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Intel's 2013 update to their Xeon family isn't being rushed, but it will pack quite a punch when it arrives
With no real competition in the server/workstation space, Intel aren't just rushing out their 2013 update to their Xeon platform of processors. Toward the end of this year, we should expect the Ivy Bridge-based Xeon E5 and E7 processors, while the Xeon Phi MIC/co-processor/accelerator gets segmented into more SKUs and thanks to a new stepping, we're seeing clock speeds pushed from 1.1GHz to 1.238GHz with nearly the same TDP and form factor.
What we will see when the new Xeon processors arrive, is a 12-core part with 30MB of cache and quad-channel DDR3-1866 server memory paths per socket with clock speeds pushing 3GHz and Turbo Boost to boot. Power consumption on these insane 12-core processors should see a helping hand from its 22nm FinFet '3D transistor' process.
Toward the end of the year, we should expect the E5-4600 v2 series, which is the same as the above solution, but 4-socket-enabled where the dual QPI links make a square interconnection layout between the CPU. At around the same time, we should see the 15-core IVB-EX enterprise Xeon processors - the E7-4800 v2 and 8800 v2 - which will replace the Westmere-EX processors we have had for the past couple of years now.
The time is nearly upon us, when we get to see what the fourth-generation Core processor from Intel can do. Haswell, as it's otherwise known, has begun "shipping to customers now and will launch later this quarter" according to a source of CNET's.
Intel is expected to make a statement at the IDF Beijing conference next week, and should arrive in June for Computex in Taipei. Haswell is a special chip, as it is a next-generation processor that will scale incredibly well, from Ultrabooks to smart devices, right up to the high-end desktop and more. Intel CEO, Paul Otellini, has said that Haswell's new micro architecture will deliver "the single largest generation-to-generation battery life improvement in Intel history."
The chipmaker has confirmed the USB bug attached to chipsets, known as errata, will be "in production" during the initial ramp which happens later this month:
4th gen Core is on track for a mid-year launch. Intel issued a PCN documenting a chipset USB errata and stating that chipsets with the errata will be in production during the initial ramp. But Intel has confirmed that there is no chance of data loss or corruption. This issue has only been observed with a small subset of USB SuperSpeed thumb drives and does not affect other USB peripherals. We take all customer issues seriously and should any customer have a question or concern they can always contact Intel customer support.
In a recently released presentation, AMD has hinted that its new Steamroller micro-architecture is on track to be released this year. This comes at a surprise as most industry insiders thought that the new architecture would not arrive until mid to late next year.
In a presentation slide titled "AMD Opteron Technology: Delivering multiple generations of greater functionality and improved performance," it was hinted that AMD will be releasing server-class Opteron chips based on the new technology later this year.
X-Bit Labs is reporting that AMD has pushed forward its plans for Steamroller and the new chips will be compatible with current sockets and that the new server microprocessors will support PCI-E 3.0. Desktop chip's featuring Steamroller technology will most likely not be seen until next year though.
GDC 2013 - Intel have shown off GRID 2 on their upcoming Haswell-based processor, running purely from the integrated graphics. It looks like it is a decent res - maybe 1920x1080 - and it looks like it's pumping out around 30fps.
We don't have any of those details on hand, but you can tell from the video it looks sharp and is running smooth. Playing games at 1080p at 30fps on integrated graphics is a nice achievement, something that will mix well with upcoming Haswell-based Ultrabooks.
AMD has released its Richland line of 35W mobile APUs this morning. The company says that it has been shipping the processors to PC makers since January and that devices running the new APU's are available now.
Richland is may be the new APU in town, but not much of it is different than its predecessor Trinity. The same Piledriver based CPU cores are still there as well as the Radeon HD 6900 based GPU. The new APU is even fabricated on the same 32nm process. The difference lies within more efficient transistors, which provide better power management and better utilizes the existing architecture.
Like Trinity, Richland manages power states via a 32-bit microcontroller. Both have a network of thermal sensors built-in that report back to the MCU, whereas most of these go unused in Trinity, Richland takes full advantage of the sensor network. This allows the CPU and GPU clocks to be changed based on the APU's temperature.
Richland utilizes better algorithms to more precisely tune those clocks based on temperature as well. AMD claims that these improvements allow Richland to consume 17% less power than Trinity and 38% less when playing 720p video.
Intel has a bit of a problem on its hands. It's probably not as terrible as the Sandy Bridge SATA controller issue, but it could end up being another costly fix for the chip giant. According to Fudzilla, the problem cannot be fixed by a mere software update. Rather, the chipset will require a new revision to take care of the issue.
The bug isn't too major. If a USB 3.0 port is being used when the system is put to sleep (S3 state), the device will need to be reconnected upon waking the machine. It's nothing more than a slight hassle, but this is the second chipset glitch experienced by Intel in less than a year.
Motherboard vendors are saying that June is still the planned introduction for Haswell, so it looks like the first batch of motherboards could possibly be coming with the buggy chipset. We'll know more as the proposed launch period nears.
There's some bad news coming out of the cracks of the Internet today, with Hardware.info reporting that they have talked with a "reliable source" who says that the next-generation processor from Intel named Haswell, is having issues with USB 3.0.
The site claims they've taken a look at a document that Intel reportedly sent out to inform system builders of a bug surrounding USB 3.0 and Haswell - the bug specifically has issues with waking from sleep and using a USB 3.0 device. If the system exits S3 level sleep while a user is accessing data on a USB 3.0 drive, their session with that data will end.
This would mean if you're working on a document open before you put your PC to sleep, or it went to sleep after a period of time, when you come back that document could be just blank. Intel is reportedly aware of this issue and are said to be trying to make partners accept the flaw before purchasing the affected CPUs.
A group of overclockers at Canada's biggest LAN party have managed to push an AMD FX 8350 all the way up to 8027MHz. The feat was achieved using extreme voltage and cooing and was part of a demonstration about the importance of insulation and testing the hardware step by step.
The feat was achieved with an ASUS Crosshair V Formula-Z, Corsair Dominator GTX3 memory, Corsair AX850i PSU, and Ryba LN2 pot. Achieving a max speed of 8027.93MHz required 1.968 volts through the core and a multiplier of 31.5 and bus clock of 254.86MHz. Of course, only 2 cores and threads were active for the run.
This is the sixteenth best score achieved on this CPU if you go by Hwbot's listings.
We've already seen the insane performance that NVIDIA's upcoming Tegra 4 should provide us, but Qualcomm aren't just sitting on their hands. Rather, their hands are up in defensive position, swinging at NVIDIA before these chips have even made it into consumer devices.
Qualcomm's Senior Vice President of Product Management, Raj Talluri, told The Verge that Qualcomm is more focused on shipping products than refuting competitors' benchmarks. The company believes that their upcoming Snapdragon 800 easily beats NVIDIA's Tegra 4. Talluri also said that while NVIDIA may be offering something impressive, Qualcomm's Snapdragon 800 is so much more integrated, where the LTE modem is built directly into the silicon die.
The Snapdragon 800 also includes the ability to both encode and decode 4K content, which is a very nice feature to have going into 2013. We should see more than 50 products include the Snapdragon 800 in the near future, with the quad-core 2.3GHz chip expected to arrive in even more devices before the year is up.
Time to spill the beans on Intel's upcoming CPU and chipset plans, if our tomato sauces are correct. One of our sources tipped us that Haswell will be coming at Computex (June 2013) on the Z87 platform as the mid-range solution (much alike the previous-gen Z77), though this is something that is widely available through Google, and mostly widely known among inner circles as being fact.
More importantly, the source let us know that the next-generation performance range of CPUs will be coming by the end of the year, and not 2014 as previous speculated. This news comes from a source that is very close to the subject.
While we suspect this to be Ivy Bridge-E based, our source wasn't exactly clear and it could end up being Haswell-E, with Ivy Bridge-E being skipped. We do know, however, that the next-gen performance chip will make use of a chipset called X99. A quick Google for "X99" turns up relatively little and basically nothing about an Intel chipset.
We'll be sure to keep you up-to-date with all of the latest Intel CPU and chipset news as soon as we hear anything more.