ONLINE RETAILERS have published details of an unlocked Intel Core i7-8086K 'anniversary' microprocessor designed to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the release of the Intel 8086 processor - the first 16-bit microprocessor that was the basis for the 8088 CPU adopted by IBM for its first PC.
Rumours of an 8086 anniversary CPU have been circulating for the past month or two, but the appearance of an apparently supercharged part on stock listings have given the rumours fresh impetus.
The collected leaks, stock listings and other information indicate that the new Core i7-8086K will be a 14-nanometre, socket LGA 1151 part based on the Coffee Lake-S architecture. It will bear six cores and offer 12 threads and come with UHD630 onboard GPU.
However, the most intriguing aspect is the core clock speed, which will run at a standard 4GHz but be capable of boost-clocking to 5.10GHz. It will also be offered unlocked to appeal to enthusiasts and power users.
The Core i7-8086K will have a level 3 cache of 12MB and TDP of 95 watts. The CPU cooling requirements for overclockers have not been disclosed.
However, as the hardware website Hexus notes, the specs of the anniversary part are identical to the Core i7-8700K, with the exception of the boost clock speed.
The Intel 8086 microprocessor was introduced in mid-1978 following two years or so of rapid development. The 16-bit CPU was the first x86 microprocessor and designed to counter the competitive threat of the popular Zilog Z80 chip, designed by ex-Intel engineers and used in the ZX80, ZX81, ZX Spectrum, and Amstrad CPC and PCW series, among others.
While it was the 8088 - a modified 8086 with an eight-bit data bus that was selected by IBM for the first IBM PC - the 8086 went on to be used in the first Compaq Deskpro, IBM PS/2 models 25 and 30, and the Amstrad PC1512, PC1640, PC2086 and PC3086.
The 8088, which was identical to the 8086 with the exception of the external data bus, was developed to cut costs and improve compatibility because circuit boards accommodating a 16-bit bus were expensive and difficult to support when the chip was first released.
If Intel plans to keep within historical norms, it will no doubt release next year an anniversary version of the 8088 based on a crippled Core i7-8086K. µ
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