Intel Computex keynote confirms Kaby Lake and Optane for 2016

Intel's Computex presentation this morning covered a lot of topics, from the Internet of Things and 5G, to machine learning and VR. We'll talk about some of the other bits in due time, but the news of greatest interest to TR readers is no doubt the confirmation that the 7th generation "Kaby Lake" Core processors and Optane solid-state disks will be launching this year. Those new products made up the bulk of Intel's announcements today, along with the Broadwell-E chips that Jeff wrote about this morning and the low-power Apollo Lake platform.

Kaby Lake is, of course, the codename of Intel's 7th-generation Core architecture. These processors will be fabricated on the same 14nm process as Broadwell and Skylake before them, and thus they represent the first break in Intel's long-standing "tick-tock" cadence of CPU releases. As an optimization of Skylake, it's unlikely the seventh generation will be a drastic departure from the status quo. We have reported on all of that before, but today Intel announced that Kaby Lake processors will have native support for USB 3.1 and Thunderbolt 3, and that models in the family will range up to 95W TDPs. That figure is only slightly above the Skylake Core i7-6700K's 91W TDP. Here's hoping one of those 95W models includes an eDRAM cache as Scott wished for last year.

In case you missed it, Optane is Intel's branding for solid-state disks using the new 3D XPoint memory technology. 3D XPoint—which is pronounced "cross point"—technology purportedly represents a generational leap over existing NAND flash memory in terms of both density and performance. Intel demonstrated 3D Xpoint by performing an offline 3D render using Houdini on two computers, one of which was equipped with an Intel 750 Series SSD, and the other with an Optane prototype. The machine with the 750 series SSD completed the render in slightly over 25 hours, but the Optane-equipped machine finished in just nine.

At its presentation, Intel also confirmed earlier news that the low-power Apollo Lake SoC family is coming this year. These chips are the successors to the existing Cherry Trail mobile parts, and wield new Goldmont CPU cores alongside 9th generation (Skylake) graphics units. Intel included Apollo Lake when talking about Optane, so we may see 3D XPoint in low-end devices, as well. Unfortunately, despite all the talk, Intel didn't offer specific timelines or pricing details about the new products.

Comments closed
    • NovusBogus
    • 3 years ago

    I want Kaby, but I’m hearing rumors that MS doesn’t even plan to offer security updates for W7 Kaby users. Not sure quite how they plan on doing this (again, talking sec patches not secondary opcode whatevers) so I suppose I’ll wait to see what happens when they launch to decide if I’ll be upgrading to Sky or Kaby.

      • Krogoth
      • 3 years ago

      It is more like MS isn’t going to offer platform support for Skylake and newer with Vista and 7. You are completely depended on third-party support a.k.a Intel.

    • travbrad
    • 3 years ago

    [quote<]Here's hoping one of those 95W models includes an eDRAM cache as Scott wished for last year.[/quote<] This. If some eDRAM can provide a similar IPC boost to Skylake/Kaby Lake as it did on Broadwell there is a chance I may finally upgrade my Sandy Bridge system. If it's just Skylake + 4%/4W, consider me Krogothed.

      • Firestarter
      • 3 years ago

      well all those 4%’ers do add up, but that also depends on how it clocks. If it’s another ‘meh’ on the overclocking front I definitely won’t be getting one either

        • travbrad
        • 3 years ago

        Yeah the clock speed is important. That’s a big part of why Sandy Bridge is lasting so long if you overclock. Skylake is significantly faster than Sandy Bridge at stock speeds, but when you overclock both of them there is only about a 20% difference between Skylake and the 4 generations older Sandy Bridge.

        A few extra % from architectural tweaks AND eDRAM could conceivably push that more towards something like 40% assuming Kaby can hit similar frequencies to Skylake.

    • DrCR
    • 3 years ago

    When do we anticipate Cannonlake arriving? End of Q2 2017?

    • albundy
    • 3 years ago

    in other news, AMD’s keynote confirms that it’s made an awesome paper airplane out of its keynote and plans to eventually fly with it.

      • Neutronbeam
      • 3 years ago

      So yet another AMD paper launch…

    • ronch
    • 3 years ago

    Really can’t wait to see the duel between Cabbie Lake and Zeny later this year. I hope it’s gonna be a good fight, not a one-sided one.

      • willmore
      • 3 years ago

      Guess: Intel gets slaughtered in graphics. AMD gets beat up on single threaded performance. Intel get outdistanced on multithreaded workloads. AMD wins for price/perf.

        • chuckula
        • 3 years ago

        [quote<]Intel gets slaughtered in graphics. [/quote<] Against Zen? Even Sandy Bridge would win every graphics benchmark. [quote<]AMD gets beat up on single threaded performance. [/quote<] Yup. [quote<]Intel get outdistanced on multithreaded workloads. [/quote<] Maybe. [quote<]AMD wins for price/perf.[/quote<] Against a 10 core 6950X? They'd better. Against a 6 core K-series part? That's not a sure thing at all. There's no way a "high end" Zen is going for the $125 Crazy Eddy special if AMD wants to stay in business.

    • torquer
    • 3 years ago

    Its not a TR article unless it features at least one use of “purportedly.”

    • jensend
    • 3 years ago

    Has anybody heard anything more about Intel’s timeframe for VESA adaptive sync support? I wonder whether that’ll have to wait for Gen10 — and Cannonlake and a mature 10nm process.

    Once adaptive sync is more mainstream it will be a big benefit for iGPUs.

      • tsk
      • 3 years ago

      With Intels current Process>Architecture>Optimization I’m guessing at the next architecture, so whatever comes after Cannonlake, i.e 9th gen processors.

    • omf
    • 3 years ago

    Can’t read “Kaby Lake” without thinking “Krabby Patty”… 😐

      • DancinJack
      • 3 years ago

      It’s not Kabby. It’s “kaybee” lake.

        • ronch
        • 3 years ago

        I’d like to call it Cabbie Lake.

    • cmrcmk
    • 3 years ago

    Is Kaby Lake going to introduce PCIe 4 or is that further down the line?

      • the
      • 3 years ago

      That is a very good question which I also would like to know the answer to.

      • DancinJack
      • 3 years ago

      Really doubt that. What even needs that much bandwidth at this point?

        • blahsaysblah
        • 3 years ago

        SM 961 3200r/1800w 450k/400k MLC
        PM 961 3000r/1150w 360k/280k TLC
        vs
        SM 950 2500r/1500w 300k/1100k

        Samsung is getting there very soon. Will need 4x 4.0 links next year.

          • DancinJack
          • 3 years ago

          because consumer PCs and applications can use that?

            • blahsaysblah
            • 3 years ago

            For home office professionals. Either large compiles, lots of VM work in home lab or many other not too niche.

            SM 950 Pro is not that expensive that its not worth it. Its drastic time saver when your work can take advantage of it. Even if you rarely move VMs around, being to push off a copy or backup in a few minutes versus half and hour makes your workflow TOTALLY different.

        • cmrcmk
        • 3 years ago

        Servers will benefit. Between 10 Gig ethernet and NVMe SSDs, PCIe lanes are getting scarce. The best way to alleviate this is to increase the throughput per lane and reduce the number of lanes required by each device.

        Even for consumer gear, the number of available lanes isn’t increasing so reducing the lanes required by each card allows more cards to share the bus. Do I have an urgent need for this? No. Do I want the foundation to get built before it becomes urgent? Absolutely.

          • UberGerbil
          • 3 years ago

          Was going to say exactly this. Server tech always filters down, and at least some server configs / use cases already have been starved for a while. Running more traces is problematic and expensive, so adding more lanes is never preferable to clocking the existing lanes faster.

          That said, this Intel announcement was about products coming [i<]this[/i<] year and [url=http://www.eetimes.com/document.asp?doc_id=1326922<]PCIe 4 isn't due until 2017[/url<]. There's a bunch of technological hurdles which have been holding things up (I can remember when the 16GT/s tier aka PCIe4 was expected to require optical interconnects, but it looks like that exciting/painful transition is going to arrive with PCIe 5). And there's a SIG involved, so there are always a bunch of [s<]stakeholders to placate[/s<] conflicting requirements to resolve.

      • chuckula
      • 3 years ago

      Further out. The spec isn’t supposed to be final until 2017. Incidentally, while there will likely be a PCIe 5.0, it won’t be over copper.

      [Dear AMD fanboys: I didn’t realize that I meant enough to you for you to downthumb a 100% factual comment that isn’t even remotely pro-Intel. I guess you did get rattled by Broadwell-E despite all the crap about “OMG WAITING FOR ZEN!”]

    • blastdoor
    • 3 years ago

    Am I correct to understand that Kaby Lake still won’t support DisplayPort 1.3, meaning no 5k displays at 60 hz?

    If so… forgive my ignorance, but why do OEMs have to rely on Intel to provide that functionality? Would it be possible to support 5k monitors at 60hz without Intel’s support? How hard would it be?

      • the
      • 3 years ago

      Apple does this already on the 5K iMac. There solution was a custom chip for the internals of the iMac only that reportedly took two DP 1.2 steams to drive the 5K screen. This custom chips would be on the monitor side, not something a motherboard maker would add.

      That doesn’t preclude a company from making a dual DP 1.2 to single DP 1.3 stream adapter, but I would consider such a chip unlikely to appear before DP 1.3 simply becomes part of Intel’s integrated GPU. (nVidia is already shipping DP 1.4 cards and AMD has already announced support for DP 1.3 in Polaris.)

      • blahsaysblah
      • 3 years ago

      It costs extra, they need to integrate an extra controller. Several Z170 used a Megachips solution to provide HDMI 2.0 functionality (4k@60, though not HDCP 2.2 at same time).

      4k monitors and TVs are not exactly mainstream yet. Anyone who can afford them is ahead of the curve right now.

    • Dr_Gigolo
    • 3 years ago

    So I am guessing we won’t see new MBP’s and iMac’s untill Kaby Lake is here with it’s integrated Thunderbolt 3 and USB 3.1.

      • tipoo
      • 3 years ago

      God I hope not, the wait for Skylake was already agonizing. Can’t keep waiting on the next architecture. I think at the June WWDC, we’ll see Skylake rMBPs at least. The 27 inch iMac is already on Skylake, but the 21 inch is on Broadwell, strangely.

    • adampk17
    • 3 years ago

    When we see “machine learning” mentioned is that essentially artificial intelligence?

      • Neutronbeam
      • 3 years ago

      Essentially, yes.

        • adampk17
        • 3 years ago

        So….

        Intel’s Computex presentation this morning covered a lot of topics, from the Internet of Things and 5G, to machine learning and VR. We’ll talk about some of the other bits in due time, but the news of greatest interest to TR readers is no doubt the confirmation that the 7th generation [i<]"Skynet"[/i<] Core processors and..........

      • Redocbew
      • 3 years ago

      Yeah, AI has an odd property where once something that starts out under the umbrella of AI moves out of the ivory tower and starts finding application in the real world, then it ends up being called something else.

      /spooky
      Sort of like it’s already got a mind of its own…
      /end spooky

    • DancinJack
    • 3 years ago

    Yay 3.1+Thunderbolt natively!

      • ImSpartacus
      • 3 years ago

      Of course, it’ll be 3.1 Gen 1, right?

      • hasseb64
      • 3 years ago

      Yay Thunderbolt natively?? Yay? Really?

      • ikjadoon
      • 3 years ago

      Not confirmed. We’re hoping, but they didn’t specify just yet. I’m hoping badly that it’s native.

        • Krogoth
        • 3 years ago

        It might be included on high-end platform (Z series), but I would surprised if Thunderbolt is offer on the entire platform line-up.

    • chuckula
    • 3 years ago

    Kaby Lake… let’s call it Krogoth Lake instead.

    Optane: Might not be that exciting for consumers in 2016 since it’s coming to Enterprise first, but in a few years a new platform with Optane storage and some other bells-n-whistles could be exciting enough to justify an upgrade even if the raw CPU power hasn’t jumped too much.

      • Neutronbeam
      • 3 years ago

      Meh…Krogoth Lake isn’t that impressive.

      • whm1974
      • 3 years ago

      USB 3.1 and Thunderbolt 3 might enough to upgrade for some people.

        • the
        • 3 years ago

        The question is, from what?

        It does make upgrading from Sandy Bridge more attractive for those holding out (and there are many). The real question is what Kaby Lake bring in terms of CPU performance increase. Even if it is Skylake + eDRAM on the desktop, that is a very tempting upgrade for my i7 2600K.

      • ronch
      • 3 years ago

      Optane may be a nice piece of technology but I honestly find the ‘Optane’ branding kinda lame. I mean, what, OPTANE???

        • NTMBK
        • 3 years ago

        Goes well with an Opteron

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