Did MSI Just Leak Intel's Official 12th Gen Alder Lake Processor Launch?

MSI LGA 1700 Upgrade Kit
Companies that make cooling products for PCs have been stepping up to the plate with free mounting kit upgrades for Intel's upcoming Alder Lake CPUs, which employ a new LGA 1700 socket design. MSI is the latest to join the fray, and in doing so, it may have tipped the release date for Alder Lake, which is something Intel has not announced yet.

The only indication from Intel so far is that Alder Lake will arrive before the end of the year, with motherboards based on its accompanying Z690 chipset in tow. And since Alder Lake supports DDR5 RAM, we can expect DDR5 memory kits to broadly launch at or near the same time as well. Some kits have already been announced—for example, TeamGroup recently announced some DDR5-5200 RAM kits as part of its T-Force Vulcan and Delta RGB lines.

While Intel has not yet formally announced Alder Lake's launch date, MSI's upgrade offer for several of its CoreLiquid coolers begins November 4, 2021, and runs through April 30, 2022. Have a look...

MSI Upgrade Kit
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MSI's free upgrade kits contain the necessary mounting hardware for upcoming LGA 1700 motherboards. In addition to having more pins, it is the physical design of the socket mount, as well as the different shape and Z-height of Alder Lake that necessitates new bracket hardware to make existing coolers compatible with Intel's next-gen CPUs.

"The kits emphasize excellent contact pressure and handy adjustment with fixed-strut back plates for both the liquid cooler and motherboard, making installation hassle-free! Now please follow the steps below to apply for your upgrade kit," MSI says.

MSI's free upgrade kits will be available for the following coolers...
  • MAG CoreLiquid 360R
  • MAG CoreLiquid 280R
  • MAG CoreLiquid 240R
  • MPG CoreLiquid K360
  • MPG CoreLiquid K240
The starting availability for MSI's upgrade program aligns neatly with previous Alder Lake rumors, which have suggested Intel will announce its 12th Gen Core CPUs in October, followed by a retail release in November.

More precisely, the latest Alder Lake rumors peg the announcement date as October 27, at which point it's said people will be able to place preorders. Then on November 4, Alder Lake will release to retail. So those are the two dates to circle on your calendar, just be sure to use pencil or erasable ink.

As to MSI's upgrade offer, when the time comes, you will be able to submit a ticket to claim your free mounting kit hardware, if applicable. You'll need to provide your cooler's serial number and proof of purchase, among other details. If everything checks out, MSI will send new backplates (for the motherboard and cooler) and any necessary screws and studs.