Another entry of an Intel 12th Gen Alder Lake Desktop CPU has been spotted within the SiSoftware Sandra database. The processor which seems to be an early engineering sample comes with some nice specifications on the table and should be a major upgrade over anything that Intel has to offer, even its 11th Generation Rocket Lake CPUs which are yet to be launched.
Intel Alder Lake Desktop CPU With 16 Cores & Up To 4.0 GHz Boost Clocks Spotted, Comes Packed With 256 Core Xe GPU & DDR5 Memory Support
The Intel Alder Lake-S Desktop CPU has no official name but we know that the lineup would be part of the 12th Gen Desktop family which is scheduled for launch in the second half of 2021. The Alder Lake chip is configured with 16 cores and interestingly, SiSoftware lists down the thread count at 32 which may not entirely be accurate. We know that Alder Lake CPUs will feature a hybrid design that will feature both Big x86 and smaller Atom cores. The bigger cores will feature multi-threading so it should be equivalent to 8 cores and 16 threads. The smaller cores however won't feature SMT and will be configured at 8 cores and 8 threads. This would yield a total of 16 cores and 24 threads but we can't say that for sure.
As for the clock speeds, the Intel Alder Lake ES CPU is configured at a base clock of 1.80 GHz and a boost clock of 4.00 GHz. These are in no way the final clock speeds for the chip and expect them in the mid 3 GHz range for the base clock and 5 GHz range for the boost clock. It will be interesting to see how clock speeds are managed between the two core architectures, one being Golden Cove for x86 cores and the other being Gracemont for the Atom cores. The CPU will be fabricated over the enhanced 10nm SuperFin process node which should allow for higher boost frequencies.
Other specifications include 1.25 MB of cache and there's a total of 10 pairs which brings the total amount to 12.50 MB. There's also a massive 30 MB of L3 cache and that brings the complete cache amount to 42.50 MB. There's also a 32 EU Xe GPU on board the die which features a total of 256 stream processors for graphics. The graphics chip is clocked at 1500 MHz and based on the newer Gen 12.2 architecture. The chip was tested on an internal Alder Lake test platform with support for DDR5-4800 memory. This confirms that Alder Lake will be the first Intel desktop platform to feature the support for DDR5 memory.
Here's Everything We Know About The Next-Gen Alder Lake CPU Family
The Alder Lake CPUs are not only going to be the first desktop processor family to feature a 10nm process node but would also feature a new design methodology. From what we know so far, Intel plans to include a mix of CPU cores that are based on different IPs. The Alder Lake CPUs will come with standard high-performance 'Cove' cores and smaller yet efficient 'Atom' cores. This big.SMALL design methodology has been incorporated on smartphones for a while now but Alder Lake will be the first time we see it in action in the high-performance segment.
We don't have any specifics of which generation of 'Cove' or 'Atom' architecture Intel plans to utilize for its Alder Lake CPUs but their roadmap does point to Golden Cove and Gracemont architectures availability by 2021. It is possible that we would see these cores in actions first on the desktop CPU platform but would also be utilized in a Lakefield successor. You can learn more about the various Alder Lake SKU configurations here and here.
Following are some of the updates you should expect from Intel's 2021 architecture lineup:
Intel Golden Cove (Core) Architecture:
- Improve Single-Threaded Performance (IPC)
- Improve Artificial Intelligence (AI) Performance
- Improve Network/5G Performance
- Enhanced Security Features
Intel Gracemont (Atom) Architecture:
- Improve Single-Threaded Performance (IPC)
- Improve Frequency (Clock Speeds)
- Improve Vector Performance
The CPUs will be compatible with the LGA 1700 socket which has a much larger area footprint than LGA 1200. The package size for the chips is 45.0 x 37.5 mm whereas the existing LGA 1200 package is 37.5 x 37.5 mm. As for the demo unit itself, an undisclosed Intel Alder Lake CPU was running on a reference test platform that featured Intel's stock fan cooler and had two DIMMs operating next to it. There is no GPU attached so the platform was running off the Iris Xe GPU that will be featured on the Alder Lake CPUs. The DIMMs seem to be DDR5 but we cannot confirm this at the moment.
In addition to the chips, the LGA 1700 platform is said to feature the latest and brand new I/O tech such as support for DDR5 memory, PCIe 5.0, and new Thunderbolt / WiFi capabilities. While the chip design methodology isn't anything new as we have seen several SOCs feature similar core hierarchy, it would definitely be interesting to see a similar outing on a high-performance desktop CPU lineup.
Intel Mainstream CPU Generations Comparison:
|Intel CPU Family||Processor Process||Processor Architecture||Processors Cores/Threads (Max)||TDPs||Platform Chipset||Platform||Memory Support||PCIe Support||Launch|
|Sandy Bridge (2nd Gen)||32nm||Sandy Bridge||4/8||35-95W||6-Series||LGA 1155||DDR3||PCIe Gen 2.0||2011|
|Ivy Bridge (3rd Gen)||22nm||Ivy Bridge||4/8||35-77W||7-Series||LGA 1155||DDR3||PCIe Gen 3.0||2012|
|Haswell (4th Gen)||22nm||Haswell||4/8||35-84W||8-Series||LGA 1150||DDR3||PCIe Gen 3.0||2013-2014|
|Broadwell (5th Gen)||14nm||Broadwell||4/8||65-65W||9-Series||LGA 1150||DDR3||PCIe Gen 3.0||2015|
|Skylake (6th Gen)||14nm||Skylake||4/8||35-91W||100-Series||LGA 1151||DDR4||PCIe Gen 3.0||2015|
|Kaby Lake (7th Gen)||14nm||Skylake||4/8||35-91W||200-Series||LGA 1151||DDR4||PCIe Gen 3.0||2017|
|Coffee Lake (8th Gen)||14nm||Skylake||6/12||35-95W||300-Series||LGA 1151||DDR4||PCIe Gen 3.0||2017|
|Coffee Lake (9th Gen)||14nm||Skylake||8/16||35-95W||300-Series||LGA 1151||DDR4||PCIe Gen 3.0||2018|
|Comet Lake (10th Gen)||14nm||Skylake||10/20||35-125W||400-Series||LGA 1200||DDR4||PCIe Gen 3.0||2020|
|Rocket Lake (11th Gen)||14nm||Cypress Cove||8/16||35-125W||500-Series||LGA 1200||DDR4||PCIe Gen 4.0||2021|
|Alder Lake (12th Gen)||Intel 7||Golden Cove (P-Core)|
|16/24||35-125W||600 Series||LGA 1700/1800||DDR5 / DDR4||PCIe Gen 5.0||2021|
|Raptor Lake (13th Gen)||Intel 7||Raptor Cove (P-Core)|
|24/32||35-125W||700-Series||LGA 1700/1800||DDR5 / DDR4||PCIe Gen 5.0||2022|
|Meteor Lake (14th Gen)||Intel 4||Redwood Cove (P-Core)|
|TBA||35-125W||800 Series?||LGA 1851||DDR5||PCIe Gen 5.0||2023|
|Arrow Lake (15th Gen)||Intel 20A||Lion Cove (P-Core)|
|40/48||TBA||900-Series?||LGA 1851||DDR5||PCIe Gen 5.0||2024|
|Lunar Lake (16th Gen)||Intel 18A||TBD||TBA||TBA||1000-Series?||TBA||DDR5||PCIe Gen 5.0?||2025|
|Nova Lake (17th Gen)||Intel 18A||TBD||TBA||TBA||2000-Series?||TBA||DDR5?||PCIe Gen 6.0?||2026|
News Source: Momomo_US