Intel Launches Sweepstakes for Core i7-8086K and Processor Details

Intel is running a sweepstakes, which began today and runs through tomorrow to win one of their new Core i7-8086K processors. The contest is celebrating 40 years of x86 computing since the initial 8086 release. It began today, June 7, at 5:00 PST and runs for only 24 hours, so hurry and enter if you are interested. Intel is giving away 8,086 of the processors, 2,086 in the United States, and the rest in other regions around the globe. Winners are being chosen on June 11. The processor is described as a limited-edition, available through the sweepstakes, and unknown if it will be available at retail later.

The processor is part of their 8th generation Core family, using the Coffee Lake architecture. Like other Coffee Lake products, it is built on a 14nm process. It is similar to the existing i7-8700K, but slightly faster.

Core i7-8700K Core i7-8086K
Cores/Threads 6/12 6/12
Base Frequency 3.7 GHz 4.0 GHz
Turbo Frequency (single core) 4.7 GHz 5.0 GHz
L3 cache 12MB 12MB
TDP 95W 95W
Graphics UHD Graphics 630 UHD Graphics 630
GPU Frequency 350-1200 MHz 350-1200 MHz
Price $359 Sweepstakes value listed as $425

The other differences are that the 8086K does not have vPro support and is not part of Intel’s Stable Image Platform Program. Neither is surprising given that it is a limited edition processor.

China will have 2000 8086K’s awarded, Germany 1000, and 500 each in Canada, U.K., France, Japan, South Korea, and Taiwan.

Xbox 360 Hard Drive upgrade to 250GB

In early 2006 I bought a Xbox 360 with the 20GB hard drive.  While the original box died and I’ve since replaced it, the hard drive has continued to run strong.  I finally decided that I must have more space for installed games, demos, etc.  So I bought a 250GB Western Digital hard drive from Amazon with for $40 the intent on replacing the 20GB.

The 250GB BEVT works great, with the full capacity showing in the Xbox settings.  To perform the upgrade, I followed this guide, which was very useful.  Nearly everything went just as described in the guide when I followed the directions, except for migrating my data over to the new drive.  I first tried using a WinPE 3.0 USB flash drive to boot and run hddhackr.  That was fail.  Finally I created a regular DOS boot flash drive, attached the drive to a SATA port (running in Legacy mode in the BIOS) and the flash of the 250GB drive went smoothly.

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Thoughts on Kinect

Over the weekend I bought a Kinect for Xbox 360 at Best Buy.  I checked several places online which were sold out, went to GameStop (sold out), and finally found a dozen or so at Best Buy.  As far as the price for the controller goes, I think it’s worth it.  This is some impressive technology.

Setup was easy enough.  Ran the Kinect ID for each of the profiles so they’d be recognized automatically.  Though we only have one game for now, the bundled Kinect Adventures, the family has spent a bunch of time playing it.  Even my 3 year old is getting the hang of it.  It seems like it may get repetitive after a while, but for now it’s quite entertaining.

Controlling the “cursor” is simple enough, as is selecting items on screen.  Some reviews complained that it takes too long to select anything, but I haven’t been bugged by it.  One annoyance I ran across was with the search function in the Zune app.  Selecting individual letters and dragging them up was a real pain in the neck.  I really feel that UI needs work.  Another is with the avatar setup, which is done MUCH easier and quicker with a controller.  Dragging across pages of clothing or other items was a pain.

The voice controls are great, and I hope additional functions are added over time.  As far as apps on the Kinect hub, I hope we get the following: Video Library (for streaming from home PCs, not Zune), Facebook, and a “Paint” app.  I wonder if Kinect will be extended to work with the Media Center Extender functionality, which would be incredible.

Overall, it’s great!  More games are on the way, and I can’t help feeling this is the tip of the iceberg for this tech.