9600K vs 9700K

Let's look at two Intel CPUs where the difference may not be as obvious as the price

9700k vs 9600k
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Choosing a processor for your gaming computer can be a daunting process if you aren’t entirely sure what you are supposed to be looking for. Everybody knows what they want in terms of speed, but it can be difficult to differentiate between all of the different CPU specifications in order to know what is good and what isn’t. 

If you were to look at the Intel Core i5-9600K and i7-9700K side by side, it might not always be apparent what the differences between them are, especially if you aren’t familiar with the terms used to describe the specifications. This is why we have thoroughly researched these two processors in order to draw a comparison between the two products.

By looking at all the specifications and features of both of these CPUs, we have taken all of the important information that you need to know and put it all in one place. To find out about the i5-9600K and i7-9700K processors, simply keep reading.

Intel Core i5-9600K Vs Intel Core i7-9700K - Specifications

Intel Core i5-9600K

This CPU is one that is made for enthusiasts. It is a better improvement than its predecessors, and it supports impressive clock speeds and optimized boost functions. This processor is part of the 9th generation Core 9000 series, which is also known as Coffee Lake S.

Its base clock speed is 3.7GHz, and it has Intel Optane memory support. This CPU features AES-NI encryption and Intel cPro technology and is protected with Boot Guard. 

In modern-day gaming, there are tasks that will require a substantial amount of power to be drawn from the CPU. This processor is able to take performance to the next level, and it can guarantee a boost clock speed of 4.6GHz. In addition to this, it supports DDR4-RAM that operates at 2666MHx in Dual-Channel Mode. 

In terms of integrated graphics, this processor includes Intel HD Graphics UHD 630. Combined with 24 execution units, this will offer you more than enough graphics power to make use of the Intel Quick Sync, GPU computing, and most importantly, gaming, which it can handle with efficiency.

This CPU redefines what has previously been possible with its new 9th generation Intel Core processing that allows for unprecedented power and responsiveness.

It features 6 cores and up to 9MB cache and is perfect for enthusiasts and professional gamers alike by pushing performance boundaries to the next level. It is unblocked, which means that you can set the pace, as overclocking can allow you to achieve maximum performance. 

Intel Core i7-9700K

With a new series of Intel Core processors comes an upgraded Coffee Lake S refresh. The newer updated range brings some much-needed improvements, including the fact that unlocked CPUs now offer soldered heat spreaders, which enable heat to be dissipated more efficiently away from the CPU. This allows for higher clock frequencies for longer periods of time. 

The Intel Core i7-9700K is a high-end model of the Core 9000 series. It has a total of eight cores, and the processor has impressive high clock frequencies and optimized boost functions that are superior to its predecessors. The TDP of this processor is relatively low at just 95 Watts.

It has a base clock speed of 3.6GHz, and it offers high clock frequencies that automatically increase depending on the scenario. The processor has a turbo boost function that allows the CPU cores to be clocked in order to meet the user’s performance requirements.

If a game is running, the boost clock can increase to run either one core or multiple cores, depending on what is needed at the time. It can also be overclocked as it has an unlocked multiplier. 

The processor supports a maximum clock frequency of 2.666 MHz on DDR4-RAM, and the CPU also supports Dual-Channel Mode. 

Coffee Lake Architecture

Intel Core i7-9700K

The 8th generation Intel Core Pentium and Celeron processor families (Coffee Lake S) introduced the first 6-core processors for performance-demanding applications. These processors feature the most up to date and optimized 14nm technology.

Alongside an Intel 300 series chipset, these processors can offer even better CPU and graphics performance compared to the previous generation. 

They also introduce USB 3.1 Generation 2 support. The S series of processors allows for more manufacturing flexibility that can match performance, features, and price.

They offer thermal design power options of 65W and 35W to suit different design configurations with performance and low-power requirements. They are well suited for gaming purposes due to their advanced features. 

Clock Speed

In terms of computers, the clock speed is the frequency at which the clock generator of a processor can generate pulses that are then used to synchronize the operations of its components.

It is used as an indicator of the processor’s speed. The clock speed is measured in Gigahertz, and the number is how many clock cycles the CPU can perform per second. For example, a processor with a clock rate of 1.6GHz can perform 1,600,000,000 clock cycles per second. 

As shown in the specifications, the i5 processor lacks the hyper-threading feature, and it has a base clock speed of 3.7GHz.

However, the i7 actually has a slightly lower base clock speed of 3.6GHz. To make up for this, though, the i7 has a boost clock speed of 4.9GHz, whereas the i5 has a boost clock speed of 4.6GHz. 

The base clock speed is the guaranteed measurement that the manufacturer can guarantee that the CPU will run at with reasonable cooling. The boost clock speed is when the CPU speed is boosted, choosing between boosting one or more cores to increase performance when under a load, like when you are gaming.

If there is sufficient cooling available, the CPU can run at its boost clock speed for a long period of time without any negative effects. 

This means that the i5 can run faster than the i7 normally, but when boosting the power, the i7 becomes superior. The boosted power of the i5 is 4.6GHz, but the boosted power of the i7 is 4.9Ghz. This is because the i7 has 8 cores when the i5 has only 6.

The more cores that there are available, the higher that the performance can be increased. The i7 can run faster due to the higher amount of cores that allow for faster processing speeds.


For those looking to spend less money on a processor but still want adequate performance capabilities, the i5 processor is a good choice.

It is a great middle-ground in terms of performance and price and is more than capable of running your favorite games. It even delivers the same overclocking abilities as the i7 competitor. It offers an impressive amount of CPU performance.

The i7 is a powerful processor that will appeal to PC gamers everywhere for providing excellent gaming performance at a reasonable price.

Thanks to its 8-core chip, it can offer the excellent single-core performance that most games require to run. It is more than capable of running high-end games with a high frame rate and no lag. 


Before we go into the details of overclocking, there are some things that you need to be aware of. If you overclock your CPU, you will be voiding the warranty. This means that if something does go wrong during the overclocking process or somewhere further down the line, your processor will not be covered by the warranty. 

While you can benefit from higher clock speeds and other perks from overclocking, you really shouldn’t do it unless you know exactly what you are doing.

It is also worth checking that you even need to overclock your CPU because both of these processors provide enough power to run high-end games with sufficient frames per second, so it may not always be necessary to overclock your components if they are already running smoothly. 

Both of these CPUs have the ability to be overclocked, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that you should, as they are already capable of playing most games at a high frame rate. However, if you are sure that you want to overclock your processor, it will run even faster than it did before.

Overclocking is when you increase the speed of the CPU to run faster than the maximum speed that is set by the manufacturer, which in this case, is Intel. This forces the CPU to run more operations per second.

Most CPUs will run faster than the company states, which is why overclocking is becoming a more popular option. You will need to make sure that you have sufficient cooling in place to do so, as your CPU will run hotter. 

Pricing and Availability

When comparing the two processors side by side, it is easy to see that the i5 processor is significantly cheaper than the i7 processor.

While the i7 does have faster processing capabilities through a faster boost clock speed and more cores than the i5, it might not be enough for you to warrant spending almost an extra $100 on it.

For those who are on a budget, the clear winner is the i5, which is much more cost-effective, considering it has everything you need for a lower price. 

However, if you aren’t too concerned about a budget, then the i7 processor shouldn’t be forgotten about. It does slightly outperform the i5, and if you are more focused on performance and speed, then this could be a great option for you. 

In order to make the best decision, you should consider the cost vs. performance and decide whether or not you think that the difference in price is worth the faster processing speed and performance levels. This is a decision that only you can make, but everything you need to know is laid out here for you to make the best-informed decision.

In terms of availability, these processors came out in late 2018 and are no longer in as popular demand as they were when they were first released. While people still buy these products, they are available in plentiful supply, so you have more than enough time to make a decision without having to worry about them going out of stock. 


Final Word

While there aren’t many major changes between the two processors mentioned here, there are some slight differences in the processors based on their technical characteristics. In gameplay, there isn’t too much of a difference, but it must be said that the Intel Core i7-9700K is ever so slightly superior to its competitor. 

Both of these models are productive and more than suitable for gaming purposes, as the performance is more than adequate. However, power features are not the only things to be considered here.

Cost is also going to be an important factor to consider, as while there is almost a $100 difference between the two, it might not be a justified price difference for all users. 

If you aren’t too concerned about the increased power and performance levels and are budget-conscious, then the i5-9600 might be a better choice for you. It is a well-balanced processor with an optimal performance that is more than capable of running games.

The 6-core processor is worth the money as it is a great addition to any gaming PC assembly compared to its rival. It is almost as good as the i7-9700, and the difference might not be varied enough to warrant the big price difference. 

However, if you are concerned about the difference in processing power, then it could be worth investing in the i7-9700. The decision is yours.