In the previous couple of months we’ve examined the most recent x86 built-in graphics choices on the desktop from AMD, with some stunning outcomes about how performant a platform with built-in graphics could be. In this overview, we’re doing the same check however with Intel’s newest Rocket Lake Core 11th Gen processors. These processors characteristic Intel’s Xe-LP graphics, which had been touted as ‘next-generation’ once they launched with Intel’s mobile-focused Tiger Lake platform. However, the model applied on Rocket Lake has fewer graphics items, slower reminiscence, however a pleasant wholesome energy finances to maximise. Lo, Intel set forth for battle.

When a CPU meets GPU

Intel initially began integrating graphics onto its methods in 1999, by pairing the chipset with some type of video output. In 2010, the corporate moved from chipset graphics to on-board processor graphics, enabling the graphics {hardware} to reap the benefits of a a lot sooner bandwidth to predominant reminiscence in addition to a a lot decrease latency. Intel’s client processors now characteristic built-in graphics because the default configuration, with Intel at occasions dedicating extra of the processor design to graphics than to precise cores.

Intel CPUs: IGP as a % of Die Area
AnandTech Example Launched Cores IGP Size IGP as

Die Area %
Sandy Bridge i7-2600K Jan 2011 4 Gen6 GT2 11%
Ivy Bridge i7-3770K April 2012 4 Gen7 GT2 29%
Haswell i7-4770K June 2013 4 Gen7.5 GT2 29%
Broadwell i7-5775C June 2015 4 Gen8 GT3e 48%
Skylake i7-6700K Aug 2015 4 Gen9 GT2 36%
Kaby Lake i7-7700K Jan 2017 4 Gen9 GT2 36%
Coffee Lake i7-8700K Sept 2017 6 Gen9 GT2 30%
Coffee Lake i9-9900K Oct 2018 8 Gen9 GT2 26%
Comet Lake i9-10900K April 2020 10 Gen9 24 EUs 22%
Rocket Lake i9-11900K March 2021 8 Xe-LP 32 EUs 21%
Mobile CPUs
Ice Lake-U i7-1065G7 Aug 2019 4 Gen11 64 EUs 36%
Tiger Lake-U i7-1185G7 Sept 2020 4 Xe-LP 96 EUs 32%

All the best way from Intel’s first built-in graphics to its 2020 product line, Intel was reliant on its ‘Gen’ design. We noticed a variety of iterations through the years, with updates to the operate and processing ratios, with Gen11 that includes closely in Intel’s first manufacturing 10nm processor, Ice Lake.

The newest graphics design nevertheless is completely different. No longer referred to as ‘Gen’, Intel upcycled its design with further compute, extra options, and an prolonged effort for the design to scale from mobile compute all the best way as much as supercomputers. This new graphics household, often known as Xe, is now the inspiration of Intel’s graphics portfolio. It is available in 4 predominant flavors:

  • Xe-HPC for High Performance Computing in Supercomputers
  • Xe-HP for High Performance and Optimized FP64
  • Xe-HPG for High Performance Gaming with Ray Tracing
  • Xe-LP for Low Power for Integrated and Entry Level

Intel has initially rolled out its LP designs into the market place, first with its Tiger Lake mobile processors, then with its Xe MAX entry degree pocket book graphics card, and now with Rocket Lake.

Xe-LP, A Quick Refresher

Intel’s LP improves on the earlier Gen11 graphics by reorganizing the bottom construction of the design. Rather than 7 logic items per execution unit, we now have 8, and LP’s front-end can dispatch up two triangles per clock somewhat than one. The default design of LP entails 96 execution items, break up right into a centralized ‘slice’ that has all of the geometry options and glued operate {hardware}, and as much as 6 ‘sub-slices’ every with 16 logic items and 64 KiB of L1 cache. Each variant of LP can then have as much as 96 execution items in a 6×16 configuration.

Execution items now work in pairs, somewhat than on their very own, with a thread scheduler shared between every pair. Even with this modification, every particular person execution unit has moved to an 8+2 extensive design, with the primary 8 engaged on FP/INT and the ultimate two on advanced math. Previously we noticed one thing extra akin to a 4+4 design, so Intel has rebalanced the mathematics engine whereas additionally making in bigger per unit. This new 8+2 design really decreases the potential of some arithmetic straight blocking the FP pipes, enhancing throughput significantly in graphics and compute workloads.

The full Tiger Lake LP answer has all 96 execution items, with six sub-slices every of 16 execution items (6×16), Rocket Lake is neutered by comparability. Rocket Lake has 4 sub-slices, which might counsel a 64 execution unit design, however really half of these EUs are disabled per sub-slice, and the ultimate result’s a 32 EU implementation (4×8). The two lowest Rocket Lake processors have solely a 3×8 design. By having solely half of every sub-slide lively, this could in concept give extra cache per thread throughout operation, and supplies much less cache stress. Intel has enabled this flexibility presumably to offer a carry in edge-case graphics workloads for the components which have fractional sub-slices enabled.

Xe-LP additionally comes with a revamped media engine. Along with a 12-bit end-to-end video pipeline enabling HDR, there’s additionally HEVC coding help and AV1 decode, the latter of which is a royalty-free codec offering reported comparable or higher high quality than HEVC. Intel is the primary desktop IGP answer to offer AV1 accelerated decode help.

Rocket Lake Comparisons

For this overview, we’re utilizing the Core i9-11900K, Core i7-11700K, and Core i5-11600K. These three are the very best energy processors in Intel’s Rocket Lake lineup, and consequently they help the very best configuration of LP graphics that Intel supplies on Rocket Lake. All three processors have a 4×8 configuration, and a turbo frequency as much as 1300 MHz.

Intel Integrated Graphics
AnandTech Core i9

Core i7

Core i5

  Core i9

Cores 8 / 16 8 / 16 6 / 12   10 / 20
Base Freq 3500 MHz 3600 MHz 3900 MHz   3700 MHz
1T Turbo 5300 MHz 5000 MHz 4900 MHz   5300 MHz
GPU uArch Xe-LP Xe-LP Xe-LP   Gen 11
GPU EUs 32 EUs 32 EUs 32 EUs   24 EUs
GPU Base 350 MHz 350 MHz 350 MHz   350 MHz
GPU Turbo 1300 MHz 1300 MHz 1300 MHz   1200 MHz
Memory DDR4-3200 DDR4-3200 DDR4-3200   DDR4-2933
Cost (1ku) $539 $399 $262   $488

Our comparability factors are going to be Intel’s earlier technology Gen11 graphics, as examined on the Core i9-10900K which has a 24 Execution Unit design, AMD’s newest desktop processors, a variety of Intel’s mobile processors, and a discrete graphics choice with the GT1030.

In all conditions, we shall be testing with JEDEC reminiscence. Graphics loves reminiscence bandwidth, and CPU reminiscence controllers are sluggish by comparability to mobile processors or discrete playing cards; whereas a GPU would possibly love 300 GB/s from some GDDR reminiscence, a CPU with two channels of DDR4-3200 will solely have 51.2 GB/s. Also, that reminiscence financial institution must be shared between CPU and GPU, making it all of the extra advanced. The use case for many of those processors on built-in graphics will usually be in prebuilt methods designed to a value. That being stated, if the worth of Ethereum retains growing, built-in graphics is likely to be the one factor we’ve left.

The objective for our testing is available in two flavors: Best Case and Best Experience. This means for many benchmarks we shall be testing at 720p Low and 1080p Max, as that is the realm wherein built-in graphics is used. If a design can’t carry out at 720p Low, then it received’t be going wherever quickly, nevertheless if we will obtain good outcomes at 1080p Max in sure video games, then built-in graphics lends itself as a aggressive choice towards the fundamental discrete graphics options.

If you wish to see the total CPU overview of those Rocket Lake processors, please learn our overview:

Intel Rocket Lake (14nm) Review: Core i9-11900K, Core i7-11700K, and Core i5-11600K

Pages In This Review

  1. Analysis and Competition
  2. Integrated Graphics Gaming
  3. Conclusions and Final Words

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