The only 2 Ivy Bridge processors for a 2012 11" MBA (both 17W TDP)?

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by Jobsian, Feb 19, 2012.

  1. Jobsian macrumors 6502a

    Jobsian

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    #1
    Heat and noise (battery too) are all very important for how comfortably I use mobile notebooks. In the similar way you just don't have to think about heat and noise on iPads, and unlike pre-2010 MBAs, heat and noise are never an issue for the 2010 11" MBA Ultimate for normal use (browsing, videos, typing etc). I have never thought eg "better close some tabs" or "i should lift this from the sofa for a few mins" etc.

    I note that there's a fair bit more discussion on heat and noise in 2011 11" MBAs and that (along with the worse battery) are among the reasons I didn't upgrade immediately.

    The 2010 11" MBA Ultimate used the Intel SU9600 1.6GHz C2D at 10W TDP and it's been working like a treat. It also had the Nvidia GPU chipset too though I don't know what the TDP on that was.

    The Ivy Bridge line-up appears to show 2 options for an 2012 11" MBA:
    1) Core i5 3427U - 1.8GHz, turbo to 2.6GHz - 2.8GHz at 17W TDP
    2) Core i7 3667U - 2.0GHz, turbo to 3.0GHZ - 3.2GHz at 17W TDP



    Are there possibly any further Ivy Bridge mobile processors to be announced and anyone have any thoughts on likely heat/fans/battery on the 22nm Ivy Bridge for a MBA for non-intensive use?
     
  2. gpat macrumors 6502a

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    #2
    I can't think of any other viable Intel CPUs for the 2012 11". But the Configurable TDP feature should improve performance when charging and battery when.. on battery (duh), as the 17W can be tuned up or down on demand.
     
  3. roofz macrumors regular

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    #3
    I can't think of any off the top of my head either. Can't wait for the 2012 MBA to come out, i'm getting sick of my current MBA 1, 1. :(
     
  4. Augure macrumors regular

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    #4
  5. Jobsian thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Jobsian

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    #5
    Thanks, this is the first I've ever heard of the Configurable TDP feature, sounds like a battery-saver, interesting!

    ----------

    Are you referring to the 2 processors in the OP? If so, surely a 15" Air can handle something beefier than 17W? And if you're right, what do you think we'll see in the 11" (bearing in mind the current 2011 11" MBA houses a 17W CPU)?
     
  6. thekev macrumors 604

    thekev

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    #6
    It's got a little more space. Some of that would go to battery. You need to remember that it goes from 17W to 35W or 45W. The current one is pretty much tapped out with 17W. Under heavy load the machine can run close to its limits in temperature. I'm not starting one of those overheating threads. I'm saying that packing in more would be difficult, then of course higher tdp cpus typically means lower battery life. Intel may have implemented more aggressive power management, but what's the point in scaling up the cpu choice if you're going to under clock it intentionally. Intel's ulv line isn't cheap. They're not designed as budget cpus. They're designed to be extremely efficient in terms of performance per watt.

    The only way I see them going outside the ULV range is if we're looking at something closer to a macbook pro design than an Air. If the rumors are true that they're looking at an updated design, it could have involved many different prototypes and concept designs. We really don't know what made it through. Seeing as Haswell looks like a bigger change than Ivy Bridge, bringing out such a thing with Ivy Bridge would most likely be a trying to stay ahead kind of maneuver. This would give them a tested second generation product for Haswell onward which would be the real timeline focus of such a design.

    Okay quite a lot of that is a bit speculative on my part, but Apple likes to get in on things a generation or two before the hardware is truly ready for their plans. This gives them a road and market tested product once the underlying hardware matures.
     
  7. jsolares macrumors 6502a

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    #7
    I think we'll see both of those in 11" and 13" just like now both have i7 options.

    I could see a 35W tunned to 25W thanks to the variable TDP, not sure how much more capable it would be over the 17W.

    That is if they release a 15 MBA at all.
     
  8. thekev macrumors 604

    thekev

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    #8
    That's kind of what they did with the original macbook air 1,1, but you are misunderstanding the variable TDP here. It was possible to do an under clocked version before too. That's really nothing new. The variable tdp thing (to the best of my understanding) is about being able to dynamically clock itself or shut down one or more cores during lighter cpu loads to reduce power consumption outside of peak use. If they have any 35W cpus, they'll be dual core. There is basically no point in under clocking them to get them into a machine as opposed to using the ULVs. It wouldn't dramatically increase performance. If anything you're better off just allowing the ULV cpus to run a little cooler and possibly run under turbo boost modes for longer periods of time when necessary without nearing throttling temperatures. The only function to cramming in a cpu by under clocking would be to look better on spec sheets when Intel has done an impressive job with the ULV line.

    Personally I think if we see a true 15" Air with only two cpu options, I'm guessing the 13 and 15" models would see the same thing. Currently all available 17W cpus are available on the 13" model.
     
  9. jsolares macrumors 6502a

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    #9
    Remember that the MBP 15" has two fans vs just one of the 13", if the 15 MBA also has two fans it can take the added heat, i do wonder if they'll use 17W parts with a dedicated graphics core, or a 35W part.

    Now i want a 15" MBA even if i also want an 11" XD
     
  10. thekev macrumors 604

    thekev

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    #10
    I wasn't referring to just thermal issues. Obviously higher tdp cpu = shorter battery life. The current 13" pro vs 13" air comes out to about a 20% difference on geekbench. It's definitely something, but that doesn't mean 20% faster in real performance. Anyway I wouldn't worry too much about how many options are available. They look like decent options, which is what is really important.
     
  11. oiuh151, Feb 20, 2012
    Last edited: Feb 20, 2012

    oiuh151 macrumors 6502

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    #11
    Intel's new CPU's, post C2D era (Arrandale and forward), include the integrated GPU in the TDP. The TDP of the C2D MBA with the 320M is essentially the same TDP as the current Sandy Bridge MBA's and what will be future Ivy Bridge MBA's.
     
  12. throAU macrumors 601

    throAU

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    #12
    Nothing to say apple won't get a special down clocked/under volted model from intel...
     
  13. DeepIn2U macrumors 68040

    DeepIn2U

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    #13
    1) Core i5 3427U - 1.8GHz, turbo to 2.6GHz - 2.8GHz at 17W TDP

    ^ I doubt that this will be on the 13" ... as currently that model tops out with Turbo Boost at 2.9Ghz (1.8Ghz Core i7 2677 I think).
     
  14. jsolares macrumors 6502a

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    #14
    The base i5 in 13" is the 2557M which is 1.7 turbo to 2.7/2.4 so that 3427U would be the upgrade for both base models (128/256 SSD)
     
  15. Bear macrumors G3

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    #15
    I see the GHz debate isn't dead yet. You need to look at some of the other specs for the processor and do benchmarks. With only those 2 processors as the only 2 known options that are likely to be used for the Air, it's a tough call as to how Apple with place them in the Airs.
     
  16. DavidC1, Feb 26, 2012
    Last edited: Feb 26, 2012

    DavidC1 macrumors member

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    #16
    No, you are confusing Configurable TDP with power gating, Turbo Mode, and speedstep. Turbo Mode in combination with power gating does exactly what you describe.

    Power Gating - Basically a circuit inside that completely cuts power to the bigger circuit, like a core.

    Turbo Mode - Clocks the CPU higher than Base when power and thermal conditions allow. Less cores active will mean headroom for thermal and power, so you can Turbo higher. Power gating helps Turbo Mode do its job better.

    EIST(Enhanced Intel Speedstep)
    - Frequency steps between the lowest LFM and the Base frequency. Some applications only need the intermediate frequency rather than Turbo, or even Base.

    Configurable TDP(cTDP)
    - All the above plays around TDP. Configurable TDP allows a certain trigger to change TDP values. Like a docking station with fan allows for more TDP than a laptop, so it can act as a higher TDP CPU(17W-->25W). Or a convertible laptop in tablet mode would need less TDP so it can act as a lower TDP CPU(17W-->14W)

    The only known power envelope with cTDP is 17W ULV and 55W Extreme Edition parts. The rest don't have it.

    I've explained it extensively here: http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=1318243
     
  17. thekev macrumors 604

    thekev

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    #17
    Doh! Thank you for the correction. Also I'm going to look at that thread.
     
  18. DeepIn2U macrumors 68040

    DeepIn2U

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    #18
    Oh I'm not trying to go for the GHz debate; not intently. I was just using the Ghz to show the performance ... with the peak one mentioned in the original post as a replacement, only:
    Intel HD 4000 (with possible OpenCL)
    USB 3.0 (again Possible if Apple chooses to use the ports supporting it)
    slightly faster RAM?
    Battery Life = pure bliss over 10hrs!
    not much else improves significantly in performance is there?

    I think I need to research a LOT more then.
     
  19. jsolares macrumors 6502a

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    #19
    anywhere from 10 to 20% at the same speed, it's not entirely just a node shrink.
     

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