Intel’s 8th-generation desktop CPUs will up core counts across the board

Intel is evangelizing its 8th-generation Core i series with reckless abandon, most recently detailing the upcoming desktop chip line to Chinese manufacturing partners in a private session it had to know would inevitably leak online.

Just ahead of an August 21 official reveal, the leak comes courtesy of a photo from the session posted on a Chinese computing forum known as ChipHell, later picked up by none other than Anandtech before the post was removed from the forum.

As per the leaked photo, Intel’s desktop processors – from Core i3-8100 to Core i7-8700K – will enjoy increases in core count by 100% and 50%, respectively. 

Specifically, 8th generation Intel Core i3 processors will be quad-core by default, meanwhile both Core i5 and Core i7 chips will be hexa-core standard. However, the devil is in the details here, unsurprisingly.

While Intel is upping the core count of every tier of Core i processor, the firm is removing hyper-threading from the i3 line in comparison to last generation’s product, and not bringing it to the i5 line – on par with last year. 

Of course, the i7 line’s hyper-threading remains untouched, for such a move would likely be deemed treason by the enthusiast community.

Otherwise, it seems the Core i3 line is enjoying the most changes, with the i3-8100 and i3-8350K seeing a considerable bump in TDP, or thermal design power, to 65 watts and 95W, respectively. (Last year’s were 51W and 60W, respectively.)

This is to be expected given the doubling of cores, and makes the TDP offerings of every tier much more uniform than before.

Across the board, all three tiers of Core i desktop chips will receive a boost in L3 memory cache, too, to the tune of 6MB, 9MB and 12MB going from Core i3 up to Core i7.

Intel spouting off 8th-gen details to Chinese manufacturers. Credit: ChipHell

Intel spouting off 8th-gen details to Chinese manufacturers. Credit: ChipHell

Questions left unanswered

That said, this leak still doesn’t tell us some of the base and turbo frequencies of the processors, but expect these clock speeds to drop a few hundred megahertz year-on-year across the board given the bumps in core counts.

The leaked photo also makes no mention of the graphics platform found within these new processors, an important element given AMD’s focus on GPU compute – or utilizing graphics processing cores for general computing tasks.

Finally, we still have no idea how much these chips are going to cost, if at all different from last generation’s pricing. That said, with AMD's effect on the processor market, we could well be paying less for the highest-end, 8th-generation Intel desktop processor.

Boy, can that total eclipse not come soon enough or what?

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Joe Osborne

Joe Osborne is the Senior Technology Editor at Insider Inc. His role is to leads the technology coverage team for the Business Insider Shopping team, facilitating expert reviews, comprehensive buying guides, snap deals news and more. Previously, Joe was TechRadar's US computing editor, leading reviews of everything from gaming PCs to internal components and accessories. In his spare time, Joe is a renowned Dungeons and Dragons dungeon master – and arguably the nicest man in tech.