Today, we're getting a look at what is alleged to be Intel's flagship desktop processor: the Core i9-10980XE. Like the Core i9-10900X that was leaked yesterday, Geekbench figures for the processors were discovered by momomo_us and were obtained from an unreleased Dell Precision 5820 Tower X-Series desktop. The Core i9-10980XE is shown to have a base clock of 2.46GHz and a boost clock of 3.93GHz (compared to 3.7GHz and 4.4GHz respectively for the Core i9-10900X.
The lower base and boost clocks can be attributed to two factors: 1) this is still a 14nm++ processor that generates a lot of heat, and 2) keeping 18 cores cool is no easy feat. With 18 cores on command, that means that we're looking at a total of 36 threads. As expected, the Socket 2066 LGA processor tested was residing in a X299-based HEDT motherboard.
Looking at the actual benchmark numbers, the Core i9-10980XE puts up a strong showing with a single-core score of 5381 and a multi-core score of 51514. The single-core score seems a bit higher than we were expecting (especially compared to the higher-clocked Core i9-10900X), but here are how those numbers stack up against the second-generation Ryzen Threadripper, according to our internal database of scores. Also, note GeekBench is typically not kind to AMD Threadripper and doesn't particularly scale well across many-core CPUs.
Intel is hoping for a big "win" against Ryzen Threadripper in the HEDT market with Cascade Lake-X, and has been touting a superior performance-per-dollar rating. However, the tables could easily turn when third-generation Zen 2 based Ryzen Threadripper 3000 processors arrive on the scene later this year. Not only are these processors expected to offer significant performance advantages over their Zen+ based counterparts, but they should also push prices down on existing Ryzen Threadripper 2000 series processors. And of course, as always take leaks with the usual grain of salt and skepticism.