Tick–tock model

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Tick–tock was a production model adopted in 2007 by chip manufacturer Intel. Under this model, every microarchitecture change (tock) was followed by a die shrink of the process technology (tick). It was replaced by the process–architecture–optimization model, which was announced in 2016 and is like a tick–tock cycle followed by an optimization phase. As a general engineering model, tick-tock is a model that refreshes one side of a binary system each release cycle.


Every "tick" represented a shrinking of the process technology of the previous microarchitecture (sometimes introducing new instructions, as with Broadwell, released in late 2014) and every "tock" designated a new microarchitecture.[1] These occurred roughly every year to 18 months.[2] In 2014, Intel created a "tock refresh" of a tock in the form of a smaller update to the microarchitecture[3] not considered a new generation in and of itself.

In March 2016, Intel announced in a Form 10-K report that it deprecated the tick–tock cycle in favor of a three-step process–architecture–optimization model, under which three generations of processors are produced under a single manufacturing process, with the third generation out of three focusing on optimization.[4] The first optimization of the Skylake architecture was Kaby Lake. Intel then announced a second optimization, Coffee Lake,[5] making a total of four generations at 14 nm.[6]


Code names
for step
Intel Microcode
Intel Microcode
8P/4P Server 4P/2P Server/WS Embedded Xeon 1P Xeon Enthusiast/​WS Desktop Mobile
(new fabrica-
tion process
65 nm P6, NetBurst Presler,
Cedar Mill,
1995-11-1 (P6),
2000-11-20 (Netburst)
Presler Cedar Mill Yonah
(new micro-
Core Merom[9] 2006-07-27[10][11] Tigerton Woodcrest
Kentsfield Conroe Merom
Tick 45 nm Penryn 2007-11-11[12] Dunnington Harpertown Yorkfield Wolfdale Penryn
Tock Nehalem Nehalem 1 N/A NHM[13] 2008-11-17[14] Beckton Gainestown Lynnfield Bloomfield Lynnfield Clarksfield
Tick 32 nm Westmere 1 N/A WSM[13] 2010-01-04[15][16] Westmere-EX Westmere-EP Gulftown Clarkdale Arrandale
Tock Sandy Bridge Sandy Bridge 2 1 SNB JKT (Jaketown) 2011-01-09[17] (Skipped)[18] Sandy Bridge-EP Gladden Sandy Bridge Sandy Bridge-E Sandy Bridge Sandy Bridge-M
Tick 22 nm[19] Ivy Bridge 3 2 IVB IVT (Ivytown) 2012-04-29 Ivy Bridge-EX[20] Ivy Bridge-EP[20] Gladden Ivy Bridge Ivy Bridge-E[21] Ivy Bridge Ivy Bridge-M
Tock Haswell Haswell 4 3 HSW, CRW (Crystal Well)
with Iris Pro[22][23]
HSX 2013-06-02 Haswell-EX Haswell-EP N/A Haswell-DT Haswell-E Haswell-DT[24] Haswell-MB (notebooks)
Haswell-LP (ultrabooks)[24]
Refresh Haswell Refresh,
Devil's Canyon[25]
4 N/A HSW, CRW (Crystal Well)
with Iris Pro[22][23]
No server version released Devil's Canyon No mobile version
Tick 14 nm[19] Broadwell[26] 5 4 BDW BDX 2014-09-05 Broadwell-EX[27] Broadwell-EP[27] Broadwell-DE Broadwell-DT Broadwell-E Broadwell-DT Broadwell-H
Tock Skylake[26] Skylake[26] 6 5 SKL SKX 2015-08-05[28] Skylake-SP Skylake-DE Skylake-DT/H Skylake-X Skylake Skylake-H
Kaby Lake[32] 7 6 KBL 2017-01-03[33] Only 1P server (Xeon E3) version released Kaby Lake-DT/H
cores: 4 (4/8)
Kaby Lake-X[34] Kaby Lake Kaby Lake-H
Kaby Lake-U
Kaby Lake-Y
Kaby Lake R[35][36] 8 N/A KBL-R 2017-08-21[36] Only mobile version released Kaby Lake R
Coffee Lake 8, 9[37] E-2xxx CFL 2017-10-05[38] Cascade Lake-SP
Cooper Lake (Q2'20)
Cascade Lake-AP Coffee Lake-DT/H
cores: 6 (12)
Skylake-X Refresh Coffee Lake
Coffee Lake-R
Coffee Lake-H
Coffee Lake-U
Coffee Lake-H Refresh
Whiskey Lake,
Amber Lake[39]
2018-08-28[39] Only mobile version released Whiskey Lake-U
Amber Lake-Y
Comet Lake[40] 10 N/A CML 2019-08-21[40] No server version released Comet Lake-S Comet Lake-U[41]
Comet Lake-Y[41]
Process 10 nm[42] Cannon Lake 8 N/A CNL 2018-05-16[43] Only mobile version released Cannon Lake-U
Architecture Sunny Cove Ice Lake[44] 10 ICL 2019-08-01[45] Ice Lake-SP (1H'21) Ice Lake-U
Ice Lake-Y
Optimization[31] Tiger Lake[31] 11
Process 7 nm[42] Sapphire Rapids[46]
Architecture Granite Rapids
Process 5 nm[42]

Atom roadmap[edit]

Atom roadmap[47]

Code names
for step
MID, Smartphone Tablet Netbook Nettop Embedded Server Communication CE
Tick 45 nm Bonnell
Bonnell ? 2008 Silverthorne N/A Diamondville Tunnel Creek & Stellarton N/A Sodaville
Tock Bonnell ? 2010 Lincroft Pineview Groveland
Tick 32 nm Saltwell 2011 Medfield (Penwell & Lexington) & Clover Trail+ (Cloverview) Clover Trail (Cloverview) Cedar Trail (Cedarview) Unknown Centerton & Briarwood Unknown Berryville
Tick 22 nm Silvermont
Silvermont 2013 Merrifield (Tangier)[48] & Moorefield (Anniedale)[49] & Slayton Bay Trail-T (Valleyview) Bay Trail-M (Valleyview) Bay Trail-D (Valleyview) Bay Trail-I (Valleyview) Avoton Rangeley Unknown
Tick 14 nm[47] Airmont 2014 Binghamton & Riverton Cherry Trail-T (Cherryview)[50] Braswell[51] Denverton
Unknown Unknown
Tock Goldmont[52]
Goldmont 2016 Broxton Cancelled Broxton Cancelled
Apollo Lake
Apollo Lake Apollo Lake Unknown Denverton Unknown Unknown

Note: There is further the Xeon Phi. It has up to now undergone four development steps with a current top model that got the code name Knights Landing (shortcut: KNL;[13] the predecessor code names all had the leading term Knights in their name) that is derived from the Silvermont architecture as used for the Intel Atom series but realized in a shrunk 14 nm (FinFET) technology.[53]


See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Intel Tick–Tock Model". Intel.com. Intel Corporation.
  2. ^ "Intel tick–tock model". intel.com. Intel Corporation. Retrieved 2014-11-02. A yearly product cadence moves the industry forward in a predictable fashion that can be planned in advance.
  3. ^ "Intel Haswell Refresh Processors Codenamed Devil's Canyon - Launching in Mid 2014 With Unlocked Design and Improved TIM". Wccftech.com. 2014-03-20. Retrieved 2017-04-29.
  4. ^ a b "Intel's 'Tick–Tock' Seemingly Dead, Becomes 'Process–Architecture–Optimization'". Anandtech.com. Retrieved 23 March 2016.
  5. ^ "Intel Official News on Twitter". Twitter. Retrieved 2017-04-29.
  6. ^ "Intel's 8th-gen 'Coffee Lake' chips reuse 14nm process as other Core CPUs ease into new tech". PC World. Retrieved 2017-04-29.
  7. ^ Intel Releases Linux CPU Microcodes To fix Meltdown & Spectre Bugs by Lawrence Abrams on January 11, 2018
  8. ^ Linux* Processor Microcode Data File Version 20180312 on 3/12/2018
  9. ^ Crothers, Brooke (2009-02-10). "Intel moves up rollout of new chips | Nanotech - The Circuits Blog". CNet.com. Retrieved 2014-02-25.
  10. ^ "Intel CEO: Latest Platforms, Processors Form New Foundations For Digital Entertainment And Wireless Computing". Intel.com. Intel Corporation.
  11. ^ "Intel Unveils World's Best Processor". Intel.com (Press release). Intel Corporation.
  12. ^ "Intel Unveils 16 Next-Generation Processors, Including First Notebook Chips Built on 45nm Technology". Intel.com (Press release). Intel Corporation. January 7, 2008.
  13. ^ a b c d https://github.com/gz/rust-x86/blob/master/x86data/perfmon_data/mapfile.csv
  14. ^ "Intel Launches Fastest Processor on the Planet". Intel.com (Press release). Intel Corporation. November 17, 2008.
  15. ^ Bohr, Mark (February 10, 2009). "Intel 32nm Technology" (PDF). Intel.com. Intel Corporation. Retrieved July 7, 2017.
  16. ^ "Revolutionizing How We Use Technology—Today and Beyond". Intel.com. Logic Technology Development, Intel Corporation.
  17. ^ Crothers, Brooke (November 15, 2010). "Intel Sandy Bridge chip coming January 5". CNet.com. Retrieved July 7, 2017.
  18. ^ Pop, Sebastian (April 9, 2012). "Intel Ivy Bridge CPU Range Complete by Next Year". Softpedia.com. Retrieved July 7, 2017.
  19. ^ a b Bohr, Mark; Mistry, Kaizad (May 2011). "Intel's Revolutionary 22 nm Transistor Technology" (PDF). Intel.com. Intel Corporation. Retrieved July 7, 2017.
  20. ^ a b Novakovic, Nebojsa (April 9, 2012). "Ivy Bridge EP and EX coming up in a year's time – the multi-socket platform heaven". VR-Zone.com. VR Zone AP Pte. Ltd. Retrieved July 7, 2017.
  21. ^ Knight, Shawn (March 19, 2012). "Ivy Bridge-E Delayed Until Second Half of 2013". techspot.com. Retrieved July 7, 2017.
  22. ^ a b Products formerly Crystal Well at Intel web page
  23. ^ a b What is Crystalwell? by Matt Egan on OCT 31, 2013 at macworld.com
  24. ^ a b "Leaked specifications of Haswell GT1/GT2/GT3 IGP". TechNewsPedia.com. 2012-05-20. Retrieved 2014-02-25.
  25. ^ "Intel Core i7-4790K: Devils Canyon mit bis zu 4,4 GHz, ohne verlöteten Deckel" [Intel Core i7-4790K: Devils Canyon with up to 4.4 GHz, without soldered lid]. golem.de (in German). June 3, 2014. Retrieved July 7, 2017.
  26. ^ a b c Demerjian, Charlie (March 31, 2011). "After Intel's Haswell comes Broadwell". SemiAccurate.com. Stone Arch Networking Services, Inc. Retrieved July 7, 2017.
  27. ^ a b Shilov, Anton (August 21, 2015). "Intel to release 22-core Xeon E5 v4 'Broadwell-EP' late in 2015". KitGuru.net. Retrieved July 7, 2017.
  28. ^ Carey, Gabe (July 7, 2015). "The wait for Skylake is almost over, first desktop chips likely to hit August 5". DigitalTrends.com. Retrieved July 7, 2017.
  29. ^ "Intel 14nm Kaby Lake "Skylake Refresh" Platform Detailed – Launching in 2H 2016, 256 MB eDRAM H-Series and 91W K-Series Unveiled". wccftech.com. July 2015. The Kaby Lake platform will be similar to Skylake platform that launches this year and will act as a platform refresher
  30. ^ "Intel Releasing 14nm Kaby Lake Processor in 2016 Ahead of 10nm Cannonlake". legitreviews.com. 2015-07-08. We have long known that Intel was planning a ‘Skylake Refresh’ that has always been on the roadmap between Skylake and Cannonlake, but it appears that refresh might be going by the code name Kaby lake now.
  31. ^ a b c Mujtaba, Hassan (January 20, 2016). "Intel's Cannonlake CPUs To Be Succeeded By 10nm Ice Lake Family in 2018 and 10nm Tiger Lake Family in 2019". WCCFTech.com. Retrieved July 7, 2017.
  32. ^ Bright, Peter (July 15, 2015). "Intel confirms tick–tock shattering Kaby Lake processor as Moore's Law falters". ArsTechnica.com. the switch to 10nm manufacturing has been delayed until the second half of 2017.
  33. ^ Walton, Jarred (January 4, 2017). "Intel's Kaby Lake: Everything you need to know". PCGamer.com. Retrieved July 7, 2017. Today marks the official launch date of the desktop S-series 7th Generation Core processors...
  34. ^ "Intel® Core™ X-series Processors Product Specifications". Intel® ARK (Product Specs). Retrieved 2017-10-05.
  35. ^ Products formerly Kaby Lake R
  36. ^ a b Ngo, Allen (August 21, 2017). "Intel Core i5-8250U, i5-8350U, i7-8550U, and i7-8650U Kaby Lake-R series launches today". Notebookcheck. Intel Core i5-8250U, i5-8350U, i7-8550U, and i7-8650U Kaby Lake-R launches today (Source: Intel)
  37. ^ "Products formerly Coffee Lake".
  38. ^ "Intel Unveils the 8th Gen Intel Core Processor Family for Desktop, Featuring Intel's Best Gaming Processor Ever | Intel Newsroom". Intel Newsroom. Retrieved 2017-10-05.
  39. ^ a b "New 8th Gen Intel Core Processors Optimize Connectivity, Great Performance, Battery Life for Laptops | Intel Newsroom". Intel Newsroom. Retrieved 2018-08-30.
  40. ^ a b "Intel Expands 10th Gen Intel Core Mobile Processor Family, Offering Double Digit Performance Gains". Intel Newsroom. Retrieved 2019-08-21.
  41. ^ a b online, heise. "Comet Lake-U: 15-Watt-CPUs für Notebook-CPUs mit sechs Kernen". c't Magazin (in German). Retrieved 2019-08-21.
  42. ^ a b c Tyson, Mark (2012-05-15). "Intel currently developing 14nm, aiming towards 5nm chips". HEXUS.net. Retrieved 2014-02-25.
  43. ^ Tyson, Mark. "Intel Core i3-8121U 10nm processor hits ARK database". HEXUS.net. Retrieved 2019-06-17.
  44. ^ Eassa, Ashraf (January 18, 2016). "What's the Name of Intel's Third 10-Nanometer Chip? This Fool has learned the code name of the follow-on to Intel's Icelake processor". Fool.com; The Motley Fool. Retrieved July 7, 2017.
  45. ^ "Intel Launches First 10th Gen Intel Core Processors: Redefining the Next Era of Laptop Experiences". Intel Newsroom. Retrieved 2019-08-07.
  46. ^ Lilly, Paul. "Intel's 12th generation 'Sapphire Rapids' core architecture may arrive in 2020". PC Gamer. Retrieved 1 October 2017.
  47. ^ a b Lal Shimpi, Anand (May 6, 2013). "Intel's Silvermont Architecture Revealed: Getting Serious About Mobile". AnandTech.com. Retrieved July 7, 2017.
  48. ^ Hiroshige, Goto. "Intel Products for Tablets & SmartPhones" (PDF). Impress.co.jp. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2013-11-14.
  49. ^ "Import Data and Price of Anniedale". zauba.com. Retrieved July 7, 2017.
  50. ^ Kazuaki Kasahara (November 30, 2012). "アウトオブオーダーと最新プロセスを採用する今後のAtom" [Future Atom adopting out-of-order and latest process]. Impress.co.jp (in Japanese). Retrieved July 7, 2017.
  51. ^ "Products (Formerly Braswell)". Ark.Intel.com. Intel Corporation. Retrieved 5 April 2016.
  52. ^ Smith, Ryan; Cutress, Ian (29 April 2016). "Intel's Changing Future: Smartphone SoCs Broxton & SoFIA Officially Canceled". Anandtech.com. Retrieved 29 June 2016.
  53. ^ Intel veröffentlicht Xeon Phi mit bis zu 7 Teraflops

External links[edit]