At Computex a couple of weeks ago, Intel announced its new Basin Falls platform, consisting of the X299 chipset with motherboards based on it, a pair of Kaby Lake-X processors, and a set of Skylake-X processors going all the way up to eighteen cores, denoting the first use of Intel’s enterprise level high core-count silicon in a consumer product. For the most part, we had assumed that the news was just that, and following traditional Intel strategy they would not officially give a launch date until the reviews go live sometime later. So imagine our surprise when Intel starts announcing dates at the E3 show this week.

As part of Intel’s E3 press release, as well as their presentations at the show, the new Core i9 processors were discussed, along with Intel’s continued commitment towards eSports. Intel gave the dates for the new platform as the following:

  • 4, 6, 8 and 10-core parts available for pre-order from June 19th
  • 4, 6, 8 and 10-core parts shipping to consumers from June 26th
  • 12-core parts expected to ship in August
  • 14, 16 and 18 core parts expected to ship in October

This means that the following five processors will be available from June 26th:

Intel Basin Falls X299 Processors, June 26th
  i5-7640X i7-7740X i7-7800X i7-7820X i9-7900X
Cores 4C/4T 4C/8T 6C/12T 8C/16T 10C/20T
Base Clock 4.0 GHz 4.3 GHz 3.5 GHz 3.6 GHz 3.3 GHz
Turbo Clock 4.2 GHz 4.5 GHz 4.0 GHz 4.3 GHz 4.3 GHz
TurboMax Clock N/A N/A N/A 4.5 GHz 4.5 GHz
L2 Cache 256 KB per core 1 MB per core
L3 Cache 6 MB 8 MB 8.25 MB 11 MB 13.75 MB
PCIe Lanes 16 28 44
Memory Channels 2 4
Memory Freq DDR4-2666 DDR4-2400 DDR4-2666
TDP 112 W 140 W
Price (1k tray) $242 $339 $389 $599 $999

The two quad-core parts are part of the Kaby Lake-X family, essentially using the mainstream Kaby Lake-S silicon but disabling the integrated graphics and expanding the voltage/frequency window and TDP limit to give extra frequency. As already demonstrated, extreme overclockers have hit over 7.5 GHz on these chips at a special Computex Intel event using Liquid Helium, with positive words coming out about 24/7 overclocking capabilities on air and water.

The other three parts are the Skylake-X family, with the 6, 8 and 10-core variants all coming from the same harvested low-core-count die. The big upswing for these processors is the rearranged cache arrangement, with Intel moving from 256KB of L2 cache on the previous generation to 1MB of L2 cache on Skylake-X (and changing the L3 cache from being a fully inclusive cache to being a non-inclusive cache). This significantly enhances software which is L2 cache size sensitive, although it remains to be seen how much of an effect it will have for consumers.

For the other parts, 12 core and up, Intel is staggering their launch to the extent that we do not even know many of the details. Intel's own documents list them all as TBD for frequency, power and DRAM support – the only certainties are core counts, pricing, and the fact that they will use the same socket as the above five processors. The August shipping date for the 12-core will be interesting, given that Dell has announced that pre-orders for its ThreadRipper Alienware desktops start on July 27th. The same announcement from Dell states 'and the Area 51 featuring Intel Core X-Series will arrive on August 22nd, and the product page states that this includes the 12-core option, as well as 6-10 cores. Whether the wording 'arrive' means pre-order or release we do not know, although the TR version explicitly states 'pre-order'. Ryan points out that this could just mean the 6-10 core options, as it doesn't explicitly state the 12 core and Intel hasn't made a firm date themselves yet.

Further Reading

Source: Intel

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  • Hurr Durr - Wednesday, June 14, 2017 - link

    AMD finally comes out with a decent processor after literally ten years of failure to compete, already has to slash prices, and here are you proclaiming intel "RIP" and calling others names. Got to hand it to AMD fanatics, comment sections would be far more boring without you guys.
  • bigboxes - Wednesday, June 14, 2017 - link

    Consumers are happy that prices are dropping. I am not rooting for one company over another. I want competition. By what is best for you. Price/Performance.
  • Twingo - Tuesday, June 13, 2017 - link

    The X299 platform is much more expensive than the AM4 platforms. 8 Core starts at ~300 for the Ryzen part versus 600 for the Intel. They aren't that price competitive. The Intel BETTER be significantly faster for 2x the price.
  • Ninjawithagun - Tuesday, June 13, 2017 - link

    Actually, try $150. And that's before all the 3rd party sellers mark up the price from $599 to $650 and beyond. You have a very bad memory, if you don't remember this happening with every single Intel CPU release since Sandy Bridge. Case in point, the 7700K was supposed to be $329 on release, yet could not be bought anywhere on the release date for less than $399. I rest my case. AMD Ryzen is not only alive and well, it will rule the consumer mainstream market for the next 6-12 months. Let's say by some mere chance of the 7820K is available for $599, then one has to ask that does it have 25% more performance vs. an 1800X? Nope. Plain and simple, Intel's prices are not competitive and AMD wins again.
  • Ninjawithagun - Tuesday, June 13, 2017 - link

    ...oh and I forgot to mention the fact that X299 motherboards are going to be EXPENSIVE...much more expensive than any AMD X370 enthusiast motherboard easily by a couple hundred dollars. AMD wins yet again and doesn't even have to compete against the 7820K with Threadripper as Ryzen 7 already beats it! ;-)
  • Gothmoth - Tuesday, June 13, 2017 - link

    i have been using only intel for over a decade.

    but im not stupid enough to ignore their (price) policy.
    milking the user for as much money as possible for only minor improvements.

    i will take a close look at the new boards and cpus.
    i want to build a 10 core system this year.
  • haukionkannel - Tuesday, June 13, 2017 - link

    Intel could have maid the 6 core version to have 44 PCI lines and it would have been a really good chip, but instead it will be something very different.
    Well maybe next year...
  • mapesdhs - Thursday, June 15, 2017 - link

    They could have done a lot better than that a long time ago. Remember the 4-core 4820K has 40 lanes, and the original 3930K was just an 8-core (40 lanes) with 2 cores disabled.
  • colonelclaw - Tuesday, June 13, 2017 - link

    Assuming that ThreadRipper will cost $1000 or less (some sites are saying as low as $850), then by the time the 12-core and up chips actually ship, surely Intel will have to make price cuts in order to stay competitive?
  • nevcairiel - Tuesday, June 13, 2017 - link

    Should wait for any TR reviews before judging, its an entirely different concept then Intels CPUs. Using two Dies on one chip can have real disadvantages if the software is not aware of this layout, so we'll see how that works.

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