CHIPMAKER Intel has put back the launch of its Ivy Bridge chips by a month, with a leaked roadmap citing April 2012 for its revised Sandy Bridge processors.
Intel's Ivy Bridge refresh of Sandy Bridge was set to appear late this year but the firm has put the date back twice, now telling its customers that Ivy Bridge chips won't tip up until April 2012. A leaked roadmap shows that Intel's upcoming chips will sport thermal design power (TDP) ratings between 65W and 77W, while 'thin' versions of the chips will be rated between 35W and 45W.
According to X-bit labs, Intel's Ivy Bridge range topper will be a 3.5GHz, quad-core Hyperthreaded Core i7-3770K chip featuring an unlocked multiplier and 8MB of Level 2 cache that can be run at 3.9GHz in Turbo mode. It is pretty safe to assume that chip will occupy Chipzilla's traditional top-of-the-range $1,000 price tag.
Below the Core i7-3770K, the Core i5-3570K will also interest overclockers with an unlocked multiplier, a base clock speed of 3.4GHz and a Turbo clock speed of 3.8GHz. Although there is no pricing available at this time, it would be fair to assume that the Core i5-3570K could be a far more affordable and attractive alternative to the $1,000 Core i7-3770K blunderbuss for most gamers and overclockers.
All of Intel's Ivy Bridge chips will feature graphics cores, with the firm opting to stick its Intel HD 2500 in most of the chips. Intel will put its new HD 4000 graphics core in the Ivy Bridge Core i5-3570K and all of its upcoming Ivy Bridge Core i7 chips. Both of Intel's GPU cores support Microsoft's DirectX 11 and OpenCL 1.1.
Intel has said that all Ivy Bridge processors will be fabbed on the firm's 22nm Tri-gate process node. At this point it is unclear whether the delays to Ivy Bridge have been due to that process node or simply business decisions.
With AMD's Bulldozer desktop processors not giving Intel's present Sandy Bridge generation a run for its money, Intel might simply think that it can hold off with Ivy Bridge a bit longer, milking sales from Sandy Bridge for a while. That said, there is no doubt that moving to a new process node has its own dangers, and Intel will want to avoid another recall after Cougar Point. µ