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Intel Core i9-10900K CPU might be pricey, but at least you can insure it for overclocking

Intel Core i9
(Image credit: Intel)

Intel’s Core i9-10900K flagship processor is going to take quite a chunk out of your wallet looking at the initial pre-order pricing we’ve just seen, but the better news is at least you can protect the chip – and some other Comet Lake CPUs – with insurance if you’re planning on overclocking.

This is courtesy of Intel’s Performance Tuning Protection Plan which the company has just extended to cover some of its Comet Lake desktop processors which are just about to land.

You can purchase coverage for the Core i9-10900K or 10900KF, the Core i7-10700K (and KF) and the Core i5-10600K (and KF). These are unlocked processors that enthusiasts can overclock, and the point of the insurance is that if the owner pushes the CPU too hard when overclocking – and it dies – Intel will replace the chip with another.

The caveat is that you only get one replacement, so in other words, Intel won’t keep sending you new silicon indefinitely as chips repeatedly go pop (unsurprisingly – that could lead to a situation where people keep spinning the ‘silicon lottery’ wheel in this manner until they get a really good overclocking chip).

You get one replacement CPU, and that’s it, with the cost of the scheme being $19.99 for these desktop processors (10th and 9th-gen models are currently covered, although the scheme actually started a long time back – in 2012, in fact).

High-end desktop processors (HEDT) can also be insured – up to the Core i9-10980XE – but in this case, you pay slightly more at $29.99 (pricing outside the US is yet to be confirmed, incidentally).

Peace of mind

Given that the Core i9-10900K has gone up on pre-order for around $600 in the US (and at about the £530 mark in the UK), adding an extra 20 notes isn’t much more than a 3% price increase, and for those looking to overclock – which will doubtless be many folks buying this expensive flagship – the extra outlay is likely worth it for that guaranteed one-shot replacement if things happen to go wrong.

As Intel puts it, you can “overclock with peace of mind” at least once, pushing as hard as you dare. Although you should, of course, treat this as a safety net rather than a license to play ‘overclocking chicken’ as it were – particularly if it looks like you’ve bought a good processor with plenty of OC headroom.

Intel’s insurance plan is good for the same length of time as the processor warranty, which is three years.

Via Tom’s Hardware