Intel's next-gen Clearwater Forest Xeon CPU has only E-Cores, but up to 288 cores

Intel's next-gen Xeon codenamed Clearwater Forest is expected to take a giant leap in CPU core count, with a bonkers 288 cores... but only E-Cores.

2 minutes & 48 seconds read time

Intel's next-gen Xeon, codenamed Clearwater Forest, will feature up to 288 cores with an updated CPU architecture, but those 288 cores will exclusively be E-Cores, not the higher-performance P-Cores that Intel has on its CPUs.

Intel's next-gen Clearwater Forest Xeon CPU has only E-Cores, but up to 288 cores 801

This is according to new leaks on the scene, which tease that Intel's 2nd Gen Xeon CPU family will be based on the E-Core CPU architecture, while the first E-Core-only CPUs are codenamed Sierra Forest, which Intel will release in the 2H of 2024. If Intel stays on track, that means we should expect to see Clearwater Forest CPUs sometime in 2025... but this could slip into 2026 easily.

Intel's new Clearwater Forest architecture will feature an updated version of the Skymont E-Core architecture, which it'll be the 5th Gen E-Core architecture, with Gracemont being the first. Intel's next-gen Gracemont architecture will be launching on the new Meteor Lake CPUs, which will be making their debut on December 14 at Intel's upcoming "AI Everywhere" event.

Sierra Glen will arrive with the next-gen Xeon codenamed Sierra Forest, and won't bring much changes with it... it'll have some minor tweaks, just as Gracemonth will. Clearwater Forest will feature an optimized version of the Skymont cores, it seems, which will be the same E-Core architecture that we'll see Intel use with its upcoming Lunar Lake and Panther Lake CPUs that should in 2025.

Clearwater Forest will max out at 288 cores, which will be the same max thread count of Sierra Forest CPUs... except Sierra Forest-SP features 144 cores and 288 threads in total. Instead, Clearwater Forest has 288 E-Cores without Hyper-Threading. The IPC improvement is expected to be decent, with Clearwater Forest featuring a larger L3 cache.

We should expect Intel's next-gen Xeon codenamed Clearwater Forest to launch with its upgraded E-Core architecture in 2025, with Intel making the new Xeon CPUs on its in-house 18A process node.

Intel's next-gen Clearwater Forest Xeon CPU has only E-Cores, but up to 288 cores 802

What will AMD have by then? AMD just announced its new Ryzen Threadripper PRO 7995WX processor with up to 96 cores and 192 threads of Zen 4-powered CPU goodness. But that's a HEDT processor, while AMD's datacenter-focused EPYC family of CPUs see the Genoa-X processors with up to 96 cores and 192 threads, while the cloud and HPC-focused EPYC 9754 processor has 128 cores and 256 threads of CPU power.

After that, we're going to see AMD's next-gen EPYC codenamed Turin, which will feature up to 256 cores and 512 threads of Zen 5-based CPU power. These new EPYC Turin CPUs should easily crush a 288-core E-Core-only Xeon Clearwater Forest.... but I guess we'll be waiting a couple of years to see that high-end CPU battle of the giants.

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Anthony joined the TweakTown team in 2010 and has since reviewed 100s of graphics cards. Anthony is a long time PC enthusiast with a passion of hate for games built around consoles. FPS gaming since the pre-Quake days, where you were insulted if you used a mouse to aim, he has been addicted to gaming and hardware ever since. Working in IT retail for 10 years gave him great experience with custom-built PCs. His addiction to GPU tech is unwavering and has recently taken a keen interest in artificial intelligence (AI) hardware.

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