Benchmarks - Overclocked
As with all of our reviews, we pit the default speed system against the overclocked one in a head-to-head byte match. The effective overclock for these tests is 5.2Ghz @ 52x multiplier. To attain this overclock I took the cheap route by setting the XMP profile and set the multiplier to 52x. There was no need to make voltage adjustments, it simply worked.
What really bothers me about the Core i9 10900K is how “overclockable” the processor is. The advertised Boost 3.0 frequency is 5.3Ghz and yet under load all the cores will only boost to 4.9Ghz. Setting the multiplier manually will force the CPU to run at 5.2Ghz across all the cores and yet there is no way to reliably run the advertised 5.3Ghz.
I should also mention that the Z490 Aorus Master comes programmed to run 5.5Ghz in overclocked mode. There are not many Core i9 10900k processors that will run that fast so be careful when using the auto overclocking features. You will have a bad time.
As you can see overclocking is a little hit or miss. The hit is constant clocks on every core in the processor and the miss is how much extra power you actually get from it. A key thing to remember when running cooler based overclocking (Like the boost conditions in the Comet Lake CPUs) you must always factor in the ambient temperature. My reviews are done on an open air test bench in a conditioned space. Had I tested this system inside a case or in a room without air conditioning the peak temperatures can change and either make the system unstable or set the base overclock lower.
Bottom Bottom line, invest in a good cooler.
It should also be noted that *most* of this performance increase is from setting the XMP profile and a few instances where multithreading is heavily used. Again, because the Core i9 10900K is already pretty much maxed out from the factory some of these benchmarks show the same values.