Intel’s Raptor Lake processors may be a fair bit more expensive than current-gen Alder Lake chips, at least going by some leaked pricing which has popped up on Amazon – but as always, there are serious caveats here.
Regular Twitter-based leaker @momomo_us spotted Intel’s Core i9-13900KF listed on Amazon UK, as well as the 13700K and 13700KF, plus the 13600KF.
pic.twitter.com/6rRCUmTjrdSeptember 25, 2022
The product listings have since been pulled, but not before the leaker took screenshots giving us evidence of the price tags pertaining to these chips, with the 13900KF running to a hefty £750 in the UK (around $800, AU$1,230).
The 13700K weighed in at £547 (around $585, AU$900) and the 13600KF at £349 (around $370, AU$570), so it all looks distinctly pricey. As Tech Powerup, which spotted the tweet, points out, this is a substantial markup on Alder Lake processors, but before we get carried away with that notion, let’s discuss those mentioned caveats.
Analysis: Placeholder pricing, but still a worrying hint
For some time now the grapevine has been carrying chatter around Intel notching up prices for Raptor Lake. Team Blue itself has declared that pricing with some of its chips is heading upwards in the near future – and this won’t do anything to ease those fears.
However, generally speaking, leaks like these early product listings use placeholder pricing, so they don’t reflect the actual MSRPs (recommend prices) Intel will pin on Raptor Lake CPUs. That said, it’s perhaps a decent guestimate, and indicative of the direction that a major retailer is expecting pricing to go in – so a worrying sign in that respect.
If Intel is going to push pricing, it’s likely to be on the higher-end processors, as that’s where enthusiasts – the target audience – are likely to be willing to fork out more, of course. And given that the 12900K is still selling for about £620 (around $660, AU$1,020) or so, it may be possible that the 13900K ends up in excess of £700 (around $750, AU$1,150). We certainly wouldn’t rule that out, although if Intel is going to hike pricing with its 13th-gen, what we would hope is that it’ll leave the mid-range (and lower-end) CPUs alone, and that they’ll have a similar impact on wallets as their Alder Lake counterparts.
So, when we’re looking at the Core i5-13600KF at £349 (around $370, AU$570), that’s a hike of about 28% compared to what you can currently buy the 12600KF for. Obviously it’s not as much of a jump compared to the price tag that the latter originally came in at, but still, fingers crossed we won’t see such a push forward with pricing at the mid-range level.
Remember that Intel must compete with AMD’s incoming Ryzen 7000 processors, and notably Team Red has kept pricing on par with current-gen CPUs, so Intel will be competing against the Ryzen 5 7600X in the mid-range with a price of $299 (around £280, AU$460).
AMD has even dropped the price of the flagship Ryzen 9 7950X compared to the 5950X, and arguably that could make it difficult for Intel to push overly hard with its Raptor Lake flagship. But who knows how this will pan out, as a lot will depend on how well these CPUs perform against each other – though the battle looks pretty even going by the rumors thus far.
Perhaps one of the most important takeaways with this Amazon pricing leak is that this is more fuel to the fire that Raptor Lake is going on sale before we expected. Speculation has pointed firmly to the 13th-gen CPUs being launched tomorrow, at Intel’s Innovation event, but the rumor mill has floated the idea that the chips won’t actually hit shelves until the latter half of October.
However, we’ve seen a marked increase in the amount of leaks lately, including multiple spilled benchmarks for the Raptor Lake flagship processor, and a sighting of the purported packaging for the 13900K (which changes things somewhat). And if Amazon is readying product listings now, that suggests we could see Raptor Lake on sale early in October, hot on the heels of Ryzen 7000 – which is definitely what Intel should be shooting for. Indeed, pre-orders could even kick off after the big reveal tomorrow, and at least we’ll then know what level pricing is being pitched at.
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Darren is a freelancer writing news and features for TechRadar (and occasionally T3) across a broad range of computing topics including CPUs, GPUs, various other hardware, VPNs, antivirus and more. He has written about tech for the best part of three decades, and writes books in his spare time (his debut novel - 'I Know What You Did Last Supper' - was published by Hachette UK in 2013).