9-series chipsets may support only Broadwell and refreshed Haswell CPUs

Broadwell, the successor to Intel’s current Haswell processors, is supposed to hit notebooks next year. It looks like desktop users will have to wait, though. Leaked slides suggest Broadwell won’t be available in a desktop-friendly socket next year; instead, we’ll supposedly have to make do with refreshed Haswell processors and an updated 9-series chipset.

Apart from its rumored SATA Express support, we haven’t heard much about the 9-series platform. Now, however, documents published by VR-Zone indicate that the chipset will be compatible with Broadwell. They also suggest the 9-series platform may be incompatible with current Haswell chips. The excerpts detail pin assignments for motherboard makers, including several related to a new VCCST power supply. If Intel is changing how power is routed to the processor, backward compatibility may not be possible.

Tellingly, there’s no mention of current-generation Haswell processors. The documents only make references to Broadwell and "Haswell Refresh."

Interestingly, the motherboard implementation guidelines specifically detail support for "Broadwell LGA H 2-chip LGA processors." H-series Haswell chips combine the processor die with a separate eDRAM chip on the same package. The embedded DRAM provides gobs of bandwidth for the CPU’s integrated graphics, and it looks like Intel’s plans for that tag team may extend to traditional desktop systems.

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    • HisDivineOrder
    • 7 years ago

    If true, that would be an explanation as to why Intel is in no rush to change to Broadwell next year. The improvements are small (outside of SATAExpress) for desktop users and a refresh of Haswell will likely wind up in Haswell finally getting sales up to the numbers of SB/IB.

    There’s a reason there are so many insane sales and bundles now on Haswell. The word is out. Haswell is a stinker. So maybe a refresh will help next year recoup more of the money Intel invested in making it.

    I really don’t know why Intel would be surprised, though. The lack of the fluxless solder is a mistake they already made once with IB. Why make it again with Haswell? Especially given they put the voltage regulator in the chip? Crazy heat and they still don’t even manage to fill up all the gaps between the processor and the heatspreader?

    Sometimes I think Intel just wants to give AMD a chance. That someone in charge of Intel is like, “Hey, guyz. Let’s slow down and let AMD catch up. It’s much more epic of we beat them with them at our backs than if we beat them when they’re on the ground all the way on the other side of the world.

      • Klimax
      • 7 years ago

      Mistake affecting only tiny percent of base… (while decreasing further costs of chip and if somebody want s to have extra, he can always take LGA2011.)

        • Arclight
        • 7 years ago

        Ha, with 2011 architecture as well.

          • Klimax
          • 7 years ago

          Not for long. (And as for me, I don’t complain about delta between consumer and server chips. At least I get time to upgrade rest of system)

      • Chrispy_
      • 7 years ago

      Haswell isn’t a stinker, it’s just a mobile product that doesn’t really offer much over Ivy on the desktop.

      The low-power options and improved IGP make it a big deal for laptops.

      • Vaughn
      • 7 years ago

      I disagree with haswell being a stinker part.

      Anyone building a brand new computer now would be silly to build on SB or Ivy unless you need 6 cores.

      The only people complaining about haswell are overclockers. And for most of them they are happy at 4.4Ghz and below. Its the guys that are delidding or trying to hit 5ghz are the ones crying the most.

      I would take a 4.4-4.5Ghz haswell chip with its IPC improvements over a 5Ghz SB or 4.8Ghz Ivy.

      And these groups of people are such a small part of the market its irrelevant what their opinion is on haswell.

        • Krogoth
        • 7 years ago

        Overclocking crowd don’t understand that part of the problem is that 22nm process. It doesn’t take well to overvolting like the 28nm process. The thermal paste issue just compounds it. The “naked” Ivy Bridge and Haswell chips only have a little more overclocking headroom than their normal brethren.

        Basically, overclocking crowd got too spoiled by post-Conroe chips being able to effortlessly handle insane overclocking.

    • Bensam123
    • 7 years ago

    It’s like the socket lottery with Intel. New chipsets aren’t even compatible with the same generation CPUs that are supposed to fit into them. XD

    So we’re going to have like Haswell A and Haswell B now… Sounds good to me. Makes me wonder how AMD got away with a socket that was generally compatible with new CPUs and chipsets for close to six years.

      • chuckula
      • 7 years ago

      [quote<]Makes me wonder how AMD got away with a socket that was generally compatible with new CPUs and chipsets for close to six years.[/quote<] Oh that part is easy: AMD barely released anything new for 6 years. DONE! P.S. --> I love how you pretend that the whole new-motherboard-required-each year parade of Llano-Trinity-Kaveri never happened*†. Get used to it though, because APUs are all that AMD is selling to you going forward unless you want to drop $900 on an FX-9590! * Well technically it didn't happen since it was Llano 2011, Trinity 2012 and Kaveri 2014... oops. † Oh yeah, and that 3-for-3 streak from AMD? Guess what AMD did to improve the chipset and add features like SATA-express. Go ahead.. Guess!! Here's the answer: NOTHING! They just moved the same chipset from motherboard to motherboard for you!

      • Klimax
      • 7 years ago

      By stagnating platform?

        • Bensam123
        • 7 years ago

        Easy jab is easy, doesn’t make it a right answer.

          • Klimax
          • 7 years ago

          Correct answer then? Because there is not much to do to keep multi gen compatibility without incurring technical penalty.

          Edit: deleted “evidence”. Too soon…

            • Bensam123
            • 7 years ago

            The context it was used in was a correct response to my original post. What you typed was essentially ‘ur a towel’.

            AMD 64 through Vishera says it wasn’t stagnated.

            • Klimax
            • 7 years ago

            I think you’re mistaking CPU-level for platform level. (What is supported on chipset and/or on CPU)

            • Bensam123
            • 7 years ago

            Depends on what you’re referring to as a platform… A desktop is a platform. Now if you’re talking about chipsets, even then the 8xx/9xx series still do their job quite well and if it means not adding PCIE 3.0 which no real devices can fully utilize, but I can still use older chips in it, I’m willing to live with it.

            Maintaining compatibility for six years is nothing to make a snyde remark about, especially when your competition changes it every CPU and then even during the same CPU (Haswell A and B now) and you remain up to date for the most part.

      • madseven
      • 7 years ago

      why are you being downvoted?

        • Bensam123
        • 7 years ago

        People can make fun of AMD, but they can’t make fun of Intel, it apparently doesn’t work that way here.

        It’s like the guy that ‘just jokes’ about everyone else, which really amounts to insults, but can’t take a joke.

      • Krogoth
      • 7 years ago

      AMD doesn’t change around the core logic for their CPU as much as Intel.

        • Bensam123
        • 7 years ago

        I think that would be a hard point to argue… I definitely believe there are plenty of changes between the AMD64 and Vishera… Enough where Intel would’ve warranted a half dozen new sockets. You can argue Vishera isn’t compatible with AM2 sockets, but AM2 chips are still compatible with AM3+ sockets, so there is definitely some compatibility still in there.

    • mganai
    • 7 years ago

    Won’t Broadwell be for everything but desktops though? Otherwise there wouldn’t be any reason for a Haswell refresh.

    • NeelyCam
    • 7 years ago

    [quote<]a new VCCST power supply. [/quote<] I wonder why they call it V[b<]CC[/b<]ST... The "CC" on VCC generally/historically referred to the collector of a bipolar transistor, while CMOS designers call their supply VDD (referring to the drain of a MOS transistor).

    • ronch
    • 7 years ago

    [quote<]9-series chipsets[/quote<] Who else thought for a nanosecond that this article is about AMD's 9-series chipsets when their eyes first fell on it?

      • Deanjo
      • 7 years ago

      You mean the rebranded AMD 8 series?

    • jdaven
    • 7 years ago

    I guess it has increasingly become a given that any processor family revision means a new motherboard. If there is not much difference within a family revision then upgrading is useless as well. Might as well solder the CPUs in their sockets.

      • kamikaziechameleon
      • 7 years ago

      I share your annoyance. It really detracts from the premium motherboards. Makes you build a system with a mentality that it is more disposable and less frequently going to be upgraded.

      • Ryhadar
      • 7 years ago

      Would rather they didn’t solder them. For my family I have gotten a lot of use out of chipsets when they didn’t want to spend a lot of money up front.

      My younger brother in particular has gone from a Athlon X2 5050e, to a Athlon II 255 and most recently to a Phenom II 965 without changing a thing except for the processor.

        • faramir
        • 7 years ago

        You brother isn’t using Intel CPU. Intel takes great care to ensure their chipsets support only two generations of CPUs at most before becoming (artifically) obsolete.

          • NeelyCam
          • 7 years ago

          It’s called progress. You know, gets you stuff like PCIe Gen 3, superawesome integrated voltage regulators etc.

          • chuckula
          • 7 years ago

          So you’re saying Intel is better than AMD where one-generation-per-socket (LLano/Trinity/Kaveri) is considered normal? HOW DARE INTEL STEAL THE INNOVATION FROM AMD!

          • Klimax
          • 7 years ago

          Cost of platform progress.

        • Srsly_Bro
        • 7 years ago

        Ah, in the cherry picking industry?

      • MadManOriginal
      • 7 years ago

      If SATA express will be a new feature it will be worth upgrading.

      • Star Brood
      • 7 years ago

      If soldering reduces the cost of the motherboard/CPU combo, it may be worth the sacrifice. Otherwise, if prices stagnate or go up, no thanks bye.

      • cmrcmk
      • 7 years ago

      I think I’ve only ever once upgraded my CPU without also replacing the motherboard. Hey Scott, how about a poll for when was the last time your replaced your processor without replacing the board? I bet most people would say 5+ years or never.

        • nanoflower
        • 7 years ago

        That’s probably true. I’ve certainly kept it in mind when buying a new motherboard and processor, but somehow it never works out. I always end up buying a new MB when getting a new CPU and never just upgrading the CPU.

        • Vaughn
        • 7 years ago

        Its been a while but I did it 3 times so far.

        Socket A
        Socket 939
        Socket 1366

        Generally with AMD you get abit more life with processor upgrades.

        On the intel side less upgrades but because of the increased preformance you tend to get systems that last as long but hold performance abit better with age.

        • bthylafh
        • 7 years ago

        I haven’t upgraded a CPU since around 2001, which was a P2-350 to P3-500 swap. More recently I’ve replaced a motherboard (cap plague) but kept the CPU; however even that’s been since ~2004.

        At my day job I’ve done it more recently, but even that happens maybe every other year, and it’s usually a warranty repair.

        • JustAnEngineer
        • 7 years ago

        I think I’ve done it the other way more recently. The motherboard dies and gets replaced by a newer one that’s compatible with the old processor.

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