Intel Comet Lake-S processors have been unavailable since May 2020, though they have faced some supply issues since then. However, Intel processors have always been favorites of the overclocking community. If you want to get a chip that is guaranteed to achieve high clock speeds, you’re in luck.
You can currently buy an Intel Core i5-10600K from Silicon Lottery that has been validated for high all-core overclocking. However, you have to pay a high premium the higher the guaranteed clock rate. For example, if you want to buy a 10600K that will hit a whopping 5.1 GHz, you’ll see a price of $ 419 (around £ 330, AU $ 600), which is almost double the processor̵
If you don’t need such high overclocking, you can still pick up a well-grouped version of the processor. You can buy one that reaches 4.8 GHz on all cores, for example, for only $ 294 (about AU $ 230, $ 420). This is more expensive than the suggested retail price, but not so much that it targets higher-level processors.
In both cases, these are products that are aimed directly at computer fans who enjoy optimizing their hardware. If you’re not really interested in messing around in your BIOS to get the absolute maximum juice out of your processor, be sure to purchase one of these processors from retail stores – all of them will reach their advertised boost speeds (or at least they will) should).
However, if you want to overclock something and don’t want to literally dice whether you get a solid piece of silicon or not, these pre-validated Silicon Lottery processors may be just the thing for you.
Why are they necessary at all?
Not all processors are the same. Intel will manufacture millions of processors, but only a few of them will be able to achieve world record overclocks. In the hardware enthusiast community, this is known as a silicon lottery. This is where the silicone lottery has its name.
While every Intel Core i5-10600K should be able to achieve the announced maximum boost speed of 4.8 GHz, there is no guarantee of how far you can overclock the processor.
So when you pick up a processor in the store, you can’t tell if it can overclock well until you plug it into your motherboard and try to push it as far as it will go. There is absolutely a possibility that you are extremely lucky and get a super high overclock, but it is much more likely that you will get a chip that is not much higher than the default settings.
For example, according to the listing for the Intel Core i5-10600K at 5.1 GHz at Silicon Lottery, only 8% of the 10600K processors tested by the company could achieve this speed – so there is a pretty slim chance of getting a golden chip like this at your local best buy.
In general, Silicon Lottery offers the certainty that you get the absolute best processor for your money by taking the risk out of the equation. You will certainly pay more, but if you don’t want to take the risk, we can definitely see the value in it.