After a new Intel CPU for less? Try your luck with a Japanese Gachapon

A Gatchapon in Japan has been discovered which dispenses Intel CPUs with an asking price of as little as 500 Yen ($3) with mixed results. 

The video showcases one curious user on a visit to PC Ones, a computing store located in Osaka, Japan. For just 500 Yen, you’re able to crank the handle and instead of a plastic toy, out will pop an Intel processor which may be fully functioning. 

Now, as you may expect, you’re not exactly going to pop in a couple of dollars and receive one of the best processors on the market. The clip showcases that instead of the plastic orb was the Intel Core i7-8700 which is built on the LGA 1151 socket and was released back in 2017. 

Short of being a novelty, most surprising is the fact that the older i7 processor actually works as the lucky recipient was able to power it on in a makeshift test rig and boot up to the BIOS. You can’t really ask for much more out of a CPU when you’re spending less than the price of a cup of coffee on one. 

After some troubleshooting, they were able to install Windows 10 and then engage in some synthetic benchmarking through Cinebench R23 which showed the chip working in a more hampered capacity. While the CPU has six cores and 12 threads, the Task Manager screenshot revealed only five cores to be operational with 10 threads in use, likely from some pre-existing damage. 

More inventive ways to recycle hardware

While this Gatchapon isn’t the only quirky vending machine in Japan, or the region for that matter, it goes to show a creative way to dispose of older hardware without just resorting in a landfill. 

It’s not known exactly which chipsets are available in the dispenser, but we’re willing to bet that an older i7 or i9 are at the the upper echelon of what’s inside. Chances are, when you crank the handle, you could receive an ancient chipset that has no functionality. 

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But that’s what Gatchapon is all about, after all. Put in a couple of dollars and you never know what you could win. If you ever find yourself cash-strapped for your next upgrade and you just so happen to be in Japan, you could win yourself a processor which normally sells for around the $200 mark, not too bad a gamble at all. 

This CPU capsule machine is an exception to what we generally see happen to old hardware which is thrown away, though, and gamifying old gear could be a way to cut down on the amount of silicon we see slung out, especially if there’s any chance it could keep on ticking over inside a budget build. US retailers like MicroCenter could learn a thing or two from this operation. 

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