IDF 2014: Skylake Silicon Up and Running for 2H 2015 Release

Subject: Shows and Expos | September 9, 2014 - 05:27 PM |
Tagged: Skylake, Intel, idf 2014, idf, 14nm

2015 is shaping up to be an interesting year for Intel's consumer processor product lines. We are still expected to see Broadwell make some kind of debut in a socketed form in addition to the mobile releases trickling out beginning this holiday, but it looks like we will also get our first taste of Skylake late next year.

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Skylake is Intel's next microarchitecture and will be built on the same 14nm process technology currently shipping with Broadwell-Y. Intel stated that it expects to see dramatic improvements in all areas of measurement including performance, power consumption and silicon efficiency.

On stage the company demoed Skylake running the 3DMark Fire Strike benchmark though without providing any kind of performance result (obviously). That graphics demo was running on an engineering development board and platform and though it looked incredibly good from where we were sitting, we can't make any guess as to the performance quite yet.

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Intel then surprised us by bringing a notebook out from behind the monitor showing Skylake up and running in a mobile form factor decoding and playing back 4K video. Once again, the demo was smooth and impressive though you expect no more from an overly rehearsed keynote.

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Intel concluded that it was "excited about the health of Skylake" and that they should be in mass production in the first quarter of 2015 with samples going out to customers. Looking even further down the rabbit hole the company believes they have a "great line of sight to 10nm and beyond." 

Even though details were sparse, it is good news for Intel that they would be willing to show Skylake so early and yet I can't help but worry about a potentially shorter-than-expected life span for Broadwell in the desktop space. Mobile users will find the increased emphasis on power efficiency a big win for thin and light notebooks but enthusiast are still on the look out for a new product to really drive performance up in the mainstream.


September 9, 2014 | 06:41 PM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

Yes to the last sentence in the article. I'm on an i7 920 and have specifically been waiting for Skylake. Broadwell doesn’t seem so interesting for the desktop, in fact I'm waiting for it to go away before it's even here! By then, DDR4 for Skylake would be more mature as well.

September 9, 2014 | 06:45 PM - Posted by Martin Trautvetter

So, will Skylake regain the PCIe/PEG interface Broadwell is missing?

September 9, 2014 | 06:55 PM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

It's not necessarily so early for skylake engineering samples showings, and more of Broadwell's development running late. Intel must have had, and still is having problems. There is no news of any 6 core laptop SKUs, or unofficial guesstimates of Graphics(GPU) improvements.

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