Core i9-13900KS Special Edition Appears Barely Faster Than 13900K In Cinebench

A Twitter post by @g01d3nm4ng0 has revealed benchmark results of Intel’s upcoming souped-up 6GHz Raptor Lake Core i9-13900KS in Cinebench R23 and compared it to several other CPUs, including the vanilla i9-13900K. Unfortunately, the KS model is barely any faster than its less-expensive counterpart, scoring just 5.4% higher in the single-threaded benchmark and 3.2% higher in the multi-threaded test.

Before we continue, please remember to take these Cinebench results lightly. The benchmark data shown is not official and could vary from what we’ll see with the final product.

The Core i9-13900KS is an upcoming special edition processor that will succeed the previous generation i9-12900KS and be capable of 6GHz boost clocks. The chip has not been officially announced, but Intel has already teased its existence during the Intel Technology Tour earlier this year, where it announced that the Raptor Lake architecture could hit 6GHz on a single core at stock speeds.

During the conference, we didn’t know the final specifications of Intel’s vanilla Core i9-13900K, so nobody knew if Intel would release a 13900K with 6GHz boost clocks or reserve it for a future KS version instead. However, now that we know the 13900K hits a maximum boost frequency of 5.8GHz (with TVB), we know for certain Intel will make a KS model that will achieve 6GHz.

This is backed up by several other leaks showing the 13900KS running other benchmarks, including Geekbench. So we know it is coming soon.

Sadly, it appears the 13900KS has inherited the same weaknesses as its 12900KS predecessor, with an underwhelming performance improvement over the 13900K. For example, in Cinebench R23, the 13900KS scored 2366 points in the single-threaded test and 40998 in the multi-threaded test, while the vanilla 13900K scored 2243 and 39689 in the same tests. Combined, both scores account for a 3.5% difference in performance.

This abysmal difference will be compounded if Intel uses the same pricing strategy on the 13900KS as it did on the 12900KS, pricing it at $160 over the vanilla part. This will make the 13900KS an absolutely terrible value for any buyer. 

But the KS has never been about value — it’s also been about bragging rights and overclocking capabilities. If Intel puts all of its best quality silicon into the i9-13900KS, it will be extremely valuable to the extreme overclockers who want to break world records and for extreme hardware enthusiasts who want nothing but the best.

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