Question i9-9900K now or wait?

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Darkbreeze

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The BeQuiet Dark Rock Pro 4 performs comparably to the Noctua, is cheaper, and doesn't look like a used piece of toilet paper. It won't fit in that case either though. Unless you win the silicon lottery you'll struggle to cool a 9900k with either cooler unless you leave the Asus default TDP enforcement settings turned on in the bios. In that case the CPU will be completely gimped. If you don't at least achieve the 4.7 ghz all core turbo there is no point in buying the CPU. It will just run at base clock under load with the default settings.
That's nonsense. To start with, the OP already CLEARLY stated they didn't care much at all about aesthetics, so what it looks like is probably irrelevant, besides which, your personal opinion about how the Noctua coolers looks is your own and doesn't come close to reflecting the opinion of the larger enthusiast community.

Temp wise, not even close. The DRP4 has a 6°C stock idle difference from the D15, a 5.75°C difference in overclocked load temps, and that is a world of difference when comparing supposedly "comparable" coolers. Not comparable. Not even close. In fact, there are NO BeQuiet coolers that compare when it comes to cooling performance decibel for decibel. BeQuiet doesn't even make exceptionally good products. They just make products that LOOK exceptionally good, and then throttle the fan speeds to get good sound level specs on paper. Obviously, if you take two otherwise identical fans, and limit one of them to 500rpms less than the other, it's going to be quieter. That's EXACTLY what BeQuiet does.

Noctua achieves those kinds of sound levels without gimping the fan performance, so at ANY given RPM, they are going to be moving more air AND be quieter, pun intended.

https://www.tweaktown.com/reviews/8842/quiet-dark-rock-pro-4-cpu-cooler-review/index6.html

Typically, this paragraph is filled with dislikes about design or anything we feel might be lacking. However, unless you are looking for the best of the best in thermal results, there is not one thing we can pick out with the Dark Rock Pro 4 which we do not care for.
Well, in THIS case, the best of the best is EXACTLY what is called for, so I don't think that cooler fits the bill. It's a good enough cooler for what it is, but it is not in the same class as Noctua and Thermalright when it comes to performance.
 

rigg42

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That's nonsense. To start with, the OP already CLEARLY stated they didn't care much at all about aesthetics, so what it looks like is probably irrelevant, besides which, your personal opinion about how the Noctua coolers looks is your own and doesn't come close to reflecting the opinion of the larger enthusiast community.

Temp wise, not even close. The DRP4 has a 6°C stock idle difference from the D15, a 5.75°C difference in overclocked load temps, and that is a world of difference when comparing supposedly "comparable" coolers. Not comparable. Not even close. In fact, there are NO BeQuiet coolers that compare when it comes to cooling performance decibel for decibel. BeQuiet doesn't even make exceptionally good products. They just make products that LOOK exceptionally good, and then throttle the fan speeds to get good sound level specs on paper. Obviously, if you take two otherwise identical fans, and limit one of them to 500rpms less than the other, it's going to be quieter. That's EXACTLY what BeQuiet does.

Noctua achieves those kinds of sound levels without gimping the fan performance, so at ANY given RPM, they are going to be moving more air AND be quieter, pun intended.

https://www.tweaktown.com/reviews/8842/quiet-dark-rock-pro-4-cpu-cooler-review/index6.html



Well, in THIS case, the best of the best is EXACTLY what is called for, so I don't think that cooler fits the bill. It's a good enough cooler for what it is, but it is not in the same class as Noctua and Thermalright when it comes to performance.
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u4Yd-P_b4dc


This mirrors my own experience with cooling a 9900k with both of these coolers. So I've actually compared the 2 with a 9900k overclocked and stock. The Noctua is certainly a nice cooler. Obviously the cosmetics aren't that big of deal in the grand scheme. The coolers are definitely comparable though.

I think your linked data is nonsense:

https://nl.hardware.info/reviews/8139/9/dit-zijn-de-beste-cpu-koelers-lucht-en-waterkoelers-voor-elk-budget-testresultaten-luchtkoelers
 
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Darkbreeze

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Sorry. I'll take Tweaktowns results over hardware.info all day, every day, and into the next year. As I've told members before, anything coming off that website is to ME, questionable at best. Tweaktown is a known, trusted, respected review site with a solid history of accuracy. So, you go with .info if you want to.

Bit-tech.net, another trustworthy review site, shows about the same seven degree difference between the Dark Rock Pro 3 and the D15, and while that is not the DRP4, our own hardware reviewers had this to say:

The Dark Rock Pro 4 doesn’t seem to muster the same cooling potential as its predecessor, the Dark Rock Pro 3
So if these three sites all show a decrease in performance when going to the DRP3/4, even if it's only a few degrees, I think the extra five bucks is worth it. Of course, like you said, it doesn't fit either, so the whole thing is moot, but factually, if you slapped a pair of Noctua iPPC industrial 2000rpm fans on any of these big coolers, you could likely keep a camp fire in check.
 

R_G_S

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Thanks again for all the input, really appreciate it.

As for the NH-D15 fit, yeah I had considered those extras just wasn't sure they'd equate to 2 cm + that YouTube video gave me hope. If I was building the system myself I would buy the MB and the D15 first and see if they fitted, but as I'd be sending the case off to have the components installed, that's unfortunately not an option (buying from these guys most likely: https://www.pcspecialist.co.uk/). Fairly annoying that it likely won't fit as one of the reasons I bought the thing in the first place (aside for build quality/looks) was the "I won't ever have to worry about what I put in it" factor. That was at the time when graphics cards were getting bigger and longer. Oh well... It looks like Lian Li might have something suitable without busting the bank, but only just started looking.

As for the look itself (Noctua), I don't mind it, personally. Especially for an old school workstation, sans RGB. I can see how the DRP4 would fit much better in an all black rig using RGB though. My current case (bare aluminium, in and out) doesn't have a window, so how things look inside isn't a big concern, that said some of Gigabyte's offerings are pretty fairground (to me) and I can't help being put off by the looks, even though that's pretty ridiculous given my situation! I hear the AORUS Master is a good board, on par with the Hero, but offering a third M.2 and WiFi (for the same price as the 2 M.2, non-WiFi Hero). Would you agree that MBs in this range are what I should be looking at? I believe that was the consensus on the first page. Whilst I won't be overclocking, I do value high grade components, particularly as the machine will be seeing heavy usage.

Regarding 3ds Max: As I understand it Max doesn't really make much use of extra cores except when rendering when they then admittedly make a huge difference. I do very little rendering, primarily lighting bakes, so this isn't of high importance to me. As mentioned, I did consider HEDT, specifically the 12-core part, but opinion seemed to be that Max, Photoshop and games would all run better on the 9900K (aside from rendering!) and that the cost couldn't be justified. If they were the same, or similar price I'd likely go with the HEDT solution, regardless of the slower speeds (though not inconsiderable); the 18-core part suggested is way out of my price range though. Plus, I don't think I'll need 128 GB RAM, 64 should be more than sufficient. Again, if money was no object, sure it'd be nice to have that option, just in case, but I think I should be fine (famous last words!).

Speaking of RAM, I'll consider going for a faster option, dependent on cost and provided it doesn't introduce instability (5% faster, in some apps only, but the odd crash/issue isn't worth it to me). The price difference between 2666 MHz and 3000 MHz is £60 at PC Specialist. Though they don't offer any above that in the 64 GB config, am sure I could order some if needs be. Agree that £60 isn't all that much in terms of the full build, but it keeps going up and up... I was originally going with a cheaper MB for e.g., thought I could use my existing case and so on. I'll likely nail everything else down first then see where I am with the RAM.

Thanks once more for taking the time to help.
 
Good read so far, but there's just one point I have to disagree wholeheartedly with: more RAM is always better. Even if you know there's going to be a penalty on the IMC (be it 4 modules or speed constraints), having more RAM will allow your PC 2 very important things (weight them as you like):
1.- Last longer over OS upgrades and other Software upgrades.
2.- Hide inherent overall system latency or lag when using multiple software (SSD/HDD reads and cached items; to InvalidError's point).

My rule of thumb is to try and double/quadruple what the "standard" is for the OS requirements and it's worked quite well for me over the years. Be it professional software or just playing around with whatever you want to use, having more RAM is never the wrong answer.

As for the CPU... The i9 9900K is just the king of the hill, much like the 2080ti; there's an inherent tax to that crown and certainly (unfortunately?) it's never really a value proposition. If price is no concern, I don't really see why not. Even when talking about professional software, these are not value propositions, but investments.

Cooling wise... Hard to believe the NH-D14/5 is an under-performer. I have one and compared it to a gen 1 TT Frio (I have massive respect for the gen1 TT-Frio) and it's just mind blowing how better the Noctua is. As long as you have installed the HSF properly and taken care of the airflow, you feel it just does the job. Room temperatures go up! Haha.

All in all, buying the best there is for you when price is of no concern, is never the wrong answer. Specially when there's arguably little room for debate. The mainstream is dominated by the 9900K for most standard tasks and some professional. Unless you go ThreadRipper for extra threads, the i9 is the CPU to get in mainstream.

EDIT: https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/1INkI1PPb_PZxdBI-DhzkCp_5xSqGtIjy

You should be able to see the size comparison there for the Wraith AMD cooler and the Noctua. Also, how it fits in a "normal" sized case with a "normal" sized GPU (my then R9-480).

Cheers!
 
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Darkbreeze

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Honestly, I can't disagree with any of that other than possibly the fact that in some cases, as you say, having more memory than you can use in reality might not be desirable because of the IMC penalty it might inflict. But for THIS use case, I think the risk or at least potential, is justified and that 64GB probably is not overkill for the intent. But it might be. I still think based on the applications mentioned that unless you are working with CRAZY large projects with crazy large resolutions or numbers of layers, that 32GB would be more than enough, but I'm definitely not against 64GB either if you know you need it. Other than that, no arguments.
 

Dreamevil55

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2080 TI update is not coming anytime soon, since those just came out not long ago, however, AMD will be releasing a completely new architecture, the first in many, many years for them, very soon. It might be worth waiting to see what that brings as well as what the new Ryzen 3000 series CPUs bring in terms of IPC and core counts as well and those will all be coming, in addition to whatever Intel might release, in the next few months.

Normally I'd agree that waiting is a fool's game, but being this close to a flurry of new launches almost makes it senseless to not at least wait to see what happens because at the very least, we will likely see a drop in the cost of current parts in an effort to deplete current stock on those parts.
Yeah nah. Navi will be GCN too lol. The last from AMD though.
 

rigg42

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Unless you want to use an AIO water cooler I think you will need to change cases. The 9900k is absolute fire breather. You should be okay at stock settings with the Noctua. Nothing smaller is going to do the job in terms of air cooling. You’ll also want an airflow optimized case with top notch fans. Noctuas would be ideal.

I used my 9900k with a Maximus xi hero and a gigabyte z390 aorus ultra. Both are good boards but I got better overclocks at lower temps on the asus. The gigabyte aorus boards all have great vrms. I bought it for this reason. Despite the 4 phase design on the asus it did a better job. To be fair it’s a monster of a 4 phase. It runs hotter but is fine as long as there is case airflow. I prefer the features and bios of the asus. You can always add pcie m.2 cards.

It’s too bad you are not in the US. I’m looking to sell my 9990k, max xi, 64 gb of 2666, and a 2tb 960 pro right now.
 
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R_G_S

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Hey guys, back again...

What are your thoughts on the Noctua NH-U12A for the TJ07? Not enough oomph for the 9900K?

If not, then a new case is called for. Seems Lian Li fit the bill for me, for e.g. the PC-A75 or maybe even the PC-7H, assuming the latter can fit all I need it to. PC-10N would be another option.

Last note on the RAM "...64GB probably is not overkill for the intent. But it might be." I agree that it might well be overkill, even for me, but that's not a certainty which is why I feel, all things considered, it's worth it. I shall re-read your info on the the IMC penalty however as was not aware of this consideration previously.

Cheers!
 
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Uhm... You would need a proper CLC (big rad+pump) or custom loop to best the Noctua NH-D14/5 IMO. That would really bring the price up and not necessarily make it better? Well, a proper custom loop would do, but I'm a bit wary of them as I have little experience with them myself.

As for the RAM. It's a tricky thing to balance. It will depend a lot on the type of RAM and the modules density the performance / GB you can get out of it. It's also a thing about it being spread across 4 slots or in 2 slots. You'd have to investigate a bit more on how RAM scales across different configs of your target CPU to get the best price/performance (or just performance) ratio.

Cheers!
 

Darkbreeze

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The Noctua NH-U12A is comparable in terms of performance to the U14S, which is not (As good as it is, and it IS a VERY good cooler for most configurations) good enough to handle the TDP of the 9900k when factoring in it's all core boost thermals.

This (Thermalright Le Grand Macho RT) however would be a really good option, however, I'd recommend adding a second fan in the pull location on the back of the heatsink, or adding a pair of Noctua industrial 2000rpm fans to it, for a couple of reasons.

One, it's a huge heatsink, with tremendous surface area but it's also a very deep finstack and there is likely to be some eddies and deadspots in the airflow with only a single fan. Possibly also some air flow reversion or loss through the sides of the stack. Adding a second fan or better, a pair of higher static pressure fans like the Noctua 2000rpm units, will pretty well eliminate any of those things being potential issues since you'll create somewhat of a vacuum between the two fans with the pull fan that will not only help resolve any issues with deadspots or reversions in the airflow path, but will also reduce the amount of static pressure needed by the push fan since there will be a pressure differential already in place.

This is very good cooler, performs arguably on par with the D15, -ish, if you can take the reviews at face value (But regardless, a very good, very high end cooler from what is undoubtedly the very best air cooler manufacturer next to Noctua) and is also below your 162mm height threshold so you would not need to replace the case. The fact that it states support for systems up to 300w TDP doesn't hurt either. Unlike some companies, Noctua and Thermalright don't generally unrealistically pad their stated specs much if at all so if it says 300w TDP you can bet it can handle at least 260-280w TDP well enough to accept as truthful.

https://www.techpowerup.com/reviews/Thermalright/Le_Grand_Macho/6.html

https://www.tweaktown.com/reviews/7986/thermalright-le-grand-macho-rt-cpu-cooler-review/index6.html

https://www.pcper.com/reviews/Cases-and-Cooling/Thermalright-Le-Grand-Macho-RT-Air-CPU-Cooler-Review/Performance-and-Concl
 

R_G_S

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Le Grand Macho RT looks pretty good, very good in fact. I think my decision now is between a new case, one of the Lian Li models above (or similar), with the D15, or my existing case with the LGM RT.

Will spec-up my build now and post again for final thoughts + airflow/case fan suggestions shortly.

Following that, it may make sense to hold out until end of June to see if any announcements come from Intel before pulling the trigger.

Thanks again, all responses very helpful and appreciated!
 
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.....Regarding 3ds Max: As I understand it Max doesn't really make much use of extra cores except when rendering when they then admittedly make a huge difference. I do very little rendering, primarily lighting bakes, so this isn't of high importance to me. As mentioned, I did consider HEDT, specifically the 12-core part, but opinion seemed to be that Max, Photoshop and games would all run better on the 9900K (aside from rendering!) and that the cost couldn't be justified. If they were the same, or similar price I'd likely go with the HEDT solution, regardless of the slower speeds (though not inconsiderable); the 18-core part suggested is way out of my price range though. Plus, I don't think I'll need 128 GB RAM, 64 should be more than sufficient. Again, if money was no object, sure it'd be nice to have that option, just in case, but I think I should be fine (famous last words!).

Speaking of RAM, I'll consider going for a faster option, dependent on cost and provided it doesn't introduce instability (5% faster, in some apps only, but the odd crash/issue isn't worth it to me). The price difference between 2666 MHz and 3000 MHz is £60 at PC Specialist. Though they don't offer any above that in the 64 GB config, am sure I could order some if needs be. Agree that £60 isn't all that much in terms of the full build, but it keeps going up and up... I was originally going with a cheaper MB for e.g., thought I could use my existing case and so on. I'll likely nail everything else down first then see where I am with the RAM.

Thanks once more for taking the time to help.
Yes, that is what Puget found regarding 3ds Max:

https://www.pugetsystems.com/recommended/Recommended-Systems-for-Autodesk-3ds-Max-159/Hardware-Recommendations

and here's Photoshop to be complete:

https://www.pugetsystems.com/recommended/Recommended-Systems-for-Adobe-Photoshop-CC-139/Hardware-Recommendations

Though it may be semantics, I think many would consider the higher XMP profile RAM settings to be a factory overclock. Though tested and approved by the MB and RAM manufacturers, it is not what Intel specifies. Puget does not use these but says they get more stability using the Intel specified 2666.
 
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R_G_S

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Thanks for those links, Bearmann.

Info is in line with the little bits and pieces I've read here and there and confirms that the 9900K is the best option for my usage.

Also my thoughts regarding the RAM. Think I'll stick with 2666 MHz, maxxing out the budget as is, and stability is very important to me.
 
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InvalidError

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As a point of interest, I noticed that Newegg lists all RAM faster than 2666 as an overclock, e.g.
Intel's official spec stops at 2666MT/s, anything beyond that is technically an overclock since it isn't officially supported by the CPU manufacturer. Nothing surprising there.

BTW, it isn't a Newegg thing. Visit the motherboard manufacturer's spec page and you'll see all speeds above 2666MT/s listed as (OC) there too. Motherboard manufacturers have to cover their asses by specifying that speeds above Intel's specifications are overclocks, which means limited to no official support unless using DIMMs on the motherboard's QVL.
 

R_G_S

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Thanks for the help, Bearmann.

I'd not considered the D15S as I thought it would be 165 mm tall like the D15, but it seems to be 160 mm which should just do the trick. I'll look at some reviews this eve to confirm, along with your link.

Pretty sure I'll be going with the Gigabyte AORUS Master as it seems very well made, has 3 M.2 slots, Wi-Fi and runs cool. I hope that the back plate (which I also like) doesn't add to the height of the socket as the TJ07 max CPU cooler height is listed at 162 mm, so I would be cutting it pretty fine with the D15S (I think the U12A is 158 mm).

My case is the TJ07S, bare metal version without a window. AFAIK, the B and S suffix are just to define the colour (silver and black).

Thanks again, really appreciate it.
 
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Darkbreeze

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D15S is definitely an option. It IS only 160mm tall, and that includes WITH the fan installed. Performance is not as good as the D14 or D15 though. It's about the same as the newer NH-U12A unit which takes up a lot less real estate inside the case, although the U12A is about twenty bucks more expensive.

Also, you could probably add an additional fan to D15s if you wanted, and maybe narrow the performance difference between it and the taller D15, if you needed to.

Noctua seems to be quibbling on my requests for information regarding whether or not the NH-U12A can handle the all core turbo TDP of the 9900k (Which I have serious doubts about) and since THEY lump the U14S, U12A and D15s into a similar category, and review data seems to support that with both the U12A and D15s getting similar thermal results on all test systems that I've seen data on, I have concerns about it handing that CPU without either having problems or being seriously annoying due to constant noise levels.

But again, as far as dimensional restrictions are concerned, it's certainly an option and a very high quality product.
 
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R_G_S

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Thanks guys. Pretty sure that I'll go with either the D15S or U12A. I am a little tempted towards the latter due to the extra 2 mm of clearance as a bit concerned about the back plate on the AORUS Master adding to the overall height of the board.

In the review linked by Bearmann (www.youtube.com/watch?v=cAE6Wce9Pa8&t=223s) it performs better than Thermalright's LGM RT, but the D15S performs better still. Reviews seem a bit variable from one to another though.

I'm a bit confused about the M.2 slots, in terms of how they limit the total number of SATA connections (and other things/speeds) and have posted about that here: https://forums.tomshardware.com/threads/i9-9900k-workstation-gaming-build-your-thoughts-please.3478361/. If someone could confirm whether my thoughts on the matter are correct, or the guys who posted above, that'd be really helpful.

Thanks.
 

Darkbreeze

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Thanks guys. Pretty sure that I'll go with either the D15S or U12A. I am a little tempted towards the latter due to the extra 2 mm of clearance as a bit concerned about the back plate on the AORUS Master adding to the overall height of the board.

I don't understand this statement. What do you mean by this? Are you referring to the CPU backplate? Those are the same for just about every board and chipset made in the last, well, ten years at least. It should not be a factor regarding height of anything found on the business side of the motherboard UNLESS you have a case without a backplate cutout on the motherboard tray that incorporates longer standoffs, and even then, their own specs that indicate how much clearance there is from the top of the CPU heat spreader to the inside of the case panel would account for that. There is never a situation where YOU need to add or subtract anything from the dimensions you find on the case and cooler specifications page because they've already done that, extensively.

Unless you add a heatsink cover (Which is a consideration because Noctua sells those) there are few things that could affect the stated height and clearance specifications.
 
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