$2,200 in prizes up for grabs in TR's Dear Diary contest

Our summer o' giveaways is over, but that doesn't mean we're out of gear to give out. In fact, we've amassed our biggest bounty this year—and we're about to give it all away to three lucky readers.

The loot comes from Gigabyte, which is promoting its sponsorship of the BlizzCon event, as well as from Intel, Rosewill, and Diamond, who also wanted to chip in. All in all, we have over $2,200 worth of goodies, including a thousand-dollar Intel Core i7-4960X processor, a couple of $200+ motherboards, a GeForce GTX 760 graphics card, and much, much more.

Entering is simple, though some creativity is required. We're asking readers to head to this thread in our forums and contribute a mock diary entry written in the words of a PC. You can impersonate any PC you like—yours, a celebrity's, a fictional character's, or anyone else's—as long as your submission is between 50 and 350 words. There's an example entry in the starter post of the forum thread.

We'll be awarding prizes to the folks who post the most entertaining entries. There will be three winners. The first-place winner will get to choose one of our two prize bundles, while the second-place winner will get the remaining one. The third-place winner will receive our runner-up prize, which is a Diamond docking station worth around $150.

Our first prize bundle is made up of:

  • A Core i7-4960X processor donated by Intel. This is the fastest member of Intel's desktop CPU lineup. It features six cores, 12 threads, and four memory channels. There's no heatsink in the box, so you'll have to supply your own. See our review of this processor here. (Price: $1,049.99.)
  • A GA-X79-UP4 motherboard donated by Gigabyte. Designed to accommodate LGA2011 processors like Intel's Core i7-4960X, the X79-UP4 features an Intel X79 chipset, eight DIMM slots, four physical PCI Express x16 slots (with support for quad SLI and quad CrossFire configs), and dual eSATA ports. (Price $224.99.)
  • An Extreme Sound XS71HD sound card donated by Diamond. This 24-bit/192kHz, 7.1-channel sound card is powered by a C-Media CMI8838 chip and fits in a PCIe x1 slot. It has a 120-dB signal-to-noise ratio, a full complement of 3.5-mm jacks and dual RCA coaxial connectors, and dual S/PDIF digital audio connectors. (Price: $59.99.)

Our second bundle consists of:

  • A G1.Sniper 5 motherboard donated by Gigabyte. The G1.Sniper 5 has a Z87 chipset and is designed for Intel's Haswell processors. It has four physical PCI Express x16 slots, Creative integrated audio, Killer E2201 integrated networking, Bluetooth 4.0, and 802.11n Wi-Fi. (Price: $199.99.)
  • A GeForce GTX 760 2GB graphics card donated by Gigabyte. This card has a humongous triple-fan cooler, and it's clocked at 1085MHz with a 1150MHz Boost speed, up from the reference 980/1033MHz. For more details about the GeForce GTX 760, check out our review. (Price: $249.99.)
  • A Sumo Omega mid-tower case donated by Gigabyte. Included in this enclosure are six fans, a cornucopia of tool-less drive bays, holes in the motherboard tray for cable routing and access to the back of the CPU socket, a card reader, and a hard-drive docking station—among other things. (Price: $119.99.)
  • A GreenMax Plus 650W power supply, also provided by Gigabyte. The GreenMax Plus can push a combined 624W on its dual 12V rails. It also has 80 Plus Bronze and SLI certification, and it's cooled by a 120-mm fan. (Price: $73.99.)
  • Your choice of any RK-9000-series mechanical keyboard in stock at Newegg, donated by Rosewill. The RK-9000 series uses Cherry's MX mechanical key switches, and models are available with different variants of those switches, each with a different feel and sound. See our review for more details and audio recordings of the various switch types. (Price: between $74.99 and $99.99, depending on the model.)

Finally, our runner-up prize is a DS3900 docking station donated by Diamond. The DS3900 hooks up to your PC via a single USB 3.0 port, and it provides Ethernet, DVI, HDMI, and 3.5-mm audio connectivity in addition to a four-port USB hub—handy for an ultrabook or any other PC with a limited port payload. (Price: $148.18.)

Not bad, huh?

Head over to this thread in our forums to enter the contest. Bear in mind that only entries posted in that thread will be accepted. We'll be allowing submissions until noon, Central Time on November 10. TR staffers will judge submissions, and the winners will be announced on the site by November 15. The contest is open to residents of the United States and Canada (Quebec excepted) only.

Good luck!

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