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[ExtremeTech]An end to scaling: Intel’s next-generation chips will sacrifice speed to reduce power

post #1 of 161
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http://www.extremetech.com/extreme/222590-an-end-to-scaling-intels-next-generation-chips-will-sacrifice-speed-to-reduce-power
Quote:
Faster, cheaper, smaller. For decades, those three words drove innovation in Silicon Valley and across the world. Even after clock speed increases flatlined after 2005, the semiconductor industry found ways to drive performance forward while increasing total transistor counts and improving on-die integration of various components. The rise of SoCs, GPGPU, and Intel’s own Xeon Phi are all designed to increase performance even if clock speeds are largely static.

Now, Intel has acknowledged that the future of semiconductors may rely on technologies that reduce absolute performance in exchange for improved power consumption. William Holt, head of Intel’s Technology and Manufacturing Group, made the announcement at the International Solid State Circuits Conference (ISSCC) this past week, when discussing some of the options Intel is evaluating. These technologies aren’t coming next year or the year after — all of the tech in question would be introduced after 2021.
post #2 of 161
Part of me just died a little.
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post #3 of 161
I can understand if they reduce clockspeeds. That isn't new, they did it for the Core 2 Duo line-up in 2006 when compared to the Pentium 4 / D line. The much improved architecture more than made up for the lower clockspeeds.

On the other hand, what I, and I guess nobody else would understand is if there are actual performance regressions. Nobody would buy a chip that performs worse than the previous one.
 
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post #4 of 161
Quote:
Originally Posted by tpi2007 View Post

I can understand if they reduce clockspeeds. That isn't new, they did it for the Core 2 Duo line-up in 2006 when compared to the Pentium 4 / D line. The much improved architecture more than made up for the lower clockspeeds.

On the other hand, what I, and I guess nobody else would understand is if there are actual performance regressions. Nobody would buy a chip that performs worse than the previous one.

for desktops, no..... but for mobile and servers maybe.

All we can do is hope they keep up the enthusiast segment with a higher power option.
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post #5 of 161

Switching speeds and power consumption of future chips
Quote:
Our current technology is the green line.
What is an "electronic chip"? Any ideas?
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post #6 of 161
Quote:
Originally Posted by tpi2007 View Post

I can understand if they reduce clockspeeds. That isn't new, they did it for the Core 2 Duo line-up in 2006 when compared to the Pentium 4 / D line. The much improved architecture more than made up for the lower clockspeeds.

On the other hand, what I, and I guess nobody else would understand is if there are actual performance regressions. Nobody would buy a chip that performs worse than the previous one.
thumb.gif
They think pc sales are bad now!
I still use incandescents on all my dimmers and where I want light to look good.
And imagine all of the smug sandy bridge owners rolleyes.gif
post #7 of 161
Quote:
Originally Posted by tpi2007 View Post

I can understand if they reduce clockspeeds. That isn't new, they did it for the Core 2 Duo line-up in 2006 when compared to the Pentium 4 / D line. The much improved architecture more than made up for the lower clockspeeds.

On the other hand, what I, and I guess nobody else would understand is if there are actual performance regressions. Nobody would buy a chip that performs worse than the previous one.

This.
Maybe finally we will see some serious IPC gains. I have no problem with a lower clocked part that outperforms last gen equivalent part that was clocked much higher. Though how the new part will overclock could be a whole new can of worms.
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post #8 of 161
Intel's goal since the disastrous Bulldozer release has been this ~ heck i wrote about it back in 2012 ~ what they want is to take today's desktop cpu and put it into every mobile device in the planet. In short they want today's performance paired with SOC ARM power draw and size. This has been the windmill they've been tilting at every generation of chip. NOT more performance, but MORE performance/watt.

This isn't new news. It's just no one paid attention. I've been saying for 5 years now, intel isn't competing against AMD, they're competing against ARM. My conclusion 5 years ago is the same as my current one, which is "at some point desktop performance will stop improving" thanks in no small part due to lack of competition. If Zen doesn't compete/resurrect AMD, then expect Skylake to be the pinnacle of Intel desktop performance.
 
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post #9 of 161
Quote:
Originally Posted by tpi2007 View Post

I can understand if they reduce clockspeeds. That isn't new, they did it for the Core 2 Duo line-up in 2006 when compared to the Pentium 4 / D line. The much improved architecture more than made up for the lower clockspeeds.

On the other hand, what I, and I guess nobody else would understand is if there are actual performance regressions. Nobody would buy a chip that performs worse than the previous one.

This would be different.

In the case of Core 2, Intel basically took another set of parts, Core Duo/Pentium M and then relaunched with with both higher performance AND higher clock speed. Using P4 as a predecessor paints a muddy story as it was explicitly designed around high clock speeds and less around performance.
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post #10 of 161
There is some good news to this, though. As with Nvidia's Kepler and then Maxwell architecture, Nvidia's goal has been performance/watt for years. However, because they have been able to reduce energy consumption on the same node, they have been able to increase performance. Intel probably isn't going to take the same road as CPUs and GPUs are fundamentally different from an architecture standpoint. However, we all knew this time was coming where performance would cease to be the goal, and energy efficiency would become the new benchmark.

This is how the "Internet of Things" is born, my friends. It may sound grim for enthusiasts, but oh boy are we headed for a crazy time from a computer tech standpoint. thumb.gif
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