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Intel Core i9 9900K vs AMD Ryzen 9 5900x: Which CPU is Better?

Intel i9 9900K and Ryzen 9 5900X are two very close competitors in the desktop CPU industry. However, choosing between the both isn’t that tough because you can easily detect the differences and pick the one that suits you the best.

Today, I am going to compare the Intel i9 9900k and Ryzen 9 5900x, two of the best processors from companies competing in the market. Intel came up with the i9 9900k processor, while Ryzen’s 9 5900k hit the stores within a little lesser price range (Ryzen is around $300 less than Intel). Let’s compare these two processors and see which one fares better.

Both Intel and Ryzen are on par with each other with most of the specs. However, Ryzen is newer, cheaper, and belongs to a more modern build. Both the processors also show overclocking, but again, Ryzen is ahead of Intel in this one with an average bench of 103% as opposed to Intel’s i9 9900k. 

To be honest, Ryzen 9 5900x is a better processor for gaming, but Ryzen shows an average 6.8% increase in the FPS rate. The launch of the 5900x has seen a significant rise in the sales percentage, but if you are looking for a device with a processor that does whatever you want, then it’s a no-no. If you are looking to build a performance machine, then going with Ryzen on paper might sound like the better option, but it is Intel that will last much longer and perform much better and be more consistent in the long run. 

SpecificationIntel i9 9900kRyzen 9 5900x
CPU Generation9th-gen4th-Gen
Cores/Threads8-Core/16 threads12-cores/24 threads
Max Boost Clock5.0 GHz4.8 GHz
Cache (L1/L2/L3)64K (per core)/256K (per core)/16MB (shared)64K (per core)/512K (per core)/64MB (shared)
PCIe VersionPCIe 4.0PCIe 4.0
Memory SupportUp to 64 GB of DDR4 2666 MHzUp to 128 GiB of DDR4-3200 memory
Cooling SolutionNot IncludedNot Included
Integrated Graphics CardIntel UHD Graphics 630None
CPU SocketLGA 1151AMD AM4
Default TDP (Thermal Design Power)95 W105 W

With this table, you can say that the Ryzen 9 5900X has a good edge over the 9900K because of its higher number of cores and threads. However, the 9900K comes with a little higher clock speed. So, the difference can easily be detected in the benchmark comparison below.

ParameterIntel i9 9900kRyzen 9 5900x
CPU Mark Score2031439448
Single-Core Score13081670
Multi-Core Score (Geek bench)851213968
Single-Thread Rating29593494

Ryzen 9 5900X is clearly a winner here as well with a massive difference in single-core and multi-core CPU performance.

Cinebench BenchmarkIntel i9 9900kRyzen 9 5900x
Cinebench R23 (Single Core)13431670
Cinebench R23 (Multi Core)1247022046
Cinebench R20 (Single Core)500636
Cinebench R20 (Multi Core)49148545
Cinebench R15 (Single Core)218271
Cinebench R15 (Multi Core)20813678

To give you the context, Cinebench is CPU benchmarking software. It is used to calculate any CPU’s single-core and multi-core performance. These are three different versions of Cinebench i.e. R15, R20, and R23. R23 is the latest version with much more effective operation than the older version (R15 and R20)

  1. Multi-Core-Score. This score simply tells you the CPU’s performance in multitasking. Rendering, encoding, and most of the productivity software will make use of multi-cores.
  2. Single-Core Score. As the name suggests, this score determines the performance capability of a single CPU. This score is good to determine your CPU’s effectiveness in gaming and the overall snappiness in any operation.

Definitely, the AMD Ryzen 9 5900X is a better option for gamers. It has a more number of cores and a better single-core performance as well. But, that doesn’t mean the i9 9900K can’t run games. It will perfectly offer you an almost similar gaming performance. However, when it comes to high-end gaming and deploying your CPU with very powerful graphics cards, you will get the best benefits with the Ryzen 9 5900X. You can watch this YouTube video to see the gaming benchmark comparison.

You can clearly see that the Ryzen 9 5900X is offering better FPS but the difference isn’t that huge.

Well, the answer to this question depends on what type of use you are. If you are indulged in high-end video editing, graphics designing, or other professional works, you will get the best productivity benefits with the Ryzen 9 5900X.

However, if you are a normal user and do not want a very huge processing power, you are good to go with the Intel Core i9 9900K.

If your work includes a heavy amount of multi-tasking, the Ryzen 9 5900X is the best pick because of its higher number of cores and threads. But, if you think you don’t need that much power, the 9900K isn’t a bad idea.

All you need to do is to check the system requirements of your desired productivity software and then choose the right CPU between these both.

Price Comparison

It is obvious to think that the Ryzen 9 5900X is going to be an expensive option as compared to the 9900K. But, surprisingly, the Ryzen 9 5900X is the cheaper CPU of both. And, the price difference is around 100 bucks by the time I am writing this article. However, the prices keep varying and I would suggest you check the live price before making your final decision.

Final Verdict: Which One Should You Buy?

When it finally comes down to which of the two you are planning on getting, you need to look at the bigger picture. What exactly are you going to be using it for? When you look at the specs, you can clearly see that in many instances, the Ryzen out beats Intel by 10-20% on an average. Now, if you are trying to build a beast of a gaming PC, then you can go for Ryzen 9 5900X. Not only will this keep your build cost low, but it will also deliver a bit more performance than the Intel counterpart. 

If the price of the Intel i9 9900K was low, I would have definitely recommended it for budget users. But, because the Ryzen 9 5900X is the cheapest CPU between them both, I would recommend it to everyone.

If someone is a real fan of Intel CPUs or has any specific job to be done by only an Intel CPU, then they can go for 9900K. Otherwise, there is no point in opting for the 9900K over 5900X.

Let me know what you think about this comparison!

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