Editor’s Note, June 16: We’ve attempted to clarify the distinctions between the “true” Core i9 processors, and the other members of the Core i7-family that share some common architectural elements.

Intel’s Core i9 processor is what happens when Intel begins to worry that it might not have the baddest chip on the block. And if you’re desperate for one, here’s some great news: Some Core i9 preorders begin the week of June 19, with the remainder launching through October.

Just weeks after AMD disclosed its massive 16-core, 32-thread Threadripper chip, Intel dropped its bomb: The Core i9 family will have up to 18 cores and 36 threads, making them possibly the most powerful consumer PC chips ever made.

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