Intel has taken to Twitter to tease a higher clocked Core i9 12900K processor. If past precedent is anything to go by, the chip in question should receive Core i9 12900KS branding. With a boost clock of up to 5.5 GHz, such a chip would definitely indicate that Intel’s 10nm (Sorry, Intel 7) process is now working very well, and those years of 10nm memes are well and truly in the past.
12th Gen #IntelCore desktop processors are topping Best CPU lists and widely available to gamers and enthusiasts. And we're not done yet. Next stop: Up to 5.5GHz. pic.twitter.com/mEUreGSixFJanuary 3, 2022
Intel’s tweet includes a screenshot that shows one of the CPU cores clocked at 5.5 GHz with the rest of the P cores clocked at 5.2 GHz. The E cores appear to be clocked at 4.0 GHz. This compares to the standard Core i9 12900K (opens in new tab), which is able to boost to 5.2 GHz on one or two cores and up to 5.0 on all cores, with its E cores coming in at 3.9 GHz.
It’s important to note that the screenshot only shows the current CPU clocks. Although the 7-zip benchmark that’s being used is active and loading up the CPU, a pinch of salt is still required, at least until we see how the chip behaves over a complete longer term benchmark run, and not just one snapshot of it.
While the 12900K is a powerful chip, it's not known for stunning power efficiency when under an all core load. It carries a PL2 power rating of 241W, so we can expect the 12900KS to surpass this. If it’s a highly binned die, the difference may not be a lot, but if Intel is just brute forcing non binned dies to reach higher clocks, then that PL2 reading could push closer to 300W. We’ll have to test this for ourselves if we can get one into our hot little hands.
Power aside, a 12900KS would be a mega gaming CPU and if you’re building a top shelf gaming rig with something like a RTX 3090 Ti Kingpin (opens in new tab), then the 12900KS is probably going to be the CPU that you’d use to power your rig, probably with a custom water loop to keep it all humming along. Overclocked of course!
This isn’t the first time we’ve had a tease of the 12900KS. The developers of the AIDA64 software suite included a specific mention of the chip (opens in new tab) in the changelog for its Dec 22 beta.