Intel's Skylake Chips Will Drive Three 4K Monitors at 60Hz

Intel has shared new details about its faster, more power-efficient Skylake processors at IDF 2015 in San Francisco. PCWorld reports that Intel engineers have suggested the sixth-generation Core processors could launch in around "two weeks," setting the stage for a possible announcement of new chips appropriate for Macs at the IFA Berlin trade show on September 4-9.

3 4K Mac
Skylake processors will feature improved Iris Pro integrated graphics capable of driving up to three 4K monitors at 60Hz, whereas Haswell architecture could drive a single 4K monitor at 30Hz and Broadwell architecture could handle a single 4K monitor at 60Hz. Skylake will also have fixed-function support for 4K video processing in hardware and support for the latest APIs: DirectX 12, OpenCL 2 and OpenGL 4.4.

Intel Graphics

Intel's six generations of processor graphics (Image: Ars Technica)

PC World:

That means Intel has dedicated transistors directly to the job of decoding and encoding 4K. In one demonstration showing playback of a 4K RAW video stream from a Canon video camera, playback was smooth using the Skylake graphics chip, while using just the CPU, it would constantly drop frames.

Skylake architecture is also more power efficient thanks to a new power-saving feature called Speed Shift, which allows the CPU to intelligently adjust its power state for extended battery life. Skylake CPUs are also more efficient overall and feature eDRAM+, which can cache information, for increased performance.

In June, Intel introduced Thunderbolt 3 with a USB Type-C connector and support for USB 3.1, DisplayPort 1.2 and PCI Express 3.0. The new spec, rumored to launch alongside Intel's next-generation Skylake chips, is capable of driving up to two 4K external displays at 60Hz or a single 5K display at 60Hz running off a single cable.

Intel Presentation Template Overview
Last month, a leaked Intel slide deck revealed that Skylake processors will provide a 10%-20% CPU performance boost in single and multi-threaded applications, with lower power consumption, and 30% faster Intel HD integrated graphics performance on average compared to current-generation Broadwell processors. The improved energy efficiency will also result in up to 30% longer battery life.

Intel's Skylake processors appropriate for the MacBook Air were also leaked last week.

Popular Stories

Apple Vision Pro 2 Feature 2

Apple Reportedly Suspends Work on Vision Pro 2

Tuesday June 18, 2024 8:17 am PDT by
Apple has suspended work on the second-generation Vision Pro headset to singularly focus on a cheaper model, The Information reports. Apple was widely believed to have plans to divide its Vision product line into two models, with one "Pro" model and one lower-cost standard model. The company is said to have been deprioritizing the next Vision Pro headset over the past year, gradually...
apple watch series 9 display

Kuo: Apple Watch Series 10 to Get Larger Screen and Thinner Design

Monday June 17, 2024 1:20 am PDT by
This year's Apple Watch Series 10 will be thinner and come in larger screen sizes than previous models, according to Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo. In his latest industry note -10-and-98075c44ce92">shared on Medium, Kuo said the screen size options on the next-generation Apple Watch will increase from 41mm to 45mm, and from 45mm to 49mm, while being encased in a thinner design. For reference,...
2022 back to school apple feature

Apple's 2024 Back to School Sale Launching This Week

Monday June 17, 2024 12:27 pm PDT by
Apple will launch its annual Back to School promotion for university students in the United States and Canada this week, according to Bloomberg's Mark Gurman. Apple's back to school sales provide students with a free Apple gift card when purchasing a Mac or an iPad, and this year's promotion could help Apple push the new M2 iPad Air and M4 iPad Pro models. Last year, Apple offered U.S....
Apple Pay Later feature 1

Apple Discontinuing Apple Pay Later

Monday June 17, 2024 11:44 am PDT by
Apple is discontinuing Apple Pay Later, the buy now, pay later feature that it just launched last October. Apple Pay Later is being discontinued as of today, but people who have existing Apple Pay Later loans will be able to continue to pay them off and manage them through the Wallet app. Apple announced plans to end the feature in a statement provided to 9to5Mac, which also notes that...
iOS 18 CarPlay Feature

iOS 18 Adds These 5 New Features to CarPlay

Thursday June 13, 2024 7:44 am PDT by
Apple did not mention CarPlay during its WWDC keynote this week, but iOS 18 includes a handful of new features for the in-car software. Overall, there is not a whole lot new for CarPlay on iOS 18, with changes seemingly limited to the Messages and Settings apps so far. Below, we recap everything new for CarPlay on iOS 18. New for CarPlay on iOS 18 1. Contact Photos in Messages App...
iPod Nano vs iPod Pro Ad Feature 1

Apple Developing Thinner MacBook Pro, Apple Watch, and iPhone

Monday June 17, 2024 2:22 am PDT by
Apple intends to slim down the MacBook Pro, Apple Watch, and iPhone, with the new ultra-thin M4 iPad Pro a sign of the company's new design trajectory, according to Bloomberg's Mark Gurman. When the M4 iPad Pro was unveiled last month, Apple touted it as the company's thinnest product ever, and even compared it to the 2012 iPod nano to emphasize its slim dimensions. Writing in the latest ...
watchOS 11 Thumb 2 1

watchOS 11 Supports Automatic Nap Detection

Monday June 17, 2024 4:05 pm PDT by
watchOS 11 appears to include a new feature that allows an Apple Watch to automatically detect and record when you're taking a nap. As shared on Reddit, an Apple Watch owner took a nap and was able to see the sleep data recorded in the Health app, despite not putting the device in Sleep Mode. Right now, the Apple Watch only tracks and records sleep when it is in Sleep Mode, and there is no...

Top Rated Comments

Crosscreek Avatar
115 months ago
Mac Mini with quad core and a couple of usb type c please.
Score: 38 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Agent OrangeZ Avatar
115 months ago
Retina Macbook 2 + this:


http://gizmodo.com/heres-the-box-that-can-turn-your-puny-laptop-into-a-gra-1724958260

Here's The Box That Can Turn a Puny Laptop Into a Graphical Powerhouse ('http://gizmodo.com/heres-the-box-that-can-turn-your-puny-laptop-into-a-gra-1724958260')



USB Type-C is shaping up to be the holy grail of ports ('http://gizmodo.com/usb-type-c-ive-never-been-so-excited-about-a-dumb-litt-1690839061'). It can charge your laptop, deliver 4K video, and transfer loads of USB data all over a single cable—all at the same time. What could be better? You’re looking at the answer.

What you see in these pictures is a hub that uses Intel’s Thunderbolt 3, a supercharged version of USB-C ('http://gizmodo.com/thunderbolt-3-has-usb-type-c-connector-drives-two-4k-s-1708393316')with doublethe bandwidth. What does that actually mean in practice? It’s fast enough that you can actually augment the power of a relatively weak laptop with an external graphics card... yes, while still charging the laptop... driving two 4K monitors... and powering your USB devices all at the same time. Here’s what that looks like:



That’s right: with just a single USB-C Thunderbolt cable plugged into the side of this super thin, super light laptop we spotted at IDF 2015, you get three USB 3.0 ports, two HDMI ports, two DisplayPorts, external audio, and ethernet all at the same time. Plus an extra USB Type-C port for—in this case—attaching a ridiculously-fast external solid state drive.







The best part isn’t the plethora of ports, though: it’s the fact that this sleek box has an external graphics chip inside. In this case, an AMD Radeon R9 M385. Hello, games!

What if you need even more graphical muscle? Say, if you want to plug your thin and light laptop in at night and play some Grand Theft Auto V? Thunderbolt 3 can handle a way bigger external graphics card dock, too. Here’s what it looks like with a full-size AMD R9 200 series graphics card, delivering a respectable framerate in the Unigine Heaven benchmark.









Sadly, all of these Thunderbolt 3 boxes—and the laptop—are just Inventec reference designs, not commercial products yet. Plus, Intel won’t say what they might cost or when they might arrive, though the first real Thunderbolt 3 products will allegedly start hitting the market by the end of the year.

Will manufacturers actually build external graphics solutions with Thunderbolt 3? “Watch this space,” says Navin Shenoy, an Intel executive.
Score: 21 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Dilster3k Avatar
115 months ago
All I want is Thunderbolt e-GPU's baby!!!
Score: 16 Votes (Like | Disagree)
AngerDanger Avatar
115 months ago
I must be one of the few who don't see the appeal. From most viewing distances, I cannot discern between individual pixels on my 1080p monitor, and that's when I'm wearing my glasses, contacts, pocket protector, etc.
Score: 15 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Barry Bishop Avatar
115 months ago
and when are we going to see a Mac Pro update?!?!?
Score: 14 Votes (Like | Disagree)
redheeler Avatar
115 months ago
Mac Mini with quad core and a couple of usb type c please.
Apple's interpretation: Mac mini with Core M and only a couple of USB Type-C please.

;)
Score: 14 Votes (Like | Disagree)