Final 12 months, Intel launched an uncommon desktop CPU household. The Kaby Lake-X sequence of processors was an try and goose demand for Intel’s HEDT (Excessive Finish DeskTop) platform by providing cheaper CPUs based mostly on Kaby Lake, reasonably than the Skylake-X cores that Intel launched on the similar time. The Core i7-7740X and Core i5-7640X had been clocked marginally larger than the mainstream desktop components (although the Core i5-7640X received a bigger increase on this regard), however the chips had limitations that hit them laborious at market. Now Intel is planning to tug your entire product line.
That’s the phrase from a brand new Intel support document, which notes:
Market demand for the merchandise listed within the “Merchandise Affected/Intel Ordering Codes” tables under have shifted to different Intel merchandise. The merchandise recognized on this notification might be discontinued and unavailable for added orders after the “Final Product Discontinuance Order Date” (see “Key Milestones” above).
The issue with Kaby Lake-X had little to do with the processors themselves, and all the things to do with how they built-in into the HEDT platform. As a result of Intel hadn’t designed its LGA2011v3 socket with built-in graphics in thoughts, no Kaby Lake-X chip may use its graphics capabilities or QuickSync encoding. Whereas most fans don’t use Intel built-in graphics as a major resolution, it’s nonetheless good to have the GPU for emergencies, and QuickSync is beneficial in its personal proper, for quick encodes.
As a result of Kaby Lake-X solely had two reminiscence channels, half the DIMMs on an ordinary HEDT motherboard had been ineffective, which isn’t an effective way to place a product. And, after all, the issue solely received worse as soon as Espresso Lake debuted and the Core i7-8700Okay dropped. A comparability between the households makes the purpose reasonably properly:
In a world the place the Core i7-8700Okay didn’t exist, the Core i7-7740X no less than provided marginally larger clocks on the similar worth level and the choice to improve to a better core-count CPU at a later date. However as soon as the six-core, excessive single-core clock Core i7-8700K was in market, there was merely no technique to justify Kaby Lake X. Whereas we gave the nod to the Ryzen 7 2700X as the higher general chip on the prime of the market, the 8700Okay remains to be a wonderful processor with unmatched single-thread efficiency, whereas six-core Core i5s provide wonderful scaling in their very own proper.
For a number of years, there’s been a rumor that Intel would try to maneuver fans over to the HEDT house totally by shifting its overclockable and higher-clock CPUs over to that market. It’ll be fascinating to see how the HEDT platform continues to evolve now that Espresso Lake has launched six-core CPUs to the desktop. Intel has a number of choices obtainable, together with stepping up reminiscence channels and core counts to extra aggressively compete with AMD’s Threadripper. Intel has held the road on worth, no less than publicly, since Skylake-X launched final 12 months, however we may nonetheless see a shakeup the subsequent time HEDT is refreshed.