With the newly-announced Intel Core i9-9900k CPU and 9th generation CPUs, many have been asking me if these new Intel CPUs will be a good choice for digital audio creatives and music producers.
First, it’s worth mentioning that these CPUs are relatively new, and so some of its benchmarks and information will be forthcoming as we test fully with them. However, Intel has focused heavily on content creation with these new CPUs, and the prospects for this being an excellent CPU for digital creatives are distinct.
Next, let’s talk about the features of these new CPUs from Intel:
- 3 new 9th Gen Intel Core processors unveiled (i5-9600K, i7-9700K and i9-9900K).
- Intel Turbo Boost technology 2.0 will offer up to 5GHz single-core frequency — that’s great for Digital Audio Workstations that require a high single-core frequency due to their prioritizing a single core for processing of digital audio data.
- Up to 40 Platform PCIe 3.0 lanes — this will be useful for those of us using add-in cards such as Universal Audio UAD processing cards, Audio Interfaces, or those that will be performing video editing tasks in applications such as Vegas Pro or Adobe Premiere, utilizing graphics cards which require more PCIe lanes for great performance.
- Extra PCIe lanes are also useful for those of us who will be utilizing Thunderbolt, or add-in PCIe storage, such as Intel Optane 905p NVME Solid State Storage
- New Overclocking features, using the Intel Extreme Tuning Utility. (Related: Should I overclock my Pro Audio PC?)
With these new CPUs comes the new Intel Z390 chipset. This chipset included integrated USB 3.1 Generation 2 and Integrated Wireless AC with support for Gigabit Wi-Fi speed.
Intel also announced 7 new Intel Core X-Series CPUs: (i7-9800X, i9-9820X, i9-9900X, i9-9920X, i9-9940X, i9-9960X and i9-9980XE). These new X-Series CPUs aim to help digital creatives who need higher core counts and single-core and multi-core operating frequencies for handling higher plugin counts, track counts, and working at lower latencies when recording audio, mixing, mastering, and engineering in digital audio workstations such as Pro Tools, Steinberg Cubase, PreSonus Studio One, and more.
These new CPUs will offer up to 4.5GHz single-core performance. The more critical workloads can be offloaded onto the CPUs fastest two cores, allowing for lightly threaded performance when needed. This allows for choosing a CPU that’s well-suited for lightly or heavily threaded workloads (such as high plugin count sessions, or video editing).
How will these new CPUs perform for audio and video production?
Intel states that overall system performance can be improved by up to 15 percent compared to the previous 8th Generation CPUs, and up to 40 percent over CPUs that are more than three years old — Intel references As Measured by SYSmark* 2014 SE Overall on 9th Gen Intel® Core™ i9-9900K vs. 8th Gen Intel® Core™ i7-8700K and 9th Gen Intel® Core™ i9-9900K vs. 6th Gen Intel® Core™ i7-6700K benchmarks for these numbers.
Intel also states that video editing in Adobe Premiere can be improved by up to 34 percent from the previous 8th Generation CPUs, and up to 97 percent faster when compared with a 3-year old CPU.
As for Audio Production, which we know you’re all wondering about, we are still benchmarking these new CPUs for audio production. However, as we have generally seen an upswing in performance with Intel CPUs over the previous generation of CPUs, we believe that performance will be improved for those who are using the new Intel 9th generation CPUs for audio production. Taking a look at our DAWbench benchmarks for previous Intel Generation CPUs, in our MC Series Pro Audio PCs we can see a distinct improvement in performance, comparing the 7th and 8th Generation CPUs:
We expect that these new CPUs will continue the upwards trend of higher plugin counts at lower latencies, and at higher sample rates, as well.
If you’re interested in seeing more information about these CPUs, we’ve included Intel’s informational grids below (all data is Trademarked by Intel and its partners).
How can you get your hands on these new Intel CPUs in a Pro Audio PC?
That’s the good news! You can pre-order a PCAudioLabs Pro Audio PC with these new Intel CPUs very soon. As always, we will aim to be the first to market in the pro audio PC industry with these brand new CPUs from Intel. If you’d like to speak to us about how these new CPUs can improve your pro audio or video production workflow, call us today: 615-933-6775, dial 2, then 1.
We hope you found this article on the Intel Core i9-9900k CPU and new X Series CPUs helpful. If you want to know more about how you can get these powerful CPUs, and other components, in your new pro audio PC, give PCAudioLabs a call today, send us a message, find us on social media, or, start building your dream pro audio PC right now by clicking here!