Processor Manufacturing Processes or "Die Shrinks" as Fast As Possible

How do processor manufacturers keep providing us with higher performance processors each year at the same or lower prices?

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40 thoughts on “Processor Manufacturing Processes or "Die Shrinks" as Fast As Possible

  • Problems and solutions at 7 NM – YT. This will clear your doubts. Unfortunately, competition is overrated! About 6 different technologies coming to the rescue at 7 and 5 NM. Open source OSes and hardware designs would be way more efficient. Now, TSMC nailed out the 10 NM. Samsung 10 NM was just a joke.

  • Apparently the nm no longer has to do with the size of the transistor, now it refers to the degree of accuracy for the chip.

  • Please revisit this conversation… silicon is impossible, physically, or economically ridiculous, at less then 7nm. After 2019, with the post-tick-tock cycle being retired and Intel being left with the last silicone node ever to be used (!), will we come to a standstill?

  • pentium 3.4ghz was 1000 dollars and now 99 dollars for a 11" laptop at best buy with a quadcore processor. Funny how things have changed. ITs a waiting game really if you can wait you will get it for free basically.

  • So for anyone reading this, do you think Cannon Lake would be worth the wait (at lease 15-20% performance bump from Kaby Lake) @ 10mm process? Even though Broadwell moved from 22nm to 14nm, there wasn't a big performance difference. So I am wondering if I should just buy Skylake now, since Kaby Lake doesn't seem to offer much of a performance increase, though if Cannon Lake turns out to be what GTX 1070 and 1080 turned out to be to their predecessors, i.e. much better performers, it'd make more sense to wait for Cannon Lake.

  • For those that are wondering why intel disposed of the Tick/Tock cycle, you may investigate Moore's Law. It states that the number of transistors on a single die will double in 18 months. However, once we get down to around the 8 nm process, we start to have issues with a phenomenon called quantum tunneling. This is where the transistors switch themselves on and off randomly, instead or in addition to the gate current being applied. This, in turn, means a highly unstable processor. In order to combat this, intel has adjusted how the "dope" the silicon. By changing the concentration of the dopant atoms, they are able to change the quantum mechanical properties of the transistor. This allows them to prevent it. Imagine the problem like this: You have a dam holding 5 feet of extremely wavy water. If the dam is too thin, it will burst letting all the water through. If the dam is not high enough, water can splash overtop of the dam. In both of these situations, the dam has failed to do its job. This is the same issue with these transistors. So, we now will have to wait until we have quantum computers (which may never happen.) Yay spending money!

  • For all the people who are saying 14 nm transistors and comparing it to the size of atoms are wrong. The transistors aren't 14 nm, the band gap is. If you have two circuits(so 2 lines of copper) 14 nm  is the distance between them. It has nothing to do with size of the transistor. I don't know the size of the transistors. Band gap is bettered by finding better ways to insulate the circuits.

  • i am still keeping my pentium 200MMX as a key chain (i drilled a hole in it and tied a ringt through the hole
    (just dumped the 486 66MHz IBM Thinkpad last year)

  • I think linus should've mentioned something about the fact that we're reachjng the limit of how small a transitor can get before quantum mechanics becomes a problem.

  • Surely there's a plateau to be hit, and the next big step would probably require those missing elements on the periodic table or some other unobtanium not on Earth. As well as manufacturing techniques not possible with physical matter. We'll need like, magic and spells and shit.

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