This smoking new CPU from Intel does away with Frontside Bus altogether and brings a technology back from the dead.
This month, Intel moves on from the Core microarchitecture to the next generation of processors for mobile, desktop and servers, codenamed Nehalem and officially named the Core i7 family.
We've spent a few weeks with Intel’s test kit for the new desktop part, codenamed Bloomfield, as well as the new compatible motherboard chipset the X58 Express, codenamed Tylersburg.
The new platform represents a fundamental change in the way Intel processors communicate with the rest of the system, but more on that later.
Tick-Tock: this one is a tock
Intel's tick-tock development process means every "tick" of the clock is a minor update to processor architecture (such as a process shrink), while the "tock" is a major upgrade to the architecture.
Since adopting this process, Intel's first "tick" was the process shrink for Presler, Yonah and Dempsey CPUs to 65nm, and the first Tock the release of the Core microarchitecture which superceded them.
Since then, there's been another "tick" with a process shrink from 65nm to 45nm for the Penryn processors.
Now, we’re seeing the "tock" side of the development process with the new Nehalem microarchitecture. So this is a major relaunch.
Intel's Tick-Tock Model
Looking forward, we can expect to see a process shrink of the Nehalem family to 32nm around this time next year, and roughly 12 months after that, a new microarchitecture codenamed Sandy Bridge (formerly Gesher).
Currently, we don’t know much about Sandy Bridge except unconfirmed whispers that it will focus on power efficiency and include a combined CPU and GPU on die.