New Desktop Chipsets and CPU SKUs
We also have new capabilities because of the recently launched 300-series chipsets. With improvements to the digital signal processor inside the chipset, audio has been improved on all motherboards.
Many people don't realize that the audio processor is built into the chipset and that the codec on the motherboard pretty much converts digital signals into analog ones. With these improvements, Intel has improved audio quality, and we also get wake-on-voice and instant-on capabilities.
Many people have also been awaiting Intel's missing 8th Generation desktop SKUs such as the i5-8500. Those are now here, with the i5-8500 offering 6 cores and 6 threads under $200. Intel is also adding in their lower TDP "T" SKUs. With these new SKUs, we get a few new chipsets. Most notably the H370 and B360 chipsets. These new chipsets integrate USB 3.1 Gen 3 (USB 3.1 10Gbps), although I haven't seen a B360 or H370 motherboard with more than two of these ports implemented.
They also offer audio DSP improvements, just like the mobile SKUs. We also get an integrated MAC in the PCH that supports Intel's new 1.733Gbps PHY. Part of the Intel integrated WIFI solution is built into the chipset, and the rest will be offered in the form of an M.2 add-in card that you might or might not get depending on the motherboard. The new two-part system is similar to how Intel does their wired NICs on the desktop, but they are calling it CNVI.
We also find enhancements to the vPRO lineup, and now you can get an i7 vPro CPU with Radeon RX Vega M graphics onboard. Intel is also trying to make it easier for Optane and ThunderBolt 3 to enter the business marketplace. Overall, today we have seen one of Intel's largest launches in regards to what is being disclosed. We got new mobile CPUs, new desktop CPUs, new chipsets, and new Optane technologies. Stay tuned for more as our reviews go live!
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