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What just happened? A user on Reddit has posted photos of what they claim to be Intel's Alder Lake Core i9-12900K processor ahead of its official launch in the coming weeks. The user hasn't been able to benchmark it yet, but this at least confirms some interesting packaging.
Reddit user Seby9123 posted the the photos of the Core i9-12900K in the Intel subreddit, claiming to have acquired two of them for $610 (pre-tax) each, which would compare favorably to AMD's competing Ryzen 9 5950X, which is $725. The user claims to live in the United States.
Seby9123's unboxing of the 12900K reveals a sort of gold-colored case inside the standard Intel box, made to look like a semiconductor wafer, which houses the CPU itself. This seems to be the same packaging that leaked at the beginning of this month. They couldn't find any details like processor frequency or even core count on the box.
Seby9123 hasn't actually tried the processor out because they don't yet have a motherboard on which to install it. Once they acquire one, they plan to benchmark it against a Core i9-10900K and a 5950X, with both DDR4 and DDR5 RAM. Previous benchmarks have already shown Intel's upcoming Core i9 putting up a fight against the 5950X.
Early prices that have been posted for the 12900K have varied quite a bit. A leaker in September suggested it would be around $700, while a US retailer listed it at $605. Amazon Netherlands, on the other hand, listed it at $812.
Intel is expected to formally reveal the Alder Lake processors toward the end of this month, and release them in the beginning of November.