Intel Pricing Snafu Could Shed Light On Skulltrail Future

Santa Clara (CA) - Earlier today, TG Daily received an updated Intel processor pricelist, which reveiled the prices of standalone Atom processors for Mobile Internet Devices. Of course, it is Friday and, in anticipation of the weekend, we missed half the story: The other end of the spectrum showed an interesting detail for Intel's $1500 Skulltrail desktop processor QX9775.

The updated pricelist now includes Intel's Skulltrail CPU Core 2 Extreme QX9775 for $1499, which reflects a $100 premium over the QX9770, which has the same specifications (12 MB L2, 3.2 GHz, 1600 MHz FSB).

Strangely enough, the QX9775 is listed as a Socket 775 part (like all other quad-core Extreme processors) and not as a Socket 771 (Socket J) processor. QX9775, however is a (Xeon) Socket 771 (Xeon) part and is, according to Intel, the only Core 2 Extreme processor that fits into the Skulltrail board.

So, the big question now really is whether this pricesheet includes a simple mistake due to human error and the fact that the weekend was close, or the QX9775 listing is intentional. If that is teh case it looks like that Intel did not see any reason to even create a separate column for the Socket 771 processor and the end of the Socket 771 Skulltrail processor may be near.

Unfortunately, by the time we discovered this issue, it was way past 5 PM on Friday and we were not able to reach someone at Intel to comment. So we all will have to wait until Monday to find out what really happened and whether Skulltrail may be a very, very limited edition product.

Of course, unlike AMD's 4X4 experiment, called QuadFX, you can always put future Xeon processors onto the Skulltrail. Oh wait, Socket 771 and 775 are expected to die with the upcoming Nehalem architecture, scheduled for release at the end of this year.