Intel’s 8th Gen 14nm++ Coffee Lake Processors Will Require All-New Motherboards

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Over the past few months, we’ve seen various leaks regarding Intel’s upcoming 8th generation ”Coffee Lake” Core processors. Most of the leaks have pertained to core counts and clock speeds, with the top-ranging SKUs sporting 6 cores and 12 threads, which is music to the ears of enthusiasts. However, a prominent motherboard manufacturer has confirmed one bit of bad news regarding Coffee Lake that will leave many banging their heads against their keyboard.

The official Twitter account for a prominent motherboard manufacturer over the weekend responded to a question regarding Coffee Lake compatibility with existing 200-Series LGA 1151 motherboards. The response was quite sobering to say the least:

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That’s right, your fancy 200-Series motherboard will be useless when Coffee Lake arrives -- you’ll have to go out and buy a brand-new motherboard to support the new processors. We don’t know exactly what change has been made that makes Coffee Lake incompatible with existing motherboards, but there are likely electrical/pin variations that are forcing the chance (Coffee Lake will reportedly still use the LGA 1151 socket).

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Intel’s 100- and 200-Series motherboards have been in use with the Skylake and Kaby Lake generations of 14nm Intel Core processors. There were questions swirling about whether Intel would make Coffee Lake compatible with these existing motherboards, but it looks as though we now have our answer. And while Intel is keeping its mouth shut with regards to commenting on the drama surrounding Coffee Lake, PCWorld has confirmed with its own sources that the tweet is indeed accurate.

So, if you were hoping to take a sip of steaming hot Coffee Lake hexa-core goodness, you might want to budget in a brand new Z370-based motherboard to go along with it.

(Article Updated 8/4)