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Intel-Logo
Hardware

Just yesterday we released a hint found in IDF14 slides that Skylake will feature Dual-IMC tech and while that is unconfirmed, it seems that Intel is pursuing a ‘Universal DIMM’ slot design for notebooks that will be able to accommodate both DDR3 and DDR4 Memory. Universal compatibility like this is always an appreciable gesture and helps the Industry grow at its own pace, rather than forcing it to jump.Intel Skylake Microarchitecture 2H 2015

Intel’s Universal DIMM Initiative in Notebooks Will Make DDR3 and DDR4 Compatible in the Same Slot

So far DDR4 support exists only within the Haswell-E, HEDT platform. However, with this new UniDIMM memory standard, users of the mobile platform will be able to enjoy both DDR3 and DDR4 Memory on the same slot. Prominent AIBs such as Kingston, Micron and many more are fully supporting this initiative. The specs of the standard are as follows:

  • 160 Pin SO-DIMM Memory Interface
  • 69.6 x 30mm AND 69.6 x 20mm

This upgrade to the current SO-DIMM standard will make the notebook market more user friendly and also help drive the sector that most Investor’s care about. Interestingly we have seen motherboards in the past which supported both DDR2 and DDR3 but that was by utilizing multiple RAM slots. The UniDIMM standard will only have one slot for both generations. Currently DDR4 is very expensive but as time passes it will grow cheaper, infact there will come a time when DDR4 is actually cheaper than DDR3!

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Hardware

[Not Confirmed] An interesting point raised by the Italian publication Bitsandchips.it, stated that Intel has tucked away a very big hint pertaining to memory support in its IDF14 slide deck. Upon closer inspection the hint is about DDR3 and DDR4 support at the same time probably utilizing a Dual-IMC design . The market is now moving toward DDR4 but its prices remain quite high, so it might be possible that Intel will introduce the above-mentioned tech to hasten the transition. Intel Broadwell and Skylake Platform

Dual-IMC with DDR3 and DDR4 Support Could Grace Skylake Processors – Hints IDF14 Slides

As we told you a long time ago and as Intel later confirmed in IDF14, Skylake-S is coming in 2H 2015, most probably July. These will be quad cores and will come in i5 and i7 variants with 4 and 8 threads respectively. Skylake will of course also arrive on mobile platforms and 2-in 1 devices before the desktop release. If you notice the slide deck below, specifically the one on the right, you will notice that Intel mentions “DDR3 and DDR4″ in the “future” section of the Mainstream segment. Now Intel has noted down Haswell Micro-architecture, so its near future is Broadwell and Skylake-S.

Intel-Logo
Hardware

A few days ago I wrote about a leak which stated that Skylake-S will have DX12 support. However, we were not sure whether it was just DX12 API that was supported or the full hardware level feature set. As it turns out, it is the latter as Intel has officially confirmed the same in its IDF 14 keynote. This would also make the upcoming Intel processors the first chips to have confirmed full DX12 support. Intel Broadwell and Skylake Platform

DirectX 12 Hardware-Level Feature Set Will be Supported by Intel Skylake Processors

DX12 needs no introduction, thanks to social media and online publications it is one of the most eagerly anticipated APIs after Mantle. However, even though we have seen demos, tech charts and more, we have yet to see a hardware chip that supports the ‘Feature Level 12_0′ set. Many thought that the upcoming GPUs from Nvidia and Maxwell would be the first to do so, but we still have a few days to go before release and Intel has already swooped in and taken this particular honor.

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Hardware

Intel announced their next generation 14nm Skylake microarchitecture at the IDF14 conference being held in San Francisco. The Skylake microarchitecture will be a Tock in Intel’s Tick-Tock roadmap since its a totally new core architecture which will be based on the 14nm process that is going to be integrated on upcoming chips including desktop and mobility parts.Intel Skylake Processors

Intel Announces 14nm Skylake Microarchitecture at IDF14

Replacing Broadwell, the Skylake processors would be available in 2H 2015 which is just a few months away from the time Broadwell would actually be available on the high-end mobility side and desktop market. The first iteration of Skylake processors won’t replace the K-Series SKUs that Broadwell will introduce in Q2 2015 but based on a new architecture, Skylake would definitely bring further core performance improvements and enhanced power efficiency. The most notable thing about Skylake was that Intel actually had actual desktop chips at IDF14 which were demoed using 3DMark Icestorm on a desktop PC and laptop too. We are over at IDF covering the event and you can check out the videos at the end of this article.

Coming back to Skylake details, this isn’t the first time we have been told that Skylake is launching in 2H 2015. We have details from a few months ago which already confirmed this and now Intel just made it official with their own announcement.

Intel Xeon E5-2600 V3 Processor  Front
Hardware

As suspected, Intel has finally unleashed their next generation Xeon E5-2600 V3 processors codenamed Haswell-EP at the IDF 2014 event being held in San Francisco. The Xeon E5-2600 V3 lineup is going to be aimed at the HPC server and workstation market featuring 23 E5-2600 V3 SKUs including the flagship Xeon E5-2699 V3 which boasts 18 Cores, 36 threads, 45 MB of L3 cache and a high price of $4115 US.Xeon E5-2600 V3 die close

Intel Xeon E5-2600 V3 “Haswell-EP” Workstation and Server Processors Unleashed

Today, Intel finally takes the lid off of their Haswell-EP lineup (Xeon E5-2600 V3) which replaces Ivy Bridge-EP (Xeon E5-2600 V2) from last year. Built on the latest Haswell microarchitecture, the Haswell-EP lineup ushers into a new era of high-performance computing on the server and workstation side with specifications and core performance improvements which are just amazing.

Starting off with the architectural details, the Intel Haswell-EP Xeon E5-2600 V3 is configured into several die variants which include HCC (High Core Count), MCC (Medium Core Count) and LCC (Low Core Count models). The LCC variants range from 4-8 cores, configured on a 354mm2 die consisting of 2.6 Billion transistors. The MCC die has 10-12 cores, configured on a 492mm2 die consisting of 3.84 Billion transistors while the HCC die which is reserved for the flagship parts including the Xeon E5-2699 V3 ranges from 14-18 core variants and configured on a 662mm2 consisting of a mind boggling 5.69 Billion transistors. The previous Ivy Bridge-EX flagship had 4.31 Billion transistors configured on a 541mm2 so its easy to tell that the Haswell-EP takes die size and transistor count to a new level. The Xeon E7-2600 V3 “Haswell-EN” processors which are reserved for launch later might have even higher core configurations but their arrival is scheduled around Q4 2014 or Q1 2015.

Intel-Logo
Hardware

A few days back Intel confirmed that they will not be using Extreme Ultra Violet Scanners to produce 10nm dies, something that though expected, still managed to raise a few eyebrows. Most of Silicon Valley agreed that Intel does not need EUV to pass 10nm, but it had also agreed that Intel would have absolutely no trouble with 14nm and that doesn’t appear to be the case.

Original Forecast

Extreme Ultra Violet Scanners Will Not Be Needed for P1274 (10nm) – Intel

Intel has been acting very weird as of late, it has delayed its road map of 14nm processors and has been following Moore’s Law on a sheer technicality. Intel is now stating that the 10nm Processors that are queued for 2016 will not require EUV Scanners. “We know we can get through 10nm without EUV,” said Brian Krzanich, CEO of Intel at the Citi Global Technology Conference. Once again, the statement is not really surprising, its only when you put it in context with the Broadwell delay that eyebrow raise I mentioned earlier happens.

See, Intel really should not have had problems with 14nm, there just isn’t any conceivable reason for it. The delay could have been artificial in nature but we wont recognize that facet in this post because that isn’t an official stance. So the question is, how can Intel confidently predict 10nm in 2016 without EUV after the unforeseen hurdles they faced with Process 1272 (broadwell)? P1272 is arriving in 2015 by the skin of its teeth so how can P1274 a die shrink, arrive in 2016? With EUV it would have been child’s play to push 10nm out the door after the initial prototyping. Ofcourse, adapting EUV is no easy task and by Intel’s comments we will not be seeing it for 2 – 3 years at least, so theres that.

Broadwell_Die_Center_Persp_On_White_HR
Hardware

Intel has dedicated the last few months to the desktop market by launching two new platforms for the PC desktop community. In April, we saw the Haswell Refresh platform which was launched along side a flood of 9-Series chipset based motherboards. In July, Intel introduced their latest Devil’s Canyon processors and just last month, we saw the daddy Haswell platform codenamed Haswell-E which ushered a new era of enthusiasts level PCs with the latest Haswell-E processors, X99 motherboards and the first platform to support DDR4 memory on the consumer front.
Broadwell_Die_Diagonal_BW

Intel’s 14nm Core M Series “Broadwell-Y” Processors With 4.5W TDP Detailed

With the majority of Q2 and Q3 targeted towards the desktop market, Intel is now making a return on the ever growing mobility front. Intel is not going to release a new Haswell processor since they are done with that CPU architecture and Haswell-E is the last major platform release on the 22nm Haswell micro-architecture. Intel is now expanding to the mobility front with their latest 14nm process based Broadwell architecture with the first cores configured specifically for the mobility market which include 2 in 1s, notebooks and fanless devices. Meet the Intel Core M processor.

The Intel Core M name isn’t new and we got a glimpse of the processor a few weeks back when Intel gave the green light to publish some of the key architectural details regarding their new 14nm processor node. It’s very essential that we take a look at the architecture first before we get to talk about the Core M processor in detail. Intel’s focus with Haswell was to produce a highly scalable architecture which spans from tablets to desktops and even the HPC workstation market. They are keeping the same focus with Broadwell which will power a lot of devices and form factors. While PC is an established market, Intel will puts its core focus towards the growth markets which include notebooks, tablets and mobile smartphones. Intel has already a variety of Ultrabooks in the market and they recently entered the 2 in 1 form factor design which has got some attention but there are some specific rules and regulations which need to be followed. As a part of the standards which define an Ultra book, Intel wants to keep these devices power efficient, performance capable and feature days of battery life without getting hot.

Intel Core i7-5930K
Hardware

Today, Intel finally launches their HEDT (High-End Desktop) platform codenamed Haswell-E for PC enthusiasts. The Haswell-E platform marks the start of a new generation of the PC platform loaded with the latest X99 chip set based motherboards and the new DDR4 memory which will be the future standard for the upcoming CPU platforms. Included in the Haswell-E CPU family is the Core i7-5960X Extreme Edition processor which is Intel’s first 8 Core processor built for the consumer market.Intel Haswell-E Core i7

Intel Haswell-E Including Flagship Core i7-5960X Extreme Edition Processor Officially Launches

The Haswell-E platform is going to be the great platform for users who are gearing up for the next generation graphics cards and performance upgrades such as the NVIDIA Maxwell “GeForce 900 Series” and AMD’s GCN based Volcanic Islands family. The Haswell-E family includes three processors; the Core i7-5960X EE, Core i7-5930K and the Core i7-5820K. Before we get into the specifications regarding the X99 chipset and new DDR4 memory, let’s take a quick look at the specifications of Intel’s Haswell-E processors.

Intel Core i7-5960X Extreme Edition Processor

The Intel Core i7-5960X Extreme Edition processor is without a doubt the most impressive consumer CPU that Intel has released yet. This is also the first native 8-Core processor from Intel which features a total of 8 Cores and 16 threads. The processor is clocked at 3.0 GHz stock and 3.5 GHz boost. The Core i7-5960X features a total of 20 MB L3 cache, 40 PCI-Express lanes, Quad Channel DDR4-2133 MHz memory support, a 140W TDP, LGA 2011-v3 socket compatibility and a price of $999 US.

Intel_xeon_e7
Hardware

if you thought that Intel’s Haswell-E was a beast, wait till you see the Haswell-EP and Haswell-EN lineup of processors. The Haswell-EP Xeon E5-2699 V3 is the flagship processor in the Xeon E5 V3 family which will launch in the next few months. The Xeon E5-2699 V3 processor was also listed on retail for 3,960.26 EUR and benched few months ago.Intel X99 Xeon Processors

Intel Haswell-EP Xeon E5-2699 V3 Processors Benchmarked On 2-Way Server Board

Haswell-EP will be Intel’s first native server platform to feature DDR4 memory support with speeds of 2133 MHz which will provide significant boost in bandwidth when compared to conventional DDR3-1866 MHz memory. Intel will also topple these chips with 40 PCI-Express Gen 3 lanes and we are looking at TDPs ranging between 70W to 145 Watts. Intel is planning to introduce their third LGA2011 socket type known as the LGA2011-3 which will debut along with the Haswell-E and Haswell-EP generation of microprocessor families. This has been known since a while and the socket change was expected considering the new features such as DDR4 memory supported by the platform.

For their next Xeon E5 platform, Intel is going to release the Haswell-EP generation of Xeon processors branded as the Xeon E5-2600 V3 which from an architecture perspective are a TOCK featuring the latest 4th generation Haswell microarchitecture. Based on a 22nm 3D Transistors process, the Xeon E5-2600 V3 family would support upto 18 cores per socket and 36 threads coupled with fast 45 MB LLC (Last Level Cache) and featuring both the Intel Hyper Threading and Turbo Boost technologies.

Intel Logo
Hardware

The first benchmarks of Intel’s next generation Core i7-5960X “Haswell-E” processor have been unveiled by Coolaler forums. While several tech sites including us have the X99 and Haswell-E review planned for 29th August, Coolaler went ahead to showcase a performance preview of the upcoming Core i7-5960X processor which is the flagship SKU of the Haswell-E lineup.Intel Haswell-E Core i7-5960X

Intel Core i7-5960X “Haswell-E” HEDT Flagship Processor Benchmarked

We have most of the details regarding the Haswell-E processors thanks to the leak from Videocardz earlier this week. The Intel Haswell-E processor lineup would include three SKUs, the Core i7-5960X, Core i7-5930K and Core i7-5820K. All processors are built on the 22nm Haswell architecture which means that they will improve the IPC performance while keeping the same power limits as previous generation processors due to enhanced power efficiency of the Haswell microarchitecture. Before moving into the feature set of the platform itself, we will detail the SKUs that will be launching in 29th August 2014:

Intel Core i7-5960X Processor

The Intel Core i7-5960X Extreme Edition would be the flagship processor of the lineup boasting 8 Cores and 16 threads. The Haswell-E Core i7-5960X will house 2.6 Billion transistors inside its 22nm die and measures at 335.2 mm which is considered a huge die. The die block diagram also shows that the Core i7-5960X is not a 12 core die as previously expected which turns out to be a Xeon core. We can see 8 Cores with a large amount of shared L3 cache in the middle with a DDR4 memory controller at the bottom and Queue, Uncore and I/O at the top side. This would be Intel’s first 8 Core consumer processor and would be clocked at 3.0 GHz base and 3.5 GHz boost frequency. The processor would feature 20 MB of L3 cache, 140W TDP and support for DDR4-2133 MHz memory. Being the flagship processor of the Haswell-E lineup, the Core i7-5960X would end up with a price of $999 US.

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Hardware

We have received an update on the Skylake-S iGPU front from Fudzilla.com. Fudzilla has been rock solid about Intel leaks in the past, so I won’t be tagging this as a rumor. It looks like the Skylake-S CPUs will have DirectX12 compatibility and 4K resolution support. iGPUs have really come around in the past few years (we can thank AMD for the competition) and this is great news for OEMs and users who rely only on the iGPU.Intel Broadwell and Skylake Platform

DirectX 12 and 4K Resolution Support to be Featured in Intel Skylake-S

We have already released quite a lot of Info on Skylake-S including the fact that it will be launching alongside Broadwell-K and will consist entirely of locked multiplier CPUs on release. Skylake-S is ofcourse based on 14nm and will feature optimized architecture with the downside of no unlocked multiplier. As before we have already covered details regarding Skylake-S’s iGPU before but we have a few things to add to that. For e.g the fact that Skylake-S integrated graphics will be fully compatible with DX12. Whether or not it will support all the hardware based functions of DirectX 12 is unknown. But looking at the time frame of the launch, I think this is a real possibility.

The latest version of Open GL (5.x) will also be supported alongside the latest version of Open CL (2.x). HEVC codecs VP8 and VP9 will be supported. Resolution up to 4096×2304 (4K) which is a 16:10 aspect ratio. Ofcourse there is no way on this earth that you will be able to play any modern game at that resolution, but the iGPU should suffice for 4k video playback and general screen management. This will be coupled with Intel’s 100 Series chipset, this will be led by the Intel Z170 Chipset. It will support DMI and PCIe 3.0 up to 8GT/s. The source also mentions that this is all in time for 20nm GPUs that are coming in mid-2015.

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The official specifications and prices of Intel’s upcoming HEDT Haswell-E platform which includes the flagship Core i7-5960X Extreme Edition processors have been unveiled by Videocardz. The source has leaked the press deck for the Haswell-E platform which shows several new details along with a preview of the upcoming X99 motherboards which include the ASUS X99 Deluxe.Intel Haswell-E 5960X Processor

Intel Haswell-E Core i7-5960X, Core i7-5930K, Core i7-5820K Specifications Unveiled

The Intel Haswell-E processor lineup would include three SKUs, the Core i7-5960X, Core i7-5930K and Core i7-5820K. All processors are built on the 22nm Haswell architecture which means that they will improve the IPC performance while keeping the same power limits as previous generation processors due to enhanced power efficiency of the Haswell microarchitecture. Before moving into the feature set of the platform itself, we will detail the SKUs that will be launching in 29th August 2014:

Intel Core i7-5960X Processor

The Intel Core i7-5960X Extreme Edition would be the flagship processor of the lineup boasting 8 Cores and 16 threads. The Haswell-E Core i7-5960X will house 2.6 Billion transistors inside its 22nm die and measures at 335.2 mm which is considered a huge die. The die block diagram also shows that the Core i7-5960X is not a 12 core die as previously expected which turns out to be a Xeon core. We can see 8 Cores with a large amount of shared L3 cache in the middle with a DDR4 memory controller at the bottom and Queue, Uncore and I/O at the top side. This would be Intel’s first 8 Core consumer processor and would be clocked at 3.0 GHz base and 3.5 GHz boost frequency. The processor would feature 20 MB of L3 cache, 140W TDP and support for DDR4-2133 MHz memory. Being the flagship processor of the Haswell-E lineup, the Core i7-5960X would end up with a price of $999 US.

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[Editorial] Today we’re going to bring you on a journey that will get you one step closer to seeing the world in the eyes of AMD and Intel and reflect on how different yet quite similar those images truly are. To understand the philosophies of both companies we have to also understand the architectures inside the products they make and get to know the reasons behind the decisions made in designing those architectures intimately.

Intel and AMD Microarchitectures – Exploring the Past, Present and the Future (Part I)

Lets start from the beginning, in 2006 AMD made the decision to buy ATi with the vision to fuse GPU cores and CPU cores into a single piece of silicone called the Accelerated Processing Unit or APU for short. AMD called this effort “Fusion” and it was the company’s main advent from buying ATi. In 2010 Intel released the first processor to feature integrated graphics but just like the company’s first effort to make a dual or a quad core processor the resulting product was a multi-chip module or an MCM for short. Intel called this design Clarkdale & it was not a fully integrated monolithic solution. The graphics portion had its own separate die and it was connected to the main CPU die using an interposer.

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[Editorial] I read a very interesting report by Daniel Nenni over at SemiWiki.com and thought I would share it and add upon it. The report concludes that Intel’s 14nm node has still not entered volume production. Now this report is not a leak, and is rather an exercise in deductive reasoning by the author. Therefore, take the authenticity of this report as you will; I for one, completely agree with the arguments given.

Intel Broadwell Delay Analysis

Intel Broadwell 14nm Has Not Entered Volume Production Yet – Why Though?

Lets begin with a brief overview of Intel’s process nomenclature. Intel’s modern process names starts with P12 as a suffix in a 5 digit nomenclature. The P12 is followed by 2 numeric digits that depict the process advancement in an increasing order. Each successive die shrink is exactly 2 numbers apart. For eg Intel’s 45nm Process was called P1266 and was produced in 2007. The 32nm Process was called P1268 and was produced in 2009. Similarly the P1270 Process is the current 22nm implementation being used (produced in 2011). The 14nm Process, as you may have guessed by now is called P1272. And this is the process that has been giving Intel so much trouble. See, Intel has been following Moore’s Law to the letter and introducing a die shrink every two years, that is, uptill P1272. P1272 also known as 14nm 2nd Generation FinFET (Tri Gate) technology was supposed to start volume production by the end of 2013. Provided you don’t live under a rock, you would have noticed that 2014 is approaching its end and there is still no sign of the 14nm products. In fact, we are slated for Broadwell-K arrival in Q2 2015 by last reports. So just what went so wrong?

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Press Release - GIGABYTE TECHNOLOGY Co. Ltd., a leading manufacturer of motherboards and graphics cards, today announced its latest overclocking contest hosted on HWBOT.org, the GIGABYTE Z97-Pentium AE Beat the Heat Challenge. The main focus will be centered on the latest GIGABYTE 9 series motherboards and the G3258 Intel® Pentium® Anniversary Edition CPU.

GIGABYTE-Z97-Pentium-AE

GIGABYTE Z97-Pentium AE beat the heat challenge to be hosted on HWBOT.ORG

The challenge is open to all HWBOT.org overclockers and will be separated in 5 stages running various benchmarks on air/water cooling and LN2 cooling. A total of USD $2,000 in cash prizes and two GIGABYTE Z97X-SOC LN2 will be offered to the winners, as well as a lucky draw with 5 participants winning a GIGABYTE G-Powerboard kit.

To celebrate the 20th anniversary of the Pentium® brand, Intel delivered to the overclocking community an unlocked processor with great potential at a very fair price. To put this bad boy to the test, GIGABYTE is giving HWBOT’s community the opportunity to see if they can keep their cool under pressure and win big from August 24th until September 28th, 2014.



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