THERE’S LOTS TO TALK ABOUT here, so we’ll keep it brief where we can. This is Intel’s latest 11th-gen Core series of desktop processors. It’s also the company’s seventh iteration on the 14nm transistor design. It debuted 14nm with Broadwell (fifth-gen, successor to Haswell and Devil’s Canyon) in 2015, and since then the company has struggled to break past that 14nm barrier, with delay after delay proving costly. There have been several attempts, and Intel did see some success with low-powered laptop and ultrabook chips in 2019, thanks to the 10nm+ Ice Lake CPUs, but desktop parts never arrived.
As AMD has continued to push the limits of its architectural design and manufacturing processes, Intel’s had to pivot to keep up, increasing core counts, voltages, IPCs, and frequencies in the process, and working its way around the engineering and design problems induced by those unorthodox methods of improving performance.
With its 5000-series CPUs, however, AMD presented something that even Intel couldn’t match, with dominance in both single-core IPC and multicore capacity, and continued support for PCIe 4.0. Intel’s 10th-gen series, when it launched, was a hard pill to swallow for most people wanting to upgrade, as it only represented increased core counts, with slightly higher clock speeds and IPC, more heat, and, of course, a new socket.
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