Intel recently commissioned Principled Technologies to conduct a benchmark test for their latest processor: the Intel Core i9-9900K. This study compared Intel’s processor against not only their own processors, but also their competitor’s (AMD) processor, in terms of . The results show that the i9-9900K outperformed the other processors across 19 games. It even managed to outperform the AMD Ryzen 7 2700X by nearly 50% in some games. This performance is, admittedly, worthy of a few boastful remarks by Intel, which they did by calling their processor “the world’s best gaming processor.”  It would’ve been a remark grounded in reality, if not for the revelation that the benchmark was misleading.

Caught Red-handed

On October 8, 2018, Steven Walton of the Hardware Unboxed Youtube channel released a video explaining why the Principled Technologies report was misleading.  He stated that the study was conducted in such a way that the AMD Ryzen 7 2700X would be at a disadvantage, while giving the Intel Core i9-9900K the boost it needed to look good. Some of these misleading practices include overclocking the test system used for the i9-9900K and disabling four of the eight cores of the AMD Ryzen processor.

Principled Technologies has since admitted to making errors, while defending some parts of their methodology, in testing the processors. The company is currently retesting the processors.  As for Intel, they are defending the inaccurate test results, going as far as stating that:

“…The data is consistent with what we have seen in our labs…”

Why Should We Care

It is important to remember that the gaming community is not only composed of enthusiasts, but also consumers. The gaming industry produces high quality games, some of which requires platforms capable of running them smoothly.  These platforms may come in the form of consoles, or a gaming rig/PC.

As consumers, we have the right of information. We are protected by law against misleading practices made by producers and manufacturers in order to make an informed decision. It is obvious that this incident would’ve tipped the favor onto Intel, and against AMD if it weren’t exposed early on. Keep in mind that the Intel Core i9-9900K is currently in pre-order, a period where marketing is at its strongest and sales figure must be at its highest. Commissioning a benchmark test comparing their processor against their competitor’s processor may be dodgy at best. Conducting an inaccurate and erroneous test is bad business practice. Defending the misleading results, and even suggesting that the data from these results is ‘consistent’ with what you’ve seen despite the results from independent reviewers, is just outright wrong.