It Just Got WORSE For Intel 10th Gen - Comet Lake Arrives

Intel sticks to 14nm for 10th-gen Comet Lake laptop CPUs

Earlier this summer, Dell announced an all-new XPS 13 2-in-1 convertible running Intel's 10 generation 10nm Ice Lake processors.

Just weeks after unveiling the first models in its 10 Gen Core CPU lineup, Intel has now announced another series based on a different architecture, but targeted at the same segment. It is important to note that these new processors does not belong to "Ice Lake" family, instead they belong to "Comet Lake".

It will be interesting to see how performance compares between Ice Lake and Comet Lake, as well as Whiskey Lake.

Despite being built on a 10nm process and having fewer cores / threads and a lower Max Turbo frequency, Ice Lake actually consumes more power than the 14nm Comet Lake.

Comet Lake processors are all about increasing performance by boosting clock speeds.

Comet Lake chips, on the other hand, are created to be proper mobile powerhouses with up to six cores and 12 threads, yet Intel promises they won't glug down more power than their eighth-gen predecessors with fewer cores. Comet Lake's higher core counts deliver more performance in those types of workloads. Some Comet Lake systems are heading for Project Athena verification too, it says. That makes sense, as the Comet Lake chips don't come with Gen11 graphics and therefore do not have the "Gx" identifier, but that hardly helps the average consumer. These families of CPUs will have 15W and 7W nominal TDPs respectively, though laptop OEMs can choose to configure U-series models to up to 25W, while Y-series parts can be designed for thermal environments between 4.5W and 9W.

Conversely, Comet Lake with have a "U" or "Y" identifier at the end of its product string, whereas Ice Lake models will not. In other words, Intel is using its confusing change of product identifiers with the Ice Lake chips (here is a deeper look at what this mismash of numbers means) to help customers identify the difference between the chips. None of this extra performance impacts battery life, insists Intel, and the faster modern connectivity options are a boon to users too.

Intel expect these new Comet Lake chips to appear in more than 90 ultraportable PCs before the holiday season.

In yet another round of confusion, the Core i7 chips support faster LPDDR4X-2933 and DDR4-2666 memory than the previous-gen models, while the Core i5 models only support LPDDR3-2133. Intel refers to the new processor selection as "performance powerhouses that bring double digit performance gains compared with the previous generation." . Some of the chips launched today include the first 6C/12T processors ever in the U-Series, and the range offers faster frequencies, faster memory interfaces, Wi-Fi 6 and broader scaling of Thunderbolt 3.

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