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Supermicro Launches 4-Socket Server for 3rd Gen Xeon Scalable

Super Micro Computer, Inc., a global leader in enterprise computing, storage, networking solutions and green computing technology, today launched a new high-performance X12 generation 4-socket SuperServer optimized for the new 3rd Gen Intel Xeon Scalable Processors (codenamed Cooper Lake) and Intel Optane Persistent Memory 200 series (codenamed Barlow Pass), which were both officially launched by Intel today. The tremendous growth in applications and use cases that require real-time analysis and manipulation of big data has helped Supermicro's 4-socket server family to be one of the fastest-growing product lines in recent times.

"As Supermicro's first X12 generation system, this new 4-socket server is our most robust enterprise-class platform featuring the most powerful Intel Xeon Scalable Processors, Intel Optane Persistent Memory, and a new silicon based Root-of-Trust implementation for enhanced security," said Charles Liang, CEO and president of Supermicro. "This new SuperServer provides a powerful and trusted foundation for your most secure and mission critical workloads in enterprise, cloud-scale, or hybrid environments."

GIGABYTE Launches R292 Servers Supporting 4-way 3rd Gen Intel Xeon Scalable Processors

GIGABYTE, an industry leader in high-performance servers and workstations, today announced the launch of the GIGABYTE R292 servers featuring four 3rd Gen Intel Xeon Scalable processors, supporting four double-slot accelerators in the R292-4S0, and eight full-height half-length expansion cards in the R292-4S1.

The R292 series server supports four 3rd Gen Intel Xeon Scalable processors. Each processor can perform data transfer or share workload at 20.8GT/s with the other three processors on the motherboard. Its breakthrough computing power can be used to power mission-critical application at scale and analyze growing data at extraordinary speeds.

Intel Announces "Copper Lake" 4P-8P Xeons, New Optane Memory, PCIe 4.0 SSDs, and FPGAs for AI

Intel today introduced its 3rd Gen Intel Xeon Scalable processors and additions to its hardware and software AI portfolio, enabling customers to accelerate the development and use of AI and analytics workloads running in data center, network and intelligent-edge environments. As the industry's first mainstream server processor with built-in bfloat16 support, Intel's new 3rd Gen Xeon Scalable processors makes artificial intelligence (AI) inference and training more widely deployable on general-purpose CPUs for applications that include image classification, recommendation engines, speech recognition and language modeling.

"The ability to rapidly deploy AI and data analytics is essential for today's businesses. We remain committed to enhancing built-in AI acceleration and software optimizations within the processor that powers the world's data center and edge solutions, as well as delivering an unmatched silicon foundation to unleash insight from data," said Lisa Spelman, Intel corporate vice president and general manager, Xeon and Memory Group.

Chenbro Announces RB14604 - Affordable Level 6 1U Rackmount Server Barebone for Xeon E

Chenbro has launched the RB14604, a 1U server barebone with integrated Intel Server Board M10JNP2SB for Intel Xeon E processors. The RB14604 is an easy-to-use barebones server solution, pre-integrating a server-grade microATX motherboard to ensure a reliable, cost-effective, ready-to-go solution for applications such as web hosting, content delivery, storage applications, and entry-level Cloud services.

The Level 6 server barebone system is pre-tested to ensure compatibility and long-term reliability with the pre-installed Intel M10JNP2SB Server Board. The barebones design includes a high-quality 400 W 80 Plus Gold level PSU with MTBF 100K+ Hours, optimized cable routing, 4X dedicated cooling fans, and air ducts to ensure reliable cooling up to 95 W Intel Xeon E processors.

ASRock Intros W480 Creator Motherboard

ASRock introduced the W480 Creator premium motherboard for creators, which supports 10th Gen Core and Xeon W-1200 series processors in the LGA1200 package, based on the "Comet Lake" microarchitecture. Built in the ATX form-factor, the board draws power from a 24-pin ATX and two 8-pin EPS power connectors, conditioning it for the CPU with a 16-phase VRM cooled by large aluminium fan-heatsinks. The LGA1200 socket is wired to four reinforced DDR4 DIMM slots supporting up to 128 GB of dual-channel DDR4-4800 (OC) memory, including ECC unbuffered DIMM support when paired with Xeon W-1200 processors; and two PCI-Express 3.0 x16 slots (x8/x8 with both populated, else x16). These slots are gen 4.0 capable with future processors that offer PCIe gen 4.0 support. Storage connectivity includes three M.2 NVMe slots with PCIe gen 3.0 x4 wiring, each; and six SATA 6 Gbps ports.

Much of this board's serious "creator" USP begins with its connectivity. It offers two Thunderbolt 40 Gbps ports via type-C connectors, each with its own mini-DisplayPort 1.4 passthrough input that you connect to your graphics card. Networking connectivity includes a 10 GbE wired network connection powered by an AQuantia AQC107 controller; a second 2.5 GbE connection driven by Intel i225-LM controller, and an 802.11ax WLAN connection by an Intel AX201 adapter that also provides Bluetooth 5. The onboard audio solution packs some serious hardware, with an ESS Sabre 9218 DAC handling the front-panel headphones out (130 dBA SNR), a Realtek ALC1220 HDA codec handling the other channels (120 dBA SNR), WIMA capacitors for the front outputs, and the right and left audio channel wiring being routed through distant PCB layers to minimize crosstalk. The company didn't reveal pricing.

No Intel "Rocket Lake-S" or "Ice Lake-X" This Year?

A roadmap slide from an Intel Partner Connect presentation suggests that the company's client-segment processor lineup will be unchanged for the rest of 2020, with the company briskly launching its 10th generation "Comet Lake-S" desktop processor lineup through May-June, and "Comet Lake-H" a month prior. The Core X "Cascade Lake-X" processor lineup will continue to lead the company in the high core-count HEDT segment, with no indications of new models, at least none higher than 18 cores.

More importantly, this slide dulls expectations of the company refreshing its desktop process segment just before Holiday 2020 with the 11th generation "Rocket Lake-S" silicon that has next-gen "Willow Cove" CPU cores, Gen12 Xe integrated graphics, and PCIe gen 4.0 connectivity, especially with engineering samples of the chips already hitting the radar. Intel is expected to launch 10 nm "Ice Lake-SP" Xeon enterprise processors in 2020, and there was hope for some of this IP to power Intel's next HEDT platform, the fabled "Ice Lake-X," especially with AMD's "Castle Peak" 3rd gen Threadrippers dominating this segment. While there's little doubt that the slide may have originated from Intel, its context must be studied. Partner Connect is a platform for Intel to interact with its channel partners (distributors, retailers, system integrators, etc), and information about future products is far more restricted on these slides, than presentations intended for large OEMs, motherboard manufacturers, etc. Then again, with the COVID-19 pandemic throwing supply chains off rails, it wouldn't surprise us if this slide spells Gospel.

ASUSTOR Announces Lockerstor 10 Pro NAS with ECC Memory and Xeon Processor

ASUSTOR today has officially announced the release of the ten bay Lockerstor 10 Pro sporting a 9th generation Intel Xeon Quad-Core processor. The Xeon E-2224 runs at 3.40 GHz and turbos to 4.60 GHz, making everything faster than ever, especially transfer speeds, virtual machines and Docker apps. The Lockerstor 10 Pro comes with eight Gigabytes of DDR4-2666 ECC memory and supports up to thirty-two Gigabytes of RAM. The ECC RAM included with the NAS corrects memory errors in real-time and helps avoid data loss caused by memory corruption, keeping critical data safe.

In terms of transmission speed, the Lockerstor 10 Pro provides a single 10-Gigabit Ethernet connection as well as triple 2.5-Gigabit Ethernet ports. With the all-new Intel Xeon processor, Link Aggregation on the 2.5-Gigabit ports, up to 7.5 Gbps of bandwidth can be achieved while the 10-Gigabit port brings the full 1.25 GB/s speeds. The Lockerstor 10 Pro also features dual M.2 SSD slots, which support a variety of m.2 form factors and thumbscrews for easy installation. With NVMe SSD caching, the performance of traditional HDD hard drives is quickly upgraded to SSD levels, bringing the best of both storage and speed. The Lockerstor 10 Pro also features USB 3.2 Gen2 which provides up to 10 Gbps of speed and supports up to 192 TB of extra capacity using the AS6004U for a total of 160+192 TB.

Possible Intel "Ice Lake-SP" 24-core Xeon Processor Surfaces on Geekbench Database

Intel plans to update its Xeon Scalable server processor family this year with the new "Ice Lake-SP" microarchitecture. Built on the 10 nm+ silicon fabrication process, "Ice Lake-SP" is a high- thru extreme core-count monolithic silicon that features "Sunny Cove" CPU cores that introduce the first real IPC increases over "Skylake." A 24-core/48-thread processor likely based on this silicon surfaced on the Geekbench database, where it posted some impressive numbers given its low clock speeds.

The processor comes with an identification string "GenuineIntel Family 6 Model 106 Stepping 4," with a nominal clock speed of 2.20 GHz, and boost frequency of 2.90 GHz, which points to the possibility of this being an engineering sample. Besides clock speeds and core counts, some basic hardware specs were detected by Geekbench 4. For starters, the processor has an L1D cache size of 48 KB and L1I cache size of 32 KB, which is similar to the client-segment "Ice Lake-U" silicon based Core i7-1065G7, and confirms that this processor uses "Sunny Cove" cores. "Cascade Lake" and "Skylake" cores use 32 KB L1D caches. Also, the dedicated L2 cache per core is 1.25 MB, up from the 1 MB L2 caches on "Cascade Lake." Client-segment "Ice Lake" chips use 512 KB L2 caches. The shared L3 cache is 36 MB (or 1.5 MB slice per core), which loosely aligns with the cache balance of Intel's server and HEDT processors. In this bench run, the processor is backed by 256 GB of memory, of an unknown type or configuration. In the three bench runs, the setup scores roughly 4100 points single-core, and roughly 42000 points multi-core.

Intel Reassures Investors of its Server Processor Roadmap: Ice Lake-SP in 2020, Sapphire Rapids in 2021

Intel's Investor Relations head Trey Campbell, in a "fire-side chat" with top investors at the Cowen Virtual Technology Media and Telecom Conference, reaffirmed Intel's commitment to its server processor roadmap. Intel is on course to introducing its 10 nm Xeon "Ice Lake-SP" enterprise processor family by the end of 2020, and "Sapphire Rapids" sometime within 2021.

"Ice Lake-SP" processor will introduce the new "Whitley" platform, with a new 4,189-pin LGA socket, which leverages PCI-Express gen 4.0. While retaining the DDR4 memory standard, the memory interface has been broadened to 8-channel, and reference memory clock speeds are expected to be increased to DDR4-3200. The company's "Sapphire Rapids" processor is expected to shake up the market, as it introduces next-generation I/O, when it launches alongside the "Eagle Stream" platform in 2021. The processor will be built on the refined 10 nm+ silicon fabrication node, feature "Willow Cove" CPU cores, and I/O feature set that sees the introduction of DDR5 memory standard, and PCI-Express gen 5.0.

Dell Announces New Generation Latitude, OptiPlex, and Precision Commercial Notebooks, Desktops, and Services

Dell Technologies unveiled the world's most intelligent and secure business PCs across its award-winning Latitude, Precision and OptiPlex portfolios to make work more efficient and safe - no matter the location. As the industry's most sustainable commercial PC portfolio, the new devices further advance Dell's commitment to sustainability with recycled materials, sustainable packaging, energy efficient designs and EPEAT Gold registrations.

Professionals can work smarter with Dell Optimizer, the automated Artificial Intelligence (AI)-based optimization technology, now available across Latitude, Precision and OptiPlex devices. The built-in software learns how each person works and adapts to their behavior to help them focus on the tasks that matter most. It works behind the scenes to improve overall application performance; enable faster log-in and secure lock outs; eliminate echoes and reduce background noise on conference calls; and extend battery run time.

ASRock Rack's Compact Workstation with Intel Xeon W-1200 Processors and W480 Chipset Motherboard

ASRock Rack, - the HPC and Workstation leading manufacturer ASRock Rack announces its new mATX workstation motherboard; the W480D4U, which supports the latest 10th Gen Intel Core and Intel Xeon W-1200 Series processors with single socket LGA1200. And the W480D4U is optimized with best compatibility and reliability by supporting the dual channel ECC-UDIMMs.

The W480D4U could be ideal candidate for light loading workstation solution by its small form factor. This compact motherboard provides 4x DDR4 ECC-UDIMMs, as well as two M.2 with PCIe3.0 x4 interface supporting Intel Optane Memory Module and Intel Rapid Storage Technology (Intel RST) in micro-ATX form factor. While having the HDMI supported by Intel CPU integrated Intel UHD Graphics, USB3.2 Gen2 and 8x SATA 6 Gb/s connections, W480D4U will also be the best choice as the light creation workstation for SOHO design studio and freelancers. Moreover, with the BMC AST2500 for IPMI remote management, W480D4U will be your new choice for entry level server solution.

Hot Chips 2020 Program Announced

Today the Hot Chips program committee officially announced the August conference line-up, posted to hotchips.org. For this first-ever live-streamed Hot Chips Symposium, the program is better than ever!

In a session on deep learning training for data centers, we have a mix of talks from the internet giant Google showcasing their TPUv2 and TPUv3, and a talk from startup Cerebras on their 2nd gen wafer-scale AI solution, as well as ETH Zurich's 4096-core RISC-V based AI chip. And in deep learning inference, we have talks from several of China's biggest AI infrastructure companies: Baidu, Alibaba, and SenseTime. We also have some new startups that will showcase their interesting solutions—LightMatter talking about its optical computing solution, and TensTorrent giving a first-look at its new architecture for AI.
Hot Chips

ASUS Announces the W480 Workstation Series

ASUS today announced the W480 series workstation motherboard and workstation system designed to showcase the full potential of the latest Intel Xeon W-1200 processors. The ASUS W480 workstation series is the ideal choice for small-to-medium businesses and content creators seeking workstations delivering essential performance along with professional-grade reliability and security at a budget friendly price.

Teamed up with the latest Intel Xeon W-1200 processors featuring up to 10 cores, 20 threads, 5.3 GHz clock speeds, and 125 W and 128 GB DDR4-2933 ECC memory support, the ASUS W480 workstation series is purpose-built for 2D/3D CAD applications. The ASUS W480 workstation series also supports ASUS Control Center Express and ASUS Control Center, two versions of enterprise-grade IT monitoring and management software that simplify IT operations and improve productivity with comprehensive control and intuitive functionality.

Intel Announces Xeon W-1200 Processor Line, Comet Lake Wears a Suit

Intel today announced the Xeon W-1200 line of socket LGA1200 processors aimed at enterprises, workstations, and small-scale server builds. These processors are based on the 14 nm "Comet Lake-W" microarchitecture, and are differentiated from the 10th generation Core "Comet Lake-S" processor family in featuring ECC memory support, vPro support on select SKUs, and the UHD P630 integrated graphics solution. These processors will be supported on motherboards based on the Intel W480, W470, and possibly Q470 chipsets. The processors also introduce Turbo Boost Max 3.0 to this segment with select GPUs. Thermal Velocity Boost is available on only the top SKU.

The lineup is led by the 10-core/20-thread Xeon W-1290P, clocked at 3.70 GHz, with 5.20 GHz max boost frequency, and 20 MB of L3 cache. This SKU also features 5.30 GHz TVB and 4.90 GHz all-core TVB. This is followed closely by the Xeon W-1270P, an 8-core/16-thread part with 3.80 GHz nominal and 5.10 GHz boost frequency, and 16 MB of L3 cache. The W-1250P 6-core/12-thread chip is next in line, with its 4.10 GHz nominal, 4.50 GHz boost, and 12 MB L3 cache. All P-extension SKUs feature generally high clock speeds, and 125 W TDP. Positioned right below these are the non-P SKUs, with their 80 W TDP, and lower clock-speeds.

Intel Core i9-10885H is an i9-10980HK that Trades OC Capability for vPro

Intel is reportedly giving finishing touches to a new performance-segment notebook processor positioned between the Core i7-10875H and the flagship Core i9-10980HK, called the Core i9-10885H. Based on the "Comet Lake-H" silicon, this 8-core/16-thread processor has identical clock speeds to the i9-10980HK, but lacks overclocking capabilities. With its default 45 W TDP configured, the processor ticks at 2.40 GHz nominal, with up to 5.30 GHz boost - a 200 MHz speed-bump over the i7-10875H.

Apparently, the chip also features vPro capability, making it fit for commercial-segment notebooks such as the Dell Latitude and Lenovo ThinkPad T-series. Among the other Intel mobile processors with vPro capability are the new Xeon W-10855M 6-core/12-thread and W-10885M 8-core/16-thread processors; and the 15 W category i7-10810U 6-core/12-thread; and i7-10610U i5-10310U 4-core/8-thread processors. These processors are likely to formally launch on May 13.

Tachyum Achieves 90 Percent of Silicon Laid for its Prodigy Universal Processor

Semiconductor startup Tachyum Inc. announced today that it has achieved, on schedule, a major milestone in the detailed physical design of its Prodigy Universal Processor. Tachyum now has a complete chip layout, with a verified detailed physical design of more than 90 percent of the design silicon area.

Tachyum's Prodigy is the world's first Universal Processor, combining general-purpose processors, high-performance computing (HPC), artificial intelligence (AI), deep machine learning (ML), explainable AI, bio AI and other AI disciplines within a single chip. This latest milestone achieved integration of key, high-quality Tachyum IP within a multiprocessor environment, and with DDR4/DDR5 DRAM controllers, PCIE 5.0, 112Gb SERDES, USB, GPIO, PLLs and various I/Os. Results of the layout indicate that Prodigy's die size is within product design goals with top-level clocking results that are better than expected.

Cincoze Unveils GM-1000 Rugged Compact GPU Computer

Cincoze, a professional manufacturer of embedded systems, unveils the GM-1000 rugged GPU computer, which is powered by the 9th/8th generation Intel CPU and supports one MXM GPU module expansion. This GPU computer provides high-performance computing capability with a small footprint design, which is suitable for applications like edge computing, machine vision, image processing, and artificial intelligence.

GM-1000 can be configured with a range of 9th/8th generation Intel CPUs, including Xeon and Core i up to 8 cores. It supports dual channel DDR4 2666 MHz SO-DIMM up to 64 GB. It has abundant I/Os, including 4x COM, 2x GbE LAN, 8x USB, 1x HDMI, and 1x DVI-I. GM-1000 comes with an M.2 M key slot to support NVMe SSD, and M.2 E key slot to support CNVi for WiFi or Bluetooth connection which are commonly required in high speed data storage and communication. All these functions are integrated in a small footprint just 260 mm x 200 mm x 85 mm, making it easily installed in space-limited environments.

TYAN Launches AI-Optimized Server Platforms Powered by NVIDIA V100S Tensor Core GPUs

TYAN, an industry-leading server platform design manufacturer and a subsidiary of MiTAC Computing Technology Corporation, has launched the latest GPU server platforms that support the NVIDIA V100S Tensor Core and NVIDIA T4 GPUs for a wide variety of compute-intensive workloads including AI training, inference, and supercomputing applications. "An increase in the use of AI is infusing into data centers. More organizations plan to invest in AI infrastructure that supports the rapid business innovation," said Danny Hsu, Vice President of MiTAC Computing Technology Corporation's TYAN Business Unit. "TYAN'sGPU server platforms with NVIDIA V100S GPUs as the compute building block enables enterprise to power their AI infrastructure deployment and helps to solve the most computationally-intensive problems."

TYAN's new Thunder HX FT83-B7119 features high density local storage within a 4U 10GPU server platform. The system is based on dual-socket 2nd Gen Intel Xeon Scalable Processors, supporting up to 10 NVIDIA V100S or 20 T4 GPUs with 12 hot-swap 3.5" drive bays. The system provides a spare PCIe x16 slot in addition to the 10 double-wide PCIe x16 ones, and it supports high speed networking such as 100 Gigabit EDR InfiniBand or Ethernet. The chassis features tool-less drive trays for added ease of service.

Intel Bringing the Xeon W Brand to LGA1200 Socket?

Intel is bringing its Xeon W brand extension of processors meant for workstations, to the LGA1200 socket. The Xeon W brand were typically associated with enterprise variants of HEDT platforms, with those of mainstream desktop sockets reserved for the Xeon E brand. At least 7 SKUs are in the works, beginning with the Xeon W-1290P, W-1290, and W-1290T, which are 10-core/20-thread parts based on the "Comet Lake" silicon, with TDP ratings of 125 W, 65 W, and 35 W, respectively; and nominal clock speeds of 3.70 GHz, 3.20 GHz, and 1.90 GHz, respectively.

The Xeon W-1270P and W-1270 are 8-core/16-thread parts, likely with 125 W, and 65 W TDP ratings, respectively, and clock speeds of 3.80 GHz and 3.40 GHz, respectively. Lastly, there are the 6-core/12-thread Xeon W-1260P and W-1260, clocked at 4.10 GHz and 3.60 GHz, respectively. It's likely that the processors are either compatible with the W480/W480E chipsets, or have a C-series enterprise chipset with a similar feature-set to it. The W-1290P is priced at $620.62, the W-1290 at $568.91, the W-1290T at $568.80; the W-1270P at $492.57, the W-1270 at $416.21; the W-1260P at $358.41, and the W-1260 at $293.12. All prices are per-unit in 1,000-unit tray quantities.

Intel Xeon vPro and Core E "Comet Lake" Lineup Surfaces

Remember DFI? Those guys are into industrial PCs and embedded systems these days, and put out data sheets of upcoming products implementing the new Intel W480 chipset. A possible step-up from Intel Qx70 series chipset family, the W480 is positioned between the Q470 and Z490, and enables certain quasi-workstation features relevant to client desktops in very big organizations. The chipset enables vPro, and certain other features that helps with remote management.

The DFI specs, without taking model numbers, names several kinds of upcoming Xeon vPro and 10th generation Core E-SKUs. Among these are Xeon vPro processors in core-counts of 10, 8, and 6; and TDP levels of 80 W, and 35 W. It's not known if the 10th gen Xeon vPro succeed the workstation-segment Xeon E-series, which typically don't work on client-segment chipsets. We also see an assortment of Core i9, Core i7, Core i5, Core i3, Pentium and Celeron processors with the "E" brand extension, across a variety of TDP options. Unless we're horribly mistaken, the "E" brand extension could denote ECC memory support, at least in the case of the W480E and Q470E chipset variants.

Intel Provides Trusted Foundation for Azure Confidential Computing

Today, Microsoft Azure DCsv2-Series featuring a hardware-based trusted execution environment (TEE) built on Intel Software Guard Extensions (Intel SGX) was released for general availability. Built on Intel's trusted foundation, the Azure DCsv2-Series makes confidential computing broadly available to enterprise customers who want to leverage cloud computing while helping to keep sensitive workloads protected.

"Customers demand the capability to reduce the attack surface and help protect sensitive data in the cloud by encrypting data in use. Our collaboration with Microsoft brings enterprise-ready confidential computing solutions to market and enables customers to take greater advantage of the benefits of cloud and multiparty compute paradigms using Intel SGX technology," said Anil Rao, Intel vice president, Data Center Security and Systems Architecture.

Intel Reports First-Quarter 2020 Financial Results

Intel Corporation today reported first-quarter 2020 financial results. "Our first-quarter performance is a testament to our team's focus on safeguarding employees, supporting our supply chain partners and delivering for our customers during this unprecedented challenge," said Bob Swan, Intel CEO."The role technology plays in the world is more essential now than it has ever been, and our opportunity to enrich lives and enable our customers' success has never been more vital. Guided by our cultural values, competitive advantages and financial strength, I am confident we will emerge from this situation an even stronger company."

In the first quarter, Intel achieved 34 percent data-centric revenue growth and 14 percent PC-centric revenue growth YoY. The company maintained essential factory operations with greater than 90 percent on-time delivery while supporting employees, customers and communities in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. This includes a new Intel Pandemic Response Technology Initiative to combat the virus where we can uniquely make a difference with Intel technology, expertise, and resources.

HP Unveils new ZBook Studio and ZBook Create Notebooks

Today, HP Inc. unveiled its newest Z by HP mobile workstation and HP ENVY portfolio - designed for creators who push the envelope of what's possible. The HP ZBook Studio, HP ZBook Create, and the HP ENVY 15 are the latest additions to the HP Create Ecosystem, which launched at Adobe MAX in 2019.

The powerful line-up enables all levels of creators, including consumers, prosumers and professionals, to capture, create, and bring to life digital concepts and ideas that can be shared, enjoyed, and experienced. In the past, creators had to choose between heavy workstations or bulky gaming devices to get the power they require for work and play. Today, HP is pushing the boundaries of engineering and creative productivity by allowing photographers, vloggers, graphic designers, architects, film makers, and everyone in between, to achieve what was never thought possible.

Intel 10nm Product Lineup for 2020 Revealed: Alder Lake and Ice Lake Xeons

A leaked Intel internal slide surfaced on Chinese social networks, revealing five new products the company will build on its 10 nm silicon fabrication process. These include the "Alder Lake" heterogenous desktop processor, "Tiger Lake" mobile processor, "Ice Lake" based Xeon Scalable enterprise processors, DG1 discrete GPU, and "Snow Ridge" 5G base-station SoC. Some, if not all of these products, will implement Intel's new 10 nm+ silicon fabrication node that is expected to go live within 2020.

"Alder Lake" is a desktop processor that implements Intel's new heterogenous x86 core design that's making its debut with "Lakefield." The chip features up to 8 larger "Willow Cove" or "Golden Cove" CPU cores, and up to 8 smaller "Tremont" or "Gracemont" cores. This 8-big/8-small combo lets the chip achieve TDP targets around 80 Watts. Next up is "Tiger Lake," Intel's next-generation mobile processor family succeeding "Ice Lake." This microarchitecture implements "Willow Cove" CPU cores in a homogeneous setup, alongside Xe architecture based integrated graphics. "Ice Lake-SP" is Intel's next enterprise architecture that places mature "Sunny Cove" CPU cores in extreme core-count dies. Lastly, there's "Snow Ridge," an SoC purpose built for 5G base-stations. Image quality notwithstanding, these slides don't appear particularly new, and it's likely that COVID-19 has destabilized the roadmap. For instance, "Alder Lake," and "Ice Lake-SP" are expected to be 10 nm++ chips, a node that doesn't go live before 2021.

x86 Lacks Innovation, Arm is Catching up. Enough to Replace the Giant?

Intel's x86 processor architecture has been the dominant CPU instruction set for many decades, since IBM decided to put the Intel 8086 microprocessor into its first Personal Computer. Later, in 2006, Apple decided to replace their PowerPC based processors in Macintosh computers with Intel chips, too. This was the time when x86 became the only option for the masses to use and develop all their software on. While mobile phones and embedded devices are mostly Arm today, it is clear that x86 is still the dominant ISA (Instruction Set Architecture) for desktop computers today, with both Intel and AMD producing processors for it. Those processors are going inside millions of PCs that are used every day. Today I would like to share my thoughts on the demise of the x86 platform and how it might vanish in favor of the RISC-based Arm architecture.

Both AMD and Intel as producer, and millions of companies as consumer, have invested heavily in the x86 architecture, so why would x86 ever go extinct if "it just works"? The answer is that it doesn't just work.
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