Credits: Grist

A lucky winner has won a high-performance PC with a Core i9 and a GeForce RTX 4090 for a much lower price than normal for an almost unbelievable reason. The person himself shared his story on Reddit, under the username _MonkeyMonkey.

According to his account, the user found this build for sale in the classifieds for a great price. He doesn’t reveal the exact number, but says he paid less than the list price for the processor and GPU, excluding taxes. And the PC came complete: case, power supply, fans, cooler, etc.

The reason for the sale at such a low price was said to be the fact that the computer was overheating. “Basically the fans were running at maximum speed as soon as it was turned on, and everything was a bit laggy,” the user reported. The seller allegedly cited the well-known problems with the Core i9 as the reason, saying that he had lowered the CPU voltage to be able to use the computer.

The author of the report says that he imagined that the problem could be the quality of the cooler, whose brand he did not know, or the application of thermal paste. After making sure that the rest of the hardware worked well, he decided to risk buying the PC.

Was the problem really the Core i9?

Finally, _MonkeyMonkey took the PC home and started fiddling with the cooler to find out what was wrong. To his surprise – and making the story much more interesting – it wasn’t the Core i9, nor the cooler, nor the thermal paste. It was a piece of plastic.

The original owner of the PC simply forgot to remove the protective plastic film from the copper surface of the cooler. Ironically, one of the photos even reads backwards (in English) “please remove the film before use”.

In addition to being a curious anecdote, the story also illustrates how the reputation of a product affects people’s perception. The PC seller already had another one, so that probably encouraged his decision not to investigate the problem too much. Still, it is noteworthy that he immediately thought of the Core i9 throttling before even double-checking that his installation was correct.

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