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Best Intel Core i9 Laptops in 2020 (Review & Comparison)

by Sean Hamilton

Modern-day games, editing software, DAWs, and other apps and programs need something powerful to run smoothly. The growing and demanding specifications needed in high-end programs and games require more than an i7 processor. With an increased number of cores and a support of hyper-threading along with power efficiency, no one can beat Intel Core i9 processors in performance.

If you are a content creator, a freaky gamer, or a photographer who mostly deals with 4K videos and photos, the i9 processor is for you.

According to a survey, the Ryzen 3000 family CPU’s are failing to hit the boost clock frequencies. More than 3000 Ryzen 7nm owners participated in the survey, and results showed this flaw in AMD’s new CPUs.

But it is not the case with Intel Core i9 processors, so it is ideal to go with Intel to hit the right boost clock speeds for faster performance.

So, if your work or gaming needs a higher and faster processor, then you should go for an Intel Core i9 laptop. But which of the laptops are best? Here is the list below.


Best Intel Core i9 Laptops

1. Apple MacBook Pro 15 – Overall Best  
Display: This Apple MacBook Pro 15 is better than its previous models in terms of performance. It comes with a 15.4-inch Retina LED-backlit display with IPS and True Tone technology. With 2880 x 1800 screen resolution, get ready for the breathtaking and more realistic visuals.

Touch Bar and ID: Although MacBooks haven’t come with touchscreens, there are touch bar and touch ID features. With a touch bar that has replaced the function keys located at the top of the keyboard, you can control a lot of things by a single touch, hold, flick, and slide. And the Touch ID provides you with advanced security. You can unlock your Mac, buy with Apple Pay, or use the feature for authentication.

Processor: The laptop comes with the fastest 2.3 GHz, 9th generation Intel Octa-Core i9 processor with a clock speed boost up to 4.8 GHz.

Memory: It is equipped with 16GB RAM that is upgradeable.

Hard Drive: The 512GB SSD reads and writes data super-fast and provides enough space to store games, music, and important documents.

Graphics: Radeon Pro 560X is a professional graphics card that is the part of this MacBook Pro 15 with 4GB graphics memory. Also, there is an integrated Intel UHD graphics 630 processor.

Keyboard and Trackpad: It features a comfortable typing keyboard with more key stability. Also, it has a force touch trackpad that is quite spacious.

Ports: There are four Thunderbolt 3 (USB-C) ports.

Battery Life: The fully charged battery of Apple MacBook Pro 15 can live up to 10 hours.

Wireless Connectivity: Bluetooth 5.0 and 802.11a/b/g/n/ac Wi-Fi

My Opinion:

Pros: This MacBook Pro 15 is the best Intel Core i9 machine. Its powerful processor, RAM, SSD storage, display, and graphics are all up to the mark. No one can beat Apple MacBook Pro.
Cons: It is an expensive laptop, and there are no other ports except the Thunderbolt 3.

2. MSI GT75 Titan 4K-071 4K Gaming Laptop – Most Expensive Intel Core i9 Laptop

Display: The second best Intel Core i9 system is the MSI GT75 Titan 4K-071 that comes with 17.3-inch widescreen with UHD (3840 x 2160) 4K LED-backlit display featuring IPS technology. Its screen resolution is better than Apple MacBook Pro.

Processor: With its powerful 2.9 GHz, 8th generation Intel Hexa-Core i9-8950HK processor, you can produce music, play high-end games, edit music and videos, and even can deal with any processor-intensive workload. The 4.3 GHz is the base clock speed that can boost up to 4.8 GHz.

Graphics: If we talk about its GPU, then it is NVidia GeForce GTX 1080 with an 8GB graphics card RAM size. This graphics card gives impressive speed and power efficiency. Also, there is an integrated Intel UHD Graphics 630 processor.

Memory: Its 32GB RAM is divided into two RAM slots, and there are two extra slots that you can use to upgrade the RAM up to 64GB. If you are a music producer or content creator, even the most RAM-thirsty DAW can be easily handled with this 32GB RAM size.

Hard Drive: You have a dual storage option. There is 1TB NVMe SSD that is the fastest drive in the market and 1TB HDD as well.

Keyboard and Trackpad: It features Per-Key RGB mechanical keyboard with nice and deep key travel and tactile feedback. Its trackpad is small, and its quality is not up to the mark.

Ports: The laptop features five USB 3.1Gen two ports, multi-format SD card reader, one Thunderbolt 3 (USB-C) port, mini DisplayPort, RJ-45, and a microphone/headphone combo jack.

Battery Life: Its battery life is up to 5 hours.

Wireless Connectivity: 802.11ac Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 5.0

My Opinion:

Pros: It is one of the best gaming laptops with Intel Core i9 processor. Its dual storage option and 4K display are the two most appealing features.
Cons: Short battery life and it runs hot under load.

3. Gigabyte Aero 15-X9-9RT5 Laptop – Best under $2100

Display: This Gigabyte Aero 15-X9-9RT5 is also a high-end laptop, but its screen resolution is limited to FHD (1920 x 1080). It has a 15.6-inch widescreen with an ultra-thin bezel. Also, the display is powered by IPS anti-glare technology.

Graphics: It comes with a new and powerful NVidia GeForce RTX 2070 Graphics Coprocessor with 8GB GDDR6 graphics memory.

Processor: The laptop has an impressive Intel Core i9-8950HK processor with a 2.9 GHz base clock frequency that can go up to 4.8 GHz. It is basically a gaming laptop, but can you deal with any processor-intensive tasks without any problem.

Memory: 16GB DDR4 Samsung DRAM is ideal for multitasking and faster performance.

Hard Drive: The system has an integrated M.2 NVMe PCle 1TB SSD.

Keyboard and Trackpad: There is a per-key RGB backlit programmable keyboard that features soft keys for easy typing, gaming, and editing. Also, its trackpad is quite responsive and much improved as compared to the ELAN trackpad used in the previous models.  

Ports: There is an SD card reader, combo audio jack, an RJ-45Ethernet, two USB-C ports (Thunderbolt Type-C and USB 3.1), three USB 3.1 ports (2 x Gen 1 and 1 x Gen 2), and an HDMI 2.0 port.

Battery Life: The laptop offers up to 8 hours of battery life.

Wireless Connectivity: 802.11ac Wi-Fi and Bluetooth

My Opinion:

Pros: It has a great cooling system, excellent sound system, and incredible graphics card. Also, its SSD is super-fast. In a nutshell, it is simply an amazing laptop.
Cons: There is an overheating issue, and sometimes the Wi-Fi disconnects automatically.

4. ASUS ROG G703GX Gaming Laptop – Most Powerful Processor

Graphics: This ASUS ROG G703GX is equipped with a dedicated NVidia GeForce RTX 2080 GPU featuring 8GB GDDR6 RAM. This graphics card is slightly better than the RTX 2070 that is present in Gigabyte.

Processor: It is powered by the 9th generation Intel Octa-Core i9-9980HK processor. The base clock speed can go up to 5 GHz. It is the most powerful processor on the list.

Display: With 17.3-inch widescreen and Full HD (1920 x 1080) IPS display with NVidia G-Sync technology, you will be able to view much wider and sharper visuals.

Memory: The laptop is powered by 32GB DDR4 SDRAM. Its RAM size is more significant than what Gigabyte is offering.

Hard Drive: If we focus on its hard drive, then it is 1TB SSD (2 x 512GB M.2) drive.

Ports: Thunderbolt 3, HDMI 2.0, Mini DisplayPort 1.4, and USB 3.1 Gen 2 ports.

Keyboard and Trackpad: There are an AURA Sync RGB gaming keyboard and a decent trackpad.

Battery Life: On a fully charged battery, you can work up to 8 hours.

Wireless Connectivity: Bluetooth and 802.11b/n/g/ac Wi-Fi

My Opinion:

Pros: Its powerful processor and huge storage capacity are the two most appealing things. Also, its RAM size and graphics card are quite sufficient for playing high-end games.
Cons: Trackpad is small and overly sensitive.

5. New Alienware 17 R5 – Best under $2600

Processor: This laptop is powered by the Intel Hexa-Core i9-8950Hk processor. Its base clock frequency can boost up to 5.0 GHz.

Graphics: There is a dedicated NVidia GeForce GTX 1080OC graphics card with 8GB DDR5X graphics memory.

Display: If we talk about its screen size, then it is 17.3 inches. This big-screen offers a QHD (2560 x 1440) display with G-Sync and anti-glare panel.

Memory: There are two DDR4 SDRAM slots of 16GB that combine to make 32GB of RAM.

Hard Drive: The system features dual storage options like the MSI. But its 256GB PCle SSD is different, and 1TB HDD is the same.

Ports: Thunderbolt 3, two USB 3.0 Type-A, one USB 3.0 Type-C port, an HDMI 2.0, a headphone/microphone combo jack, and a mini DisplayPort 1.2.

Keyboard and Trackpad: It has a backlit keyboard having soft keys that require a little force to be pressed. Also, its trackpad is decent.

Battery Life: Up to 8 hours of battery life

Wireless Connectivity: 802.11ac Wi-Fi (2×2) and Bluetooth 4.1

My Opinion:

Pros: Its build quality is excellent, performance is quite satisfactory, fans are quite, and speakers are quite decent.
Cons: Its trackpad is slightly weird. Also, the laptop is not 100% compatible with the Alienware graphics amplifier.

6. ASUS ZenBook Pro 15 Laptop – Best under $1600

Processor: Another best Intel Core i9 system in our list is the ASUS ZenBook Pro 15 that is made up of a single piece of aluminum. It is powered by 8th generation Intel Hexa-Core i9-8950Hk processor with Turbo Boost up to 4.8 GHz.

Display: 15.6-inch UHD touchscreen display with NanoEdge bezel. Its color accuracy is factory-calibrated and validated by Pantone.

Graphics: NVidia GeForce GTX 1050 Ti with 4GB graphics memory

Memory: 16GB DDR4 RAM is best for multi-tasking.

Hard Drive: 512GB PCle x4 NVMe SSD

Ports: There are two USB 3.1 Gen 2 Type-A ports, two Thunderbolt 3 USB-C ports, a microSD card slot, an audio jack, a DC-jack, and an HDMI.

Battery Life: Up to 6 hours of battery life

Keyboard and Trackpad: Its backlit keyboard performs well, but the main center of attraction is its intelligent touchpad. It adapts to what you are doing on your laptop and helps you to do those tasks much faster. Also, you can use the touchpad as a screen pad with the help of a screen extender mode.

Wireless Connectivity: Bluetooth 4.1 and 802.11AC Wi-Fi 5

My Opinion:

Pros: Although it has a fast processor and UHD display, the most appealing feature is the intelligent touchpad.
Cons: There is an overheating issue. And when it gets hot, it shuts down suddenly.

7. Dell XPS 15 9570 Laptop – Best under $3000

Display: 15.6-inch UHD (3840 x 2160) anti-reflective touch screen

Processor: The laptop is powered by the 8th generation Intel Hexa-Core i9-8950HK processor.

Memory: It comes with 32GB DDR4 SDRAM.

Hard Drive: 1TB SSD is its storage capacity.

Graphics: If we focus on its GPU, then it is NVidia GTX 1050 Ti that comes with 4GB graphics memory.

Ports: There is an SD card slot, two USB 3.1 ports, and one Thunderbolt 3.

Keyboard and Trackpad: It has a decent keyboard and trackpad.

Battery Life: Its battery life is up to 6 hours.

Wireless Connectivity: 802.11AC Wi-Fi

My Opinion:

Pros: Its UHD display and 1TB SSD storage are the best features. Overall, its performance is quite decent.
Cons: Its battery life is short, and the keyboard and trackpad are not of good quality.

Buyer’s Guide

It is equally important to know about those factors that you should consider when buying the best Intel Core i9 machine. So, what are those factors? In this section, you are going to know them.


The first factor that requires your consideration is the display of your Intel Core i9 laptop. First, focus on the screen size that must be at least 15-inch. But a 17-inch screen with ultra-thin bezel will give you the best viewing experience.

Now, come to the screen resolution or display. At least your laptop must have a Full HD display (1920 x 1080). All the Core i9 laptops at least come with Full HD display. But if you have a good budget, then you should go for a 4K UHD resolution to have a stunning display.

RAM and Hard Drive

It is also necessary to focus on the RAM size and hard drive of your system. It totally depends on your usage, but at least 16 GB RAM must be the part of your Core i9 laptop. And if you want to have HDD storage, then it should be 1TB, but in case of SSD, it must have a storage capacity of 512GB. Also, some Core i9 laptops come with dual storage options, so you can also go for that.

Keyboard and Trackpad

No matter whether you are selecting an Intel Core i9 laptop for gaming, music production, or to edit photos and videos, the keyboard and trackpad must be top-notch.

RGB backlighting keyboard is best for gaming, but make sure it offers per-key RGB lighting. Also, there must be a comfortable key-travel distance so that you can do any task with ease.

Now, come to the trackpad that must not be highly-sensitive. If it supports multiple-finger inputs, then it is best to go with.

Cooling System

Make sure the laptop that you are buying feature innovative cooling technology. A laptop with an i9 processor may heat up quickly; therefore, an efficient heat dissipation system is essential to work and play smoothly.


You should also check the connectivity ports of your laptop. Make sure that the ports available are according to your needs. Always try to have a laptop with USB Type-C ports, USB 3.0 and 3.1 ports, and an HDMI along with SD card reader and a headphone/microphone combo jack.

Battery Life

CPU and GPU-intensive workloads drain batteries a lot faster, so it is necessary to ask the selling person about the laptop’s battery life under extreme workloads.


What is the Core i9 processor, and how fast is it?

Core i9 is the latest in the Intel Core i PC chip series that was introduced in the year of 2017. It is the fastest and efficient processor in the market that gives an incredible performance. There are several models of the Core i9 processor available. Their clock speed can turbo-boost up to 4.8 GHz to 5 GHz. Also, these processors support hyper-threading. Moreover, they feature a large cache size from 12MB to 16MB that also enhances their performance.

What are the advantages of Core i9 processors?

They provide high-end performance that is why they are ideal for content creators, gamers, and photo and video editors. The number of cores is higher than the previous processors. These Core i9 processors are ultra-fast. There is an Intel Optane support.What are the disadvantages of Core i9 processors?They are expensive as compared to previous processors. Needs a new motherboard that doubles the cost. They have overheating issues and limited usage.

Which Core i9 processor model is the best? I9-8950HK or I9-9980HK

If we compare i9-8950HK and i9-9980HK with each other, then the i9-9980HK is slightly better than i9-8950HK in terms of performance. But this i9-9980KH is not better than the best model so far of the i9 processor that is i9-9900K. The CPU mark rating of Intel Core i9-9900K is 20,221, whereas 17,509 and 14, 262 are of i9-9980HK and i9-8950HK, respectively.

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