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Intel Core Ultra 9 185H

Intel Ultra 9 185H

The Intel Core Ultra 9 185H is the top-of-the-line Meteor Lake family chip that debuted in December 2023. This 1st Gen Core Ultra processor has come to replace 13th generation Core chips; it has 16 cores (6 + 8 + 2) and 22 threads at its disposal. Its Performance cores, of which there are 6, are SMT-enabled and run at up to 5.1 GHz while its Efficient cores, of which there are 10 (8 main cores plus 2 extra ones found in the Low Power Island) run at up to 3.8 GHz. The 8-core Arc GPU, just out of the oven, serves as the integrated graphics adapter - this runs at up to 2.35 GHz - and there is a bevy of other brand-new technologies on offer as well, such as the integrated AI Boost NPU with two Gen 3 engines for hardware AI workload acceleration.

Architecture & Features

Meteor Lake is a case of throwing everything at AMD (including the kitchen sink, yes) and seeing what sticks. With this product family, Intel intends to deliver higher CPU performance, higher GPU performance, higher hardware AI workload acceleration rates and longer battery life than what Raptor Lake chips were capable of. For those counting, that's four birds to kill with a single stone.

This generation of Intel Core processors features Redwood architecture P-cores and Crestwood architecture E-cores. Both come with slight architectural improvements over Raptor Cove and Gracemont respectively for slightly higher performance-per-clock figures; the interesting thing is that of the 10 E-cores, two are actually a separate cluster located on what Intel calls a "Low Power Island". Essentially, the latter is an SoC within an SoC that can stay active while the rest of the chip is turned off to save power. The low-power E-cores run at up to 2.5 GHz. Intel hopes that this approach will let it deliver unprecedentedly low power consumption figures when under low load, boosting battery life of laptops and tablets powered by Meteor Lake.

To build its Meteor Lake processors, Intel uses the Foveros technology (stacking several chips on top of each other). This is a cost-cutting measure more than anything else, as manufacturing several small dies on several different processes is so much cheaper than making a huge single die and hoping that there are no defects in it that will require disabling some parts of it.

Elsewhere, the Core Ultra 9 185H comes with 24 MB of L3 cache and a very healthy number of PCIe 5 and PCIe 4 lanes for NVMe SSD speeds up to 15.7 GB/s. vPro Enterprise and business-centric features such as the Remote Platform Erase are onboard as well. It supports RAM running at up to 7467 MHz (DDR5-5600, LPDDR5-7467, LPDDR5x-7467, to be specific - which is about as good as what 8040 series Ryzen chips have). Naturally, the chip also features built-in Thunderbolt 4 support and Intel CNVi Wi-Fi support; fascinatingly enough, Intel chose to keep native SATA III support that AMD had removed from its Ryzen processors quite a while ago.

The 185H is compatible with 64-bit Windows 10, 64-bit Windows 11 and with many Linux distros.

Performance

If one chooses to trust the official Intel performance data, then the 185H is not a whole lot faster than the Ryzen 9 6900HX (Zen 3 Plus, 8 cores, 16 threads, up to 4.9 GHz), as far as multi-thread performance is concerned. This isn't a ground-breaking result but let's just wait for our in-house testing results instead of jumping to conclusions.

Either way, real-world performance of the chip may vary significantly depending on how high the CPU power limits are and how competent the cooling solution of the system is.

Graphics

The 8-core Arc GPU running at up to 2.35 GHz is slated to be a proper alternative to the mighty Radeon 780M. The thing is about as fast as the GTX 1650 (Laptop) and the RTX 2050 (Laptop) to represent some seriously solid performance gains over aging Xe-series integrated GPUs. If one chooses to take Intel's word for it, that is.

A proper DX12 Ultimate graphics adapter, the Arc is no stranger to ray tracing and other modern technologies including AI frame generation (XeSS). It will let you connect up to four SUHD 4320p monitors and it will both HW-encode and HW-encode the most widely used video codecs including AVC, HEVC and AV1 in a fast and efficient manner.

Your mileage may vary depending on how high the CPU power limits are, how competent the cooling solution of your system is, how fast the RAM of your system is. The latter is really important; Intel stresses that for the Arc to deliver the best results possible, multi-channel RAM configuration is a must.

Power consumption

This mighty Core Ultra 9 series processor has a "base" power consumption of 45 W, while its Turbo power consumption is not supposed to exceed 115 W. A powerful cooling solution will be needed to sort out this chip's hot temper.

The 185H is comprised of five small chips ("tiles") that are connected using Intel's Foveros technology. The tile containing main CPU cores is produced on the modern 7 nm Intel process marketed as Intel 4 while most other tiles (the iGPU, the I/O die, ...) are built with TSMC's N5 and N6 processes. The base tile is built with the old Intel 22FFL process.

SeriesIntel Intel Meteor Lake-H
CodenameMeteor Lake-H

Series: Intel Meteor Lake-H Meteor Lake-H

Intel Core Ultra 9 185H « 3.8 - 5.1 GHz16 / 22 cores24 MB L3
Intel Core Ultra 7 165H compare3.8 - 5 GHz16 / 22 cores24 MB L3
Intel Core Ultra 7 155H compare3.8 - 4.8 GHz16 / 22 cores24 MB L3
Intel Core Ultra 5 135H compare3.6 - 4.6 GHz14 / 18 cores18 MB L3
Intel Core Ultra 5 125H compare3.6 - 4.5 GHz14 / 18 cores18 MB L3
Clock Rate3800 - 5100 MHz
Level 3 Cache24 MB
Number of Cores / Threads16 / 22
6 x 4.8 GHz Intel Redwood Cove P-Core
8 x 3.8 GHz Intel Crestmont E-Core
2 x 2.5 GHz Intel Crestmont E-Core
Power Consumption (TDP = Thermal Design Power)45 Watt
Manufacturing Technology7 nm
Max. Temperature110 °C
SocketBGA2049
FeaturesDDR5-5600/LPDDR5-7467/LPDDR5x-7467 RAM, PCIe 5, Thr. Director, DL Boost, AI Boost, vPro Enterprise, RPE, MMX, SSE, SSE2, SSE3, SSSE3, SSE4.1, SSE4.2, AES, AVX, AVX2, AVX-VNNI, FMA3, SHA
GPUIntel Arc 8-Cores iGPU ( - 2350 MHz)
64 Bit64 Bit support
Architecturex86
Announcement Date12/14/2023
Product Link (external)ark.intel.com

Benchmarks

Performance Rating - CB R15 + R20 + 7-Zip + X265 + Blender + 3DM11 CPU
43.5 pt (60%)
Cinebench R23 - Cinebench R23 Multi Core
min: 12688     avg: 16514     median: 17002 (16%)     max: 19851 Points
Cinebench R23 - Cinebench R23 Single Core
min: 1770     avg: 1828     median: 1809 (77%)     max: 1906 Points
Cinebench R20 - Cinebench R20 CPU (Single Core)
min: 680     avg: 703     median: 693 (77%)     max: 735 Points
Cinebench R20 - Cinebench R20 CPU (Multi Core)
min: 4843     avg: 6300     median: 6407 (16%)     max: 7651 Points
Cinebench R15 - Cinebench R15 CPU Multi 64 Bit
min: 1581.9     avg: 2449     median: 2532.9 (16%)     max: 3005 Points
01553104656207759301085124013951550170518602015217023252480263527902945Tooltip
Cinebench R15 - Cinebench R15 CPU Single 64 Bit
min: 257     avg: 265.7     median: 260 (78%)     max: 280 Points
7-Zip 18.03 - 7-Zip 18.03 Multli Thread 4 runs
min: 52522     avg: 65589     median: 67914 (39%)     max: 76331 MIPS
7-Zip 18.03 - 7-Zip 18.03 Single Thread 4 runs
min: 5489     avg: 5622     median: 5595 (67%)     max: 5781 MIPS
HWBOT x265 Benchmark v2.2 - HWBOT x265 4k Preset
min: 14.1     avg: 18     median: 17.2 (30%)     max: 22.7 fps
0510152025Tooltip
Blender - Blender 3.3 Classroom CPU *
min: 285     avg: 391     median: 350 (4%)     max: 538 Seconds
Blender - Blender 2.79 BMW27 CPU *
min: 163     avg: 216.7     median: 202 (1%)     max: 285 Seconds
R Benchmark 2.5 - R Benchmark 2.5 *
min: 0.4457     avg: 0.5     median: 0.5 (10%)     max: 0.4757 sec
3DMark 11 - 3DM11 Performance Physics
min: 12693     avg: 19042     median: 19804 (54%)     max: 24629 Points
3DMark - 3DMark Fire Strike Standard Physics
min: 21106     avg: 25684     median: 26583 (47%)     max: 29362 Points
3DMark - 3DMark Time Spy CPU
min: 6307     avg: 9486     median: 10455 (44%)     max: 11696 Points
Geekbench 6.2 - Geekbench 6.2 Single-Core
min: 2384     avg: 2479     median: 2483 (75%)     max: 2570 points
Geekbench 6.2 - Geekbench 6.2 Multi-Core
min: 13351     avg: 13785     median: 13972 (55%)     max: 14031 points
Geekbench 5.5 - Geekbench 5.1 - 5.4 64 Bit Single-Core
min: 1759     avg: 1824     median: 1811 (76%)     max: 1902 points
Geekbench 5.5 - Geekbench 5.1 - 5.4 64 Bit Multi-Core
min: 10441     avg: 12401     median: 12826 (23%)     max: 13936 points
Mozilla Kraken 1.1 - Kraken 1.1 Total Score *
min: 494     avg: 508     median: 508 (1%)     max: 522 ms
Octane V2 - Octane V2 Total Score
min: 90543     avg: 94299     median: 94299 (85%)     max: 98055 Points
WebXPRT 4 - WebXPRT 4 Score
min: 257     avg: 264.3     median: 268 (77%)     max: 268 Points
WebXPRT 3 - WebXPRT 3 Score
min: 286     avg: 290.7     median: 291 (61%)     max: 295 Points
CrossMark - CrossMark Overall
min: 1711     avg: 1728     median: 1719 (66%)     max: 1754 Points
Power Consumption - Prime95 Power Consumption - external Monitor *
min: 44.4     avg: 87.4     median: 87.4 (15%)     max: 130.3 Watt
0102030405060708090100110120130140150160Tooltip
Power Consumption - Cinebench R15 Multi Power Consumption - external Monitor *
156 Watt (28%)
0102030405060708090100110120130140150Tooltip
Power Consumption - Idle Power Consumption - external Monitor *
min: 5.87     avg: 6.7     median: 6.7 (4%)     max: 7.45 Watt
012345678910Tooltip
Power Consumption - Idle Power Consumption 150cd 1min *
min: 11.7     avg: 13     median: 13 (14%)     max: 14.3 Watt
012345678910111213141516Tooltip
Power Consumption - Cinebench R15 Multi Power Efficiency - external Monitor
min: 19.3     avg: 43.2     median: 43.2 (32%)     max: 67 Points per Watt
05101520253035404550556065Tooltip
- Range of benchmark values for this graphics card
- Average benchmark values for this graphics card
* Smaller numbers mean a higher performance

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