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WTF?! Another incident of someone buying a processor that turned out to be some sort of fake has been reported. This time, rather than the CPU in question being a lesser model in disguise, the Intel Core i9-13900K was missing its internal silicon. It's also claimed that the item in question was purchased from Best Buy.
According to a report from HKPEC, a consumer bought the flagship Intel Core i9-13900K from Best Buy, where it is currently available for $551. It's claimed that the buyer installed the CPU but found his PC didn't boot. After examining different potential issues, he presumably guessed there was something wrong with the physical hardware and decided to delid the chip.
The unlucky buyer then found black silicone across the IHS and discovered that the processor was literally nothing but a lid and the substrate: an empty, chipless chip, as it were.
ãÂÂåÂÂ 13900K ðÂÂÂï¿½'Reddit ï¿½-å£Âä¸ÂåÂÂæÂÂçÂ©å®¶ä¸ä¼Âï¼ÂåÂ¨ Best Buy è³¼è²·ï¿½...ï¿½ï¿½-ï¿½ Intel Core i9-13900K ï¿½'è£Â CPUï¼ÂåÂ»çÂ¼çÂ¾ CPU ï¿½-è§ÂæÂªæÂªçÂÂï¼Âï¿½-ï¿½æ©Âå®Âï¿½...ï¿½ï¿½'åÂÂæÂÂï¼Âå¿Âä¸Âä½Âï¿½-ï¿½ï¿½"ï¿½åÂ»çÂ¼çÂ¾ï¿½...ï¿½éÂ¨æ ¹æÂ¬ï¿½'æÂÂ CPU Dieï¼ÂåÂªæÂÂä¸Âå¤§å Âï¿½'èÂ²çÂ½èÂ ãÂÂ pic.twitter.com/OTWE5EIjoB– HKEPC (@hkepcmedia) September 20, 2023
There are a lot of unanswered questions in the report. It could be that someone from Asia bought the chip while in the US and took it home – Best Buy only ships to the 50 United States, the US Virgin Islands, and Guam. That might also explain why the buyer delidded it rather than returning it for a refund. Alternatively, they might have been scammed by someone pretending to be Best Buy.
While there are a few unclear details in this story, we've certainly seen large companies sell counterfeit CPUs before. It was only a few weeks ago when we heard about a Reddit user who bought what was supposed to be a Core i9-13900K from Amazon UK but later discovered it was a Core i7-13700K in disguise. It seems that they fell victim to the old IHS switching trick. They never specified, however, if the fake CPU was purchased from Amazon directly or a third-party seller.
In 2017, someone purchased what appeared to be a Ryzen 1700 from Amazon. However, it was actually an LGA-based Intel processor. The original markings had been scrubbed off and replaced with Ryzen markings from a transparent sticker.