Intel i9-9900K First Look & Return of the Test Bench

Intel i9-9900K First Look & Return of the Test Bench

The Intel i9-9900K reviews were released today. While we’re working to finish our review, we didn’t want to leave this day without any information to our readers. So we will be offering some of our initial thoughts when we unboxed the i9-9900K. It also seems a good time to bring up a bit of news on our test bench.

Intel Core i9-9900K Unboxing & Initial Thoughts

My first 8 core CPU was the Haswell-E Core i7-5960X, so it is extremely impressive to me in how they have been able to fit that much computing power in this new CPU. Until 2018 the same CPU size only contained half the amount of cores. But cramming that much power has brought up new challenges – heat. We saw in our i7-8700K review last year that while it is blazing fast, it gets very hot very quickly. Fortunately in the case of the 8700K it was possible to overclock by multiplier only or allowing the BIOS to automatically set the overclock. It was also very easy to cool down with the use of a 240mm all-in-one liquid cooling solution.

We fully expect to see a similar throttling issue with the i9-9900K when overclocked. It’s may even happen under full load at stock. Intel’s move to change back to a soldered thermal interface material (TIM) clearly indicates that they also are concerned about the heat.. It should be interesting to see just how far this new powerhouse can be pushed without hitting temperature or power limits.

A New Test Bench Arises


Regretfully a situation in the past few months led to the loss of our Lian Li T-60 test bench. The T-60 is great in many respects but space to fit everything was a concern. These space issues also only allowed the T-60 to support up to an ATX size motherboard. For two years this test bench was our mainstay, even surviving a trip halfway across the world. It will be missed.

There was a silver lining in the loss of that test bench. We already had a plan for what we wanted the next test bench to have. It’s newer sibling, the Lian Li T-70, solves both the space and motherboard size problems. The T-70, much like its predecessor, is widely used and makes it an easy choice for upcoming reviews. And since the newer test bench was intended to support configurations with higher demands, it also made sense to replace our previous 750W power supply with a 1000W version.

We will have more photos in upcoming articles as we work any bugs out of this new configuration. And XDA readers can continue to expect any build or test configuration to list each component and how it was sourced.

About author

Daniel Moran
Daniel Moran

Former PC Hardware Editor for XDA.