Irasshaimase! Stores in Tokyo districts such as Akihabara have launched sales of Intel's Core i7 processor, due to be officially rolled out at U.S. resellers on Monday.
Computerworld reported that "several hundred people crowded stores" that opened around 10 p.m. Saturday. The top-of-the-line 965 chip sold out, according to one retailer.
The Core i7 represents the vanguard of Intel's new Nehalem microarchitecture. The i7 is a desktop processor targeted initially at gaming boxes.
(See CNET review of Falcon Northwest Mach V tower system based on Core i7-965 processor.)
Sofmap, a large Japanese computer reseller, is showing Core i7 processors, motherboards, and systems on its Web site.
Sofmap lists the boxed Core i7-920 (2.66GHz) at 32,800 yen or close to $340. The i7-940 (2.93GHz) is listed at 63,800 yen or about $660. The high-end i7-965 (3.20GHZ) goes for 112,800 yen or $1,160.
A series of i7-920 processors bundled with Windows Vista Home Premium "DSP version" are shown ranging in price from 45,800 yen ($470) to 54,800 yen ($565).
Specification details (listed by Sofmap) include: LGA1366 socket, Quick Path Interconnect (QPI) rated at 4.8GT/sec (gigatransfers per second), 8MB L3 cache, and a 130 watt TDP (Thermal Design Power).
The DSP, or Delivery Service Provider, version of Windows Vista is being promoted heavily in Japan and is typically bundled with other components.
Motherboards and systems are also on sale. Motherboards are based on the Intel X58 chipset. DDR3 memory is being promoted along with the i7 too.
Tower systems using the Core i7 chip range in price from 179,800 yen ($1,852) to 219,800 yen ($2,264).