Keeping with the speed theme, Intel is giving enthusiasts even more ways to overclock. There’s a redesigned Intel Extreme Tuning Utility, which gives you more control over voltage and frequency. It’ll also let you turn off hyperthreading on individual cores — which might seem counter-intuitive at first, but Intel explains it’s a useful way to reduce heat, every overclocker’s worst enemy.
The new processors also feature a thinner die along with a thicker copper IHS (integrated heat spreader), which should also help keep things cooler. That’s a smart move, since all of Intel’s new chips still have higher TDPs (thermal design profiles) than AMD’s. The 10900K has a 125-watt TDP, for example, while AMD’s Ryzen 9 3900X’s is just 105-watts. (It’s worth noting that TDP is quite a fluid term, though, so we won’t know what that 125-watt number will translate to in real-world use until we can test a chip for ourselves.)
You can expect to see the unlocked “K” CPUs in May, but we don’t have a timeline for the other chips. Based on the specs alone, the Intel 10th-gen desktop processors seem like a solid upgrade for anyone with a 3-year old PC. Still, AMD now has the advantage when it comes to core count and architecture efficiency. Maybe next year we’ll finally see Intel’s desktop CPUs on 10nm, but by then AMD will have an even more refined process. Given just how many waves AMD has been making over the last year, Intel will really have to do something special to stand out in 2021.
All products recommended by Engadget are selected by our editorial team, independent of our parent company. Some of our stories include affiliate links. If you buy something through one of these links, we may earn an affiliate commission.