Why are CPU and GPU manufacturers trying to make transistors smaller and smaller instead of making the chips bigger so they can put more transistors?

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Why are CPU and GPU manufacturers trying to make transistors smaller and smaller instead of making the chips bigger so they can put more transistors?

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Smaller transistors use less power and so they also get less hot. And using smaller transistors means they can squeeze more cores onto a CPU/GPU.

The main reason is cost and performance.

Smaller transistors = more transistors per area = smaller silicon dies = more chips per silicon wafer.

If your chip was 1 square inch, you can only make about 78 per 12 inch silicon wafer. But if you could shrink the chip down to 1 square cm, you can make about 600 per wafer. So the latter has a much higher yield and is more profitable.

Also larger chips requires more wire distance for electricity to travel which means larger resistance and this can result in signal delays/worse performance.

There is only so much room to put things. You could easily build a supercomputer the size of the ENIAC, but that isn’t going to fit in someone’s office or living room. In order to fit more power into something that can conveniently fit within the consumer space the effort goes into making things smaller so you can pack more power into a more practical space.

It also uses less material, lowering expenses. The more material you use, the higher the cost and the less you have to make other transistors.

In addition to other reasons, smaller transistors have less capacitance and are therefore faster. That means more bandwidth in a communications application and more processing power in computers.

So you have a limited amount of space. With space not being infinite each application would in theory have a maximum volume that the GPU and CPU can occupy. No one wants a Computer that takes up a full room anymore. So how do you increase the amount of something you want when you have a space constraint? You increase its density. So by shrinking the size of the transistors now we can fit more into the same space or put the same amount of into a smaller space.
If you do want to build a computer of colossal size it will now be able to be more powerful by taking advantage of the faster chipsets or (hopefully) less expensive by taking advantage of the older and less performance dense chips.