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Intel Core i9 9900K/KF Overclocking Guide (Page 1)

Intel Core i9 9900K/KF Overclocking Guide

We give you the lowdown on overclocking Intel's Core i9 9900K/KF CPU on various brand motherboards with loads of tips and information.

By Steven Bassiri from Oct 17, 2019 @ 15:49 CDT

Overclocking 9900K

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Overclocking has become very common in the past few years as it's an easy method for increasing the performance of your PC to remove any bottlenecks that might exist. We present a quick guide on how to get started tuning your CPU to its maximum, and the good news is that the new 9900K CPUs are actually very similar to the last four generations CPUs, so overclocking is much the same. While Kaby Lake (7th Generation) CPUs were basically Skylake (6th Generation) CPUs, but with a better process (14nm+) and higher clocks, the 9900K (9th Generation) adds more cores and minor process improvements (14nm++).

When you add cores you also increase the chance of one core not overclocking to higher levels, and it only takes one core to decrease highest all-core overclock, and that is where the process improvements help. However, here is the crazy news. Intel's 9th Generations S-series CPUs don't statically assign cores to turbo bins, so the one core that needs to hit 5GHz during single core turbo is picked at random. That means that if you can cool the CPU well enough, you should be pretty much guaranteed 4.9-5GHz on all cores. Motherboard power delivery will also play an important role in this endeavor.

The Flow Chart

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There are differences between the chart here and the one designed in our Skylake Overclocking Guide. For starters, the new CPUs do consume a bit more power, but they also can take a few more millivolts and maintain the same temperatures. Our starting voltages have increased a bit. No vendor has found a way to overclock non-K SKUs with BCLK. So, we are focusing much more on multiplier overclocking since it's more straightforward and there is basically no need for BCLK overclocking for the majority of people.

The basics of overclocking have not changed, you increase multipliers, and then increase voltages to help maintain stability. You hit a wall when your temperatures go over 80C under stress testing, which means you cannot add more voltage unless you increase cooling, so you can't add another multiplier and remain stable. With the 9900K you can also increase Tjmax levels, which will increase the throttle point of your CPU.

Our starting points have changed as well; you should start at 4.9-5.0GHz, as most CPUs can do that with ease at 1.3v or less (aim for under 1.3v to keep thermals in check with an CPU that isn't de-lidded). Our CPU was only able to hit 5.0GHz stable in most cases, but six cores at 5.0GHz with a reasonable VCore is better for our CPU than pumping it up.

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