Reports are surfacing regarding Intel’s forthcoming Kaby Lake launch that could be good news for overclocking. Several sites are claiming that Intel are planning to introduce an unlocked Core i3 after a retailer posted listings of the new 7th generation processors that included a Core i3 7350K SKU. The listing is still online and can be found here. The chip is apparently a dual-core, hyper-thread Kaby Lake processor that has a list price of $177 and a base frequency of 4GHz, pushing to 4.2GHz.
The news is not confirmed by Intel of course which means we should treat it as a rumor for now. If true however it would mean a significant step from Intel who have never previously launched an unlocked Core i3 processor. There are several arguments in favor of having a more affordable K SKU in the product mix, several of which have been outlined in detail by our very own Pieter-Jan Plaisier. The article I refer to is entitled 'Intel Needs a Core i3 K – Here are 5 Reasons Why'. It actually proves almost prescient, arguing that a $179 Core i3 would be ‘highly popular’.
Regardless of the motives or reasoning behind an unlocked i3 processor, it would doubtlessly be good news from an overclocking perspective. In the long run it could prove to be a catalyst in drawing more people into the world of overclocking, broadening the base of the family pyramid with more Rookies and Novice overclockers joining the scene. It might also just be a really fun chip to play with.