In a head-scratching move, Intel has added nine 14nm Comet Lake processors to its 10th generation portfolio that also includes the brand-new 10nm Ice Lake processors.
Unlike the Ice Lake family that uses the heavily revised ‘Sunny Cove’ architecture, Anandtech said the Comet Lake lineup continues to leverage Intel’s Skylake arch on the company’s ongoing 14nm processing node.
Like the Ice Lake family, Intel has also divided the entire Comet Lake offerings into the U series and the Y series. The former aims at mid-tier performance applications with a base thermal design power (TDP) of 15w, while the latter optimizes for low-power applications with a base TDP of 7W.
That said, it doesn’t mean that Comet Lake represents a lazy refresh like the old 2017 Kaby Lake processors, which is also a Skylake derivative.
For starters, the U series now has a six-core variant called the Core i7-10710U, thus breaking Intel’s tradition of reserving CPUs with more than four cores for the faster (and more power-hungry) H and HK series.
However, knowing that Intel has squeezed eight cores into its top-of-the-line 9th gen Coffee Lake Core i9 laptop processors, the change shouldn’t come as a complete surprise.
Furthermore, Intel has outfitted the Comet Lake U series with a brand-new memory controller that supports the LPDDR4X, LPDDR3 and DDR4 memory standards, allowing OEMs to pick their preferred specifications. The Y-series on the other hand only takes LPDDR3.
The company has also back-ported Adaptix dynamic power tuning technology from Ice Lake to better manage the processor’s thermal budget. As a result, Intel has claimed an eight to 12 percent performance improvement.
Besides this, the U series gets native support for Wi-Fi 6 (802.11ax) through the new 400 series on-package chipset. The Y series, unfortunately, relies on add-on solutions to fulfill that function.
However, the Comet Lake family still misses out substantial upgrades like on-chip Thunderbolt 3 support, AI and Gen11-based Iris Plus integrated GPU.
As to availability, Intel has stated that laptops with 10th gen Core processors should arrive during the 2019 Holiday season.