Intel Planning 15-Core Ivytown Processor For High End Servers

Remember the peak of the megapixel war, where every single camera manufacturer was popping out a new point-and-shoot model with a slightly higher MP rating? It feels like we may be entering a similar leapfrog battle in the silicon world, as the race to produce chips with "more cores than the other guys" hits full stride. Though more cores generally make a meaningful difference in performance in multi-threaded workloads, more pixels don't always result in higher quality imaging if optics aren't up to par. At any rate, a new report suggests that Intel's latest project internally involves a massively packed 15-core Ivytown chip.

The high-end processor will ship first to customers in the enterprise market, with high end servers and the like apt to be first in line for the new platform. Ivytown will be based on Intel's Ivy Bridge-E architecture, and it will assume the top position in Intel's CPU stack over their existing top-end chip, the 12-core Xeon E5 v2. The new 15-core chip will probably head towards 4 to 8-socket servers which generally are only found in high performance mission critical-type applications. But, of course, these types of things can eventually trickle down to consumer products in due time.

AMD, as you may know, already as 16 cores in its newest Opteron 6300 chips. The new Ivytown processors will be built using Intel's 22 nanometer process technology, and will slot into the Xeon E7 v2 server lineup. Naturally, pricing details aren't yet available, but they'll no doubt make a serious dent in the corporate card.