Intel Core i5-10600K CPU Review

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Please also check out our full review of the flagship Intel Core i9-10900K CPU and our Intel Z490 Chipset Information article. 

Intel has recently let loose the information in regards to its next-generation desktop processors here and here, and here the Intel 10th Gen Core Desktop Processors. These consist of the Intel Core i5 10th Gen, Core i7 10th Gen and Core i9 10th Gen.  Naturally these families determine the performance, core count, frequencies, and price point each new CPU under the family will fall.  Intel has its full 10th Gen desktop processor product stack now shown entirely

In a nutshell, the Intel 10th Generation Core Desktop Processors are known as Comet Lake-S (or just Comet Lake) and are a refresh of Coffee Lake-S.  The “S” means these are the desktop CPU parts.  Comet Lake is the successor of Coffee Lake with Coffee Lake being the 9th Gen Intel Core CPUs.

10th Gen Product Stack and Pricing

Intel 10th Gen CPU Product Stack Banner

You can see up and down the product stack the specifications and RCP pricing for each new 10th Gen series CPUs.  The flagship CPU is the Core i9-10900K at $488 RCP.  The product stack goes all the way down to a Core i3-10100 at $122 RCP.  There are three i3 products, 6 i5 products, 4 i7 products, and 4 i9 products.  Every price point is covered.

We need to make a note about the RCP pricing shown in this presentation.  RCP pricing stands for Recommended Customer Price and is only pricing guidance for Intel products.  Here is the official description directly from Intel on what RCP pricing is: 

“Prices are for direct Intel customers, typically represent 1,000-unit purchase quantities, and are subject to change without notice. Prices may vary for other package types and shipment quantities. If sold in bulk, price represents an individual unit. Listing of RCP does not constitute a formal pricing offer from Intel. RCP values can vary due to tariffs.  The i9-10900K is $488 RCP and the i5-10600K is $262 RCP. Overall, the processors range from $42-$488 RCP.”   

Therefore, US retail and etail MSRP pricing can vary, and we will have to wait to see what the MSRP settles to with retailers.  It is possible prices can settle around RCP pricing, but be prepared that there could be variations on individual products in stores.

This being the 10th Generation indicates that these are the 10th generation series of Intel Core processors, and based on the architecture known as Comet Lake with Intel Hyperthreading up and down the entire product stack.  Hyperthreading support for every product is a key feature that separates these CPUs from the previous generations.  Hyperthreading is back, and it is back with a vengeance.    

The way these CPUs are labeled might be a bit confusing, Intel has a guide here.  What you will see is that the model number will start with a 10 (for 10th Generation) and then followed by the SKU numbers which indicate the specs.  Finally, a letter that may indicate certain specific use cases or features.

Two Review CPUs

The two CPUs we have for review today is the flagship Intel Core i9-10900K at $488 RCP and the Intel Core i5-10600K CPU at $262 RCP.  These are most definitely geared toward two different performance and pricing markets.  The Core i9 10900K is at the very high-end of the desktop market and is the most expensive and has the most cores and threads at 10c/20t (10 cores/20 threads) CPU.  Dan will have much more information about the Core i9-10900K in his review with benchmarks.

The Core i5-10600K processors are geared for the mainstream or mid-range user, even maybe toward the lower end of that range and is a 6c/12t (6 core/12 thread) CPU.   Therefore, we are looking at a wide chasm of performance between the two, and thus we are reviewing both CPUs in separate reviews with appropriate comparisons to each.  This review here you are reading will be on the Intel Core i5-10600K CPU review.    

Brent Justice
Former managing editor of GPUs at HardOCP for 18 years, Brent Justice has been reviewing computer components since the late 90s, educated in the art and method of the computer hardware review, he brings experience, knowledge, and hands-on testing with a gamer-oriented and hardware enthusiast perspective. You can follow him on Twitter - @Brent_Justice You can sub to his YouTube channel - Justice Gaming You can check out his computer builds on KIT - @BrentJustice

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