Intel is retiring its Kaby Lake desktop processors

(Image credit: Intel)

In a product change notification published on October 8, 2019, Intel announced that its ceasing production of its 7th-generation Kaby Lake processors. These 7th gen parts haven't been on our list of the best CPUs for gaming since the 8th gen updates arrived, but they were still available for purchase. The last order date is April 24, 2020 (non-cancelable and non-returnable), and the last shipment date is October 9, 2020. So this time next year, there will officially be no more new Kaby Lakes out in the wild.

The affected products listed on the product change notification are:

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Marketing NameProduct Code
Intel Core i7-6700 Processor CM8067702868219
Intel Core i5-6500 Processor CM8066201920404
Intel Core i7-6700 Processor CM8066201920103
Intel Core i5-6500 Processor CM8066201920404
Intel Core i5-7500 Processor CM8067702868012
Intel Core i5-7500T Processor CM806770286811
Intel Core i7-7700 ProcessorCM8067702868314
Intel Core i7-7700T Processor CM8067702868416

Also being discontinued are all 7th-gen Core i3, Celeron, and Pentium desktop processors.

First launched on desktop in January 2017, the Kaby Lake processors broke with Intel's previous tick-tock design model for a newer one called process-architecture-optimization, but still kept the same 14nm manufacturing process—except it was refined and tweaked and called 14mn+. It was also the first Intel processor to lack official driver support for any Windows versions older than Windows 10.

Compared to Skylake processors architecturally, Kaby Lake had increased clock speeds on some models and faster clock speed changes. (The Core i7-6700K had a base clock of 4.0 Ghz, while the Core i7-7700K has a base clock rate of 4.2GHz, for instance.) Additionally, the 7th-gen processors added support for Intel Optane memory on motherboards with 200-series chipsets. 

Kaby Lake was also the first Intel processor to compete with AMD's first generation of Ryzen CPUs. It still had four cores compared to AMD's eight, and Intel would release Coffee Lake just six months later to better compete with AMD's higher core and thread counts.

Intel also recently announced that it will cease production of its Kaby Lake-G processors with AMD's Radeon Vega graphics. In a statement to Tom's Hardware, Intel said it's refocusing its product portfolio and that its 10th-gen processors with Iris Plus graphics are built on the new Gen11 graphics architecture. It seems that Intel will use its own integrated graphics solutions from here on out.

Thanks, Tom's Hardware.

Joanna Nelius
When Joanna's not writing about gaming desktops, cloud gaming, or other hardware-related things, she's doing terrible stuff in The Sims 4, roleplaying as a Malkavian, or playing horror games that would give normal people nightmares. She also likes narrative adventures.