Rocket Lake-S will come with new 500-series motherboards and will be the most significant desktop upgrade in recent years. It will reportedly stick with the LGA1200 socket that will be introduced with Comet Lake-S and you will have PCI Express 4.0 support with up to 20 CPU lanes plus 24 PCH PCI Express 3.0 lanes. The Rocket Lake chips will use a new architecture but details about the core count are still unknown.
There will also be faster DDR4 memory support, DMI 3.0 x8, integrated Xe graphics, integrated USB 2.0 Gen 2x2 (20Gbps), DisplayPort 1.4a and HDMI 2.0b support, and more.
Here are the main features:
The new processor core architecture: The slide confirms that Rocket Lake-S will feature new core architecture, without stating any other details. What is rumored, however, is that Rocket Lake-S is rumored to be 14nm adoption of Tiger Lake, which is using Willow Cove cores. 20 lanes of PCI Express 4.0: The most important change for Rocket Lake-S is PCIe 4.0 support. Not only will the CPU have direct 4.0 lanes, but there will be 4 additional lanes for storage (x16 for GPU and x4 for NVME drive). This means that both the primary GPU and NVME storage will be attached directly to the CPU, not the PCH. DMI 3.0 x8: Direct Media Interface will be upgraded to x8 link, which means doubled transfer speed compared to x4. Intel does not state the transfer speed for a new DMI connection, but the current x4 link has a transfer of 8 GT/s (3.93 GB/s). Intel Xe Graphics and display updates: The slide confirms that Rocket Lake-S will benefit from Xe graphics architecture (further evidence that RKL is a Tiger Lake desktop clone?). The upgrade to Xe (presumably Gen12) will also bring HDMI 2.0b and DisplayPort 1.4a support. Thunderbolt 4 and USB 3.2 20G: At CES 2020 Intel confirmed that the Tiger Lake platform will support Thunderbolt 4. This standard does not provide an upgrade over Thunderbolt 3 in terms of transfer speed (it is still 40 Gb/s). There has been a rumor that 4.0 might be using PCIe 4.0 but the slide clearly states that TB4.0 is still using PCIe 3.0. SGX removed: Intel Software Guard Extensions have been removed for Rocket Lake-S.