Citing a lack of demand, Intel is going to stop selling its Core+ processor packages, still some of the best CPUs for gaming, that come bundled with Optane Memory modules.
These packages were mostly aimed at OEMs, though could also be bought in retail channels, like Newegg. There are three models—Core i7+ 8700, Core i5+ 8500, and Core i5+ 8400. Each one came with a regular version of the specified processor (Core i7-8700, Core i5-8500, and Core i5-8400), plus a 16GB Optane Memory stick.
The benefit of Optane Memory is that it can speed up your system by caching frequently accessed data on your primary storage drive. It makes the most sense to pair them with mechanical storage—Intel's pitch is that you can have the responsiveness of a solid state drive with the price and capacity an HDD. That said, you can pair Optane Memory with an SSD as well.
"Due to lack of market demand Intel is announcing the discontinuance of the Universal and China Boxed Intel Core i7+ 8700, i5+ 8400 and i5+ 8500," Intel stated in a product change notification (PCN) document, as our friends at TomsHardware pointed out.
Intel will continue taking orders until September 30, 2019, or while supplies last. The final shipments will go out no later than December 27.
These bundles were introduced just nine months ago. Part of the problem, though, might have been the price points. They're no longer available on Newegg, but when they were introduced in April of last year, there wasn't any savings to be had from buying one of the bundles versus buying the processor and Optane Memory separately.
The other thing working against these bundles is that SSD pricing has come down quite a bit over the past year. A 1TB Samsung 860 Evo, for example, sells for less than $150 on Amazon (opens in new tab). Likewise, a 250GB model goes for less than $60 (opens in new tab). Why buy a CPU with a 16GB Optane Memory stick for $35 extra when you could just spend $25 more and get 16 times the capacity.