Intel i9-12900K alternatives for PC

Intel i9-12900K is one of the best processors available. It is fast and provides an enhanced experience to the end-users. Gamers and graphic processing agencies are picking up i9-12900K due to its swift response to intensive processing tasks. However, are there processors that could come with a marginally scaled back performance than an i9-12900K processor? We are looking at the two alternatives to the Intel i9-12900K processor that can save us money and offer a tad lower performance.

i7-12700K processor alternative to i9-12900K

We still feel that the Intel i7-12700K is a perfect alternative to the Intel i9-12900K. It is priced almost 40% lower. Most core features and architecture of the i7-12700K are similar to those of the i9-12900K processor. What makes i7-12700K a credible alternative to the i9-12900K processor? Below, we list some similarities between i9-12900K and i7-12700K.

  • i7-12700K is a 12th-generation processor of the i7 family of core Intel processors. i9-12900K is a 12th-generation processor of the i9 family.
  • i7-12700K and i9-12900K were released at the same time in Q4 of 2021.
  • The size of both processors is the same. i9-12900K and i7-12700K come in the physical sizes of 45.0 mm x 37.5 mm.
  • Both, i9-12900K and i7-12700K support PCIe 4 and PCIe 5 standards for data transfer between the motherboard and CPU.
  • Both processors have an identical number of 20 PCI lanes for data transfer.
  • i9-12900K and i7-12700K support DDR 4 3200 MHz and DDR 5 4800 MHz RAM.
  • Both processors are able to support a maximum of 128 GB of RAM on the two memory banks.
  • Both processors can support a maximum memory bandwidth of 76.8 GBps.
  • i9-12900K and i7-12700K work on the same CPU socket. LGA1700 socket has 1700 pins for the i9-12900K and i7-12700K processors.
  • In terms of display adapters, both processors work with integrated graphics based on Intel UHD 770 chipset.
  • DirectX 12 support is inbuilt in the i9-12900K and i7-12700K.
  • You can connect up to 4 display monitors to i9-12900K and i7-12700K.
  • The maximum resolution on the display port for both processors is 7680 x 4320 at a frequency of 60 Hz. On an integrated flat panel, both processors can work at 120 Hz on a display resolution of 5120 x 3200.
  • Both processors have 8 DMI lanes for future expansion.

Noticeably, the core architecture of i9-12900K and i7-12700K is quite similar. The difference lies in the processor capabilities.

  • i9-12900K has 16 cores and i7-12700K has 12 cores.
  • i9-12900K has 30 MB cache and i7-12700K has 25 MB cache
  • i9-12900K has 14 MB L2 cache and i7-12700K has 12 MB L2 cache.
  • i9-12900K has 24 threads and i7-12700K has 20 threads for multitasking support.
  • The PassMark score for all the cores of i9-12900K is 411195. This is almost 20 percent higher than the PassMark score of the i7-12700K processor.
  • The PassMark score for all the cores of i7-12700K is 34352.

The cost of the i9-12900K processor is almost 60 percent over the cost of the i7-12700K processor. If you are on the lookout for a cost-friendly processor that can provide a good gaming experience, i7-12700K is a good choice to consider. Otherwise, an i9-12900K continues to be the first choice for many gamers and graphics professionals.

i5-12600K processor alternative to i9-12900K

Another alternative to the i9-12900K processor of Intel core processors is the i5-12600K processor. The processor has decent performance and costs less than half of the i9-12900K processor. We bring the salient points of the i5-12600K processor and the i9-12900K processors below. This would give you a detailed idea about the performance matrix of both these processors.

  • i5-12600K is the 12th-generation processor from the Intel i5 family of core processors.
  • i9-12900K is the 12th-generation processor from the Intel i9 family of core processors.
  • Both processors have been released in Q4 of 2021. They are contemporary processors of the 12th generation from a different family of core Intel processors.
  • i9-12900K and i5-12600K can work with DDR 4 3200 MHz and DDR 4 4800 MHz RAM.
  • Both processors can support 2 memory banks with a maximum RAM capacity of 128 GB.
  • i9-12900K and i5-12600K can achieve a maximum memory bandwidth of 76.8 GBps.
  • i9-12900K and i5-12600K can support ECC RAM as well.
  • i9-12900K and i5-12600K can support PCIe 4 and PCIe 5 standards of data transfer. PCIe 5 can achieve a data transfer rate of 32 Gigtransfers and PCIe 4 can achieve data transfer speeds of 16 GTs.
  • Both processors can support 20 PCI lanes for data transfer through the processor and motherboard.
  • i9-12900K and i5-12600K come with an integrated display that is based on the Intel UHD 770 chipset.
  • Both processors can support up to 4 display monitors.
  • The maximum display port resolution for both processors at 60 Hz is 7680 x 4320 pixels.
  • The base GPU frequency for both processors is 300 MHz. The max Turbo frequency for GPU is 1.45 GHz for i5-12600K and 1.55 GHz for i9-12900K.
  • DirectX 12 support is compatible with both processors.
  • Both processors have 32 graphic execution units
  • Both processors come with 8 DMI lanes for expansion at a later date.
  • The size of i9-12900K and i5-12600K is the same as both processors come in the sizes of 45.0 mm x 37.5 mm.
  • i9-12900K and i5-12600K work with the same FCLGA1700 socket. The 1700 pin socket is compatible with both processors of the i9 and i5 family.

In terms of the core architecture, the processors are quite similar. The difference between i9-12900K and i5-12650K lies in processor configuration. We have mentioned the key or important differences between the i9-12900K and i5-12600K processors below.

  • i9-12900K has 16 cores while the i5-12600K has 10 cores.
  • i9-12900K has a 30 MB cache and the i5-12600K has a 20 MB cache.
  • i9-12900K has a 14 MB L2 cache and i5-12600K has a 9.5 MB L2 cache.
  • i9-12900K supports 24 threads and i5-12600K supports 16 threads for multitasking and multiprocessing.
  • The PassMark score for all the cores of i9-12900K is 41195. It is almost 50 percent higher than the PassMark score of the i5-12600K processor.
  • The PassMark score for all the cores of the i5-12600K processor is 27467.

We can conclude that the i5-12600K’s CPU performance is a tad slower than the i9-12900K. It all comes down to your needs for performance. i5-12600K performs well for gaming and heavy graphic processing tasks. The i5-12600K processor is 40% the cost of the i9-12900K processor. It all boils down to your budget and performance needs.


We have discussed two alternatives to the i9-12900K core processor. Both, i7-12700K and i5-12600K are able processors that perform well. For most gamers, these two processors would give a decent performance. There can be, however, no denying the fact that the i9-12900K processor remains the best Intel i9 processor as we write this. It can make most complex tasks look simpler.

You may also like to read more content related to Intel processors below:

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Rajesh Dhawan

Rajesh Dhawan is a technology professional who loves to blog about smart wearables, Cloud computing and Microsoft technologies. He loves to break complex problems into manageable chunks of meaningful information.