Forget about CPUs - now Intel wants to sell you a complete monster gaming PC.
Intel Extreme Masters-branded gaming systems are part of Intel’s massive eSports push, with part of the proceeds from every PC sold boosting the prize pool for upcoming IEM tournaments around the world.
Siphoning a fraction of sales off to give gaming tournaments a boost is something Valve has done for years with DOTA 2. That cash came from selling virtual hats, though - this is the first time the idea has been applied to PCs.
There will be two models; a top-end IEM Champion and a more affordable IEM Challenger. Both should look suitably l33t, and will be built using the same parts you’d find in the pro players’ PCs.
Unsurprisingly, that means an Intel CPU running the show. Core i5 and Core i7 chips will be available, and there’ll be an Intel SSD inside too, so they should be lightning-fast.
Graphics duties fall to a choice between AMD and Nvidia, with gamers able to upgrade to more powerful kit if their budget will allow it, but even the basic system will be able to play anything you can throw at it at 1080p.
The exact specs will depend on where you buy a system from; here in the UK, Scan is adding an out-of-the-box overclock, doubling the mechanical storage to 2TB and boosting the SSD from 120GB to 250GB. Prices start from £1170.
CyberPower in the US, Komplett in Sweden and CSL in Germany are all putting their own spin on the recipe too - there’s a list of all the companies and countries taking part on the Intel Extreme Masters website.
Oh, and in case you’d forgotten these systems were built for games, each one will ship with copies of Just Cause 3, World of Warships, Rainbow Six Siege and Warface - plus some in-game gold and cosmetic items.