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First Intel Core M "Broadwell" Benchmarks Surface

Here are some of the first benchmarks of Intel's ambitious Core M processor, a performance-segment dual-core processor with a thermal envelope of just 4.5W, making it ideal for tablets, ultra-portables, and mainstream desktops. At IDF 2014, Intel showed off a 12.5-inch tablet running a Core M 5Y70 chip. An MCM of the CPU and PCH dies, the CPU die features two "Broadwell" 64-bit x86 cores, a large new graphics processor with 24 execution units and 192 stream engines, 4 MB of shared L3 cache, a dual-channel LPDDR3 memory controller, and a PCI-Express 3.0 root complex. The PCH die wires out the platform's various connectivity options.

The 12.5-inch Core M tablet was put through three tests, Cinebench R11.5, SunSpider 1.0.2, and 3DMark Ice Storm Unlimited. With the multi-threaded CPU-intensive Cinebench R11.5, the Core M scores a respectable 17 FPS in the GL bench, with 2.48 pts CPU. That's about 60 percent the performance of a Core i7-870. Significantly higher than anything Atom, Pentium, or AMD E-Series. With SunSpider, the Core M put out a score of 142.8, under Internet Explorer 12 running under Windows 8.1. With 3DMark IceStorm Unlimited, the Core M sprung up a surprise - 50,985 points. That over double that of a Qualcomm Snapdragon 800, and faster than the IGPs AMD E-Series APUs ship with. Color us interested.

Source: HotHardware

ASUS Reveals the Zenbook UX305 Broadwell-Powered 13.3-Inch Laptop

Today at IFA 2014 ASUS showcased its newest Zenbook series ultrabook, a 13.3-inch model dubbed Zenbook UX305 which comes equipped with a 14 nm Intel Core M (Broadwell) processor. The all-aluminum UX305 is 12.3 mm thick, it weighs just 1.2 kg and has a QHD+ (3200 x 1800) display, a 128 GB or 256 GB solid state drive, Bang & Olufsen speakers, 802.11ac WiFi, three USB 3.0 ports, and an HDMI output.

The Zenbook UX305 will ship later this year in two color versions - Obsidian Stone and Ceramic Alloy. No word on pricing.

Intel Haswell TSX Erratum as Grave as AMD Barcelona TLB Erratum

Intel's "Haswell" micro-architecture introduced the transactional synchronization extensions (TSX) as part of its upgraded feature-set over its predecessor. The instructions are designed to speed up certain types of multithreaded software, and although it's too new for any major software vendor to implement, some of the more eager independent software developers began experimenting with them, only to discover that TSX is buggy and can cause critical software failures.

The buggy TSX implementation on Core "Haswell" processors was discovered by a developer outside Intel, who reported it to the company, which then labeled it as an erratum (a known design flaw). Intel is addressing the situation by releasing a micro-code update to motherboard manufacturers, who will then release it as a BIOS update to customers. The update disables TSX on affected products (Core and Xeon "Haswell" retail, and "Broadwell-Y" engineering samples).

Intel Details Newest Microarchitecture and 14 Nanometer Manufacturing Process

Intel today disclosed details of its newest microarchitecture that is optimized with Intel's industry-leading 14 nm manufacturing process. Together these technologies will provide high-performance and low-power capabilities to serve a broad array of computing needs and products from the infrastructure of cloud computing and the Internet of Things to personal and mobile computing.

"Intel's integrated model - the combination of our design expertise with the best manufacturing process - makes it possible to deliver better performance and lower power to our customers and to consumers," said Rani Borkar, Intel vice president and general manager of product development. "This new microarchitecture is more than a remarkable technical achievement. It is a demonstration of the importance of our outside-in design philosophy that matches our design to customer requirements."

Intel President: Integrated, Smart Connected Devices Fuel Next Era of Computing

As computing continues to evolve and expand beyond the traditional PC, Intel Corporation President Renée James said Intel and the Taiwan technology ecosystem have the exciting opportunity to build on the long history of collaborative innovation to deliver seamless and truly personal computing experiences.

Processor technology continues to get smaller with greater performance and lower power thanks to Moore's Law, expanding the scale and potential for Intel technology and that of the Taiwan ecosystem, from infrastructure for cloud computing and the Internet of Things to personal and mobile computing and wearable technology.

Intel X99 Chipset Motherboards Unlikely at Computex

Intel's next-generation HEDT (high end desktop) platform, consisting of Core i7 "Haswell-E" processors and X99 Express chipset motherboards, are unlikely to get a showing at Computex 2014, according to an OCWorkbench report, which has its feet on the ground in Taipei. What makes this development surprising, is that Intel is expected to launch the platform in the second half of 2014, and after Computex, the company won't get another major tradeshow until 2015 International CES, slated for January. What's even more surprising, is that Intel has already launched 9-series motherboards for socket LGA1150, that are designed to support its 14 nm Core "Broadwell" mainline processors. According to the report, Intel will have its motherboard partners focus on already launched Z97 Express and H97 Express motherboards, with a focus on the platform's support for M.2 and SATA-Express interfaces, that enable a new generation of faster SSDs.

Source: OCWorkbench

ADATA's Next-generation XPG Memory Modules Detailed

Here is the first picture of ADATA's XPG V3 DDR3 DRAM module. It will be launched alongside the company's first enthusiast-grade DDR4 modules. ADATA's XPG Z1 DDR4 modules will come in densities as high as 16 GB, clocked at JEDEC-standard DDR4-2133 MHz, and run at module voltages of 1.2V. The same heatspreader design as the one pictured below, will also be used on the company's new XPG V3 line of DDR3 modules, and will come in a number of color options, to match your motherboard's color scheme. The first client platforms with support for DDR4 memory include Intel "Broadwell," and "Haswell-E" HEDT.

Intel's 14 nm "Broadwell" Could Launch by Late-2014

Intel's first processors based on the company's "Broadwell" silicon, which is an incremental upgrade to "Haswell," and built on Intel's swanky new 14 nanometer silicon fabrication process, could launch by late-2014. Intel responded to the 2014 "Back to School" shopping season with 9-series chipset motherboards featuring LGA1150 sockets, and Core "Haswell" Refresh processors. Mobile CPUs based on the silicon, were launched, too. Intel couldn't deliver on "Broadwell," the processor its 9-series chipset was originally designed to accompany. Back in 2013, "Broadwell" was expected to be Intel's big mid-2014 launch, in tune with its "Tick-Tock" product development strategy, that sees introductions of new micro-architectures, and new silicon fabrication processes take turns each year.

Source: Reuters

Intel Updates Desktop CPU Roadmap, Haswell-E, Broadwell, Devil's Canyon Blip

At GDC, Intel announced a backpedal from its plans to eventually reshape desktop CPUs into components that come hardwired to the motherboards across the line, by announcing three new CPU families. It includes the Haswell-E HEDT platform, Broadwell performance platform, and Devil's Canyon. The three are expected to launch in reverse order, beginning with Devil's Canyon. A variant of existing "Haswell" silicon in the LGA1150 package, Devil's Canyon is codename for a breed of hand-picked chips with "insane" overclocking potential. In addition to binned dies, the chips feature a performance-optimized TIM between the die and the integrated heatspreader (IHS). The dies will be placed on special "high tolerance" packages, with equally "special" LGA contact points. The chips will be designed with higher voltage tolerance levels. Devil's Canyon is expected to branded under the existing Core i7-4xxx series, possibly with "Extreme" brand extension. It will be compatible with motherboards based on the Z97 chipset.

Next up, is "Broadwell." A successor to Haswell, Broadwell is its optical shrink to Intel's new 14-nanometer silicon fab process, with minor improvements to IPC, new power-management features, and likely added instruction sets, much like what "Ivy Bridge" was to "Sandy Bridge." It will take advantage of the new process to step up CPU and iGPU clock speeds. Broadwell is expected to launch in the second half of 2014. Lastly, there's Haswell-E. Built in the company's next-gen LGA2011 socket (incompatible with the current LGA2011), this HEDT (high-end desktop) processor will feature up to eight CPU cores, up to 15 MB of L3 cache, a 48-lane PCI-Express 3.0 root complex, and a quad-channel DDR4 integrated memory controller (IMC). Intel is also planning to launch a socketed variant of the Core i7-4770R, which is based on the company's Haswell GT3e silicon, which features the Iris Pro 5200 graphics core, with 40 execution units, and 128 MB of L4 cache.

FinalWire AIDA64 v4.20 Released

FinalWire announced the latest version of its smash-hit system diagnostics and benchmarking suite, AIDA64 v4.20. The new version comes with a long list of feature updates, including a new diagnostics page for AMD Mantle API under the "Display" section, a new multi-threaded memory stress test that takes advantage of AVX2, AVX, FMA, BMI2, BMI, and SSE2 instruction sets. Version 4.20 also adds support for Intel Core "Haswell Refresh" processors, "Wildcat Point" PCH, upcoming "Broadwell" CPUs, "Royston" SoCs; Radeon R5, R7, and R9 series GPUs; and OCZ Vertex 460 SSDs.
DOWNLOAD: FinalWire AIDA64 v4.20 (installer) | FinalWire AIDA64 v4.20 (ZIP package)

Core i7 "Haswell-E" Engineering Sample Pictured

Here's the first picture of Intel's next-generation Core i7 HEDT (high-end desktop) processor, codenamed "Haswell-E." Based on Intel's latest "Haswell" micro-architecture, the chip will be Intel's first HEDT processor to ship with eight cores, and the first client CPU to ship with next-generation DDR4 memory interface. In addition to IPC improvements over "Ivy Bridge" that come with "Haswell," the chip integrates a quad-channel DDR4 integrated memory controller, with native memory speeds of DDR4-2133 MHz; a PCI-Express gen 3.0 root complex with a total of 40 PCI-Express lanes, and yet the same DMI 2.0 (4 GB/s) chipset bus.

Built into the LGA2011-3 socket, "Haswell-E" will be incompatible with current LGA2011 motherboards, as the notches of the package will vary from LGA2011 "Ivy Bridge-E." Intel will introduce the new X99 Express chipset, featuring all 6 Gb/s SATA ports, integrated USB 3.0 controllers, and a PCI-Express gen 2.0 root complex for third-party onboard controllers. Interestingly, there's no mention of SATA-Express, which Intel's next-generation 9-series chipset for Core "Broadwell" platforms reportedly ships with; and X99 isn't looking too different from today's Z87 chipset. With engineering samples already out, it wouldn't surprise us if Intel launches "Haswell-E" along the sidelines of any of next year's big-three trade-shows (CES, CeBIT, and Computex).

Source: VR-Zone

Intel's 2014 Thunderbolt Controller Detailed

Intel is continuing on its mission to establish Thunderbolt as the next universal device interconnect standard, despite steep competition from the 5 Gb/s USB 3.0, the upcoming 10 Gb/s USB 3.1, and stringent validation and licensing barriers on its own end. To that effect, the company outlined its mainstream Thunderbolt controller, which it plans to launch some time in 2014. The company is planning two major introductions to the standard, to help it compete against USB - power delivery, and ad-hoc (peer-to-peer) networking.

The controller, Broadwell Thunderbolt-LP, isn't designed too differently from what's available in the market. It handles a 20 Gb/s Thunderbolt link by aggregating two 10 Gb/s channels, relays DisplayPort 1.2 from the system's graphics device, and connects to the rest of the system over PCIe 2.0 x2. The chip is built in the 8 x 8 mm package, and features operational and idle TDP ratings of 1.5W and 1mW, respectively. The changes Intel is making to the standard will enable power delivery of up to 53W over a standard tethered cable. That's enough power to run a drive dock with up to six 3.5-inch hard drives, or a small (<24-inch) flat-screen monitor. The other big feature is ad-hoc networking, which enables people to set up peer-to-peer 20 Gb/s connections between two PCs much in the same way they did with USB and RS232, back in the day. While it's no Ethernet replacement, it could prove useful in certain environments, such as content-creation. Intel is expected to make some Thunderbolt-related announcements at CES, next January.

Source: VR-Zone

Intel Delays 14 nm "Broadwell" Chips to Q1-2014

Intel delayed its Core "Broadwell" SoCs for desktops and notebooks to the first quarter of 2014, owing to production delays facing the 14 nanometer silicon fabrication node that the chips are based on. These issues, according to Intel CEO Brian Krzanich, could limit the company's ability to ship enough quantities of functioning chips, and so the company is ironing out its fab problems first. The delay, however, shouldn't have a cascading effect on "Skylake," the successor to "Broadwell," which is based on the same fab process. Skylake's position on the long-term company roadmaps is unaffected. "Broadwell" is a particularly important micro-architecture for Intel, which is struggling to get itself on to mainstream "post-PC" devices such as tablets.
Source: CNET, Image Credit: Anandtech

New Intel CEO Outlines Product Plans, Future of Computing Vision at IDF 2013

From data centers to ultra-mobile devices such as tablets, phones and wearables, computing segments are undergoing exciting and even game-changing transitions, said new Intel CEO Brian Krzanich during today's opening session of the Intel Developer Forum. Krzanich laid out Intel's vision and described how Intel is addressing each dynamic market segment - such as accelerating Intel's progress in ultra-mobile devices - with new products over the next year and beyond, including a new, lower-power product family.

Krzanich said Intel plans to leave no segment untapped. "Innovation and industry transformation are happening more rapidly than ever before, which play to Intel's strengths. We have the manufacturing technology leadership and architectural tools in place to push further into lower power regimes. We plan to shape and lead in all areas of computing."
Image courtesy of Engadget

Intel 9-series Chipset's Backwards Compatibility with Haswell Suspect

Intel's 9-series chipset, which is built for the company's next-generation Core "Broadwell" processor family, and slated for the second half of 2014, may face backwards-compatibility issues with current-generation Core "Haswell" processors, and the ability of current 8-series platforms to support "Broadwell," even though the two processor families share a common LGA1150 CPU socket, according to a VR-Zone report.

The report notes that a number of electrical connections between the CPU socket and chipset are different, and the chip follows a different power supply (as in power distribution within the chip/motherboard) than "Haswell." Such differences could pose backwards-compatibility issues. Although a generation ahead of Haswell, Broadwell isn't its immediate successor. Intel plans to roll out a refreshed Core "Haswell" processor family in a few quarters from now, which in addition to fully-integrated clocking mode, could introduce a few other platform changes. The report notes that 9-series chipset motherboards could be more compatible with Haswell (refresh), than the current Haswell platform. Intel 9-series chipset could introduce support for SATA-Express, the next big consumer internal storage interface that succeeds SATA 6 Gb/s.

Source: VR-Zone

Intel Broadwell CPU Lineup Arrives in 2H 2014

Intel is expected to unveil its Core "Broadwell" processor family in the second half of 2014. "Broadwell" is an optical shrink of "Haswell" to Intel's new 14 nanometer silicon fab process, with a few tweaks. It's being reported that the "Broadwell" silicon will make it to mobile (notebook) platforms before desktops. Within 2H 2014, a bulk of Intel's Core mobile processor lineup will be based on the silicon, including H-series (for desktop replacements and all-in-one desktops, BGA), U (for Ultrabooks), Y (for tablets), and QM/XM (for mainstream notebooks).

It's the common desktop plaform that's shortchanged by Intel. There won't be socketed Core "Broadwell" CPUs any time in 2014. They'll probably arrive in 2015, they probably won't. Instead, Intel has a "Haswell" platform refresh planned for 2014, which will see Intel roll out speed-bumped Core i5 and Core i7 parts based on existing "Haswell" silicon, and at existing price-points. To compensate, Intel is expected to roll out the Haswell-E HEDT (high-end desktop) platform in 2H 2014, which succeeds the upcoming Core i7 "Ivy Bridge-E" platform, and introduces DDR4 system memory support.

Source: VR-Zone

Intel Aims to "Re-Architect" Datacenters to Meet Demand for New Services

As the massive growth of information technology services places increasing demand on the datacenter, Intel Corporation today outlined its strategy to re-architect the underlying infrastructure, allowing companies and end-users to benefit from an increasingly services-oriented, mobile world. The company also announced additional details about its next-generation Intel Atom processor C2000 product family (codenamed "Avoton" and "Rangeley"), as well as outlined its roadmap of next-generation 14nm products for 2014 and beyond. This robust pipeline of current and future products and technologies will allow Intel to expand into new segments of the datacenter that look to transition from proprietary designs to more open, standards-based compute models.

"Datacenters are entering a new era of rapid service delivery," said Diane Bryant, senior vice president and general manager of the Datacenter and Connected Systems Group at Intel. "Across network, storage and servers we continue to see significant opportunities for growth. In many cases, it requires a new approach to deliver the scale and efficiency required, and today we are unveiling the near and long-term actions to enable this transformation."

Intel 9-series Chipset Could Feature SATA Express Interface

Intel may be a couple of months away from launching its Core "Haswell" processor family, and the 8-series "Lynx Point" family of chipset to back it, but is already talking to partners about the platform's successor, slated for the second quarter of 2014. Core "Haswell" introduces the industry to socket LGA1150 motherboards, and Core "Broadwell" could, in all likelihood, provide continuity to it, much in the same way "Ivy Bridge" did to "Sandy Bridge." Intel could introduce a new chipset to tag along with "Broadwell."

According to a roadmap slide seen by VR-Zone, Intel's 9-series chipset will include at least two models, the Z97 targeting enthusiasts, and the H97 targeting mainstream consumers. These chipset could drive socket LGA1150 motherboards going into the second half of 2014, and could support both "Haswell" and "Broadwell," in the same way today's 7-series chipset support "Sandy Bridge" and "Ivy Bridge." Intel could introduce a major feature with 9-series, SATA Express.

Mass Production at Intel's 14 nanometer Node Begins This Year

In addition to the industry's first fully-patterned 450 mm wafer, Intel announced that its 14 nanometer silicon fabrication node at three of its fabs will begin this year. The next leap forward from 22 nm, on which two of the company's CPU generations "Ivy Bridge" and "Haswell" are based, the 14 nm node will eventually facilitate production of the company's 5th generation Core "Broadwell" processors, which are due to arrive in 2014. Given the pace at which the 14 nm node is being developed, some of the first Broadwell Core chips, at least engineering samples, will be released to the industry within 2013. Among the three Intel facilities with 14 nm nodes are D1X, located in Oregon; Fab 42, located in Arizona; and Fab 24, located in Ireland.

Source: Expreview

Intel Haswell and Broadwell Silicon Variants Detailed

It's no secret that nearly all Intel Core processors are carved out of essentially one or two physical dies, be it the "2M" die that physically features four cores and 8 MB of L3 cache, or the "1M" die, which physically features two cores and 4 MB of L3 cache. The two silicons are further graded for energy-efficiency and performance before being assigned a package most suited to them: desktop LGA, mobile PGA, mobile BGA, and with the introduction of the 4th generation Core "Haswell," SoC (system on chip, a package that's going to be a multi-chip module of the CPU and PCH dies). The SoC package will be designed to conserve PCB real-estate, and will be suited for extremely size-sensitive devices such as Ultrabooks.

The third kind of grading for the two silicons relates to its on-die graphics processor, which makes up over a third of the die area. Depending on the number of programmable shaders and ROPs unlocked, there are two grades: GT2, and GT3, with GT3 being the most powerful. On the desktop front (identified by silicon extension "-DT,") Intel very much will retain dual-core processors, which will make up its Core i3, Pentium, and Celeron processor lines. It will be lead by quad-core parts. All desktop processors feature the GT2 graphics core.

Is Haswell the Last Interchangeable Intel Client Processor?

The processor-motherboard combination as PC enthusiasts know it could end, with Intel LGA1150 processors under the "Haswell" micro-architecture, likely to becoming the last client processors to ship in the retail channel (processor-in-box). Future Intel client processors, codenamed "Broadwell" could ship only in BGA (ball-grid array) packages, with existing motherboard vendors selling their products with processors permanently soldered onto them. The information comes from Japanese PC Watch, which cites sources in the PC industry.

With a compacted socket-processor launch cycle that spans nearly 2 years under the company's "tick-tock" product strategy, the scope for processor updates in the client computing industry might be lower than what it was in the LGA775 days. Perhaps statistics at Intel don't show a sizable proportion of people upgrading processors on existing motherboards, or upgrading motherboards while retaining the processor, rather buying a combination of the two, not to mention the fact that pre-built PCs outsell DIY assembled ones in major markets. With the processor being "tied" to the motherboard, Intel gets room to compact the platform further, combining processor and core logic completely into a single package. It's likely that Intel could still leave processor interchangeability to its HEDT (high-end desktop) platform, which sees processors start at $300, and motherboards at $200.Source: X-bit Labs

14 nm "Broadwell" A True System-on-Chip (SoC)

With the 14 nm "Broadwell" architecture, Intel will take a new step towards integration of the platform-controller hub (PCH) with the CPU, by designing it to be a multi-chip module (with the CPU+northbridge in one die, and PCH on the other). This would make "Broadwell" a true System-on-chip (SoC), which allows over 90 percent of the system's I/O to be routed to the processor socket, including memory, PCI-Express, SATA, USB, etc. Although not the first to the industry with single-chip chipsets and integrated memory controllers, Intel rapidly reshaped the arrangement between CPU and core-logic, over the past four years.

It began with transfer of memory controller from northbridge to CPU die (45 nm "Bloomfield"), and transfer of the entire northbridge to the CPU die (45 nm "Lynnfield"). The graphics northbridge transferred a little more gradually, first as multi-chip module with a separate CPU die (32 nm "Clarkdale"), then complete integration with the CPU die (32 nm "Sandy Bridge"). All through, the southbridge, or I/O controller hub (ICH) remained outside the CPU package, with the addition of a display output logic, it transformed into a "platform controller hub" (PCH), which is still just a glorified southbridge. Naturally then, such a drastic relocation of system components will warrant a socket change.

Source: ComputerBase.de
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