News Posts matching "LGA1151"

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Intel Readying 22-core LGA2066 and 8-core LGA1151 Processors

Intel is readying a refresh to its "Basin Falls" HEDT platform (LGA2066 client high-end desktop), with a new 22-core silicon. This part is neither Skylake HCC (20 tiles, up to 18 cores) nor Skylake XCC (30 tiles, up to 28 cores), but a new die with four more tiles than the Skylake HCC silicon, all of which are cores. The new silicon could let Intel design 20-core and 22-core SKUs for the X299 Express chipset, and is seen as a direct response to AMD's 24-core Ryzen Threadripper II processor, which was recently shown beating the 18-core i9-7980X in tech demos. The 32-core Threadripper II could face competition from the 28-core HEDT processor Intel is readying for Q4-2018, but that processor won't be compatible with LGA2066.

In related news, the company is giving finishing touches to a new 8-core "Coffee Lake" die for the mainstream-desktop platform (LGA1151 socket, 300-series chipset). This die features 8 cores, and likely 16 MB of shared L3 cache, while retaining the iGPU and uncore components from the existing Coffee Lake-S die. The chip could retain the classic "Ring Bus" design. The new 8-core mainstream-desktop SKUs, and at least two new high-end desktop SKUs (20-core and 22-core), could be launched in September 2018. The "Basin Falls" refresh, coupled with the new LGA3647 "Purley" derivative for the 28-core monstrosity, will be all Intel has to face AMD this year, with the company's next HEDT silicon, "Cascade Lake-X" being reportedly delayed to the second half of 2019, probably due to foundry problems.

Intel Announces Core i7-8086K Limited Edition Six-core Processor

Intel today announced the Core i7-8086K six-core processor in the LGA1151(v2) package, compatible with 300-series chipset. This processor commemorates 40 years since the company's 8086 processor, which was the spiritual ancestor of the x86 architecture that dominates modern day computing. Based on the same 14 nm "Coffee Lake" silicon as the i7-8700K, this chip features high clock speeds of 4.00 GHz nominal, with a maximum Turbo Boost frequency of 5.00 GHz. Like the i7-8700K, it features 256 KB of dedicated L2 cache per core, and 12 MB of shared L3 cache. The processor will go on sale from 8th June, the company didn't reveal pricing, but it's rumored to be a conspicuous USD 486.

ASUS Intros H370 Mining Master Motherboard - Those Aren't USB Ports

ASUS rolled out one of its first crypto-currency miner-friendly motherboards based on the Intel 300-series chipset platform, now that cheaper Pentium Gold and Celeron processors for this platform are available. The H370 Mining Master puts out all 20 PCI-Express gen 3.0 lanes of the H370 Express chipset as x1 slots. It does this in a space-saving way - wiring out each PCIe "port" as USB 3.0 physically (using its 9 pins), which you wire out using USB 3.1 type-A male-to-male cables into open-ended PCIe x1 risers. You can plug in 20 graphics cards over risers, besides a 21st card on the board's PCI-Express 3.0 x16 slot.

The rest of the board is pretty spartan, which is what miners need. The LGA1151 socket is powered by a simple 4+2 phase VRM. Power is drawn from three 24-pin ATX, and one 8-pin EPS. The CPU socket is wired to two DDR4 DIMM slots, supporting up to 32 GB of dual-channel memory, the x16 slot, and the H370 Express chipset. Storage connectivity includes just two SATA 6 Gbps ports. You get six USB 3.0 ports (four on the rear panel, two via headers). Display outputs include DVI and HDMI. Legacy connectivity includes PS/2 combo, and one serial COM header. 6-channel HD audio, and one 1 GbE interface, driven by an Intel i219-V, makes for the rest of it. ASUS threw in onboard power/reset buttons, and POST debug display to sweeten things.

Intel Core i7-8086K Listed, First 5.00 GHz Processor

Intel is commemorating 40 years of its 8086 processor, the spiritual ancestor of the x86 machine architecture that rules modern computing, with a special edition socket LGA1151 processor, dubbed Core i7-8086K. The chip appears to feature a nominal clock speed of 4.00 GHz, with a maximum Turbo Boost frequency of 5.00 GHz, making it the first mainstream desktop processor from Intel to hit the 5.00 GHz mark, out of the box.

The Core i7-8086K is more likely to be based on a special bin of the 14 nm, 6-core/12-thread "Coffee Lake" silicon, rather than being something next-gen or 8-core. The retail SKU bears the part number "BX80684I78086K." The chip will be compatible with Intel 300-series chipset motherboards. Pre-launch listings put its price around $486, which is along expected lines, as it's 70-100 EUR pricier than the i7-8700K. Intel could unveil the Core i7-8086K at the 2018 Computex (specifically on the 8th of June), alongside the first motherboards based on its Z390 Express chipset.

Intel Z390 Express Chipset Detailed

Intel released a product brief of its premium mainstream-desktop (MSDT) chipset, the Z390 Express. Positioned above the Z370 Express, the chipset has an exhaustive feature-set. It supports current 8th generation Core "Coffee Lake" processors, and is ready for the next-generation. Like all other 300-series chipsets, the Z390 interfaces with the LGA1151 processor over a DMI 3.0 chipset-bus. Much like the Z370, it features 24 downstream PCI-Express gen 3.0 lanes. Its storage setup remains unchanged from the Z370 - six SATA 6 Gbps ports with AHCI and RAID support; and up to three 32 Gbps M.2/U.2 connectors.

The differences begin with the chipset's integrated USB connectivity. The Z390 Express directly puts out six 10 Gbps USB 3.1 gen 2 ports, and ten 5 Gbps USB 3.1 gen 1 ports. If that's not a lot, it also puts out fourteen USB 2.0 ports (a total of 30 USB ports). Another major feature is Intel SmartSound technology, which the document specifies as an "audio/voice offload" DSP. This should, in theory, reduce the CPU's load in processing the audio stack. At the physical level it's still the company's "Azalia" HD audio bus wired to an audio CODEC with close to zero native signal processing. Perhaps some of that processing is done inside the chipset. The concept appears to be borrowed from edge-computing, and triggered by the rise in voice-command interface, so the chipset can natively process speech-to-text conversions.

ASUS Intros Prime H310T Motherboard

ASUS rolled out the Prime H310T, one of the rare few thin mini-ITX motherboards based on Intel 300-series chipset, a boon for certain SFF cases such as the Akasa Euler series, or DIY all-in-one PC upgrades. Based on Intel H310 chipset, the board supports 8th generation Intel "Coffee Lake" processors (including 95W TDP chips). It draws power from 2-pin (12V DC in), and conditions it for the LGA1151 processor using a simple 3+1 phase VRM. The CPU socket is wired to two DDR4 SO-DIMM slots, which support up to 32 GB of dual-channel DDR4-2666 memory.

Storage connectivity includes a 32 Gbps M.2-2280 slot, and two SATA 6 Gbps ports. The only other expansion slot is an M.2 slot for WLAN modules. Display outputs include LVDS (useful in AIOs), DisplayPort, and HDMI. USB connectivity includes four 5 Gbps USB 3.1 gen 1 ports. 2-channel HD audio and gigabit Ethernet make for the rest of it.

SuperMicro Z390 Motherboard Shows Up with Coffee Lake & Cannon Lake Support

Two weeks ago, Intel indirectly confirmed via the release notes for its Rapid Storage Technology driver that the Z390 platform will support the current "Coffee Lake" and soon-to-be-released "Cannon Lake" processors. SuperMicro's Z390 motherboard (C9Z390-CG-IW) recently popped up in a few 3DMark results to confirm this compatibility. The motherboard was tested alongside the Intel Core i7-8700T and Intel Core i7-8700K six-core processors. Therefore, it's safe to say that the upcoming Z390 motherboards will employ the LGA1151 socket.

Modders Get "Coffee Lake" Chips to Work Stable on Intel 100/200-series Chipsets

One of the greatest complaints enthusiasts had with Intel's 8th generation Core "Coffee Lake" processors and their companion 300-series chipsets is their lack of compatibility with older 200-series and 100-series chipset motherboards, despite sharing an identical LGA1151 socket. Tinfoil hatters attributed this to Intel's synthetic platform-gating to ensure people buy new motherboards every two CPU generations; while Intel itself maintained that "Coffee Lake" chips have special electrical requirements that come with the increased core-counts, without explaining how that shouldn't exempt quad-core SKUs such as the Core i3-8100 and the i3-8350K from functioning on older platforms.

It turns out that "Coffee Lake" is pin-compatible with older LGA1151 motherboards based on 200-series and 100-series chipsets after all, as modders got some of these chips to work on the older platforms. Intel is using software to prevent Coffee Lake from working on older motherboards. This software comes in the form of the CPU's microcode, the iGPU's UEFI GOP driver, and certain Management Engine bootstraps on the side of the motherboard BIOS that lets it recognize the new chips. With the safe transplanting of these pieces of software, Overclock.net modders rootuser123, LittleHill, dsanke, elisw, Mov AX, and 0xDEAD; succeeding in not only getting the chips to work on older platforms, but also found ways to iron out several stability and compatibility issues. They've published a guide at this page.

ASRock Intros DeskMini GTX/RX with Z370 Chipset for 8th Gen Core Processors

ASRock updated its DeskMini GTX line of compact desktops with support for 8th generation Core "Coffee Lake" processors in the LGA1151 package (up to 65W TDP). At the heart of this machine is the new Z370M-STX MXM motherboard, which is slightly longer than the mini-ITX form-factor, to accommodate a PCIe gen 3.0 MXM slot. ASRock is selling the DeskMini GTX in three main variants based on the factory-installed discrete GPU, the DeskMini GTX 1060, the DeskMini GTX 1080, and the DeskMini RX 580. These use MXM cards of the GTX 1060 3 GB, GTX 1080, and the RX 580 8 GB, respectively, along with a fan-heatsink. The DDR4 SO-DIMM slots now support high-frequency modules up to 4000 MHz. This is still a bare-bones PC in which you add your own CPU, memory, and storage devices. The company didn't reveal pricing.

Intel Core i5-8500, i5-8600 (non-K), and Celeron G49xx Listed on Newegg

Four of Intel's latest 8th generation Core "Coffee Lake" processors that are part of the company's second wave of products for the LGA1151 (300-series) platform, surfaced on Newegg. These include the Core i5-8500 (model: BX80684I58500), the Core i5-8600 non-K (BX80684I58600), the Celeron G4920 (BX80684G4920), and the G4900. The Core i5-8500 and i5-8600 fill the price-performance gap between the i5-8400 and the i5-8600K; while the G4900 could be the cheapest processor you can buy on this platform. The i5-8500 is listed at USD $215.99, the i5-8600 at $239.99, the G4920 at $65.99, and the G4900 at $54.99. The product pages don't include specs yet, but at the time of this writing, both the i5-8500 and the G4920 can be added to cart. Intel is planning to expand its 8th generation Core, Pentium, and Celeron processor families before the end of Q1-2018, along with motherboards based on the more cost-effective B360 Express and H310 Express chipsets.

MSI Releases TXE 3.0 Vulnerability Fix for Intel LGA1151 Motherboards

In order to avoid severe security vulnerabilities for the platforms, MSI motherboards now support the latest Intel Trusted Execution Engine (TXE) 3.0 for safer system protection. According to recent Intel comprehensive security review, security vulnerabilities are identified and could potentially allow attackers to gain unauthorized access to platforms features, secrets and 3rdparty secrets protected by Intel TXE. Therefore, Intel has validated and released Intel TXE 3.0 updates to address the encountered security situations.

Currently all MSI 100,200 and 300 series motherboards are supporting the newest Intel TXE 3.0 by updating to the latest BIOS and installing the latest software updates. MSI always places strong emphasis on security and anti-hack issues to makes sure all MSI motherboard users are operating under the most secure circumstances. MSI will continue to provide additional updates if necessary to ensure maximum platform security protection for users.

EVGA Z370 Micro Motherboard Starts Selling

EVGA's premium micro-ATX motherboard based on Intel Z370 chipset, the Z370 Micro, started selling at USD $179.99. The board was announced alongside the rest of the company's Z370 lineup, earlier this October. Designed for enthusiast-grade micro-ATX builds, the EVGA Z370 micro features a standard 240 mm x 240 mm PCB, but with cutouts for the angled 24-pin ATX and 6-pin PCIe power inputs. Besides the two, it draws power from an 8-pin EPS and 4-pin ATX power connectors, conditioning it for the CPU with a 10-phase VRM. The CPU socket features 150% higher gold content in the pins. The LGA1151 socket is wired to two reinforced DDR4 DIMM slots, supporting up to 32 GB of dual-channel memory, and two reinforced PCI-Express 3.0 x16 slots (x16/NC or x8/x8), with SLI support. An x4 slot makes for the rest of the expansion.

Storage connectivity includes two 32 Gb/s M.2 slots (from which one is occupied with the WLAN card), and six SATA 6 Gb/s ports. Eight USB 3.0 ports, and a number of USB 2.0 ports make for the USB connectivity. Network connectivity includes an Intel-made WLAN card with 802.11ac and Bluetooth 4.1. The lone 1 GbE interface is driven by an Intel i219-V controller. A Realtek ALC1220 CODEC drives the 8-channel HD audio. Overclocker-friendly features include dual-BIOS with manual switching, POST debug 7-seg display, angled case-fan headers, onboard POST speaker, and power/reset buttons.

First Intel Z390 Chipset Motherboard Spotted in SANDRA Database

The first socket LGA1151 motherboard based on Intel's upcoming Z390 Express chipset was spotted on SiSoft SANDRA database. The board is SuperMicro C7Z390-PGW, a client-segment motherboard by SuperMicro under its SuperO brand. Intel is slating launch of the Z390 Express chipset for some time in the second half of 2018, following the early-2018 launches of H370 Express, B360 Express, and H310 Express.

The Z390 Express chipset adds to the feature-set of the platform, with an integrated Programmable Quad-Core Audio DSP, SoundWire digital audio interface, an integrated 10 Gbps USB 3.1 controller, integrated 802.11ac WLAN controller (with external PHY), an integrated SDIO controller (for card readers), and support for newer generation "Titan Ridge" Thunderbolt 3.0 controller.

Shuttle Announces DH270 Mini-PC

With the DH270, thanks to the Intel H270 chipset, an HDMI 2.0 port now also features on Shuttle Mini-PCs for socket LGA 1151 desktop processors. However, the model presented here has more on offer and shows itself to be versatile at other places, too. The case design has proven to be successful since the DS61, the first model with dimensions of 19 x 16.5 x 4.3 cm (DWH). The space-saving steel chassis can withstand ambient temperatures of up to 50°C and, thanks to the VESA bracket and various threaded holes, it is also suitable for individual mounting options on screens and surfaces. The operating position is flexible and can be horizontal or vertical.

As well as offering space for one 2.5-inch drive and one NVMe SSD, the XPC Barebone DH270 also provides two SO-DIMM slots for up to 32 GB of DDR4 memory. Any Intel Core processors (LGA1151) from the seventh and sixth generation with up to 65 Watt TDP are suitable. There is a total of two M.2 slots on the mainboard, 1x M.2-2280 and 1x M.2-2230, which can be used for an SSD and WLAN module, for example. With 1x HDMI 2.0 and 2x HDMI 1.4b, this model enables multi-screen workstations or digital signage scenarios with up to three 4K monitors (1x 60 Hz, 2x 30 Hz).

Intel 8-core LGA1151 Processor will be 14 nm "Coffee Lake" Based

The 8-core processor Intel is planning to launch in the second half of 2018 will be based on the current 14 nanometer "Coffee Lake" micro-architecture, according to leaked XTU errata log. A curious looking change-log entry reads "[CFL] Added support for 8,2 core," where "CFL" is the three-letter contraction of "Coffee Lake," just as "KBL" stands for "Kaby Lake" and "HSW" for "Haswell."

This hints at the two directions in which Intel is expanding its 8th generation mainstream desktop lineup. On the upper-end of the spectrum, one can expect the augmentation of 8-core/16-thread parts, while at the lower end, one can expect dual-core parts, likely branded under the Pentium and Celeron brands. Intel's MSDT lineup will be led by 6-core parts under the Core i5 and Core i7 extensions, and quad-core parts under the Core i3 extension; with 6-core/12-thread Core i7 SKUs leading the pack till the second-half of 2018.

7th Gen Core "Kaby Lake" Won't Work on 300-series Chipset Motherboards

The upcoming Intel 300-series chipset, and LGA1151 socket continues to be a source of chaos for PC builders. While the 100-series and 200-series chipset based motherboards support both 6th generation Core "Skylake," and 7th generation Core "Kaby Lake" processors, they will not support the upcoming 8th generation Core "Coffee Lake" chips. What's more, the upcoming 300-series chipset motherboards, which were earlier believed to feature backwards-compatibility for "Skylake" and "Kaby Lake" chips, will not support them, according to a Hardware.info report.

The LGA1151 socket between the two platforms remains unchanged, down to the package notches, which are designed to prevent you from installing a processor on an incompatible motherboard (eg: LGA1150 processors on LGA1151 motherboards). This isn't even a case like the incompatibility between LGA2011 and LGA2011v3, where the latter features DDR4 memory I/O, compared to the former's DDR3. Platform segmentation, and synthetically keeping up with a product development cycle, by forcing people to upgrade motherboards every two generations, appears to be Intel's primary motivation. The Hardware.info report, however, doesn't rule out the possibility of 300-series chipset motherboards getting support for older LGA1151 processors in the future, through BIOS updates.

Colorful Intros a Non-standard Motherboard with Eight PCIe x16 Slots

Colorful today introduced an non-standard form-factor socket LGA1151 motherboard for crypto-currency mining builds, the C.B250A-BTC PLUS V20. This board is 485 mm in length, and 195 mm in width, and probably won't fit in even HPTX cases for its intended use, but is suited for custom rack-type setups. It only includes the most bare-essential features to set up a mining rig with up to eight graphics cards, with 2-slot spacing between each card. The board lacks a 24-pin power input, so you can share your high-wattage PSU with multiple machines based on this board.

It features two 4-pin ATX power inputs for the CPU, and sixteen PCIe power inputs, of which eight can be populated at any given time to supply power to the PCIe slots, optionally all sixteen can be plugged in. The topmost x16 slot is gen 3.0 x16, and wired to the CPU, the remaining seven are gen 3.0 x1, and wired to the Intel B250 Express PCH. The CPU is wired to just one DDR4 SO-DIMM slot, since system memory isn't that big a bottleneck with GPU mining. The board's connectivity, too, is bare-essential, with just a couple of USB ports, an HDMI display output, and a single 1 GbE network connection. The company didn't reveal pricing.

MSI Z370 GODLIKE Gaming Motherboard Pictured

Here's the first picture of MSI's flagship socket LGA1151(v2) motherboard for 8th generation Core "Coffee Lake" processors, the Z370 GODLIKE Gaming. The board features the latest design theme by MSI for its top-tier Enthusiast Gaming series. It will be the company's most feature-rich motherboard for the platform. Drawing power from a 6-pin PCIe power connector, besides 8-pin EPS and 24-pin ATX; the board conditions it using an 18-phase VRM. The CPU is wired to reinforced DRAM and PCI-Express slots.

The Z370 GODLIKE Gaming from MSI appears to feature a plethora of onboard overclocking controls, and top-grade connectivity, which could include Killer DoubleShot Pro networking, a staggering five M.2 slots (two of which come from a riser), the company's highest-grade next-generation onboard audio solution, a large number of USB 3.1 gen 2 ports, metallic I/O shroud elements, besides the chipset and VRM heatsinks. The board lights up like a Christmas tree with RGB LEDs all over, and features several RGB LED headers. The Z370 GODLIKE Gaming could be among the first wave of socket LGA1151(v2) motherboards by the company, which could launch a littler later in Q3-2017.

DeepCool Announce White Variant of the Captain 240EX RGB AIO

DeepCool have come forward to announce a slight variation on their Captain 240EX RGB AIO solution, which we've covered in the past. The new version offers the exact same features as the 240EX RGB (non white) version, such as software control of the RGB lighting (ASUS' Aura Sync, MSI's Mystic Light and Gigabyte's RGB Fusion), or through an included wired controller. All variants of the Captain 240EX RGB also come bundled with an additional LED strip for your case; it can be plugged in to the available RGB LED header, synchronizing the LED behavior via the motherboard (an in-line RGB LED controller is also bundled for users who don't have a LED header.)

The white variant of the Captain 240EX RGB AIO is compatible with all modern processors from AMD (including AM4) and Intel (including LGA2011-v3 and LGA1151), with both parts being rated for the same 150 W TDP. Tubing length comes in at 310~315 mm, and the fans are rated for 500 RPM at the lowest end (±200 RPM) to 1800 RPM on max speed (±10% RPM). The noise profile oscillates between a 17.6 dBA minimum and a 31.3 dBA maximum. The white version of the Captain 240EX RGB will be available starting September 2017. It will be the same price as the regular non-white Captain 240EX RGB at $129.99 USD.

Intel Coffee Lake-S Features Similar Uncore Components to Kaby Lake

Intel 8th generation Core "Coffee Lake" mainstream desktop processors could work on older socket LGA1151 motherboards based on Intel 200-series chipset, after all. A recent motherboard BIOS update by ASUS alters the name-string of a system device to read "Intel Kaby Lake/Coffee Lake-S Host Bridge/DRAM Controller," reinforcing the theory that Coffee Lake and its companion 300-series chipset make up the Kaby Lake "Refresh" platform.

Responding to a customer question, motherboard maker ASRock had recently commented that "Coffee Lake" processors won't be supported by current motherboards based on the 200-series chipset, dashing hopes of current platform users to upgrade to newer 6-core processors without having to unnecessarily buy a new motherboard and reinstall software. This development shouldn't necessarily raise hopes. Although Kaby Lake and Coffee Lake have a lot of architectural similarities, particularly with their uncore components, revised electrical requirements of the new chips could be behind the lack of backwards platform-compatibility. It remains to be seen if you can use your current "Skylake" and "Kaby Lake" processors on upcoming 300-series chipset motherboards.

Colorful Intros iGame Z270I-WF Mini-ITX Motherboard

Colorful today rolled out the iGame Z270I-WF, a variant of the iGame Z270I motherboard featuring wireless networking. The socket LGA1151 motherboard is based on Intel Z270 Express chipset, and draws power from a combination of 24-pin ATX and 4-pin ATX power connectors, conditioning it for the CPU using a 6-phase VRM. The CPU is wired to two DDR4 DIMM slots, and the board's lone PCI-Express 3.0 x16 slot.

Storage options include four SATA 6 Gbps ports, and a 32 Gbps M.2 slot on the reverse side. Networking includes 802.11ac WLAN, Bluetooth 4.1, and two gigabit Ethernet interfaces, one driven by an Intel i219-V controller, and the other by Realtek DragonLAN (RTL81118AS) controller. USB connectivity includes six USB 3.0 ports, and two USB 3.1 ports (including a type-C port). The onboard audio solution combines a 115 dBA SNR CODEC (Realtek ALC1150), with ground-layer isolation and audio-grade capacitors. The company didn't reveal pricing.

ASUS Intros the Expedition B250-V7 Motherboard for Gaming iCafes

ASUS expanded its Expedition line of high-endurance gaming PC motherboards designed for the rigors of gaming iCafes, with the socket LGA1151 Expedition B250-V7, based on the Intel B250 Express chipset. Built in the ATX form-factor, the board draws power from a combination of 24-pin ATX and 8-pin EPS power connectors, and conditions it for the CPU with a simple 6-phase VRM. The CPU is wired to four DDR4 DIMM slots, supporting up to 64 GB of dual-channel memory; and a single reinforced PCI-Express 3.0 x16 slot. Other expansion slots include two PCI-Express 3.0 x16 (both electrical x4 and wired to the B250 PCH), and three x1 slots.

Storage connectivity is pretty basic, with just the six SATA 6 Gbps ports, as is the USB connectivity, with just six USB 3.0 ports (four on the rear panel, and two by headers), and no 10 Gbps USB 3.1 ports. The only display output is an HDMI port. The onboard audio consists of a basic 8-channel HDA CODEC (Realtek ALC887, <90 dBA SNR), and the gigabit Ethernet connection is driven by an Intel i219-V controller with LANGuard (power surge protection), and GameFirst packet prioritization software. The company didn't reveal pricing.

Intel Pentium G4560 Cannibalizing Core i3 Sales, Company Effectively Kills it

Intel Pentium G4560 dual-core socket LGA1151 processor is too good for Intel's comfort. For the past two generations, Intel has enabled HyperThreading on Pentium dual-core chips, and expanded L3 cache amount from 2 MB to 3 MB; which had been the two key differentiators for the company's Core i3 desktop lineup from Pentium. HyperThreading was warranted by an increasing number of games and applications which wouldn't work without at least 4 logical CPUs. The G4560 is a formidable part at its USD $64 price - 2 cores, 4 threads, the latest "Kaby Lake" micro-architecture, 3 MB L3 cache, and 3.50 GHz clock speeds. On the flip side, it makes buying Core i3 dual-core parts close to double its price a dumb option. Intel's solution? Effectively kill it.

According to a DigiWorthy report, Intel has decided to scale down production of the Pentium G4560 in a bid to cripple its availability, and force consumers to opt for pricier 7th generation Core i3 parts. The cheapest part, the Core i3-7100, is priced almost double that of the G4560, at $117. You get the same two "Kaby Lake" cores, 4 threads enabled by HyperThreading, the same 3 MB L3 cache, but slightly higher clock speeds of 3.90 GHz, and a faster integrated graphics core, if you use one. Does the extra 400 MHz warrant double the price? Not even in the case of Intel's priciest Core i7 SKUs. All prices are Intel's "recommended customer price" for 1000-unit tray quantities.

GIGABYTE Z270X Aorus Gaming 9 Pictured, Too

In addition to the X299 Aorus Gaming 9, GIGABYTE showed off its Z270X Aorus Gaming 9, its flagship socket LGA1151 motherboard based on the current Z270 Express chipset. With its nomenclature, GIGABYTE appears to have relegated "Aorus" to a brand-extension, rather than an overarching brand by itself. The Z270X Aorus Gaming 9 is packed to the brim with features. The board draws power from a combination of 24-pin ATX and 8-pin EPS power connectors; conditioning it for the CPU with a massive 24-phase VRM, with a liquid-cooling ready heatsink. This board features a PLX PEX8747 PCI-Express gen 3.0 x48 bridge chip, which takes in the x16 PEG link from the CPU, and puts out four x16 slots (x16/NC/x16/NC or x16/NC/x8/x8 or x8/x8/x8/x8), with support for 3-way and 4-way SLI and CrossFireX.

Storage options are aplenty, with two 32 Gb/s M.2 slots with NVMe RAID and Optane support, two 32 Gb/s U.2 ports, two 16 Gb/s SATA-Express ports, and ten SATA 6 Gb/s ports. This board features the same ultra high-grade AMP-UP onboard audio solution as the X299 Gaming 9, with a 127 dBA SNR CODEC made by ESS, the highest-grade audio capacitors money can buy, and three user-replaceable OPAMPs. The board will feature a plethora of CPU and memory overclocking features, and GIGABYTE's RGB Fusion LED lighting system. It goes on sale some time in June.

Intel Pushes Motherboard + Optane Bundles, "Coffee Lake" in August

Back in April, we reported motherboard manufacturer MSI bundling Intel's Optane cache SSD with a few of its mid-range motherboards. While not free, the bundle would be slightly cheaper than the sum of its parts (buying the board and SSD separately). At the time we predicted that other motherboard vendors could launch similar bundles. It turns out that Intel is indeed coordinating motherboard + Optane SSD bundles.

In a bid to boost sales of its 200-series chipset motherboards and Core "Kaby Lake" processors, Intel is coordinating bundles of motherboards across brands with its Optane cache SSDs. Analysts predict that this could be an inventory-clearing exercise by Intel, because it plans to launch its next-generation Core "Coffee Lake" processors by late-August, 2017. "Coffee Lake" will see the introduction of six-core processor SKUs to Intel's mainstream-desktop platform, which is currently led by the quad-core i7-7700K "Kaby Lake."
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