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Intel Xeon Roadmap Leaked Out, Unveils 10nm Ice Lake-SP With PCIe Gen 4 & Up To 26 Cores in 2020, Next-Gen Sapphire Rapids With PCIe Gen 5 & DDR5 in 2021

May 21, 2019
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The latest Intel Xeon roadmap for next-generation server processors and their respective platform has been leaked by WikiChip (via Momomo_US). The roadmap gives us a highlight of the major features to expect from Intel's upcoming server families including the 10nm Ice Lake-SP, Sapphire Rapids-SP, and the Granite Rapids-SP series.

Intel Xeon Roadmap Unveils 10nm Ice Lake-SP With PCIe Gen 4 in 2020, Next-Gen Sapphire Rapids-SP and Granite Rapids-SP To Feature Octal-Channel DDR5 Memory and PCIe Gen 5 Support

Intel officially announced their latest process technology roadmap at their 2019 investor meeting where they confirmed next-generation 10nm product families for the datacenter & server market. During the meeting, Intel confirmed in their public roadmap that they will launch the 14nm Cooper Lake-SP and 10nm Ice Lake-SP lineup in 2020, Sapphire Rapids-SP in 2021 & then, a next-gen Xeon family in 2022. The latest roadmap leak confirms all of these and also provides additional highlight at some of the main features that the upcoming Xeon families would support.

Related Rumor: Intel To Skip 10nm For Desktop CPUs, Will Offer 7nm Desktop CPUs in 2022 [Updated]

Intel 14nm Cooper Lake-SP With Up To 48 Cores, PCIe Gen 3 and 8 Channel DDR4 in Q1 2020

The roadmap itself is said to be a part of Intel's partner program and includes some main details of each upcoming Xeon family. We start off with the 14nm Cooper Lake-SP family which will be part of the Whitley Platform and feature up to 48 cores (Cooper Lake-AP), 8 channel DDR4 memory and PCIe Gen 3 support. The latest Barlow Pass Optane DIMMs would also be compatible on Whitley so we should expect a good boost in performance. Cooper Lake will also be available for 4S and 8S servers with up to 26 core Xeon CPU configurations, 6 channel DDR4 memory support and PCIe 3.0 support.

Intel 10nm+ Ice Lake-SP With Up To 26 Cores, PCIe Gen 4 and 8 Channel DDR4 in Q2 2020

Intel Ice Lake-SP processors would be available around the second quarter of 2020 and will feature the 10nm process node. The chips will have up to 26 cores and support 8 channel DDR4 memory. The main highlight of Ice Lake-SP processors would be support for PCIe Gen 4 which is coming to AMD's EPYC Rome processors this year in Q3 2019. Ice Lake-SP processors would be based on the brand new Sunny Cove core architecture which is expected to deliver double-digit IPC gains and a much-needed increase in overall efficiency.

One thing to note is that Intel's 10nm for 2020 is an enhanced node of the original 10nm node that will launch this year. It's marked as 10nm+ and that is specifically what the Ice Lake-SP Xeon line will make use of. Some of the major upgrades that 10nm will deliver include:

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  • 2.7x density scaling vs 14nm
  • Self-aligned Quad-Patterning
  • Contact Over Active Gate
  • Cobalt Interconnect (M0, M1)
  • 1st Gen Foveros 3D Stacking
  • 2nd Gen EMIB

Intel Xeon SP Families:

Family BrandingSkylake-SPCascade Lake-SP/APCooper Lake-SP/APIce Lake-SPSapphire RapidsGranite Rapids
Process Node14nm+14nm++14nm++10nm+10nm++7nm+?
Platform NameIntel PurleyIntel PurleyIntel WhitleyIntel WhitleyIntel Eagle StreamIntel Eagle Stream
MCP (Multi-Chip Package) SKUsNoYesYesYesTBDTBD
SocketLGA 3647LGA 3647
BGA 5903
LGA 4189
BGA 5903
LGA 4189LGA 4677LGA 4677
Max Core CountUp To 28Up To 28
Up To 48
Up To 28
Up To 48
TBATBDTBD
Max Thread CountUp To 56Up To 56
Up To 96
Up To 56
Up To 96
TBATBDTBD
Max L3 Cache38.5 MB L338.5 MB L3
66 MB L3
TBATBATBDTBD
Memory SupportDDR4-2666 6-ChannelDDR4-2933 6-Channel
DDR4 2933 12-Channel
Up To 8-Channel DDR48-Channel DDR48-Channel DDR58-Channel DDR5
PCIe Gen SupportPCIe 3.0PCIe 3.0PCIe 3.0PCIe 4.0PCIe 5.0PCIe 5.0
TDP Range140W-205W165W-205WTBDUp To 230WTBDTBD
3D Xpoint Optane DIMMN/AApache PassBarlow PassBarlow PassCrow PassDonahue Pass
CompetitionAMD EPYC Naples 14nmAMD EPYC Rome 7nmAMD EPYC Rome 7nmAMD EPYC Milan 7nm+AMD EPYC Genoa ~5nmAMD Next-Gen EPYC (Post Genoa)
Launch201720182019202020212022

Intel 10nm++ Sapphire Rapids-SP With PCIe Gen 5 and 8 Channel DDR5 Support in Q1 2021, 7nm Granite Rapids-SP in 2022

Moving further into the post-2020 Xeon lineup, Intel will be launching Sapphire Rapids-SP in 2021 and Granite Rapids-SP in 2022. The 10nm++ based Sapphire Rapids is expected to make use of the updated Willow Cove core architecture which replaces Sunny Cove in 2020. The Sapphire Rapids lineup will make use of 8 channel DDR5 memory and support PCIe Gen 5.0 on the Eagle Stream platform. This will allow Intel to match up or even outpace AMD's EPYC offerings if Milan will end up reusing DDR4 and PCIe Gen 4 from the upcoming EPYC Rome platform. That remains to be seen.

Intel's Sapphire Rapids family will be launching the same year that Intel introduces their first datacenter Xe GPUs based on the 7nm process node. The first confirmed product to feature the 7nm datacenter Xe GPUs will be the Aurora supercomputer, more on that here. The new Xe architecture based GP-GPU will be built using Foveros 3D stacking architecture which means we are going to see a one-chip, single-stacked-chip harmony between the GPU, memory and interconnect.

This will allow High-Bandwidth memory to be stacked right on top of the GPU die, featuring a package size that is much smaller than existing GPUs but at the same time, denser than anything we have got so far.

Later in 2022, Intel will launch Granite Rapids-SP which will further expand upon the DNA of Sapphire Rapids and possibly make use of the 7nm process node. The process roadmap shows that Intel will have 7nm+ ready for deployment in 2022 along with their Golden Cove chip core architecture. It remains to be seen what kind of core count we should expect from Intel's Rapid series of Xeon families, but one thing that's confirmed is that Intel is speeding up the pace for their Xeon lineup as competition from AMD has risen. We will keep you updated as we hear more info around the Intel Xeon lineup.

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