It’s well confirmed at this point that the 10nm Ice Lake parts won’t be coming to the desktop market anytime soon. We’ll be getting another 14nm rebrand, Comet Lake-S: Higher core counts and even higher boost clocks. Recently leaked benchmarks have shown that this strategy actually might work for Intel. A 10 core CPU with an all-core boost of 4GHz is no joke. That means at least the flagship (Core i9-10900K) will be a chip worth checking out. According to a report posted on Weibo, Intel is indeed planning a 10nm lineup for the mainstream desktop and DIY market. This will be called Alder Lake. Based on the Golden Cove core architecture or its successor, these chips will form Intel’s 12th Gen desktop processors.
At this point, you might ask, what about the 11th Gen? Well, turns out that 11th Gen “Rocket Lake” will be another 14nm lineup. However, unlike Coffee Lake and Comet Lake, it will leverage a backport of the Willow Cove core architecture. This is the same design that the upcoming Tiger Lake mobile CPUs will be based on. Notably higher IPC and potent Gen12 Xe graphics will be the main highlights of Alder Lake. You can also expect high boost clocks at acceptable TDPs as 10nm will be a relatively mature node by then.
Alder Lake will most likely feature a minimum of 10 cores for the flagship with support for PCIe 4 and potentially DDR5 memory. We might even get PCIe 5 and Intel’s CXL Interconnect as well. By that time, Intel’s 2nd Gen Xe graphics cards should also be on the market. These 7nm GPUs could be bundled with certain processors at attractive prices.
As for the socket, Comet Lake-S and Rocket Lake-S will use the same LGA 1200 socket while being a 10nm chip, Alder Lake will switch to a newer LGA 1700 design. This is still quite far off in the future, so don’t expect updates anytime soon. We will keep you posted if we hear anything new on Intel’s 10nm CPUs.