Wave Of New Intel Tablet CPUs Coming Soon
In a bit of news that may make Windows RT even more redundant, Intel's attempt to nab a sizable piece of the smartphone and tablet PC market from ARM has just received more ammo. Assuming CPU World is right, the behemoth chipmaker will soon make at least nine new Atom processors available to the PC makers. The site has posted unofficial specifics on seven of them.
The chips, part of an Atom Z37x5 series, will join the existing Z37x0 models that launched late last year. All are based on Intel's still-fresh Silvermont architecture. As expected, spec bumps abound, but we also see evidence of Intel trying to offer a “greater variety” of options that fit a wider spectrum of price points.
Let's have a look at the specs, with the existing Atom Z3770 and Z3740 thrown in for comparison:
|Model||Cores||Clockspeed / Turbo (Ghz)||GPU Clockspeed / Turbo (Mhz)||Max RAM Capacity||RAM Channels / Max Speed (Mhz)|
|Z3770||4||1.46 / 2.39||311 / 667||4 GB||2 / 1066|
|Z3740||4||1.33 / 1.86||311 / 667||4 GB||2 / 1066|
|Z3795||4||1.6 / 2.39||311 / 778||4 GB||2 / 1066|
|Z3775||4||1.46 / 2.39||311 / 778||4 GB||2 / 1066|
|Z3775D||4||1.5 / 2.41||313 / 792||2 GB||1 / 1333|
|Z3745||4||1.33 / 1.86||311 / 778||4 GB||2 / 1066|
|Z3745D||4||1.33 / 1.83||313 / 792||2 GB||1 / 1333|
|Z3735D||4||1.33 / 1.83||313 / 688||2 GB||1 / 1333|
|Z3735E||4||1.33 / 1.83||313 / 688||1 GB||1 / 1333|
The Z3795 is now the fastest Atom chip up for grabs, with 140Mhz and 111Mhz boosts over the Z3770's stock CPU and turbo GPU frequencies, respectively. Elsewhere, we've still got “D” versions with crippled memory controllers. These have slightly higher clockspeeds to compensate, but should have slower graphics performance compared to the others anyway, so watch out!
Of particular interest is the Z3735E model. Compared to its “D” variant, the single memory channel's bus width has been halved to 32-bit, allowing only up to 1GB of RAM to be installed. Also, screens above 1200x800 pixels are a no-go. CPU World suggests that the Z3735E is meant for Android devices – cheap ones, probably, given the specs. Most Atom-based tabs run Windows 8.1.
I'll remind you that DIYers won't be able to, say, go to the shop and buy one of these CPUs plus parts to build their own systems with, unlike AMD's kind-of-sort-of equivalents. Also, I can't think of any existing Atom slates that have user-upgradeable RAM. That basically makes the max RAM capacity figures vapour. You'll have to rely on the manufacturers to, for example, max out their Z3795-toting devices with all 4GB of supported memory.
Anyway, Intel looks to be planning to launch these either sometime this quarter or the beginning of the next. Devices packing the new chips should come available not too long after.