Intel Core i9-12900KS CPUs ship to customers ahead of launch

The most powerful Alder Lake gaming processor to date is already finding its way into gaming PCs, but there's still no word on a release date or price.

Intel Core i9-12900KS: Retail boxes of two 12th Gen Intel Core processors sit side by side, with a plant to their right

It appears that Intel Core i9-12900KS CPUs are already making their way into the hands of a select few lucky customers, despite there still being no official release date or price for the soon-to-be flagship chip.

According to VideoCardz, a customer by the name of ‘DAGINATSUKO’ was able to snag themselves Intel’s prospective best gaming CPU by placing an order with a US retailer before the outlet was able to pull the listing from their website. They apparently were asking around $790 USD for the processor, which makes it $200 more expensive than the Core i9-12900K. However, it’s currently unclear whether this is indicative of the actual MSRP for the Core i9-12900KS.

Unfortunately, we still don’t yet know how much the increased max turbo frequency of 5.5GHz found on the Intel Core i9-12900KS’s performance-cores and higher power draw will affect gaming performance. We shouldn’t have to wait much longer for benchmarks to emerge, however, whether they come from Intel directly or from a lucky third-party that already has the processor.

The Intel Core i9-12900KS will face stiff competition from the upcoming AMD Ryzen 7 5800X3D, but it could have just enough power to poke a hole in team red’s claims of its Zen 3 processor being “the world’s fast gaming CPU.”

Intel Core i9-12900KS: A top down view of the CPU, with a blue hueImage credit: VideoCardz / DAGINATSUKO

Of course, there’s the prospect of Zen 4 chips transforming the landscape of the CPU market, and it may be worth waiting to invest in a Raptor Lake processor instead of the Core i9-12900KS for your next gaming PC upgrade. Time, as always, will tell.

Image credit: VideoCardz / DAGINATSUKO