What Does LGA1151 Mean?

When you insert your CPU into your motherboard, the socket you install it into has a name. In this case, the socket you’ll be installing these CPUs is called LGA 1151 or Socket H4. The LGA 1151 Socket currently supports, Skylake, Kabylake, and Coffee Lake processors. Today you’ll likely be choosing from Intel’s 8th and 9th gen CPUs as they offer the best overall performance in terms of gaming and other applications.

Another way you can see it as the number of pins in a socket. You can find 1151 pins in the LGA 1151 Socket, and these pins act as contacts between the socket and the CPU. An LGA 1151 CPU such as the I9 9900K wouldn’t be able to work with an LGA 1150 socket. This is because, for one, it can’t even physically fit in the socket, and if you somehow managed to get it to fit, the pins will be incompatible with the CPU.

What Do The CPUs In This List Offer?

Intel is known for their fantastic single-core performance which can be used to its advantage in video games. Although most if not all video games support multi-threading, video games still rely heavily on a processors single-core performance. That’s why you see the “ultimate” gaming PC’s mostly using I9’s instead of Ryzen processors.

The CPUs in this list are part of the Coffee Lake family which supports (H310, B365, B360, H370, Q370, Z370, Z390) chipsets, we’d recommend a the latest Z390 motherboards as they offer the most features such as overclocking.

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Top-Tier
Intel Core i9-9900K Desktop Processor 8 Cores up to 5.0 GHz Turbo unlocked LGA1151 300 Series 95W
Mid-Tier
Intel Core i5-9600K Desktop Processor 6 Cores up to 4.6 GHz Turbo unlocked LGA1151 300 Series 95W
Budget-Tier
Intel Core i3-9100F Desktop Processor 4 Core Up to 4.2 GHz without Processor Graphics LGA1151 300 Series 65W
Intel Core i9-9900K Desktop Processor 8 Cores up to 5.0 GHz Turbo unlocked LGA1151 300 Series 95W
Intel Core i5-9600K Desktop Processor 6 Cores up to 4.6 GHz Turbo unlocked LGA1151 300 Series 95W
Intel Core i3-9100F Desktop Processor 4 Core Up to 4.2 GHz without Processor Graphics LGA1151 300 Series 65W
Best Gaming Processor
Best Mid-Range Processor
Best Budget Processor
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Top-Tier
Intel Core i9-9900K Desktop Processor 8 Cores up to 5.0 GHz Turbo unlocked LGA1151 300 Series 95W
Intel Core i9-9900K Desktop Processor 8 Cores up to 5.0 GHz Turbo unlocked LGA1151 300 Series 95W
Best Gaming Processor
Mid-Tier
Intel Core i5-9600K Desktop Processor 6 Cores up to 4.6 GHz Turbo unlocked LGA1151 300 Series 95W
Intel Core i5-9600K Desktop Processor 6 Cores up to 4.6 GHz Turbo unlocked LGA1151 300 Series 95W
Best Mid-Range Processor
Budget-Tier
Intel Core i3-9100F Desktop Processor 4 Core Up to 4.2 GHz without Processor Graphics LGA1151 300 Series 65W
Intel Core i3-9100F Desktop Processor 4 Core Up to 4.2 GHz without Processor Graphics LGA1151 300 Series 65W
Best Budget Processor
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Best LGA 1151 CPUs

Here you can find the top-tier CPUs for the LGA 1151 socket. Typically you’ll be pairing these CPUs with a decent motherboard since they’re high performance and are generally overclocked. These CPUs offer are great for heavy workloads such as gaming and video editing. Intel CPUs tend to lean towards single-core performance which benefits you immensely in video games. Although they’re powerful when it comes to single-core workloads, they do offer decent multi-core performance with high-end processors since they have a decent number of physical cores.

Intel I9 9900K/KS | Most Powerful Gaming Processor

Best gaming LGA1151 CPU I9 9900K/KS
Core Clock Speed3.6 GHz(base), 5 GHz(boost)
Cores8(cores), 16(threads)
MicroarchitectureCoffee Lake Refresh
SocketLGA1151
Max Memory Support128 GB
Integrated GraphicsIntel UHD Graphics 630
Lithography14nm
TDP95W

Performance

For raw performance, the I9 9900K/KS is the best gaming processor you can pick up. The I7 9700K falls slightly behind in single-core performance which games heavily rely on today. And if you want the most powerful I9, then go for the 9900KS as it can reach 5GHz out of the box, it’s basically an overclocked 9900K. As for the specs, it has 8 Cores and 16 threads clocked in at 3.6 GHz base, and 5 GHz boost, we can see it has a decent number of physical cores which can be used effectively for productivity tasks.

Its closest Ryzen competitor is the Ryzen 9 3900x which has 12 cores and 24 threads at a very similar price to the 9900K. On paper it looks like going for the Ryzen 9 3900x makes perfect sense, but for gaming, the I9 9900K is still king. The Ryzen 9 3900x excels where multiple cores can be utilized effectively.

Features

feature-wise, it comes with decent integrated graphics (Intel UHD Graphics 630) which can be used if you’re not considering using a dedicated GPU. Unfortunately, it does not come with a stock cooler, and since this chip can run hot, you’ll need a decent aftermarket cooler. You can find the Best CPU coolers For The I9 9900K here!

PROS & CONS

Pros
  • Best gaming CPU
  • Great single core performance
  • Works on Z370 motherboards
  • 5GHz core peak for single-threaded applications
  • Come with integrated graphics
  • Great overclockability
Cons
  • No stock cooler

Intel I7 9700K/KF | Great Gaming Alternative

best gaming LGA1151 CPU i7 9700k/kF
Core Clock Speed3.6 GHz(base), 4.9 GHz(boost)
Cores8(cores), 8(threads)
MicroarchitectureCoffee Lake Refresh
SocketLGA1151
Max Memory Support128 GB
Integrated GraphicsIntel UHD Graphics 630 / No(KF)
Lithography14nm
TDP95W

Performance

The I7 9700K falls slightly behind the I9 9900K in gaming performance, and when I mean slightly, it’s about a 1% difference in gaming. So for gaming, the I7 9700K can offer insane performance for its price. And with the KF variant, you can get 9700K performance for even cheaper at the cost of your integrated graphics. The I7 9700K/KF has 8c8t making this the first generation of I7’s to lack hyperthreading. This means you’ll suffer when it comes to applications that heavily utilize multiple threads.

The I7 9700K has great single-core performance which means applications that only use or heavily utilize one core will heavily benefit from this processor. Due to having no hyperthreading, this is where the I9 9900K excels greatly if you’re multitasking, and you have a lot of professional workloads to process such as video editing, and Photoshop, the I9 9900K will be a better option. This doesn’t mean the I7 is poor at handling applications that utilize multiple cores, it still has 8 physical cores which is still decent in 2020.

Features

Just like the I9 9900K, the I7 9700K has integrated graphics which is the (Intel UHD Graphics 630) which you can use in case you do not have a dedicated card. You’ll definitely need a dedicated graphics card if you pick up the 9700KF variant as it has its integrated graphics module disabled. A stock cooler does not come with the 9700K, so you’ll need to pick up an aftermarket cooler. Please check out the post we’ve written specifically for the 9900K – Best CPU Cooler For the I7 9700K/KF.

PROS & CONS

Pros
  • Great single-core performance
  • 9700KF is cheaper for the same performance
  • Decent thermals
  • Great overclockability
Cons
  • No hyperthreading
  • No stock cooler

Mid-Tier LGA 1151 CPUs

With the CPUs in this tier, you can put together a decent mid-tier build that you can game and do other tasks on. They’re usually cheaper than the top-tier CPUs, but this comes at the cost of performance. They usually have fewer cores and or lower clock speeds, than the top processors resulting in slightly worst processing speeds. The CPUs in this tier range from $150-220.

Intel I5 9600K/KF | Best Budget Gaming Processor

Best budget LGA1151 CPU Intel i5 9600k/kf
Core Clock Speed3.7 GHz(base), 4.6 GHz(boost)
Cores6(cores), 6(threads)
MicroarchitectureCoffee Lake Refresh
SocketLGA1151
Max Memory Support128 GB
Integrated GraphicsIntel UHD Graphics 630
Lithography14nm
TDP95W

Performance

If you’re going for an only gaming setup, the I5 9600K makes perfect sense. The I5 9600K is perfect if you’re not concerned about steaming, video editing, or running heavily multi-threaded tasks. It has 6 physical cores and 6 threads clocked at 3.7 GHz base, and 4.6 GHz boost, on paper, it looks like the perfect mid-range CPU for pure gaming.

Its closest AMD competitor is the Ryzen 5 2600x and they’re nearly identical in performance. The I5 9600K still excels in video games because it has stronger single-core speed, that’s why Intel is better if you only want to game. If you’re interested in performing multiple tasks, then Ryzen is the way to go.

Features

Intel’s I5 9600K features the same integrated graphics the I9 9900K & I7 9700K has which is the Intel UHD Graphics 630. If you’re not going to be running a dedicated graphics card then the integrated graphics is always there to be utilized. There is no stock cooler that comes with the I5 9600K, so you’ll need to pick up an aftermarket cooler. You can find aftermarket coolers here – Best CPU Coolers Of 2020!

PROS & CONS

Pros
  • Decently priced
  • Great single-core performance
  • Solid integrated graphics module
Cons
  • No stock cooler

Intel I5 9400F | Best Beginner Processor

Best budget LGA1151 CPU 9400f
Core Clock Speed2.9 GHz(base), 4.1 GHz(boost)
Cores6(cores), 6(threads)
MicroarchitectureCoffee Lake Refresh
SocketLGA1151
Max Memory Support128 GB
Integrated GraphicsNone
Lithography14nm
TDP65W

Performance

The I5 9400F is an extreme budget CPU cooler, much cheaper than the I5 9600K, and it has average single-core performance, much similar to what Ryzen offers. However, the price makes this chip a decent bang for your buck, you have a 6c 6t processor clocked at 2.9GHz base and 4.1 GHz boost, and depending on your GPU, you’ll experience slightly fewer frames in-game then what the 9600K offers.

It is a 6 core 6 thread processor that is perfect if you’re specifically using it for gaming. It’s AMD competitor which is the Ryzen 5 2600 is beaten by the 9400F in single-core speed, but if you’re going to multitask, then Ryzen is the way. This is a great entry processor for newly inspired PC gamers that do not want to break their bank to game.

Features

The I5 9400F does not come with integrated graphics, so you’ll for sure need a dedicated graphics card with this system. If you don’t know already, you shouldn’t pair this processor with a super-powerful graphics card, you’ll severely bottleneck the GPU, a nice low-mid tier GPU should do. The 9400F is, in fact, a locked processor so you cannot push the limited by overclocking the CPU.

PROS & CONS

Pros
  • Decent bang for your buck
  • Better single-core performance compared to Ryzen 5 2600
  • Lightweight, 65W TDP
  • Great for beginner PC builders
Cons
  • No stock cooler
  • Locked multiplier

Best Budget-Tier LGA 1151 CPUs

Here you can find extremely cheap processors that you can use to put together a low budget PC. Usually, these processors are used for budget gaming PCs because they have decent single-core performance. You probably shouldn’t use these processors if you’re handing heavily multithreaded tasks since these processors don’t support SMT/Hyperthreading.

Intel I3 9100F | Cheapest CPU

Core Clock Speed3.6 GHz(base), 5 GHz(boost)
Cores4(cores), 4(threads)
MicroarchitectureCoffee Lake Refresh
SocketLGA1151
Max Memory Support64 GB
Integrated GraphicsNone
Lithography14nm
TDP95W

Performance

The I3 9100F is an extremely budget CPU, you can pick it up for much less than $100, so it’s pretty easy to put together a low-budget gaming system with this processor. It has 4 cores and 4 threads clocked in at 3.6 GHz base and 5 GHz boost. Still, you have decent single-core performance, but 4 cores is a bit outdated in 2020. The processor is cool if you’re going for a strict gaming system since it will struggle with multi-threaded dependent tasks.

A Quad-core processor sounds like it’ll be slow in 2020, but it’s pretty responsive processing traditional computing tasks like browsing the web. It just happens that Ryzen is more multi-tasking friendly, so if you’re interested in streaming, or video editing, go Ryzen, Intel processors are known for manufacturing the best gaming processors on the market.

Features

Feature wise, it does not come with integrated graphics so you’ll need a dedicated card, but it does come with a stock cooler you can use. This is great to know because since this processor pleases budget builds, you don’t need to increase your budget purchasing an aftermarket cooler

PROS & CONS

Pros
  • Extremely affordable
  • Decent single-core performance for the price
  • Comes with stock cooler
  • Great for first builds.
Cons
  • No integrated graphics
  • Quad-core chip.

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