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Intel Alder Lake-S Core i9-12900K, Core i7-12700K, and Core i5-12600K specs leak: Core i9-12900K P-Cores to boost up to 5.3 GHz with a 125 W PL1 and 228 W PL2

Core i9-12900K, Core i7-12700K, and Core i5-12600K are all configured at 125 W PL1 and 228 W PL2. (Image Source: Videocardz)
Core i9-12900K, Core i7-12700K, and Core i5-12600K are all configured at 125 W PL1 and 228 W PL2. (Image Source: Videocardz)
Boost frequencies and power limits of three upcoming Intel 12th gen Alder Lake-S processors have leaked online. The Core i9-12900K, Core i7-12700K, and Core i5-12600K all feature a PL1 of 125 W and a PL2 of 228 W. We also get to know that Intel may designate the high performing Golden Cove cores as P-Cores and the energy-efficient Gracemont cores as E-Cores.

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We have been seeing a steady inflow of Alder Lake-related information over the past few days including alleged Cinebench R20 numbers of an Alder Lake Core i9-12900K qualification sample (QS). Now, we are getting to know some additional specifications of three Alder Lake-S desktop processors — the Core i9-12900K, Core i7-12700K, and the Core i5-12600K. 

This information comes via a post on the Chinese site Zhihu and was shared by @davideneco25320 on Twitter. Reportedly, we are looking at specifications of QS parts, which means these values are more or less final when the processors officially launch later this year. 

Alder Lake sports a hybrid CPU architecture, meaning we get to see high performing Golden Cove cores that support hyperthreading (designated as P-Cores) and energy-efficient Gracemont cores without hyperthreading (E-Cores).

The flagship Core i9-12900K is said to feature eight P-Cores and eight E-Cores, which should collectively yield a 16C/24T configuration. The leak indicates that the Core i9-12900K will be able to boost up to 5.3 GHz on up to two P-Cores while offering a 5 GHz all-P-Core boost. The E-Cores in the Core i9-12900K, on the other hand, offer a 3.9 GHz boost on one to four cores and up to a 3.7 GHz all-E-Core boost.

The Core i9-12900K also features a 30 MB cache and apparently runs at a PL1 of 125 W and a PL2 of 228 W. The PL1/PL2 values seem to be common for all three SKUs listed. How long the Core i9-12900K can sustain the 228 W PL2 is dependent on the said workload and on the motherboard. Do note that Alder Lake will likely not support the AVX-512 instruction set, which can be quite a power-guzzler.

Previously, we have seen a leak of a Core-1800 Alder Lake part, which is likely to be the engineering sample (ES) prototype of the Core i9-12900K, featuring a similar 125 W PL1 and a 228 W PL2. However, the PL2 in the Core-1800 ES was shown to last only for 2.44 ms. The processor also had a base clock of just 1.8 GHz. For perspective, Rocket Lake chips can have a PL2 of up to 250 W.

All said and done, this information should still be taken with a pinch of salt. We do not yet have information about the base frequencies of these chips, so it is hard to say what kind of performance can be expected while running in the 125 W PL1 power limit.

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Intel Alder Lake Core i9-12900K, Core i7-12700K, and Core i5-12600K clocks and power limits. (Image Source: Zhihu)
Intel Alder Lake Core i9-12900K, Core i7-12700K, and Core i5-12600K clocks and power limits. (Image Source: Zhihu)

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Vaidyanathan Subramaniam
Vaidyanathan Subramaniam - Managing Editor - 1395 articles published on Notebookcheck since 2012
Though a cell and molecular biologist by training, I have been drawn towards computers from a very young age ever since I got my first PC in 1998. My passion for technology grew quite exponentially with the times, and it has been an incredible experience from being a much solicited source for tech advice and troubleshooting among family and friends to joining Notebookcheck in 2017 as a professional tech journalist. Now, I am a Lead Editor at Notebookcheck covering news and reviews encompassing a wide gamut of the technology landscape for Indian and global audiences. When I am not hunting for the next big story or taking complex measurements for reviews, you can find me unwinding to a nice read, listening to some soulful music, or trying out a new game.
contact me via: @Geeky_Vaidy
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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > News > News Archive > Newsarchive 2021 07 > Intel Alder Lake-S Core i9-12900K, Core i7-12700K, and Core i5-12600K specs leak: Core i9-12900K P-Cores to boost up to 5.3 GHz with a 125 W PL1 and 228 W PL2
Vaidyanathan Subramaniam, 2021-07-15 (Update: 2021-07-15)