Intel lets loose with 3rd gen Ivy Bridge tri-gate chips
Claims massive OEM push for Core i5 and i7 systems
Intel has released its first chips using tri-gate memory technology with the Core i5 and i7 series, dubbed Ivy Bridge, which it claims puts it years ahead of "the competition" – the chip giant's traditional name for AMD.
The quad-core processors are Chipzilla's first 22nm range, and Intel claims the combination of reduced die size, the electrostatic improvements of tri-gate silicon builds and a reengineered graphics core that doubles performance, gives it 20 per cent better performance at 20 per cent less power.
It's promised 570 new designs using the new processors by the end of the year, and a 50 per cent ramp up of chip production from the 2nd generation Sandy Bridge line.
While there's a couple of mobile processors in the line-up, the bulk of the range is aimed at the desktop workstation, with three overclockable chips for gamers and a new push into the all-in one sector dominated by Apple, which Kirk Skaugen, general manager of Intel's the PC client group, predicted would be the wave of the future.
"I was in Japan about a week and a half ago and pretty much the entire PC market is converted to all-in-ones with 100 per cent TV, and it's all Core i7," he said. "They're very thin panels and they're all over the house. That gets exciting when you look forward to voice and gesture and everything.
Skaugen said that the graphics engine had been completely reworked to double performance over Sandy Bridge, and gives x23 speeds from this time three years ago using its Quick Sync Video. While Skaugen said Intel wasn't trying to put graphics card manufacturers out of business, citing full DirectX 11, OpenGL 3.1 and OpenCL 1.1 support, it was intending to own the laptop and thin computing market.
On that note, Chipzilla didn't include 3rd generation tri-gate Ultrabook processors in Monday's announcement. Those, along with a vPro range for business, will be announced in the next couple of months, to the frustration of some laptop manufacturers. Ultrabooks will only get two cores and are designed to run on lower voltages, and we won't be seeing tri-gate Atoms until next year Skaugen said.
Besides the new graphics engine, Intel has included some new security features built into the chip, including a Secure Key random number generator for use in encryption, a system called OS Guard that's enabled with Windows 8 that protects against some malware, and its fourth version of anti-theft technology, which can lock a laptop remotely using Wi-Fi and 3G, and broadcast its GPS location.
"We think, when you put the anti-theft sticker on the outside of your PC, just like originally in the car days when you put the first security systems on cars, it'll hopefully dramatically start reducing the amount of theft of notebooks," he said, somewhat optimistically, given the nature of opportunist crime.
System boot times have been cut Skaugen said, and the new chips include Smart Connect systems to download email and social networking content automatically. Cutting the amount of time needed to get to data is one of Intel's prime goals, he said.
Intel has already released Ivy Bridge-capable chipsets, which can also handle 2nd generation cores, and 10 are available at launch. For connectivity they, and the new processors, have full support for USB 3.0, PCIe 3.0 and Intel's own Thunderbolt connections. This latter system has been a slow starter outside Apple, but Skaugen promised hundreds of new devices by the end of the year.
Looking ahead, Intel is on track for making 14 and 10nm process shifts using existing technology explained Mark Bohr, its senior fellow in logic technology development. He said he'd love to have EUV technology available but wasn't counting on it, so had a solution using immersion lithography ready to go. ®
System boot times have been cut Skaugen said, and the new chips include Smart Connect systems to download email and social networking content automatically.
Is this their major USP for these chips? Really? WTF?
I can't believe that Intel have spent time, money and silicon real estate on stuff that can download all those inane Twatter posts a few microseconds quicker. There MUST be more important things for their designers to be working on?
Even more important than that: Who the f*&% wants to Twitter?
Where can I get a 6000x4000 monitor? to fit my 16 mp digital photos without any need to "actual size" them only to end up viewing only a small portion of the photo with any oridnary HD monitor..
It seems that Smart Connect is only as useful as the information you receive over email... if it is only inane social twatter, then yes, it is useless.
If you are receiving emails about local extreme weather conditions, seismic activity or some other information that is urgently important to you, then it might be a useful feature. Niche, but useful.
And then there are the many people for whom emailing is the primary function of their laptop- having things 'ready to go' as soon as possible after powering it up- this is very far from a niche segment. In this respect, it can be considered a logical extension to technologies designed to cut boot times.
If it is of no use to you, as I doubt it will be of use to me, turn it off in BIOS. We all have our personal computers set up in a way is, well, personal : D
This post made me go back and re-read the article. Did it really say there was such a feature? Yes it actually did. Still not quite believing this, I checked out what Smart Connect actually does. And it's worse than you think! It's not "hardware accellerated Twitter". What it actually does is allow the hardware to connect to Twitter, email, Facebook whatever, WHILE THE LAPTOP IS ASLEEP! Basically, it periodically tuns over in its sleep, checks to see if any updates have come in and grabs them ready for when you resume.
Personally, like constantly getting txts when I'm trying to sleep myself, I can't see this as being any kind of good. I'll leave the security implications of the hardware accessing my various accounts below the OS level for others to contemplate.
I think AMD's combined GPU/CPU have actually got Intel rattled. I can't see how anything is better for low-power, reasonable performance simple devices than AMD's APUs. Assuming they can manufacture enough of the buggers, anyway.