Delays in Intel Cannon Lake processor rumored again, may impact 32GB MacBook Pro plans

Posted:
in General Discussion edited September 2017
Supply chain sources suggest that the Intel Cannon Lake processor needed to drive 32GB of RAM in a MacBook Pro without the need of a dedicated memory controller has slipped to the end of 2018, likely pushing any MacBook Pro with the configuration that far away as well.




Citing "sources from the upstream supply chain," supply chain monitor DigiTimes notes that Intel appears to have pushed back Cannon Lake from early 2018 to the end of the year. Reportedly, some unnamed vendors are considering skipping Cannon Lake in anticipation of Ice Lake, which is currently scheduled to arrive shortly after Cannon Lake's new arrival date -- but why Ice Lake wouldn't be similarly pushed back isn't clear.

Cannon Lake will be the first generation of Intel chips produced using a 10-nanometer process, a die shrink that aims to provide performance improvements compared to previous generations, as well as a reduction in power consumption. This makes the processor more attractive for producers of battery-powered, where power consumption is a major concern.

Cannon Lake processors include support for LPDDR4 memory, something which could allow for the creation of a MacBook Pro with up to 32 gigabytes of memory without a RAM controller. The MacBook Pro is unlikely to see a change to 32GB of RAM in the short term, as Apple is not expected to equip a MacBook Pro with a new RAM controller allowing for 32GB of more power-hungry DDR4 support.

Compounding the problem, the expected 14nm process Kaby Lake refresh said to be called "Coffee Lake" doesn't support LPDDR4 -- which would allow for 32GB of RAM without a new RAM controller. Coffee Lake processors for desktops are expected to arrive in October.

In April, the Cannon Lake family was pushed back into 2018. DigiTimes was the first to report on those timing slips, which proved to be accurate.

DigiTimes is generally accurate when tracking a component through the supply chain, such as these Cannon Lake rumors. However, the venue has an unreliable track record in predicting Apple's future product plans.

The current 14nm Kaby Lake was chosen for the 2017 refresh of the MacBook Pro. Compared to the Skylake processor in the 2016 MacBook Pro, Kaby Lake saw a slight processing power increase, but larger improvements to the onboard GPU and power efficiency.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 45
    Apple just needs to use Zen+ (Zen 2) now that Thunderbolt is opened up.
    ksecaaron sorenson
  • Reply 2 of 45
    xzuxzu Posts: 139member
    My 2013 Mac Pro (trash can) just died. My main work computer. I have no idea what to replace it with. I am just staring at the Apple website in complete amazement. 
    repressthisksecelectrosoft
  • Reply 3 of 45
    Mike WuertheleMike Wuerthele Posts: 4,757administrator
    Apple just needs to use Zen+ (Zen 2) now that Thunderbolt is opened up.
    2018 for the Thunderbolt licensing.
    xzurepressthis
  • Reply 4 of 45
    And that is why Apple is going full scale on its ARM chips. It's not the first time Intel delayed... it's a repeated pattern and Apple's done. When IBM failed to deliver PowerPC as promised, Apple switched to Intel.
    polymniarepressthisacejax805
  • Reply 5 of 45
    xzu said:
    My 2013 Mac Pro (trash can) just died. My main work computer. I have no idea what to replace it with. I am just staring at the Apple website in complete amazement. 
    iMac Pro
    repressthisksecbaconstang
  • Reply 6 of 45
    netrox said:
    And that is why Apple is going full scale on its ARM chips. It's not the first time Intel delayed... it's a repeated pattern and Apple's done. When IBM failed to deliver PowerPC as promised, Apple switched to Intel.
    Not convinced anymore that Apple is doing an ARM-based Mac. 
    welshdogblastdoorkirkgray
  • Reply 7 of 45
    rob53rob53 Posts: 2,074member
    xzu said:
    My 2013 Mac Pro (trash can) just died. My main work computer. I have no idea what to replace it with. I am just staring at the Apple website in complete amazement. 
    If you don't want it, send it to me. I'm always looking for a computer to try and fix.

    If you're interested in trying to fix it, start at https://www.ifixit.com/Device/Mac_Pro_Late_2013 and see what parts are available. Did you have a backup for your data or was your data on external drives? If the former, I'm sure there's a way to install the SSDs in an external box and copy the data.

    If you still want to stay with the late 2013 Mac Pro until something newer comes out, I'd start here, https://eshop.macsales.com/Search/SearchPromo.cfm?Ntk=Primary&N2=4294922266&Ns=P_ID|1&Ne=4294922318&N=100518+4294922309+4294922266&Ntt=OWCUsedMac to look for a used Mac Pro.

    Good luck.
    xzuxzubsimpsenargonautrepressthis
  • Reply 8 of 45
    sflocalsflocal Posts: 4,674member
    xzu said:
    My 2013 Mac Pro (trash can) just died. My main work computer. I have no idea what to replace it with. I am just staring at the Apple website in complete amazement. 
    Define "died".  Power supply?  Silicon failure?  Have you taken it to Apple for repair or estimate?

    That being said... an iMac Pro would be for you, if not a high-end i7 iMac as well depending on the kind of work you're doing.
    repressthisbaconstang
  • Reply 9 of 45
    netrox said:
    And that is why Apple is going full scale on its ARM chips. It's not the first time Intel delayed... it's a repeated pattern and Apple's done. When IBM failed to deliver PowerPC as promised, Apple switched to Intel.
    Not convinced anymore that Apple is doing an ARM-based Mac. 
    Right, iOS 11+iCloud with BT5 and AirPlay draws into question the future of the MacBook, MacBookAir, MacMini and iMac. 

    Will there be enough users for macOS on just MBPs and iMacPros to keep third-party support strong or will the Pro-Mac users mainly be running Apple apps (like Logic, XCode, Numbers, etc.), Adobe or Windows?
  • Reply 10 of 45

    xzu said:
    My 2013 Mac Pro (trash can) just died. My main work computer. I have no idea what to replace it with. I am just staring at the Apple website in complete amazement. 
    It is too long a wait to rent a replacement at $400/mo and a used one is likely to fail sooner rather than later. Terrible spot Apple has left you in. Talk to a store manager and let them know your interest in updating to an iMac Pro. Perhaps they will give you a loaner or comp your trash can repair.
    repressthis
  • Reply 11 of 45
    I sense a plateau approaching, in regard to (exponentially) increasing performance of upcoming Apple chips.
  • Reply 12 of 45
    netrox said:
    And that is why Apple is going full scale on its ARM chips. It's not the first time Intel delayed... it's a repeated pattern and Apple's done. When IBM failed to deliver PowerPC as promised, Apple switched to Intel.
    I was just thinking the same thing. 

    The specific issue that broke the PowerPC deal was getting a G5 that would work in the PowerBook. Apple was still selling G4 PowerBooks for a few years after the G5 desktop PowerMacs were available. 

    There were lots of rumors about Apple switching to Intel as time wore on. Not much different than the "Macs using A-series chips" rumors we have now.

     Intel drags its feet deliving modern performance in a laptop format. The song remains the same. 
    Soliargonautmizhou
  • Reply 13 of 45
    Apple should offer Intel to improve their fab process...they are shipping 10nm without issue. 
  • Reply 14 of 45
    netrox said:
    And that is why Apple is going full scale on its ARM chips. It's not the first time Intel delayed... it's a repeated pattern and Apple's done. When IBM failed to deliver PowerPC as promised, Apple switched to Intel.
    Not convinced anymore that Apple is doing an ARM-based Mac. 
    Remember Steve Job's "just in case" scenario of switching from PowerPC to Intel? It's happening.
    repressthis
  • Reply 15 of 45
    netrox said:
    And that is why Apple is going full scale on its ARM chips. It's not the first time Intel delayed... it's a repeated pattern and Apple's done. When IBM failed to deliver PowerPC as promised, Apple switched to Intel.
    Not convinced anymore that Apple is doing an ARM-based Mac. 
    Remember Steve Job's "just in case" scenario of switching from PowerPC to Intel? It's happening.
    Yep, I have no doubt.
    repressthis
  • Reply 16 of 45
    anomeanome Posts: 1,291member

    I'm kind of worried at the extent an entire industry is dependent on one company whose current forward work program seems to be based on believing their own press releases. It just seems Intel had no contingency plans in place for a failure in their development cycle, and they have been hastily rewriting it as a result.

    Meanwhile, Apple, and some other companies, are having to change their own development programs in response. So when the next update to the MacBook Pro comes out and still doesn't have 32GB RAM as an option, they cop all the flack for Intel's failure to deliver. And I would guess switching to AMD cpus, without taking into account the lack of Thunderbolt support, would require a massive re-engineering effort on Apple's part. (I don't even know how the performance would compare at this point.)

    repressthis
  • Reply 17 of 45
    xzu said:
    My 2013 Mac Pro (trash can) just died. My main work computer. I have no idea what to replace it with. I am just staring at the Apple website in complete amazement. 
    Unless things have changed, Apple still has a $300 flat rate repair for hardware faults, not including physical damage. 
    xzu
  • Reply 18 of 45
    wood1208wood1208 Posts: 1,988member
    Shrinking complex chip is no easy and Intel is finding out at every tick-tok generation of their chips. But, for future enthusiastic buyers of laptop/Macs, this is bummer. Now, it's hard to trust Intel what says and what delivered.
    I was hoping next year's Macbook Pros would contain 10nm Cannon Lake chps with DDRL4 and 16GB limitation. It may be time Apple make it's own chips for all Macbooks.
  • Reply 19 of 45
    This just happened.

    Zen and Vega are being stamped out with this 1H 2018 before Zen2/Navi arrives on 7nm 2H 2018.

    Apple will not waste 1$ on helping Intel. They need Intel only for LTE radios. They know TBolt obviously is opened up any time now and can modify their motherboard design to offer a Zen/AM4 custom design with AMD's custom Vega/Navi solutions moving forward.

    iMac Pro with Xeon will be the last Intel box. Threadripper moving foward would trounce Xeon at a lower price point.

    xzunetrox
  • Reply 20 of 45
    Global Foundries just announced IBM Power solutions now using their 14nm FinFET solution.
    mizhou
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