Intel is done making fast CPUs. Slow is the future.

Discussion in 'Technology' started by bfun, Feb 10, 2016.

  1. Does it seem like increments in CPU speed have been crawling since Sandy Bridge? According to Intel the days of making faster and faster chips is over. Technology has hit a wall and the future is with slower chips.

    “We’re going to see major transitions,” said Holt. “The new technology will be fundamentally different. The best pure technology improvements we can make will bring improvements in power consumption but will reduce speed.”
  2. #2 cmdrmonkey, Feb 10, 2016
    Last edited: Feb 10, 2016
    Performance hasn't improved much since Sandy Bridge. What has improved is power consumption and battery life on laptops and tablets. It makes things pretty boring as a desktop power user though, where those things don't really matter. No games will make a desktop Core i7 break a sweat. Even a first gen i7 920 from late 2008 is overkill for gaming and won't bottleneck current GPUs. My brother is still running one of those, but upgraded his GPU to a GTX 970 recently. He maxes out nearly all games with a CPU that is 7+ years old, and his CPU is never the limiting factor. He says it makes no sense to upgrade unless his motherboard fails, and I agree with him.

    CPU power in games might be an issue on AMD chips, but who still uses those for gaming, or like at all really? AMD CPUs stopped being relevant when the Core 2 Duo launched, and Intel reached a point where AMD can never catch up with the Core i series chips. The only people still buying AMD CPUs are hopeless fanbois stuck in the past.
  3. The last time that a CPU would be your bottleneck in gaming was like forever ago. Even the mobile equivalent of their core i processors were sufficient.

    I skipped multiple generations of cpu's before I upgraded. I went from a core i5 (lynnfield) in 2009 to a core i5 (haswell) processor in 2014. I honestly felt the cpu was fine but the motherboard features were so out of date. 2009 was very very early for USB 3.0 so my mobo only had 2 ports on a separate NEC controller. It also only had intel sata2 controllers. the 2 sata 3.0 controllers were marvell.

    the only thing that would keep me upgrading is the changing technology happening around the cpu's. USB 3.1 and thunderbolt 3 with usb type-c, sata express, 3rd gen pci express, and m.2 connectors are what we're all moving to and you'd need a new motherboard for all of that.

    alot of stuff that gamers would even need high powered cpu's would be video encoding if they were uploading clips to youtube and whatnot. but all of that stuff is taken care of with the video card nowadays with nvidia's shadowplay and amd's gaming evolved. i've messed with shadowplay and it's like magic. it's pretty much instant even at the resolutions i play at (1440p).
  4. I'm guessing in the far off science fiction future of 6 years from now CPUs and motherboards might be a single piece. They pretty much are already in every form of electronics except for desktop systems and if no one is worried about a faster and better processors anymore people wont be shopping for new CPUs. I mean I might upgrade if a new CPU is 10% faster but I sure as hell wouldn't spend $250 to save 10 watts of power. People make a big deal out of small power differences in desktop graphics cards and they could simply change out one incandescent bulb in their house with an LED bulb and make a greater difference. Anyway if CPUs don't get faster I can't see people upgrading to faster memory either and cooling may not be important. The GPU and storage will be the only pieces that need upgrading. Perhaps these grandpa boxes we have will finally die and we'll just have small modular PC components.


  5. Skylake is supposed to be 25% faster than Sandy Bridge I believe, so it hasn't stopped, just slowed down. If you have a Sandy Bridge chip that's gonna be a modest jump.

    Intel have no competition in the laptop, desktop or server market, they have no reason to try hard.

    Some of the new Xeons are pretty good though if you have a few thousand £/$ to throw at 16+ cores.
  6. Well 25% across 5 generations of chips seems meager compared to the huge gains we used to see. The majority of that performance jump came from Haswell. Skylake looks like the smallest jump yet. It's even slower than Broadwell in a few benches.

    Sandy Bridge to Ivy Bridge: Average ~5.8% Up
    Ivy Bridge to Haswell: Average ~11.2% Up
    Haswell to Broadwell: Average ~3.3% Up
    Broadwell to Skylake (DDR3): Average ~2.4% Up
    Broadwell to Skylake (DDR4): Average ~2.7% Up