Intel: We will offer removable CPUs "for the foreseeable future"

A couple of weeks ago, rumors began hitting the Internet that Intel was going to do away with removable CPUs in its future PC processor lineup, starting with the lineup of chips that are currently going under the code name Broadwell. This naturally started a firestorm of criticism from PC hardware enthusiasts, particularly those who want to build their own PC rigs.

Now Maximum PC has received a statement from Intel, which says the company doesn't plan on doing away with making removable CPUs anytime soon:

Intel remains committed to the growing desktop enthusiast and channel markets, and will continue to offer socketed parts in the LGA package for the foreseeable future for our customers and the Enthusiast DIY market ... However, Intel cannot comment on specific long-term product roadmap plans at this time, but will disclose more details later per our normal communication process.

While many conspiracy theorists will likely make much of this simple statement, we think that Intel knows that doing away with removable CPUs entirely would be a bad idea. Not only would it make hardcore PC enthusiasts mad, it's also likely that large scale server and workstation customers would also be upset if Intel went ahead and moved to a system based on the ball grid array (BGA), where the processor is soldered directly into a motherboard.

AMD has already announced that it will continue to offer removable CPUs for its future PC processors and they have "no plans at this time to move to BGA only packaging."

Source: Maxiumum PC | Image via Tweaktown

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22 Comments

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There was no way intel would do this not even in the next 10 years . There are way way way to many servers / pcs in the world not to mention the sales of motherboards would also be finished as well as ram and video cards . It would kill the pc market as we know it. The world is not ready for this.

Thats very vague. just let us know that, 'hey, were switching to a newer type of socket'
don't make us think that we soon wont be able to upgrade our computers without having to replace both the motherboard and embedded processor... thats just dumb.

So Intel do nothing to respond to growing concerns from end users, but as soon as AMD make a statement that they're commited to providing the choice and options people want, they suddenly reveal themselves and make a statement. Tells me a lot.

This just means that they will eventually go to the slot processors again. Remember those? They were BGA style processors on cards that you installed into the system. They were a PITA to deal with but at least they were upgradable. That is if you could find them... They never caught on though (lucky for us).

I just built a new workstation and while newer systems require more research, the difference a motherboard makes is huge compared to what it was just a few years ago. I ended up bumping myself up the ladder to over $250 but couldn't be happier with the features while others are just as happy with the $99 boards...I think adding the all in one solution is a good idea too though.

I'd be happy with them integrating CPU's into systems. Who really upgrades their CPU within the same family anyway? Did anyone really go from a Core i7 920 to a 950? If you buy a CPU, you will usually only upgrade one or two generations later. And your old motherboard is not compatible with those new CPU's so you'd need to buy a new one anyway...

RuuddieBoy said,
..... And your old motherboard is not compatible with those new CPU's so you'd need to buy a new one anyway...

Which is why AMD is still a player.
They keep socket designs across generations for compatability.
This is the one thing I hated about Intel.

deadonthefloor said,

Which is why AMD is still a player.
They keep socket designs across generations for compatability.
This is the one thing I hated about Intel.

Is it FM1 and FM2 compatibility you're talking about?

I think SoC will be GREAT for Intel entering into the tablet/mobile market, although the surface pro runs nicely if the i5 was SoC then the size and power consumption could be reduced.

I see Intel making SoC chips for OEMs, and maybe a select group of enthusiasts who want SoC based boards. LGA will remain for the PC builders for a while.

Perhaps in 7 years things will be so advanced that we can mail in a spec sheet and robots/chinese workers will turn out a board to spec, they do it with laptops (CPU/RAM/BluRay/DVD/Backlit KB/screen type are all options when you buy, even GPU is customizable on some models) I don't think it's bad. Chill my LGA fan boys, we will prevail.

This is certainly a much more user-friendly business model, in contrast to some other companies. Intel is looking for long-term solid growth instead of instant satisfaction with very questionable growth.

TsarNikky said,
This is certainly a much more user-friendly business model, in contrast to some other companies. Intel is looking for long-term solid growth instead of instant satisfaction with very questionable growth.

Processors are already pretty powerful these days and with greater improvement comes different motherboards. So, from a business standpoint, it does make sense that Intel reduces costs and power by making everything all-in-one, as it is the case with ultrabooks, for instance.
Ordinary consumers will not really need octo-core CPUs and the enthusiast will have to deal with enthusiast motherboards with a very steep price. Until Intel just kills the screaming babies once and for all...

BGA processors will probably be aimed at tablet/smartphone/small form markets, as they currently are with the atom lines.