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Intel to stop production of over 25 CPUs

Posted: 06 Jan 2012     Print Version  Bookmark and Share

Keywords:CPU  production 

Intel is reportedly discontinuing 25 CPU models to pave the way for its upcoming 22nm Ivy Bridge processors. According to reports, the chip giant has circulated a notification among its hardware partners that it will slow down production of some desktop CPUs, before completely discontinuing them altogether.

Intel will be slowing production of the Core i5-661/660, Core i3-530, Pentium E5700 and Celeron E3500, before halting them altogether in the second quarter, according to Intel's Taiwanese hardware partners.

The chip giant is also expected to stop manufacturing its Core i7-960/950/930/870/880S/870S, Core i5-2300/680/670, Core Duo E7500/E7600, Pentium G960, E6600/E550 and Celeron E3300 in the second quarter of 2012, while the Core i7-875K/860S, Core i5-760/750S/655K and Celeron 450/430 will have production halted already in this first quarter.

Intel's new CPU platform is Maho Bay, which includes the Ivy Bridge CPU and Panther Point chipset. While the official launch is expected in early April, mainboard makers like Taiwanese firm Gigabyte have said early motherboard samples will be on show at both CES and CeBit this month and next.

Maho Bay will be completely compatible with existing socket LGA 1155 motherboards for Sandy Bridge CPUs, said a Gigabyte spokesman, meaning older SandyBridge CPUs will work with the new motherboards too. This will allow cash conscious users to upgrade their mainboards in April and wait to upgrade their CPU later on in the year.

"The new CPU will work with old LGA 1155 MBs, and old CPUs will work with the new LGA 1155 MBs," said Gigabyte's Tim Handley adding, "Of course LGA 1366 or LGA 2011 CPUs will not work with new or old LGA 1155 motherboards."

With the motherboards that run the CPUs being both backwards and forwards compatible, Intel can safely run down its old LGA 1155 CPU inventories to make way for the new, higher margin LGA 1155 CPUs.

For those waiting to decide whether to wait in order to upgrade to Ivy Bridge, the difference boils down to better integrated graphics and lower power owing to the 22-nm process technology the chips are manufactured on. Ivy Bridge chips will have DX11 graphics included and overall performance is expected to be significantly higher.

"It is well worth the wait for those looking to buy a new PC," said Handley.

-Sylvie Barak
  EE Times

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