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MSI Rep Says Rocket Lake-S Launch Comes in Late March

CPU Stock Image
(Image credit: Shutterstock)

An MSI representative has reportedly shared some interesting information about Intel's pending 11th Generation Rocket Lake-S processors over at the Danawa forums. The company has since edited its answer (hat tip to @harukaze5719), but we grabbed a screenshot of the original reply and put it through Google Translate.

Many rumors claim that Intel may announce Rocket Lake-S at CES 2021 but that the processors probably won't hit the market until later. According to the statement, the Rocket Lake-S chips won't be available to the public until the end of March, lending some credibility to the rumors. 

Meanwhile, it remains to be seen whether there is any validity to the rumor that Intel has given motherboard vendors the green light to reveal their new Z590, B560, and H510 offerings on January 11. Although it is conceivable that current-gen Comet Lake chips will be forward compatible with the new chipsets, an early motherboard launch doesn't seem to make much sense because the new processors wouldn't arrive until late March.

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MSI Representative

(Image credit: Danawa Forums)
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MSI Representative

(Image credit: Danawa Forums)

In other news, the statement also seemingly confirms that current 400-series motherboards, including the H410, B460, and Z490 chipsets would support Rocket Lake-S. This doesn't come as shocking news, considering that other motherboard manufacturers, such as ASRock and Biostar, already promote backward compatibility with 400-series motherboards.

As expected, 400-series motherboards will require a simple firmware upgrade to house the new Rocket Lake-S parts, which still dwell on the LGA1200 socket. According to the statement, MSI will prioritize Z490 motherboards first and consequently go down the product stack. Naturally, the company expects to get all its 400-series motherboard on to the new firmware before the Rocket Lake-S launch in March.

  • Endymio
    Arrives in late March, eh? Timed to coincide with actual availability of AMD's 5000 series, I see. :whistle:
    Reply
  • PCWarrior
    We have been hearing about late first quarter 2021 anyway. I have read somewhere that the actual date is 15th of March and motherboards will launch next Monday at CES. So this sounds legit. That’s also about exactly one year from when Comet lake was supposed to launch (30th of March 2020) but was delayed for a couple of months due to the pandemic.

    What perplexes me the most is why Intel does not launch a higher core count Rocketlake. I understand why they can’t release such a cpu for the mainstream but I think they could release a Rocketlake X HEDT lineup. Some will argue it cannot be done due to yields or power consumption but I disagree. The HEDT lineup doesn’t have graphics. And Intel can produce just fine and for profit an 18-core Cascade lake with the Skylake X architecture, AVX-512, 48+4 PCIe3 CPU lanes and quad channel memory controller. The 20% IPC increase should be achievable with 20% more transistors and given the same process node that translates to 20% larger die area per core. So, the 18cores of the 10980XE should occupy the area of 15 Rocketlake cores. So, Intel could make a 16-core Rocketlake 11960XE HEDT flagship. Power consumption shouldn’t be that much higher than the 10980XE, especially given the even more mature 14nm++++ process node.

    So, is Intel preparing a Rocketlake X lineup? Apparently no, as there has been absolutely no rumour or leak about the existence of such a platform. And there won’t be an Icelake X lineup either. So Intel has released absolutely nothing for the HEDT for over a year now and by the sounds of it, we will be getting nothing for another whole year. And I am not even saying that what we have now was essentially released in Q4 2017. So, if we get a new HEDT cpu in 2022 it will be an astonishing 5 years for Intel to meaningfully renew their HEDT offerings (unless you count the W3175X in Jan 2019 but even then that’s a Xeon and with a $3000 price-tag for the CPU and $1500-$2000 for the motherboard so I don’t quite count it as a mere HEDT - even then it will be 3 years at best).
    Reply
  • spongiemaster
    PCWarrior said:
    We have been hearing about late first quarter 2021 anyway. I have read somewhere that the actual date is 15th of March and motherboards will launch next Monday at CES. So this sounds legit. That’s also about exactly one year from when Comet lake was supposed to launch (30th of March 2020) but was delayed for a couple of months due to the pandemic.

    What perplexes me the most is why Intel does not launch a higher core count Rocketlake. I understand why they can’t release such a cpu for the mainstream but I think they could release a Rocketlake X HEDT lineup. Some will argue it cannot be done due to yields or power consumption but I disagree. The HEDT lineup doesn’t have graphics. And Intel can produce just fine and for profit an 18-core Cascade lake with the Skylake X architecture, AVX-512, 48+4 PCIe3 CPU lanes and quad channel memory controller. The 20% IPC increase should be achievable with 20% more transistors and given the same process node that translates to 20% larger die area per core. So, the 18cores of the 10980XE should occupy the area of 15 Rocketlake cores. So, Intel could make a 16-core Rocketlake 11960XE HEDT flagship. Power consumption shouldn’t be that much higher than the 10980XE, especially given the even more mature 14nm++++ process node.

    So, is Intel preparing a Rocketlake X lineup? Apparently no, as there has been absolutely no rumour or leak about the existence of such a platform. And there won’t be an Icelake X lineup either. So Intel has released absolutely nothing for the HEDT for over a year now and by the sounds of it, we will be getting nothing for another whole year. And I am not even saying that what we have now was essentially released in Q4 2017. So, if we get a new HEDT cpu in 2022 it will be an astonishing 5 years for Intel to meaningfully renew their HEDT offerings (unless you count the W3175X in Jan 2019 but even then that’s a Xeon and with a $3000 price-tag for the CPU and $1500-$2000 for the motherboard so I don’t quite count it as a mere HEDT - even then it will be 3 years at best).
    The mainstream CPU's and the X-Series CPU's have pretty much nothing in common. Mainstream CPU's use a ring bus while X-Series use a mesh topology. Intel's HEDT CPU's are basically Xeons with higher clocks, and thus higher power usage per core, with no ECC support. If you want to know where the HEDT platform is going, you need to look at the Xeon line. With 10nm Ice Lake Xeons scheduled to release soon, that's the next candidate for an HEDT update. HEDT has traditionally been launched in the 2nd half of the year, so it is possible that if Intel gets its act together with 10nm this year, that we could be looking at Ice Lake based HEDT chips late this year. If not, we could be waiting all the way until later in 2022 for a Sapphire Rapids based HEDT platform.
    Reply