Intel has a very clear intention, to beat AMD in the market through a two-phase move. The first is to get ahead of Zen 4 with the launch of its Alder Lake CPUs, both in laptops and desktops. The second is to take advantage of the muscle they have when producing just for themselves to achieve a rapid deployment of their processors. This requires that your CPUs are ready.
What do we know about Alder Lake?
The central cores of Alder Lake are Golden Cove. These are the successors of the Sunny Cove cores, of which we must not forget that they are currently in Ice Lake-SP, Rocket Lake-S under the name of Cypress Cove and ported at 14 nm, and in Tiger Lake and Tiger Lake-H shaped Willow Cove. So Golden Cove will be the core that will serve as the basis for the Alder Lake-S for desktop, Alder Lake-P for laptops and Sapphire Rapids which are the next Intel Xeon.
It is also the successor to Lakefield, since Intel will bet on the use of two types of cores in a single processor with different power and consumption. The 8 Golden Cove cores are accompanied by 8 Gracemont cores, which are of the Intel Atom type and they differ from the Golden Cove in three points:
- They have lower energy consumption when operating, but less power.
- They lack Hyperthreading, so they don’t have multithreading support.
- They are organized in 4-core clusters that share the L2 cache.
New details of Alder Lake-S: frequency and consumption
Through Igor’s Lab we have been able to know new details of the desktop version of the 12th generation Intel Core CPUs, that is, Alder Lake-S. The new CPU has two power consumption limits, Power Limits or PL1 and PL2. In the case of PL1 CPU can go up to 125 W in a period of 56 s, PL2 instead it lasts 2.44 ms. but with a consumption of 228 W in that period.
It’s about the revision B0 of the processor, due to its low just 1.8 GHz base speed we know that it is not the version that will hit stores. As for Golden Cove, its Turbo speed, or Boost, we have that it varies according to the number of active cores. In this preliminary version to the invoicing in mass we have the following speeds in Turbo:
- 2 cores can go up to 4.6 GHz, up to 4 cores up to 4.4 GHz, if we want to go up 6 cores then it can reach 4.3 GHz and with all 8 cores at 4 GHz.
If we go with Gracemont, yesu speed with the two active clusters is 3.4 GHz, but with only one it drops to 3 GHz. These speeds have been obtained with a voltage value of 1.3147 V. Let’s not forget that each Gracemont cluster is 4-core.
New chipset for Gen 12
The Socket of this CPU is the LGA 1700, so as we have already said many times it will be necessary to change the motherboard to use this processor. Given that the boards with the Z690 chipset are expected for the third quarter of this year it is a good clue for the release date of this CPU. Date that also coincides with the launch of the first DDR5 memories and is that Alder Lake-S will support DDR5-4800, but only on plates with Z690, the rest will continue to support DDR4-3200.
Whatever the type of memory, Alder Lake-S will inherit the Gear modes from Rocket Lake-S, not only for DDR4 but also for DDR5. The use of two types of memory and the shape of the processor makes us think that Alder Lake-S will use two different memory interfaces and activate one or the other depending on the motherboard used.
Regarding the I / O we have that the CPU has 20 PCIe lanes, 16 of which are for Gen 5 and the other 4 are for Gen 4. Considering that there are no M.2 SSDs that use the 5th Gen PCI Express interface yet it makes sense. On the other hand, the 16 PCIe 5th generation lanes tell us that the Intel Xe-HPG graphics card could be compatible with this interface. Intel has also updated its Direct Media Interface (DMI) to the fourth generation, but there are no details about the improvements in this case and we will have to wait for the final presentation.