Before we go too far into this, we are not talking about server CPUs, yet. Instead, Intel is now selling its 10th generation core CPUs based on 10nm. This is important because we have been beholden to a Skylake derived architecture for many years with Intel, and there are significant benefits to the new chips. The “Sunny Cove” architecture is being launched in low power notebook CPUs first, but we expect it to propagate to a number of different segments in the coming quarters. This is perhaps the largest architectural shift in many years for Intel.
Intel 10th Generation Core Ice Lake Overview
Here are the quick specs of the new processors. As you can see, Intel is pushing more than just 10nm core performance here. They are trying to tell a story that encompasses the CPU, Gen11 GPU, as well as platform features like Wi-Fi 6 and Thunderbolt.
STH has already done quite a bit on the Sunny Cove microarchitecture. We covered the future generation at Intel’s 2018 architecture day in Intel Sunny Cove Microarchitecture Details.
We also had a piece more recently about the new chips ahead of Computex 2019 in Intel Ice Lake Era with Microarchitecture and Gen11 GPU Improvements. Here is a refresher.
Key features are a deeper and wider core. Intel is also adding caches which help with latency by keeping the compute cores fed.
Aside from the raw CPU bits, we are going to see features like AVX-512 and a higher-performance GPU in this generation. Intel is stating that some lower-end gaming may be possible on integrated graphics with this generation. This sounds like the claim that we hear in almost every generation of the new integrated graphics chip. When you have a 1080p display and cannot game at native resolution, that is a tougher sell.
With DL Boost and the various other accelerators are important for Intel’s vision. Intel is designing these chips to also do some AI inferencing at the edge to help with features such as low latency facial recognition on edge devices.
Many of the consumer-focused sites had access to notebooks to do reviews of the new chips. We are going to suggest you go there. Patrick says we need to bound our coverage somewhere.
Intel 10th Generation Core Ice Lake SKUs
Here is the official SKU stack that we received from Intel:
As you can see the SKUs currently are focused on the lower core count and lower power end of the spectrum. This is part of Intel’s strategy of launching chips like these first in a specific segment then branching out to other markets with a core design.
Overall, this is a massive upgrade to client PCs. We should start to see these chips arrive in notebooks especially in Q4 2019. Of course, at STH, we are eagerly awaiting these chips hitting the data center market. We have already seen Intel Ice Lake Xeon Server Chips in the wild.