There's always a buzz around a new processor launch, and given Intel is playing catchup to AMD's Zen 3, it's only reasonable that it pushes the boat out that little bit harder right now. Its soon-to-be-released Rocket Lake-S (opens in new tab) chips get a new look across the board, with the halo chip, the Core i9 11900K, getting some seriously lavish packaging to call its own.
Assuming that the leaked shots over on VideoCardz (opens in new tab) are legit, the angular design complete with blue perspex panels isn't your normal processor packaging. We can't quite tell from these shots what's going on here, beyond it's clearly not the neat geometric shapes that have preceded it.
There is a natural progression here from the Core i9 9900K (opens in new tab)'s dodecahedron and the sheared corner of the 10900K—it's clearly from the same mindset—but they've let themselves think outside the erm… box a little too. You'll notice it lines up with Intel's marketing redesign (opens in new tab) that dropped towards the end of last year as well. That means we get the new Intel logo (no swirl here folks), and the new font for the Core branding too.
I'm not so keen on the blue shading on the CORE and prefer the clean look of the normal 11th Gen packaging, but to each their own. It may be that the final versions don't look quite so ropey, but we'll have to wait and see. It shouldn't be long now either, as the new chips are expected to ship in March, although we're still waiting on the exact dates.
Given that Intel had to kill off the elaborate packaging of the Core i9 10900K (opens in new tab) recently for shipping reasons, we can't help but wonder if there are two different camps at work in Intel HQ. One that wants to make an event of the halo chip and another that simply wants to get chips on pallets and not ship stale air around the world. We'll have to see how long it'll be before the latter wins out.