A slide allegedly leaked from an internal Intel presentation deck offers a first glimpse at the technology that will be found in the 8-Series chipsets for the upcoming Haswell processor generation.
The slide, leaked by Chinese technology site Zol.com.cn
, appears to be an official Intel creation. Detailed within is a chipset codenamed Lynx Point, designed to provide support to the next-generation Haswell processors due to be released in 2013.
Lynx Point, the slide claims, will include integrated USB 3.0 support for up to six individual ports, six high-speed SATA 6Gb/s ports, and support for quad-read Serial Peripheral Interface (SPI) devices. Also included is a next-generation version of Intel's vPro, which provides hardware-based security and management functionality for enterprises. This will likely depend on CPU support, however, and will only be enabled on specific processor models.
The chipset is also claimed to include performance and power optimisation tricks for users of solid-state drives (SSDs,) under the codename Lake Tiny. Enhancements are also promised for Intel's Rapid Storage Technology (RST) driver, although the slide doesn't detail precisely what these enhancements are.
For laptop makers, the news of lowered power draw will be welcomed. According to details in the slide, idle, S3 standby and active Thermal Design Profile (TDP) are all reduced in Lynx Point, while the chipset itself is physically smaller than its predecessors.
Other slides from the same deck confirm existing Haswell facts: based on a 22nm process, the new architecture brings new instruction set architecture additions including Advanced Vector Extensions (AVX) and improved cryptography performance, while the on-board graphics chip will support DirectX 11.1 and OpenCL 1.2 over digital and analogue connections.
The slides also confirm that Haswell will be launching on a new socket type, LGA1150. While that means a new motherboard for those wanting to upgrade, Intel promises to keep Haswell's successor in 2014 to the same socket. Finally, processor TDPs ranging from a top-end 95W to a bottom-end 35W are detailed.
Intel, as is usual, is saying nothing other than the oft-repeated fact that it 'refuses to comment on rumour or speculation regarding unannounced products.
' With the slides appearing genuine and matching known Haswell facts, however, it appears that we could have our first chipset details after all.
Haswell, and its associated chipset, is due to launch in the first half of 2013 as the successor to Ivy Bridge.