Wednesday, February 13th 2019

Intel Core i9-9990XE OEM-only, Even Then it's a Lottery

In a sign of just how arid the DIY retail channel has become for Intel, Tom's Hardware reports that the new socket flagship LGA2066 HEDT processor model Intel sneaked into its product-stack, the Core i9-9990XE, is restricted to the OEM/SI (system integrator) channel. Even to OEMs, ordering a tray of i9-9990XE chips isn't as simple as ordering other chips, such as the i9-9900K. Apparently, Intel has been running secret online auctions that are OEM-only, for these chips. OEMs get to bid on the per-chip price in n-unit tray quantities.

Workstation integrator Puget Systems was able to score itself some i9-9990XE inventory at USD $2,300 per chip. Puget Systems last week received its first batch of chips from Intel, and released performance benchmarks. At this price, the i9-9990XE is being sold at a 21% premium over the retail-channel SEP price of the i9-9980XE, and a whopping 65% premium over the i9-9940X. Intel can't shake off comparisons between the i9-9990XE and the i9-9940X because both chips are 14-core/28-thread with 19.25 MB shared L3 cache, with the i9-9990XE only offering significantly higher clock-speeds, but at an astounding TDP of 255W. The i9-9990XE was shown beating the 18-core i9-9980XE in a variety of HEDT-relevant benchmarks.
Source: Tom's Hardware
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64 Comments on Intel Core i9-9990XE OEM-only, Even Then it's a Lottery

#1
eidairaman1
The Exiled Airman
Ouch, a hit to the gut
Posted on Reply
#4
XL-R8R
I don't think anyone cares that it's OEM-only.... the price-point is a joke for what this thing offers.
Posted on Reply
#5
efikkan
XL-R8R said:
I don't think anyone cares that it's OEM-only.... the price-point is a joke for what this thing offers.
For high-end workstation price per performance matters less than increased productivity. There are many who would benefit from such a product, if we ignore the massive TDP.

The real problem is that this is a cherry-picked golden sample, Intel simply can't make enough of these for widespread availability. Teasing a product you really can't buy is annoying to say the least.
Posted on Reply
#7
madness777
Buy i9-9940X, overclock it. EZ Clap
Posted on Reply
#8
Chloe Price
And people called Pentium 4 EE as Emergency Edition... This is Xtreme Emergency then.
Posted on Reply
#9
silentbogo
Lol. Excerpt from pugetsystems short review:
The Core i9 9990XE is being sold without any warranty by Intel, and while CPU failure rates are generally low even a single DOA or failure for a customer in the field would be an expensive loss. Further, if a customer has a failure and we are out of stock there is no guarentee we could ever acquire a replacement... especially once Intel stops the auctions for this chip.
https://www.pugetsystems.com/blog/2019/02/12/Intels-Core-Xperiment-i9-9990XE-1353/
Posted on Reply
#11
Chloe Price
Easo said:
Nice, so the OEM would have to pay out of their pockets couple thousand in warranty cases if someone's CPU will die :D
Exactly. Intel makes pretty dick move with this "it's not our problem" thing.
Posted on Reply
#12
Zubasa
efikkan said:
For high-end workstation price per performance matters less than increased productivity. There are many who would benefit from such a product, if we ignore the massive TDP.
The issue with that is, at that absurd price you can buy proper Xeon or Epyc with ECC support.
This chip feels like when someone cannot decide they want a workstation or a gaming PC.
Posted on Reply
#13
silentbogo
efikkan said:
For high-end workstation price per performance matters less than increased productivity. There are many who would benefit from such a product, if we ignore the massive TDP.
But all of it is irrelevant for any business if the new CPU has no warranty and non-existent availability. You don't wanna run your professional suite on a purple unicorn, that's why Puget decided to stick with 9980XE, and that's why most reviews still tend to recommend 7980XE over both "refreshes".
Posted on Reply
#14
XXL_AI
chipzilla strikes again. enough is enough. threadripper ripping threads on chipzilla's a...
Posted on Reply
#17
notb
Easo said:
Nice, so the OEM would have to pay out of their pockets couple thousand in warranty cases if someone's CPU will die :D
The whole point of "warranty" as consumers know it is to have a unified, simple law that protects consumers in all transactions. As a result you don't have to negotiate a 10-page agreement every time you buy trousers or USB cables.
It's different in B2B transactions. There's usually no warranty enforced by state law. There are only agreements.
So Dell and Intel may agree that e.g. the first 10 CPUs dead are covered by Dell and everything above is paid by Intel.
There are insurance products for this kind of scenario as well.
Why do you care anyway? It's OEMs' risk and they can price it accordingly. They may put a premium just on 9990XE workstations (make them even more expensive) or they may spread it across the whole lineup and you'll never notice.

For the likes of Dell or Lenovo this won't be a problem.
For a small company like Puget it's a bigger risk, but, as you can see, they decided to take it anyway.
Zubasa said:
The issue with that is, at that absurd price you can buy proper Xeon or Epyc with ECC support.
This chip feels like when someone cannot decide they want a workstation or a gaming PC.
No Xeon gets even close to 9990XE in a combination of clocks and core count. It's a great compromise and the CPU would be an absolute beast for many real world scenarios.

But you're right. The CPU doesn't know whether it's for work or for gaming. And that's the whole point of HEDT products. So it is perfect in what it wants to be.
It might be that this CPU is interesting for someone called "a prosumer". I'm not a huge believer in this phenomenon, but you can ask AMD fans in one of the Radeon VII topics. ;-)
Posted on Reply
#18
Chloe Price
notb said:
No Xeon gets even close to 9990XE in a combination of clocks and core count. It's a great compromise and the CPU would be an absolute beast for many real world scenarios.
Yeah because this is just a factory overclocked i9-9940X. This is just an insane factory overclocked CPU like FX-9590 was few years ago.
Posted on Reply
#19
notb
Chloe Price said:
Yeah because this is just a factory overclocked i9-9940X. This is just an insane factory overclocked CPU like FX-9590 was few years ago.
Since we're talking about workstations, I've ruled out overclocking. I hope this is obvious.

BTW: since, as you said, this is basically an aggresively binned 9940X, why are people so mad about the price? Some companies will sell you binned intel consumer parts (e.g. 8700K) for as much as 50% premium. I hardly see anyone criticizing that.
Posted on Reply
#20
Chloe Price
notb said:
Since we're talking about workstations, I've ruled out overclocking. I hope this is obvious.

BTW: since, as you said, this is basically an aggresively binned 9940X, why are people so mad about the price? Some companies will sell you binned intel consumer parts (e.g. 8700K) for as much as 50% premium. I hardly see anyone criticizing that.
Paying over 2000 eur/usd for just a factory overclocked CPU which isn't even the flagship model is just stupid. Hell, that's about 2x the price of my whole setup.

Paying premium of a binned chip is stupid, 100MHz isn't worth of 100eur/usd IMO.
Posted on Reply
#21
revin
I just watched over a few weeks a builder do an insane 9980XE build.
A $15,000 build at that.
And it was for sure a customer that wanted Epeen, cause it was more of a "fantasy" build, but it did turn out nice tho.
What is the 90XE even for, since the 80XE is out :confused:
Posted on Reply
#22
notb
Chloe Price said:
Paying over 2000 eur/usd for just a factory overclocked CPU which isn't even the flagship model is just stupid. Hell, that's about 2x the price of my whole setup.

Paying premium of a binned chip is stupid, 100MHz isn't worth of 100eur/usd IMO.
I don't understand your post at all.
Why is paying over $2000 for a factory overclocked CPU stupid?
Would paying $2000 for a non-overclocked CPU be smart? Less/more stupid? It's not like $2000+ CPUs haven't existed before 9990XE.

How do you evaluate whether something is worth or not? :-o

The part about not even being a flagship is even more bizarre...
Posted on Reply
#24
Chloe Price
notb said:
I don't understand your post at all.
Why is paying over $2000 for a factory overclocked CPU stupid?
Would paying $2000 for a non-overclocked CPU be smart? Less/more stupid? It's not like $2000+ CPUs haven't existed before 9990XE.

How do you evaluate whether something is worth or not? :-o

The part about not even being a flagship is even more bizarre...
Why anyone with brains would pay over 2000eur/usd for a cherry-picked, factory overclocked 9940X? Like I said, the price goes "Apple", like 100eur/usd for 100MHz when comparing those... Why this instead of the real flagship, 18-core 9980XE? MOAR CLOCKS? Yeah.. Clock speed was the thing when we had Pentium 4.

I'd go for 2990WX anyday instead of this.
Posted on Reply
#25
R0H1T
Chloe Price said:
And people called Pentium 4 EE as Emergency Edition... This is Xtreme Emergency then.
This is what happens when life flashes right before your eyes in RTRT, as one Toms editor put it :fear:
Posted on Reply
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