What’s Tick-tock

Electronics For You - - EMBEDDED -

Tick-Tock is a model de­vel­oped by Ash­wani Gupta of Jones Farm 5 ( Hills­boro, Ore­gon) which has been adopted by In­tel Cor­po­ra­tion since 2007 to fol­low ev­ery mi­croar­chi­tec­tural change with a die-shrink of the process tech­nol­ogy. Ev­ery ‘tick’ is a shrink­ing of the process tech­nol­ogy of the pre­vi­ous mi­croar­chi­tec­ture and ev­ery ‘tock’ is a new mi­croar­chi­tec­ture. ces­sor can be over­clocked for higher per­for­mance—use­ful for gam­ing en a mo­bile plat­form.

Sandy Bridge is, in fact, a ma­jor tock. The ar­chi­tec­ture un­der­went a ma­jor plat­form repar­ti­tion­ing with a lot of things be­ing in­te­grated on the die. For in­stance, the clock gen­er­a­tor and the in­te­grated graph­ics pro­ces­sor now share space with the CPU. All this in­te­gra­tion re­sults in ex­tremely low power con­sump­tion. The on-die graph­ics pro­ces­sor called In­tel HD Graph­ics de­liv­ers a be­low par per­for­mance, but im­proved power-gated GPU. This made Sandy Bridge the best op­tion for por­ta­ble PCs.

Sandy Bridge was re­leased

Ivy Bridge

In­tel’s 22nm die- shrink of Sandy Bridge is co­de­named Ivy Bridge. Apart from the die-shrink, In­tel has utilised a non-pla­nar ar­chi­tec­ture called tri- gate for the tran­sis­tor in tran­sis­tors, this tech­nol­ogy is claimed to al­low the pro­ces­sors to cut power con­sump­tion by half and per­form 37 per cent faster. Per­for­mance wise, the CPU is expected to out­per­form Sandy

From Fig. 3, you can see that In­tel HD Graph­ics pro­ces­sor in Ivy Bridge sig­nif­i­cantly out­per­forms those in Sandy Bridge pro­ces­sors.

Al­though In­tel fac­to­ries had to be up­graded to be able to man­u­fac­ture these tri-gate Ivy Bridge CPUs, the mar­ket prices re­main roughly the same per cent more.

Ivy Bridge also over­comes the short­com­ings of the pre­vi­ous line of pro­ces­sors by im­prov­ing on the graph­ics pro­cess­ing ca­pa­bil­i­ties. The In­tel HD Graph­ics in Ivy Bridge sup­ports DirectX 11, OpenGL 3.1 and OpenCL 1.1, while also out­num­ber­ing the ex­e­cut­ing units by four to per cent bet­ter than the pre­vi­ous­gen­er­a­tion In­tel HD Graph­ics. In­tel HD Graph­ics in Ivy Bridge comes in for bet­ter per­for­mance.

- in a 15 per cent re­duc­tion in power

Ivy Bridge was re­leased in April this year. Up­grad­ing to Ivy Bridge would be a straight­for­ward af­fair since both Ivy and Sandy use the same LGA 1155 socket.

Haswell: The next tock

Haswell is the co­de­name for In­tel’s next mi­croar­chi­tec­ture which forms Sim­i­lar to Ivy Bridge, Haswell is based on the 22nm man­u­fac­tur­ing process us­ing tri-gate tech­nol­ogy. This pro­ces­sor is not back­ward-com­pat­i­ble Bridge and Sandy Bridge use the LGA 1155 socket. So to get a Haswell mi-

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