Core i9-12900KS: Intel’s “fastest desktop CPU” available from April 5th

With up to 5.5 GHz on two cores, Intel announces the Core i9-12900KS, which it says is the fastest desktop CPU. The special edition of the Core i9-12900K is intended to defend the gaming throne against AMD’s upcoming Ryzen 7 5800X3D with very high clock rates.

Intel presented the Core i9-12900KS for the first time at CES 2022 at the beginning of the year. Around three months later, the special edition of the Core i9-12900K (to the test report)

on April 5 for $739

come on the market, according to the manufacturer’s official announcement. With up to 5.5 GHz on two cores thanks to the Thermal Velocity Boost (TVB) and Adaptive Boost Technology (ABT) features already known from the Core i9-11900K, Intel wants the gaming throne against AMD’s Ryzen, which was announced for April 20th Defend 7 5800X3D.

High clock rates against stacked L3 cache, we are excited to see who will emerge victorious from this duel.

Intel Core i9-12900KS in detail

Most of the details about the Core i9-12900KS were already known, and Intel has confirmed them again with the most recent announcement. The “new” CPU is a special edition of the Core i9-12900K with eight performance and efficient cores, 24 threads and 30 MB Intel Smart Cache. In order to achieve higher clock rates and thus more performance, Intel should select the Special Edition on the one hand and use the TVB and ABT technologies already known from Rocket Lake on the other. Thanks to the Thermal Velocity Boost (TVB), the Core i9-12900KS can reach up to 5.5 GHz on two cores, as long as a specified temperature limit is not exceeded. However, the Intel Adaptive Boost Technology (ABT) is likely to have a much greater impact.

Intel Core i9-11900K: Boost technologies at a glance


Intel Core i9-11900K: Boost technologies at a glance


While the Turbo Boost 3.0 or the TVB only work within the given power limits Processor Base Power (PBP) and Maximum Turbo Power (MTP), the ABT completely negates these limits. This means that – as soon as the function has been activated in the BIOS – the CPU can enjoy an “unlimited” amount of power, whereby the limit here is usually determined by the waste heat that the cooler used can dissipate. With this function, higher clock rates can be achieved with the Core i9-12900KS on all cores than with the Core i9-12900K, provided there is a potent cooling system, and without having to overclock the CPU manually. The big advantage is that this procedure is covered by the official specifications and the three-year guarantee is not lost accordingly. The big disadvantage is that the power consumption should increase exponentially for just a few percent more performance and could turn the usually quite efficient Core i9-12900K into a regular “drunkard” at full load.

CPU benchmark 2022: AMD Ryzen or Intel Core i processor? The ranking list comparison

Unfortunately, Intel did not give any specific values ​​for the clock rates and power consumption. All that is known is that the PBP has increased from 125 watts to 150 watts, while the MTP is still 241 watts. But these power limits no longer have any meaning when using the ABT. For the best possible performance, Intel recommends a mainboard with a Z690 chipset and the latest BIOS version.

price and availability

The Intel Core i9-12900KS is expected to be available from retailers starting April 5th. However, the price is tough, the manufacturer specifies it at 739 US dollars. The Core i9-12900K was $589 compared to the release, which is $150 less.

In Germany, at least 679 euros were due for the 12900K at the market launch, and the CPU is now in the price comparison

from 577 euros

listed. In any case, Intel is getting a royal reward for the special edition, we expect prices of over 800 euros for the release in this country. The Ryzen 7 5800X3D, which aims to challenge the Core i9-12900KS for the gaming crown, starts at $449.



P cores

E cores

L2 + L3 cache



Core i9-12900KS


3.4 to 5.5GHz

2.5 to 4.0GHz

14 + 30MB

150 / 241 W


Core i9-12900K


3.2 to 5.2GHz

2.4 to 3.9GHz

14 + 30MB

125 / 241 W


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