Intel has officially unveiled its new line-up of 9th Generation Core Mobile processors today, along with an array of adjacent products and technologies. In addition, Intel's 9th Generation Core Desktop processor line-up is been refreshed today as well, with a wide array of SKUs that cover the gamut from a new Core i9-9900 all the way on down to low-power dual-core Celeron and Pentium Gold processors.
The new flagship of the 9th Generation Core Mobile processor family is the Core i9-9980HK, designed for what Intel is calling “Musclebooks” – we’ll call them powerful desktop replacement and gaming notebooks. The Core i9-9980HK is a 45 watt, 8-core / 16-thread processor, that can turbo all the way up to 5.0GHz, but is also fully unlocked for easier and more flexible overclocking.
As you probably suspect, the rest of the line-up scales things down from there. The next step down in the stack is the Core i9-9980H, which is also an 8C / 16T CPU with a similar TDP, but it can turbo up to “only” 4.8GHz and is not unlocked. Both of the chips also support something new Intel is calling Thermal Velocity Boost. Intel Thermal Velocity Boost essentially allows the processors to turbo boost higher and longer, as long as there is thermal headroom available.
The core counts and clocks of the rest of the line-up continue to scale downward as you work your way down the stack, ending with the Core i5-9300H, which is still a relatively powerful quad-core, 8-thread processor that can turbo up to 4.1GHz.
Along with its new family of mobile processors, Intel is also announcing a new Wi-Fi 6 AX200 wireless module for laptops, a higher capacity SSD 660P series solid state drive, support for higher memory capacities (up to 128GB of DDR4), and the Intel Optane Memory H10 and its associated RST v17 software, which we covered in detail right here.
Intel has a slew of new desktop processors coming down the pipeline as well. The top-end Core i9-9900K remains the company’s mainstream flagship desktop processor, but a new, locked, Core i9-9900 with a lower 65W TDP is being introduced today, though even with its lower TDP is can still turbo all the way up to 5.0GHz just like its big brother. All of the new 9th Gen Core i9, i7, i5, and i3-series processors happen to be locked, 65W or 62W parts, with 4, 6 or 8 cores, with the exception of a new 91W, unlocked Core i3-9350K that’s got a healthy 4.6GHz max turbo boost frequency – the entire line-up’s speeds and feeds are broken down in the table above. (Note: All of the processors listed in yellow are new additions to the family).
Like their mobile counterparts, the refreshed 9th Gen desktop line also supports Intel’s upcoming Wi-Fi 6 AX200 controller, up to 128GB of memory, and the latest Optane Memory products.
There is a new series of 9th Generation “T” Core i3, i5, i7, and i9 SKUs coming as well, that bring the TDP down even further to only 35W. These processors don’t turbo to frequencies quite as high as their full-power counterparts, but still scale all the way up to 8-cores and 16-threads with the top-end Core i9-9900T.
A wide array of even lower-power Pentium Gold and Celeron processors are on the way too, with dual cores chips priced as low as $42.
None of these processors are based on a totally new architecture or manufacturing process versus previously released 9th Generation Core products, but rather are tweaked to extract more performance and improve power efficiency. We still have some time before Intel launches a future salvo of true, next-gen processors, but today’s launch shows the company’s ability to further refine and scale current-generation products to better address a wide range of market segments and price points.