Driver leak reveals Intel Comet Lake CPUs with up to 10 cores
According to new data snippets found in the Linux DRM kernel driver and coreboot, the Ice Lake family of CPUs will not directly supersede the Whiskey Lake one. Due to the manufacturing problems with the 14 nm node and the postponing of the 10 nm processors, Intel will first introduce an intermediary family called Comet Lake based on the 14 nm process.
The DRM kernel driver points to the fact that Comet Lake “comes off of Coffee Lake”, so it will only bring some minor architectural refreshes to the existing Gen 8 and Gen 9 CPUs. It even specifies that the integrated graphics processor will be the same Gen 9 GPU included with last year's Coffee Lake models.
Furthermore, the coreboot code reveals that the Comet Lake will get ULV and mobile chips, as well as desktop models. The ULV chips (CometLake-U) appear to come in 2-core, 4-core and 6-core variants, while the mobile chips (CometLake-H) are getting 6/8/10-core models. As for the desktop CPUs, there will be 6-core and 10-core processors, but the coreboot code does not mention anything about 8-core CPUs.
Looking at existing roadmaps, since Ice Lake is expected to launch in late 2019, the Comet Lake CPUs will most likely launch in mid-2019, as a regular refresh for Whiskey Lake. Intel may have upped the core count to 10 in order to match AMD’s rumored 10-core Ryzen 3000 CPUs, however, rumor has it there will be Ryzen 3000 models with up to 16 physical cores and AMD will once again give Intel a run for the money.