Intel i9 9980XE Extreme Edition 18 Core CPU Review

Intel i9 9980XE

When it comes to extreme CPUs, Intel has long been the performance king. The i9-9900K certainly impressed us when it launched towards the end of last year. However, that’s a more consumer-focused part, even if it was pretty extreme in its own right. The new i9-9980XE, however, takes things to another level. It offers up a staggering 18 cores and 36 threads. However, the real performance will come from its impressive max turbo of 4.5 GHz. Of course, this being an Extreme Edition, it’s also fully unlocked. That means with sufficient cooling, the sky is the limit when it comes to overclocking.

For demanding content creation tasks, workstations, rendering, and even gaming, the latest i9 ticks pretty much every box. Of course, it doesn’t come cheap with prices ranging from £1849.99 to £2159.99 depending on the retailer. It’s the next evolution of the already fantastic 7980XE, albeit now soldered and not using TIM like their older models. Of course, with Threadripper coming in much cheaper at the price per core arms race, does the latest i9 even stand a chance? Let’s find out!


  • CPU Cores: 18
  • Threads: 36
  • PCI Lanes: 44
  • Base Clock: 3.0 GHz
  • Max Turbo: 4.5 GHz
  • TDP: 165W (Stock clocks)
  • Thermal Specification: 84c
  • Lithography: 14nm
  • Socket: X299 Socket 2066

For in-depth specifications, please visit the official Intel product page here.


  • Intel Optane Support
  • Turbo Boost 2.0
  • Turbo Boost Max 3.0
  • Virtualization Technology VT-x
  • Virtualization Technology for Directed I/O VT-d
  • Intel 64
  • 2 AVX-512 FMA Units
  • SSE 5.1, SSE 4.2, AVX2, AVX-512 Instruction Sets
  • Intel SpeedStep Technology
  • Hyper-Threading

What Intel Had to Say

“The latest Intel Core i9 9980XE Extreme Edition X Series processor is powered by a huge 18 Cores and 36 Threads to address the simultaneous, compute-intensive demands of creators. The Intel Core X Series CPU’s allow flexible system configuration for specific creator usages, giving you access to 44 PCIe lanes, quad channel memory, plus support for Thunderbolt technology and high-speed SSD drives. The new Extreme Edition processors are fully unlocked and feature solder thermal interface material (STIM) for extreme performance overclocking. Get the power and convenience of a full studio in your PC to help accelerate your creative work flow from start to finish.”

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Peter Donnell

As a child still in my 30's (but not for long), I spend my day combining my love of music and movies with a life-long passion for gaming, from arcade classics and retro consoles to the latest high-end PC and console games. So it's no wonder I write about tech and test the latest hardware while I enjoy my hobbies!

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