Published on April 30th, 2020 | by James Wright

Intel’s Core i9-10980XE Extreme Edition Review

Intel’s Core i9-10980XE Extreme Edition Review James Wright

Summary: Intel's Core i9-10980XE Extreme Edition provides some excellent performance and features, however for this power, it does come at a cost.


Pricey power!

If you need some extreme computing power for your gaming or content needs, then look no further as Intel may have the solution for you with their Core i9-10980XE Extreme Edition that has been designed for maximum performance. It supports a base speed of 3Gz and with Intel’s Turbo Boost 3.0, this beast can go up to 4.8Ghz that supports up to 48 PCI express 3.0 lanes to unleash a plethora of additional connectivity options from NVM SSDs and multiple GPU’s. It’s also created on a very tiny 4-nanometer production process with a quad-channel memory configuration of up to 128GB.



  • Cores / Threads: 18/36
  • Base Clock Speed: 3Gz
  • Intel Turbo Boost Max Technology 3.0: Up to 4.8Ghz
  • L3 Cache: 24.75MB
  • Platform PCI Express 3.0 Lanes: Up to 48
  • Memory Support: Four Channels DDR4-2933
  • TDP: 165W

Given the specifications behind this CPU (code name Cascade Lake-X), it has definitely been designed as a workhorse and whether you want your virtual worlds to be created faster or you want to build your own 4K video content faster, the inclusion of 18 cores and 16 threads will push your PC to new heights of unparalleled power.

As this is Intel’s 10th generation, it supports new faster memory standards and even new communications such as Wi-Fi 6. To run this CPU, you will need a X299-chipset compatible motherboard and we tested the CPU with an ASUS compatible motherboard, an NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Ti (raytracing looks glorious with this card and CPU), a NVMe SSD plus 16GB of DDR4.

Review Photos

Once installed our test machine, we were read to give this CPU a while with the usual suspects for benchmarking! Needless to say and expected, the CPU scored on the upper end of the spectrum thanks to its high-speed design and additional features.

Geekbench 4, Cinebench 20 & PCMark 10

Geekbench is a cross-platform processor benchmark, with a scoring system that separates single-core and multi-core performance, and workloads that simulate real-world scenarios. Compared to other high-end CPU’s, the Core i9-10980XE Extreme Edition scored quite high and does cement the evidence of how powerful its computations are.

While the CPU has been designed for content creators, particularly 4K or even 8K, we also tested it with Cinebench 20 that does mirror “real-world” usage with its own content creation. With Cinebench 20, the Core i9-10980XE Extreme Edition scored an equally impressive 7845 which again on the very high side. The last simulated test was PCMark 10 that neatly breaks its testing into further “real world” elements and again, extreme scores near the top end with an overall of 7131.

Before jumping into gaming, our last “virtual” test was 3DMARK’s Fire Strike Ultra which requires a beast of machine and graphics card to successfully run this benchmark smoothly. Did it achieve the smoothness?

It absolutely did with a score of 7901 that allows this CPU to rub shoulders with the best. Following these tests were Rise of the Tomb Raider, Far Cry 5, Hitman Absolute and Rainbow Six that were all run on high detail with tests including both 1080p and 4k. Let’s check out the results below;

1080p 4k
Rise of the Tomb Raider 171 81
Hitman Absolute 119 54
Far Cry 5 126 81
Rainbow Six: Siege 354 199

As you can see, the frame rate per second is very impressive if you’re gamer, especially the 4K scores.

Final Thoughts?

At the end of the day, Intel’s Core i9-10980XE Extreme Edition targets the PC enthusiast and if you’re a content creator or gamer, it also ticks those boxes well. While it is quite pricey, it offers excellent performance across the board including great power consumption and impressive overclocking abilities.


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