Intel "Skylake" platform delivers more performance, but it's best feature could be the doubling of memory to 64 GB.
For many generations of new Intel platforms for entry-level workstations and mobile workstations has been stuck at 32 GB. With the release of the Skylake platform, these workstations now deliver 64 GB of memory capacity.
My old workstation had been puffing along with 8 GB of memory. Fortunately, I was able to increase that. No matter what kind of CAD, 3D modeling, or design work you do, you will be doing it better when your workstation can stretch it's legs with 16 GB of memory.
The great news with Skylake workstations, mobile as well as desktop, is increasing the support from 32 GB to 64 GB of memory. Not everyone needs to break the 32 GB barrier for design and CAD work. But the extra head-room allows you to expand memory capacity as you need it.
Needing more than 32 GB of memory can arise, for example, if you add simulations to your engineering work-flow. There are many excellent simulation and analysis applications available. Many are integrated into CAD applications like SolidWorks, CATIA, PTC Creo and others. As vendors make simulation more accessible to non-simulation experts among their engineering customers, the demand for higher performance workstations – and more memory – increases, too.
The PW Perspective
Technical specifications for our workstations sometimes plateau. This happened with display resolutions on mobile workstations. For many generations, the display resolution was stuck at 1920x1080. This was the case for memory capacity in mobile and entry-level desktop workstations. The capacity was stuck for multiple generations.
Just as with the relatively recent change in resolutions for mobile workstations, the doubling of memory capacity to 64 GB is a very welcome change. Admittedly, many single application users will not need significantly more than 16 GB for now, much less more than 32 GB. However, analysis and simulation tools are a perfect example how engineering workstations continue to require more resources and better technologies. The increased memory capacity up to 64 GB is a great new feature in the Skylake platform.