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Intel Adds Game Capture and Broadcasting Features to Graphics Command Center

Intel updated its Graphics Command Center app to feature game video capture and broadcasting features rivaling AMD ReLive and NVIDIA GeForce Experience Share. The feature lets you record your screen or gameplay and either save the recording to disk or stream to various game streaming sites and social networks. You get control over the resolution, format, bit-rate, etc. The Graphics Command Center is unbundled from Intel's Graphics drivers that have switched to the new DCH driver model. It is currently distributed through Microsoft Store as a beta.

DOWNLOAD: Intel Graphics Command Center (beta)

Jon Peddie Research: AMD's Shipments in Q4'19 Increased 22.6%, Overall Shipments Up QoQ but Down YoY

Jon Peddie Research have released their report on the overall market outlook for GPU shipments for Q4'2019, and the news are great for AMD. Due to the launch of more affordable Navi-based 7 nm graphics cards, the company managed to achieve a growth of 22.6% in shipment volume for the last quarter of 2019, compared to Q3 of the same year. This 22.6% volume increase is pretty significant (and is miles ahead of competitors NVIDIA (whose shipments decreased by -1.9%) and Intel (a 0.2% increase), having increased AMD's overall market share by 3%. This means that AMD now commands 19% of the overall GPU market share, surpassing NVIDIA (which counts with 18%) but both being dwarfed by Intel (with a commanding 63% share). It's important to note here that the numbers include integrated- and discrete-GPUs, and AMD's numbers could be assisted by its mobile processor and APU sales, just as iGPUs make up all of Intel's numbers.

Those numbers are skewed, of course, when we look solely at the discrete GPU market share, with NVIDIA commanding a huge, 73% chunk of the market against AMD's paltry (by comparison) 27%. All in all, Jon Peddie Research reports that the overall PC market increased by 1.99% quarter-to-quarter and increased by 3.54% year-to-year, thus resulting a good performance for these "little" chips.

Intel 10th Generation Core "Comet Lake-S" Desktop Processor Boxed Retail SKUs Listed

Ahead of their rumored April 2020 availability product codes of Intel's upcoming 10th generation Core "Comet Lake-S" desktop processors leaked to the web, courtesy momomo_us. The lineup includes 22 individual SKUs, although it's unknown if all of these will be available in April. There are four 10-core/20-thread SKUs: the i9-10900K, the i9-10900KF, the i9-10900, and the i9-10900F. The "K" extension denotes unlocked multiplier, while the "F" extension indicates lack of integrated graphics. "KF" indicates a SKU that's both unlocked and lacking an iGPU. Similarly, there are four 8-core/16-thread Core i7 SKUs, the i7-10700K, the i7-10700KF, the i7-10700, and the i7-10700F.

The 6-core/12-thread Core i5 family has several SKUs besides the range-topping i5-10600K and its siblings, i5-10600KF and i5-10600. These include the i5-10500, i5-10400, and i5-10400F. The quad-core Core i3 lineup includes the i3-10320, i3-10300, and i3-10100. The former two have 8 MB L3 cache, while the i3-10100 has 6 MB. Among the entry-level Pentium SKUs are the G6600, G6500, G6400, G5920, and G5900.

AMD Gives Itself Massive Cost-cutting Headroom with the Chiplet Design

At its 2020 IEEE ISSCC keynote, AMD presented two slides that detail the extent of cost savings yielded by its bold decision to embrace the MCM (multi-chip module) approach to not just its enterprise and HEDT processors, but also its mainstream desktop ones. By confining only those components that tangibly benefit from cutting-edge silicon fabrication processes, namely the CPU cores, while letting other components sit on relatively inexpensive 12 nm, AMD is able to maximize its 7 nm foundry allocation, by making it produce small 8-core CCDs (CPU complex dies), which add up to AMD's target core-counts. With this approach, AMD is able to cram up to 16 cores onto its AM4 desktop socket using two chiplets, and up to 64 cores using eight chiplets on its SP3r3 and sTRX4 sockets.

In the slides below, AMD compares the cost of its current 7 nm + 12 nm MCM approach to a hypothetical monolithic die it would have had to build on 7 nm (including the I/O components). The slides suggest that the cost of a single-chiplet "Matisse" MCM (eg: Ryzen 7 3700X) is about 40% less than that of the double-chiplet "Matisse" (eg: Ryzen 9 3950X). Had AMD opted to build a monolithic 7 nm die that had 8 cores and all the I/O components of the I/O die, such a die would cost roughly 50% more than the current 1x CCD + IOD solution. On the other hand, a monolithic 7 nm die with 16 cores and I/O components would cost 125% more. AMD hence enjoys a massive headroom for cost-cutting. Prices of the flagship 3950X can be close to halved (from its current $749 MSRP), and AMD can turn up the heat on Intel's upcoming Core i9-10900K by significantly lowering price of its 12-core 3900X from its current $499 MSRP. The company will also enjoy more price-cutting headroom for its 6-core Ryzen 5 SKUs than it did with previous-generation Ryzen 5 parts based on monolithic dies.

Intel Highlights Latest Security Investments at RSA 2020

At the Intel Security Day event during RSA Conference 2020, Intel underscored its commitment to security with several announcements, including details on security capabilities coming in future products. At Intel, security is a fundamental and foundational element of all aspects of architecture, design and implementation. Together with customers and partners, Intel is building a more trusted foundation in this data-centric world.

"Hardware is the bedrock of any security solution. Just as a physical structure requires a foundation established on bedrock to withstand the forces of nature, security solutions rooted in hardware will provide the greatest opportunity to provide security assurance against current and future threats," said Tom Garrison, Intel vice president and general manager of Client Security Strategy and Initiatives. "Intel hardware, and the assurance and security technologies it brings, help harden the layers above from attack."

Intel customers build solutions and services that depend on the breadth and depth of technologies in the silicon, vertical integration and substantive reach from edge to cloud. It is Intel's mission to provide common security capabilities across all architectures, to help address the ever-increasing sophistication of user experiences.

Driven by Strong Demand from Data Center Clients, 4Q19 NAND Flash Revenue Grows 8.5%, Says TrendForce

According to the DRAMeXchange research division of TrendForce, 4Q19 NAND flash bit shipment increased by nearly 10% QoQ thanks to demand growth from data center clients. On the supply side, contract prices made a successful rebound due to shortages caused by the power outage at Kioxia's Yokkaichi production base in June. In sum, 4Q19 NAND flash revenue reached $12.5 billion, an 8.5% increase QoQ.

The stronger-than-expected 4Q19 performance from the demand side helped improve supplier inventory back to normal levels. In response, NAND suppliers were able to reduce their allocations to the wafer market and instead focus on shipping products with comparatively higher margins.

Apple to Launch Arm-Powered MacBook in the next 18 Months

Apple is currently designing a custom series of CPUs, for its Macbook laptop lineup, based on the Arm Instruction Set Architecture. Having designed some of the most powerful mobile processors that are inside the iPhone series of devices, Apple is preparing to make a jump to an even more powerful device lineup by bringing custom CPUs for MacBook. Tired of the speed by which Intel replaces and upgrades its Core lineup of CPUs, Apple decided to take the matter in its own hands and rumors about the switch to a custom solution have been going on for a while. However, we now have some information about when to expect the first wave of Arm-powered Macs.

According to the analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, who is a well-known insider in the Apple industry, we can expect the first wave of the Arm-powered Macbook in the next 18 months, precisely in the first half of 2021. Supposedly, the first chips for these new Macs are going to be manufactured on a 5 nm manufacturing process, possibly over at TSMC since Apple had a long-lasting history of manufacturing its chips at TSMC foundries. In the meantime, we can expect to see Apple providing developers with tools to transition their x86-64 software to the new Arm ISA. Without a software ecosystem, the hardware platform is essentially worthless. And Apple knows this. We will see how they plan to play it and will report as soon as there is more information.

Lenovo Updates ThinkPad Laptop Portfolio with AMD Ryzen 4000 Series Mobile CPUs

Lenovo announced today the latest additions to the ThinkPad portfolio: the new T series, X series and L series are built leveraging the core tenets of design, innovation and quality. Focused on providing a broad customer choice and a smarter workforce experience, the updated ThinkPad portfolio delivers modern IT solutions with emerging technology features to meet the needs and desires of end users. Innovations across the range include Modern Standby, Wake on Voice, WiFi 6, Dolby Audio Speaker System and Dolby Vision, plus customers can optimize select models with either 10th Gen Intel Core vPro processors or the next generation AMD Ryzen 4000 PRO Mobile processors. Lenovo will be the first PC vendor to offer the AMD Ryzen PRO 4000 Mobile processors.

Intel Announces Unmatched Portfolio for 5G Network Infrastructure

Unlocking the full potential of 5G requires transforming network infrastructure from core to edge. As the world's leading network silicon provider, Intel is at the forefront of driving this transformation. Today, the company made a sweeping set of hardware and software announcements, including the launch of the new Intel Atom P5900, a 10 nm system-on-chip (SoC) for wireless base stations, which is a critical early deployment target for 5G networks.

"As the industry makes the transition to 5G, we continue to see network infrastructure as the most significant opportunity, representing a $25 billion silicon opportunity by 2023," said Navin Shenoy, executive vice president and general manager of the Data Platforms Group at Intel. "By offering customers the fastest and most effective path to design, deliver and deploy 5G solutions across core, edge and access, we are poised to expand our leading silicon position in this growing market."

Intel 10th Gen Core "Comet Lake-S" IGP-Disabled Processor Lineup Detailed

With its 9th generation Core processor series, Intel adapted an interesting strategy to maximize its yields and increase competitiveness of its desktop processors. The "F" model number extension would go on to denote a lack of integrated graphics. It could be used in conjunction with other extensions such as "K" (unlocked base-clock multiplier). Completely disabling integrated graphics would allow Intel to salvage dies on which the iGPU component, which takes up a large chunk of the die area, doesn't clear validation. Intel refers to this as "GT0" (graphics tier zero), to fit into its iGPU tier differentiation scheme. The company also tends to price its "F" SKUs slightly lower, letting it compete with AMD Ryzen chips better. A case in point is the Core i5-9400F, often found under $160, and proving a strong alternative to the Ryzen 5 series for gaming PCs. With the 10th generation "Comet Lake-S" family, the company is planning several new "F" and "KF" SKUs.

According to a company slide leaked to the web by InformaticaCero, there are at least three each of "F" and "KF" SKUs in the works. The lineup includes the 10-core/20-thread i9-10900KF and i9-10900F; the 8-core/16-thread i7-10700KF and i7-10700F; and the 6-core/12-thread i5-10600KF and i5-10600F. Clock speeds and cache sizes of these chips are identical to their corresponding non-F SKUs (eg: i7-10700KF clock-speeds being identical to those of the i7-10700K). Provided they're sold at slightly lower prices, the lack of an iGPU doesn't affect target buyers of these chips - PC gamers or creative professionals who use graphics cards and don't need an iGPU. Competing Ryzen processors lack iGPUs by design. Intel is expected to debut its 10th generation Core "Comet Lake-S" processors in April.

GIGABYTE Updates the Brix Lineup with 10th Generation Comet Lake CPUs

GIGABYTE has updated its Brix lineup of Mini-PCs with Intel's latest and greatest 10th generation Comet Lake mobile CPUs. Measuring 46.8 x 119.5 x 119.5 mm, the Brix mini PC is a small form factor machine with its 0,6-liter size. If anyone thinks that power is proportional to the size of a PC, the GIGABYTE Brix is here to prove them wrong. Available in four variants that differ only in CPU that is soldered inside, you can get anything from a dual-core Intel Core i3-10110U, all the way up to six-core Core i7-10710U CPU powerhouse. These CPUs are 15 W TDP models, so even though the Brix is small, its cooling solution should be able to handle the heat.

The Brix Mini-PC comes with a mounting bracket for 75 x 75 mm and 100 x 100 mm VESA mounts, meaning that you can place it behind a monitor. Storage options are limited to one 2.5-inch drive that can be up to 9.5 mm thick. For RAM, the Brix is using two SO-DIMM slots that can support up to 64 GB of DDR4 2666 MHz RAM. When it comes to connectivity options, GIGABYTE has equipped the Brix with Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 3168 wireless adapter providing Bluetooth 4.2 and WiFi 802.11ac connectivity. The IO options are somewhat decent as Brix has three USB 3.2 Gen 2 ports at the front, along with a USB Gen 2 Type-C connector and 3.5 mm headphone jack. On the back, there are two HDMI 2.0a ports for video output, two additional USC 3.2 Gen 2 ports, power input, and of course an RJ45 Ethernet connector.

Intel and QuTech Detail "Horse Ridge," First Cryogenic Quantum Computing Control Chip

Intel Labs, in collaboration with QuTech ‑ a partnership between TU Delft and TNO (Netherlands Organization for Applied Scientific Research) ‑ outlines key technical features of its new cryogenic quantum control chip "Horse Ridge" in a research paper released at the 2020 International Solid-State Circuits Conference (ISSCC) in San Francisco. The paper unveils key technical capabilities of Horse Ridge that address fundamental challenges in building a quantum system powerful enough to demonstrate quantum practicality: scalability, flexibility and fidelity.

"Today, quantum researchers work with just a small number of qubits, using smaller, custom-designed systems surrounded by complex control and interconnect mechanisms. Intel's Horse Ridge greatly minimizes this complexity. By systematically working to scale to thousands of qubits required for quantum practicality, we're continuing to make steady progress toward making commercially viable quantum computing a reality in our future," said Jim Clarke, director of quantum hardware, Intel Labs.

ASUS Equips ROG Huracan G21 Mini PC with 8 cores and RTX 2080

ASUS launched its ROG Huracan G21 mini gaming PC a long time ago intending to provide a small form factor gaming machine. Today, ASUS decided to update the Huracan with the latest hardware available. Inside a 17.7 liter chassis measuring 129.9×372.4×366.1 mm, ASUS managed to pack some powerful hardware. Starting with CPU, the ROG Huracan G21 is a house to Intel's Core i9-9900K 8 core, 16 thread CPU. There are also configurations available with Intel Core i7-9700K and Core i5-9400 CPUs. The CPU is installed on Mini-ITX Z390 motherboards made by ASUS, so it is technically possible to overclock it, however with an inadequate cooling solution for that it is not recommended.

To make a gaming PC, you need to have a good GPU to push all the framerates, and ASUS opted to equip the G21 with up to NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 graphics card with a blower-type cooler. Other options include GeForce RTX 2070 and RTX 2060 GPUs as well. For storage, there are quite a few options. There is one M.2 SATA SSD which can range from 128 GB to 512 GB in capacity. In addition to a 3.5-inch HDD that is available in 1 TB and 2 TB capacity, there is a hot-swap bay for a 2.5-inch drive. As far as the main memory goes, there is room for up to 32 GB of DDR4 2666 MHz memory. For IO, two USB 3.1 Gen 2 Type-A and one USB 3.1 Gen 1 Type-C port is available on the front of the chassis. In the back, there are two USB 3.1 Gen 2 Type-A ports, along with four USB 3.1 Gen 1 Type-A ports. Video outputs are dependant on which graphics card is equipped in a given configuration. Additionally, to power this PC, ROG Huracan G21 relies on external power adapters that come in 180, 230, or 280 Watt options that again depend on the configuration of the machine. It is also worth pointing out that for audio, the G21 uses Realtek ALC1150 with ESS DAC and amplifier. Support for RGB is not lacking and of course, and it is compatible with ASUS Aura Sync software.

Intel Core i7-10700K Features 5.30 GHz Turbo Boost

Intel's 10th generation Core "Comet Lake-S" desktop processor series inches chose to its probable April 2020 launch. Along the way we get this fascinating leak of the company's Core i7-10700K desktop processor, which could become a go-to chip for gamers if its specifications and pricing hold up. Thai PC enthusiast TUM_APISAK revealed what could be a Futuremark SystemInfo screenshot of the i7-10700K which confirms its clock speeds - 3.80 GHz nominal, with an impressive 5.30 GHz Turbo Boost. Intel is probably tapping into the series' increased maximum TDP of 125 W to clock these chips high across the board.

The Core i7-10700K features 8 cores, and HyperThreading enables 16 threads. It also features 16 MB of shared L3 cache. In essence, this chip has the same muscle as the company's current mainstream desktop flagship, the i9-9900K, but demoted to the Core i7 brand extension. This could give it a sub-$400 price, letting it compete with the likes of AMD's Ryzen 7 3800X and possibly even triggering a price-cut on the 3900X. The i7-10700K in APISAK's screenshot is shown running on an ECS Z490H6-A2 motherboard, marking the company's return to premium Intel chipsets. ECS lacks Z390 or Z370 based motherboards in its lineup, and caps out at B360.

Intel Zooms in on "Lakefield" Foveros Package

The fingernail-size Intel chip with Foveros technology is a first-of-its kind. With Foveros, processors are built in a totally new way: not with the various IPs spread out flat in two dimensions, but with them stacked in three dimensions. Think of a chip designed as a layer cake (a 1-millimeter-thick layer cake) versus a chip with a more-traditional pancake-like design. Intel's Foveros advanced packaging technology allows Intel to "mix and match" technology IP blocks with various memory and I/O elements - all in a small physical package for significantly reduced board size. The first product designed this way is "Lakefield," the Intel Core processor with Intel hybrid technology.

Industry analyst firm The Linley Group recently named Intel's Foveros 3D-stacking technology as "Best Technology" in its 2019 Analysts' Choice Awards. "Our awards program not only recognizes excellence in chip design and innovation, but also acknowledges the products that our analysts believe will have an impact on future designs," said Linley Gwennap, of The Linley Group.

Intel Xe Graphics to Feature MCM-like Configurations, up to 512 EU on 500 W TDP

A reportedly leaked Intel slide via DigitalTrends has given us a load of information on Intel's upcoming take on the high performance graphics accelerators market - whether in its server or consumer iterations. Intel's Xe has already been cause for much discussion in a market that has only really seen two real competitors for ages now - the coming of a third player with muscles and brawl such as Intel against the already-established players NVIDIA and AMD would surely spark competition in the segment - and competition is the lifeblood of advancement, as we've recently seen with AMD's Ryzen CPU line.

The leaked slide reveals that Intel will be looking to employ a Multi-Chip-Module (MCM) approach to its high performance "Arctic Sound" graphics architecture. The GPUs will be available in up to 4-tile configuration (the name Intel is giving each module), which will then be joined via Foveros 3D stacking (first employed in Intel Lakefield. This leaked slide shows Intel's approach starting with a 1-tile GPU (with only 96 of its 128 total EUs active) for the entry level market (at 75 W TDP) a-la DG1 SDV (Software Development Vehicle).

MSI's Rose Pink Prestige 14 Laptop Packs Some Serious Horsepower

MSI got bored of old dark/gray/white laptop designs and decided to spice things up a bit. Say goodbye to the old boring laptops and enter the MSI Prestige 14 Limited Edition Rose Pink laptop. Designed as a premium-looking machine, it has decent specifications to back up the good looks. Equipped with a 14-inch IPS display comes in two variants, a 1080p version, and 4K edition, and it has 100% coverage of the AdobeRGB spectrum. With such specifications, we know that it is targeting the professional content creators.

Under the hood, there is Intel's 10th generation Core i7-10710U "Comet Lake" processor paired with 16 GB of LPDDR3 2133 MHz RAM running in single-channel mode. For graphics, NVIDIA's GTX 1650 Max-Q GPU is on board with 4 GB of GDDR6 memory. Storage is limited to 512 gigabytes of PCIe 3.0 NVMe SSD space, as there is no room for expansion. Connectivity options include Bluetooth 5 and Wi-Fi 6 powered by Intel Wi-Fi 6 AX201 wireless adapter. When it comes to the IO, the Prestige 14 laptop is rocking two USB 2.0 adapter along with two Thunderbolt 3 ports, one 3.5 mm headphone jack, and one Micro-SD card reader. There is also a 3-cell 50 Whr battery powering the system. Price-wise, this laptop is retailing for around $1399 on stores like Amazon and Newegg.

ASRock X570 Phantom Gaming-ITX TB3 Receives Official Thunderbolt Certification

The leading global motherboard, graphics card and mini PC manufacturer, ASRock, announces X570 Phantom Gaming-ITX/TB3 receives the Thunderbolt Host certification from Intel. It is the first Thunderbolt Certified AMD motherboard.

X570 Phantom Gaming-ITX/TB3 is the high-end Mini-ITX model in the ASRock X570 series motherboard which supports AMD Ryzen 2000 and 3000 series processors with AM4 socket. It is equipped with 10 power phase design (Dr.MOS) which provides completely smooth power delivery to the CPU to offer unmatched overclocking capabilities, and enhanced performance with the lowest temperature for advanced gamers. The key feature of this motherboard, Thunderbolt 3 technology, enables lightning-fast data bandwidth up to 40 Gbps, and can also provide both data and video transmission. Meanwhile, X570 Phantom Gaming-ITX/TB3 can connect up to six Thunderbolt 3 devices such as graphics card, hard disk or monitor simultaneously by means of Daisy Chain technology.

GIGABYTE Rolls Out Designare DDR4-3200 High-Capacity 64GB (2x 32GB) Memory for Creators

The Designare brand of motherboards by GIGABYTE target content creators, and the company is extending the brand to memory, with the new Designare Memory series. It debuts with a high-capacity 64 GB dual-channel memory kit using two 32 GB modules. The rationale behind these densities is that creators may need them to deal with large data-sets. These are not off-spec "double height" modules, but are common dual-rank modules that stick to JEDEC compatibility spec, and pack XMP profiles that can run them at DDR4-3200 with 16-18-18-38 timings at 1.35 V.

GIGABYTE has tested these modules to work on all of its AMD X570, AMD B450, AMD TRX40, Intel X299, and Intel Z390 motherboards. For X570 and B450, however, the company states that only 3rd generation "Matisse" processors can handle this memory density. In its compatibility testing, GIGABYTE used 18-19-19-39 timings. Physically, the Designare modules have regular 32 mm height, a black PCB, and aluminium heatspreaders. GIGABYTE is backing the modules with lifetime warranty. The company didn't reveal pricing.

Microsoft Releases Microcode Updates Adressing Intel CPU Vulnerabilities under Windows 10

Microsoft today has released several microcode updates for Intel CPUs. The updates are meant to be applied in a case-by-case basis under their Windows 10 operating system, and these updates target several releases of that OS (ranging from version 1507 through version 1903/1909). These address several vulnerability exploits related to side-channel and speculative execution attacks on Intel CPUs.

The updates need to be installed specifically for the Windows OS version you're rocking, and on systems with CPUs affected by the vulnerabilities and covered by this microcode update release. These include Intel's Denverton (Atom C3000 series); Sandy Bridge, Sandy Bridge E and EP (2000 and 3000 series), Valleyview (Atom Z3000 series) and Whiskey Lake U CPUs (8000U series, 5000U series, and 4200U series). These updates must be installed manually by users.

GIGABYTE Lists AMD B550 and Intel Z490 Motherboards

Thanks to the findings of VideoCardz, we have information that GIGABYTE has listed its upcoming motherboards for AMD and Intel platforms. Starting with AMD's upcoming mid-range chipset, the B550 model is supposed to bring PCIe 4.0 connectivity options to lower-priced motherboard variants. So far, only high-end chipset versions like X570 had PCIe 4.0 support, while the mid-range option was lacking. GIGABYTE has prepared a total of six B550 AORUS models, along with a GAMING series which is supposed to be a tier below AORUS models. The B550 chipset will span all motherboard sizes, including ATX, Micro-ATX, and Mini-ITX.

In the EEC listing, GIGABYTE also submitted Intel's upcoming Z490 motherboards for Comet Lake-S CPUs. In the listing, we see a total of 15 motherboards listed with an unusable entry. Again the W480 chipset appears, which is meant to power workstation motherboards. This chipset will go inside a new motherboard lineup called the "VISION" series. While we don't know what this new series brings, we know that both the workstation enabled W480 chipset and regular Z490 chipset will be a part of it.

ASRock Lists Z490 and H470 Motherboards in its Polychrome Sync Software

According to VideoCardz, ASRock has already listed Intel's upcoming lineup of motherboards in its Polychrome Sync software for controlling the RGB lighting of your motherboard. In the installed program files, ASRock displays several of the models that are a part of Intel's upcoming LGA1200-based Comet Lake-S 10th generation of CPUs. There are a total of nine Z490 motherboards and they are ASRock Z490 AQUA, Phantom Gaming 4, Phantom Gaming 4 SR, Phantom Gaming 6, Pro4, Steel Legend, Taichi, Z490M ITX AC, and Z490M Pro4.

When it comes to the cheaper, non-overclockable H470 chipset, there are two motherboards listed - H470 Steel Legend and H470M ITX AC. Additionally, perhaps one of the most interesting finds is the appearance of W480 chipset meant for workstation solutions. The motherboard using the new chipset is a model named W480 Creator, which should be a new addition to the consumer motherboard lineup.

Intel Core i5-L16G7 is the first "Lakefield" SKU Appearance, Possible Prelude to New Nomenclature?

Intel Core i5-L16G7 is the first commercial SKU that implements Intel's "Lakefield" heterogenous x86 processor architecture. This 5-core chip features one high-performance "Sunny Cove" CPU core, and four smaller "Tremont" low-power cores, with an intelligent scheduler balancing workloads between the two core types. This is essentially similar to ARM big.LITTLE. The idea being that the device idles most of the time, when lower-powered CPU cores can hold the fort; performance cores kick in only when really needed, until which time they remain power-gated. Thai PC enthusiast TUM_APISAK discovered the first public appearance of the i5-L16G7 in an unreleased Samsung device that has the Userbenchmark device ID string "SAMSUNG_NP_767XCL."

Clock speeds of the processor are listed as "1.40 GHz base, with 1.75 GHz turbo," but it's possible that the two core types have different clock-speed bands, just like the cores on big.LITTLE SoCs. Other key components of "Lakefield" include an iGPU based on the Gen11 graphics architecture, and an LPDDR4X memory controller. "Lakefield" implements Foveros packaging, in which high-density component dies based on newer silicon fabrication nodes are integrated with silicon interposers based on older fabrication processes, which facilitate microscopic high-density wiring between the dies. In case of "Lakefield," the Foveros package features a 10 nm "compute field" die sitting atop a 22 nm "base field" interposer.

Blizzard Releases Warcraft III: Reforged System Requirements

Blizzard today released the system requirements for their remastered version of Warcraft III, Warcraft III: Reforged. The new game sees the inclusion of the original Reign of Chaos campaign and its expansion, the Frozen Throne, amounting to 60 campaign missions. Reworked graphics, four-hours of updated in-game cutscenes and re-recorded voice-overs are paired with rebalanced online play and the addition of social and matchmaking capabilities.

Requirements-wise, it's a light game on its minimum settings for sure: Blizzard says gamers will need an Intel Core i3-530 or AMD Athlon Phenom II X4 910. A mere 4 GB of system RAM and an NVIDIA GeForce GTS 450 or AMD Radeon HD 5750 will be required to power the games' visuals. If you aren't looking for the minimum specs but how good of an experience you'll have, the Recommended specs up the ante: an Intel Core i5-6400 or AMD Ryzen 7 1700X or better are being called for, paired with 8 GB of RAM and an NVIDIA GeForce GTX 960 or AMD Radeon R9 280X.

CacheOut is the Latest Speculative Execution Attack for Intel Processors

Another day, another speculative execution vulnerability found inside Intel processors. This time we are getting a new vulnerability called "CacheOut", named after the exploitation's ability to leak data stored inside CPU's cache memory. Dubbed CVE-2020-0549: "L1D Eviction Sampling (L1Des) Leakage" in the CVE identifier system, it is rated with a CVSS score of 6.5. Despite Intel patching a lot of similar exploits present on their CPUs, the CacheOut attack still managed to happen.

The CacheOut steals the data from the CPU's L1 cache, and it is doing it selectively. Instead of waiting for the data to become available, the exploit can choose which data it wants to leak. The "benefit" of this exploit is that it can violate almost every hardware-based security domain meaning that the kernel, co-resident VMs, and SGX (Software Guard Extensions) enclaves are in trouble. To mitigate this issue, Intel provided a microcode update to address the shortcomings of the architecture and they recommended possible mitigations to all OS providers, so you will be protected once your OS maker releases a new update. For a full list of processors affected, you can see this list. Additionally, it is worth pointing out that AMD CPUs are not affected by this exploit.
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