Intel Raptor Lake flagship CPU sets world record with astonishing 8.8GHz overclock

Intel’s Raptor Lake processors have been unleashed and have impressed all-round, with the flagship getting a glowing review from us – and now that Core i9-13900K has grabbed the world record for the fastest ever desktop CPU overclock.

Yes, the long-held title which AMD proudly locked down some eight years ago – with its FX 8370 processor – has fallen, with expert overclocker Elmor managing to push the 13900K to reach a staggering 8812.85MHz.

The world record set by the AMD FX 8370 (courtesy of The Stilt) was 8722.78MHz, meaning the 13900K was 1% faster (this is going by the HWBOT rankings, as flagged up by VideoCardz).

Naturally, this overclock used liquid nitrogen cooling, as all record-breaking endeavors do (or an equivalent exotic method of taking the CPU right down in temperature temporarily, to allow for it to be pushed ridiculously hard). The 13900K was sat in an Asus ROG Z790 Apex motherboard (Shamino from Asus ROG was involved in the record-setting overclock which you can watch here).

Analysis: The best is yet to come?

Well, we kind of guessed this was coming, after the Core i9-13900K was doing so well in leaked pre-release overclocks (which crested the 8GHz mark, and then 8.2GHz more recently). What we didn’t expect, to be fair, is for the Raptor Lake flagship to immediately depose the AMD FX 8370 at the top of the fastest-ever rankings on HWBOT.

Usually, it takes more time to realize such impressive overclocking gains, so this is a seriously eye-opening showing from the 13900K. More to the point, inevitably as time progresses, overclockers will get more out of any given processor, so we can anticipate the 13900K pushing closer to the magic 9GHz mark, even.

What does this mean for the average PC user? Or at least, the average PC user looking at the high-end of the processor market who can afford to splash out on flagship silicon?

Well, obviously these folks won’t see anything like closing on 9GHz speeds which can only be achieved by exotic cooling. But what this represents is an indication that the 13900K is going to offer good overclocking potential at all levels, and indeed the whole Raptor Lake range seemingly will.

We’re already hearing elsewhere that there’s plentiful headroom for overclocking (for the average user) with the 13700K – the more affordable Raptor Lake higher-end (Core i7) option – so all this bodes really well for gamers or enthusiasts who want to get the most out of their 13th-gen chip even with air cooling (and certainly a good liquid cooler).

In short, liquid nitrogen isn’t needed to really feel the benefit of Raptor Lake’s overclocking chops, not by any means – and these are exciting times for those who like to tinker with their CPU and tweak it to get the best performance.

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