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Knights Landing

David Kanter, real world technologies, Knights Landing CPU Speculation, here.

In the last few years, Intel has moved towards a system-on-chip (SoC) design philosophy that mirrors the industry at large. While critical IP blocks such as CPU cores are custom designed and placed as hard macros, there is a growing emphasis on re-use across product lines. Perhaps the most obvious example is that the Silvermont core is used in smartphones, tablets, and microservers (respectively codenamed Merrifield, Bay Trail, and Avoton). Consequently, the first step to figuring out what core is used in Knights Landing (KNL) is to understand the options available to Intel’s architects.

There are at least four publicly known cores that are available to Intel’s architects as building blocks for the 14nm Knights Landing:

  1. Big cores, such as Haswell and Skylake

  2. Small cores, such as Silvermont and Goldmont

  3. The Knights Corner core, a derivative of the P54C

  4. The Quark core, a derivative of the 486

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