than what will become their predecessors, while maintaining the same core and thread counts and TDP.

Absent from both documents are any 9th generation Core i7 or Core i9 processors, including the rumored Core i9-9900K, an 8-core/16-thread chip that figures to be Intel's burliest mainstream desktop processor to date. Rumor has it Intel has at least three new higher end mainstream processors on tap, even though neither document above lists them. The include:

  • Core i9-9900K: 8 cores / 16 threads
  • Core i7-9700K: 6 cores / 12 threads
  • Core i7-9700: 6 cores / 12 threads

Intel's generational labeling scheme and codenames can be confusing, and refreshing Coffee Lake, as the company appears to be doing, won't help matters much. It's possible that Intel could market these as 8th generation processors, but with these being 9000-series CPUs, it seems doing so would just further complicate things.

We'll obviously know more once Intel officially launches these new processors. It will also be interesting to see what kind of deals might be had on existing CPUs, like the Core i7-8700K, once the new generation processors arrive.

Paul Lilly

Paul has been playing PC games and raking his knuckles on computer hardware since the Commodore 64. He does not have any tattoos, but thinks it would be cool to get one that reads LOAD"*",8,1. In his off time, he rides motorcycles and wrestles alligators (only one of those is true).