Did Intel break the 4Ghz barrier?

Please use layman terms. Did Intel they finally go beyond 4Ghz in native mode (without boost this turbo boost that)? I thought what was limiting them was the power consumption wasn't it? The to go beyond 4Ghz would require such a boost it power that it wasn't worth it? It was back in the days of the Pentium I and I lost track. Where do things stand today?
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LockDown32OwnerAsked:
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serialbandConnect With a Mentor Commented:
If you're only talking about processors for computers, then only 1 8th generation CPU has reached 4.0 GHz.  The rest are all below that unless they run in turbo mode.

It does look like there are at least 4 Intel 7th generation CPUs that are above 4GHz, so that means Intel did go above 4 GHz previously.

The Intel i7-7700K Processor is 4.20 GHz for its base frequency and boosts to 4.50 Ghz.
https://ark.intel.com/products/97129/

The Intel i7-7740X X-series Processor is 4.30 GHz for its base frequency and boosts to 4.50 Ghz.
https://ark.intel.com/products/121499/
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ITguy565Commented:
This is the fastest processor I could find : https://hothardware.com/news/amd-ryzen-threadripper-1950x-smashes-52ghz-barrier-on-ln2

5.2Ghz

From what I can see though intel hasn't done it yet.
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LockDown32OwnerAuthor Commented:
My son just sent me a link to this article is why I ask:

https://www.cnet.com/news/intel-8th-gen-core-i9-i7-hexacore-optane/
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andyalderCommented:
But those are nowhere near 4GHz native.

With overclocking I believe Celeron 352 has been the fastest GHz but there may be a faster 16 or 32 bit one somewhere. Clock rate is so meaningless when it takes multiple cycles to complete an instruction.
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LockDown32OwnerAuthor Commented:
I am looking for native. No overclocking. Not turbo boot. > 4Ghz Native. In my opinion Intel has stagnated. The i3, i5, i7 came out what? 8 years ago? and they haven't done much since. Add a core, increase the cache and 8 generations later it still runs about the same...... I have customers that just add a little memory and a SSD to an 8 years old computer and Ta Da!
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andyalderCommented:
I remember reading an Intel blog last century which explained exactly what you mean, Intel are not aiming for higher clock frequencies because physics is in the pilot's seat. You can double the clock frequency if you can get rid of the heat but that means lots of unused silicon just acting as a heat spreader. They could do it but they get more work done with multiple cores and longer pipelines (Spectre and Meltdown to one side) using the same amount of silicon.

I don't see that as stagnation though, Moore's law still holds if you accept multi-core into the equation.

As far as keeping up with a small business customer is concerned do they need more processing power than they did 10 years ago? The bottleneck at my local car service garage is how fast the oil drains out of the sump, not how fast their till runs.
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serialbandCommented:
Intel got to 3.8 GHz native speeds with the Pentium 4 long ago.  Then they realized that they were going down the wrong technology path and went RISC underneath with longer pipelines and predictive branching.  That dropped speeds down to the 1.x GHz range again, but with better performance.  They've only gotten back to above 3 Ghz native clock frequencies with recent generations.

The fastest native Intel clock frequency is the 8th gen i3 with a base frequency of 4.0 Ghz, but that's not the most powerful processor.  Clock Frequency is only one aspect of CPU processing capability.
https://ark.intel.com/products/126689 .

You can see a more complete list of newer CPU frequencies. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Intel_microprocessors
Here's Intel's quick reference guide of older CPUs https://www.intel.com/pressroom/kits/quickreffam.htm
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LockDown32OwnerAuthor Commented:
I remember the problem arising with the Pentium 4 long ago. Hence the question. So..... based on these comments, even though no one has come out and said it point blank, the answer is "Correct. Intel has yet to break the 4Ghz barrier"?
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serialbandCommented:
Read my 2nd paragraph again.
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LockDown32OwnerAuthor Commented:
I am going to do it again. It was a simple question. Looking for a simple anwser.
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serialbandCommented:
The 8th gen i3 has a base frequency of 4.0 Ghz.  Does that count as breaking the 4GHz barrier to you?  https://ark.intel.com/products/126689
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ITguy565Commented:
This is the fastest processor I could find : https://hothardware.com/news/amd-ryzen-threadripper-1950x-smashes-52ghz-barrier-on-ln2

5.2Ghz

From what I can see though intel hasn't done it yet.

I did in my first comment!
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serialbandCommented:
Ryzen is AMD, not Intel.  Intel has a single CPU that has reached the 4.0 GHz, which was launched on Q4 of 2017, so it's shipping now.  Overall, GHz is only one aspect of CPU power, and is only a general indicator of speed, but not the ultimate performance indicator.  That's why the 1.x GHz RISC CPUs in the 90s completely outperformed the Intel CISC architecture at 3.x GHz.  That's also why Intel switched gears and went to RISC architecture underneath.
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ITguy565Commented:
You are absolutely right, That is why they are shipping with more tiered cores and not a higher clock speed.
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andyalderCommented:
It doesn't actually say in the question that it is a CPU that exceeds 4GHz that you are looking for so yes, Intel broke the 4GHz barrier quite a while ago with NICs. ;)
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LockDown32OwnerAuthor Commented:
Cool! So point me to an Intel NIC where is says the frequency is > 4GHz and we'll consider the case closed :)
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andyalderCommented:
Actually pretty hard to verify that a 40Gbps NIC operates at any frequency at all as they always refer to the bitrate and not the frequency and the serdes is partially analog rather than digital, however I found https://www.altera.com/en_US/pdfs/literature/hb/arria-10/ug_arria10_xcvr_phy.pdf which references tx_serial_clk_10g which runs at  5.15625GHz
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LockDown32OwnerAuthor Commented:
Absolutely correct. So even though I didn't specify CPU the GHz should have implied it :)
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LockDown32OwnerAuthor Commented:
Bingo! You are absolutely right serialband. Both those CPUs show base frequencies > 4Ghz. I would have thought there would have been some kind of huge fanfare or announcement. Looks like they just quietly broke the barrier without saying much. Nice find!
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andyalderCommented:
They generally release slightly faster processors a few months after the initial release of the basic product when they have sorted out enough of them, hence no great fanfare as that was when the chip first came out. As you probably know they're all made on the same fab then tested to see how fast they'll go. Any that exceed the initial spec get kept in the bin until there's enough there to release them as a new model. No doubt they'll release a faster version of the one your son sent you the link for in 3 or 6 month's time.
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