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Intel announces new 10th gen Comet Lake vPro processors with enhanced Hardware Shield features and...overclocking support?

Intel 10th gen vPro processors are now available across mobile, desktop, and workstation. (Image Source: Intel)
Intel 10th gen vPro processors are now available across mobile, desktop, and workstation. (Image Source: Intel)
Intel has announced the vPro variants of Comet Lake processors across mobile, desktop, and workstation. The new vPro processors offer enhanced Hardware Shield security features, a modern lifecycle management, and will even be available in Project Athena-based designs. The intriguing aspect, however, is the inclusion of K-series unlocked processors that are capable of overclocking, whose exact purpose in a business environment seems unclear at the moment.

Each new generation of Intel processors is followed up by a vPro counterpart and this year, it is the turn of the 10th gen Comet Lake processors. Comet Lake vPro is part of the Intel Stable IT Platform Program (SIPP), and it brings improvements to enterprise features such as Intel Hardware Shield, Active Management Technology, and Endpoint Management Assistant.

The 10th gen Comet Lake vPro lineup spans across desktop, mobile, and workstation. Essentially, these are the same processors that are available on the consumer side but with added vPro enterprise management and security features. Intel said that the new vPro processors provide up to 40% overall improved performance compared to a three-year old PC (this is in comparison with Kaby Lake-U laptop) and added Wi-Fi 6 CNVi (the CRF module still needs to be separately purchased).

The 10th gen vPro chips are available in the same clock and TDP configurations as their consumer counterparts with no Core i3 offerings as expected. Intel did not provide the turbo boost speeds during the press brief, but we've managed to gather them after the presentation (see spec sheets below) though we are still yet to get the exact TVB and Turbo Boost 3.0 speeds. That being said, expect those numbers to be similar to the 10th gen Comet Lake H-series and S-series offerings.

Intel also touched upon the enhanced Hardware Shield feature that allows for advanced threat detection and BIOS rollback in case of a malware attack. However, the company did not delve deep with regards to the technology itself and how it protects from successive attacks. 

This could perhaps be the first time that Intel is enabling these 10th gen vPro chips to be presumably compatible with all 400-series chipsets. Usually, vPro SKUs require a special Q-series or a W-series chipset, but there have been no such indications this time around. If indeed all 400-series chipsets are supported, it could enable vPro to have wider market access.

Interestingly, the desktop vPro lineup also includes the unlocked K-series processors. When asked as to what could be the purpose of having overclocking abilities in an enterprise scenario, Intel didn't have a concrete answer but said that they were evaluating such modalities and welcome suggestions as to how overclocking can possibly be useful in business environments. 

Also on offer are new Xeon W-1200 vPro workstation parts. These require new motherboards with W480 chipsets. Laptops and desktops powered by 10th gen vPro processors are expected to be available from OEMs over the coming months. This time, we will also get to see vPro goodness in Project Athena form factors. 

(Source: Intel)
(Source: Intel)
(Source: Intel)
(Source: Intel)
(Source: Intel)
(Source: Intel)
(Source: Intel)
(Source: Intel)
Intel 10th gen vPro U and H-series Mobile Specifications. (Source: Intel)
Intel 10th gen vPro U and H-series Mobile Specifications. (Source: Intel)
Intel 10th gen vPro desktop and Xeon Specifications. (Source: Intel)
Intel 10th gen vPro desktop and Xeon Specifications. (Source: Intel)
Intel 10th gen vPro U-series chipset diagram. (Source: Intel)
Intel 10th gen vPro U-series chipset diagram. (Source: Intel)
Intel 10th gen vPro H-series chipset diagram. (Source: Intel)
Intel 10th gen vPro H-series chipset diagram. (Source: Intel)
 

Source(s)

Intel Press Brief

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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > News > News Archive > Newsarchive 2020 05 > Intel announces new 10th gen Comet Lake vPro processors with enhanced Hardware Shield features and...overclocking support?
Vaidyanathan Subramaniam, 2020-05-14 (Update: 2020-05-14)
Vaidyanathan Subramaniam
I am a cell and molecular biologist and computers have been an integral part of my life ever since I laid my hands on my first PC which was based on an Intel Celeron 266 MHz processor, 16 MB RAM and a modest 2 GB hard disk. Since then, I’ve seen my passion for technology evolve with the times. From traditional floppy based storage and running DOS commands for every other task, to the connected cloud and shared social experiences we take for granted today, I consider myself fortunate to have witnessed a sea change in the technology landscape. I honestly feel that the best is yet to come, when things like AI and cloud computing mature further. When I am not out finding the next big cure for cancer, I read and write about a lot of technology related stuff or go about ripping and re-assembling PCs and laptops.