Intel Processor Letters (CPU Suffix) Meaning Explained

As you venture to purchase a laptop or a desktop PC, the first thing you check is the CPU configuration. You encounter nomenclatures like Intel Core i5 11500B or Intel Core i7-10710U. These numbers, alphabets signify a lot as they provide valuable information.

Intel CPU Suffix letters Meaning

Let us understand what these numbers and letters stand for.

The Naming Formula

Intel follows a specific pattern when naming its CPUs. One can decipher the Intel processors letters meanings as follows.

  • The Company Name
  • The Name of the particular brand
  • The brand modifier
  • The generation indicator
  • The model number
  • The letter designation

For example, one of the latest 11th generation Intel Core i7 CPUs is Intel Core i7 11850H.

As per Intel’s naming formula, let us break it up to understand the naming pattern better.

(ex: Intel Core i7 11850H)

Intel

It is a no-brainer as Intel is the company manufacturing this processor.

Core

Core’ signifies the ‘Core’ brand.

Intel manufactures various brands of processors such as,

  • Core – for desktop PC, laptops, and gaming workstations
  • Xeon – powerful CPUs with unmatched cores and threads for heavy-duty workstations and network servers
  • Pentium – processor with a low processing power for casual computer users, available at budget-friendly prices
  • Celeron – entry-level processors, especially for those on a tight budget
  • Atom – power-efficient processors, primarily for mobile devices
Intel CPU brands Core, Xenon Pentium Celeron Atom

Besides, Intel also manufactures Quark micro-controllers and Movidius VPUs (Vision Processing Unit)

i7

Intel offers four Core models distinguished based on their overall performance.

Intel Core models come in four categories

  • i3 – Affordable and budget-friendly Core model, ideal for general use and casual gaming
  • i5 – Reserved for the mid-range processors that should be suitable for average gaming activity
  • i7 – High-end processors, excellent for extensive gaming and other CPU-intensive professional software
  • i9 – Best for use at computer workstations

11

indicates the 11th generation processor

Intel offers a range of processors belonging to different generations. Today, the 9th, 10th, and 11th generation Intel CPUs are popular. However, you can find the earlier generation processors in older laptops and PCs.

So, if the numbering starts from 11, it is an 11th gen CPU. If the numbering starts from 9, it is a 9th gen processor, and so on.

11th Gen i511600k

Naturally, the later the generation, the more advanced its features should be. However, you must consider the generation indicator and the brand modifier together when it comes to gauging performance levels.

850

Model Number – also known as SKU number

The model number generally comprises three digits. It does not signify much except for indicating its position in the hierarchy within its specific generation.

For example, when comparing the 850 model with the 800 model, one can say that the 800 model has been released before the 850 model.

At times, you will find a two-digit model number. For example, Intel Core i7 1195G7 or Intel Core i7 1165G7. Under such circumstances, you can deduce that the 95G7 is a later version than the 65G7.

H

is the letter designation

The letter designation, also known as product line suffixes, highlights specific characteristics that separate a particular CPU from the other. Here are the IPU suffix meanings or letter designations found in desktop and laptop processors.

Desktop CPUs

Intel-Core-i5-10600k

Intel CPU Suffix K

It is the most commonly found designation in desktop CPUs today. It indicates that the CPU comes with an unlocked multiplier, thereby allowing for free overclocking. Hence, it allows you to receive free value from the hardware that allows the processor to last longer before it requires an update. The overclocking feature also delivers better performances in high-demand applications like video editing and gaming.

Intel CPU Suffix F

Generally, Intel CPUs come with integrated graphics, except for the models with the Intel suffix F or KF. Such CPUs need a discrete graphics card. The KF model suggests that the CPU is unlocked and also does not feature integrated graphics.

Intel CPU Suffix B

The letter B does not have any description, but you can encounter some processors in desktop PCs with the Intel suffix B. They are named after the processors the names are based on. However, they are not designed for socketed desktops, as they use BGA (Ball Grid Array) mounting, similar to notebook processors.

Laptop CPUs

11th-gen Tiger Lake mobile
Intel 11th-gen Tiger Lake mobile processors

U – Intel suffix U denotes a processor that consumes low power. Hence, such processors have low TDP values.

Y – Intel last letter Y signifies Ultra-Low Power, much less than the U processor. It will have a lower TDP than the U models.

G1, G4, G7 – This lettering indicates the performance levels you can get from the processor’s integrated graphics. The number 1 indicates the lowest performance levels, whereas 7 signifies the best performance.

H – The last lettering H indicates a high-performance CPU. You also get HK processors that combine high performance with overclocking.

M – Intel suffix M indicated mobile processors designed especially for notebooks. Such processors consume less power and have calorific value. Besides M, you can find Intel suffixes like XM, LM, UM, QM.

  • XM denotes the highest performance or Extreme performance’ and is mainly for the high-end market.
  • LM signifies low voltage, with the calorific value about half that of the standard version.
  • UM stands for Ultra Low Voltage, with the power consumption less than the LM series.
  • QM means Quad, emphasizing that the CPU is a quad-core processor. Notebooks are generally dual-core. However, the i7 offers a quad-core CPU, a QM model.

Now that we have discussed Inter Processor naming in detail let us study a small example to understand the concept completely.

Naming/ProcessorIntel Core i7 11370HIntel Core i5 11400FIntel Core i7 10710U
Company NameIntelIntelIntel
Brand NameCoreCoreCore
Brand Modifieri7i5i7
Generation indicator11th generation11th generation10th generation
SKU Number370400710
LetteringH – High PerformanceF – No integrated graphicsU – Low Power

Intel CPU Letters (Suffix) – Final Thoughts

Now, the Intel CPU lettering concept should be clear. So, one glance at the CPU number should give you an idea about the brand name, brand indicator, generation, and performance levels.

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