Intel Core i9-12900K Alder Lake CPU Reportedly Crushes Ryzen 9 5950X In Rendering Benchmark

Intel CPU
What will Intel's upcoming Alder Lake CPUs bring to the performance spectrum? Perhaps a retaking of the crown against AMD's finest. That is getting waaaay ahead of things, but if you are pulling for Alder Lake to hoist Intel back on top, then you will be interested in the latest supposedly leaked benchmark run featuring a Core i9-12900K processor.

The Core i9-12900K has been making the rounds lately, because apparently qualification samples are in the wild (and being sold for insane prices). For anyone who is unfamiliar with the terminology, QS chips are essentially later revision engineering samples sent out to OEMs and sometimes reviewers, in anticipation of a pending launch. They are typically representative of the final specifications.

Alder Lake is a hybrid CPU architecture combining high performance Golden Cove cores (or big cores) with power efficient Gracemont cores (or small cores) into a single package. The Core i9-12900K is expected to be the flagship offering, with 8 big cores, 8 little cores, and 24 threads (the big cores supporting Hyper Threading, while the small cores do not).

According to various leaks, the big cores boost up to 5.3GHz, or 5GHz across all 8 cores, while the small cores boost to 3.9GHz, or 3.7GHz when engaging all 8 cores. We're curious to see how it performs, and as we wait to get our hands one to test ourselves, some interesting metrics have emerged.

Intel Core i9-12900K Cinebench Tweet

Twitter user @oneRaichu claims to be in possession of a Core i9-12900K QS chip, and ran it through a Cinebench R20 run at stock settings, with a liquid cooler in the mix. A screenshot of the result would have been nice, but if we're to take their word at the results, it scored 810 in the single-threaded test and 11,600 in the multi-threaded test.

Summed up, those are impressive scores. How impressive, exactly? In our Ryzen 9 5950X review, we recorded a single-threaded score of 638 and a multi-threaded score of 9,956 for AMD's top 'mainstream' processor for consumer desktops. If anyone needs reminding of the specifications, the Ryzen 9 5950X is a 16-core/32-thread CPU with a 3.4GHz base clock, 4.9GHz max boost clock, and 64MB of L3 cache.

If a 16-core/24-thread Alder Lake CPU can really skip ahead of AMD's burliest Zen 3 processor, it would be a notable achievement. There are caveats, however. For one, this is a leaked benchmark, so we can't vouch for it (especially without a screenshot). Secondly, it's a single benchmark application. And third, AMD is not standing pat—it is injecting stacked 3D vertical cache into its Zen 3 lineup (which is supposed to help gaming performance), and readying its Zen 4 lineup for a presumably early 2022 debut.

Still, this is good stuff, as far as leaks go. Bear in mind that Cinebench has been a showpiece of sorts for Ryzen, so for Intel to potentially jump to the front of the pack with a mix of cores bodes well for Alder Lake. Compared to our own benchmarks for the Ryzen 9 5950X, the leaked Core i9-12900K scored 27 percent higher in the single-threaded test and 16.5 percent higher in the multi-thread test.

The leaker did attempt to temper the enthusiasm a bit, though, noting that power consumption is a big question mark at the moment. "It may be over 200W in full turbo frequency easily," they wrote. Nevertheless, color us intrigued.