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Intel details Alder Lake-P and Alder Lake-U: Significant multi-core gains over Core i7-1195G7 but Ryzen 7 5800U shows higher efficiency at 15 W

Intel talks more about Alder Lake-U and Alder Lake-P offerings that range from 9 W to 28 W TDP. (Image Source: Intel)
Intel talks more about Alder Lake-U and Alder Lake-P offerings that range from 9 W to 28 W TDP. (Image Source: Intel)
After briefly detailing the various SKUs at CES 2022, Intel is now offering more details about Alder Lake-P and Alder Lake-U. Alder Lake-P SKUs offer up to 14 cores and 20 threads at a 28 W TDP while Alder Lake-U tops-out at 10 cores and 12 threads available in 15 W and 9 W options. Intel also detailed new Evo 3 features that are expected to feature in Evo-certified designs later this year.

During the 12th gen Alder Lake-H launch at CES 2022, Intel briefly touched upon Alder Lake-P (ADL-P) and Alder Lake-U (ADL-U) offerings without going into much detail about their performance or platform features. We have also seen OEMs announcing Alder Lake-P devices such as the Dell XPS 13 Plus 9320 and Lenovo Yoga 7i.

Today, Intel is throwing more light on Alder Lake-P and Alder Lake-U processors that are expected to power more than 250 designs in the 9 W to 28 W range.

Alder Lake-P and Alder Lake-U: Platform features

Alder Lake-P will offer up to 14 cores that include six P-cores and eight E-cores. Alder Lake-U, on the other hand, tops-out at 10 cores with two P-cores and up to eight E-cores Like their H-series counterparts, Alder Lake-P and Alder Lake-U also feature Intel Thread Director and support various memory standards including DDR5-4800, DDR4-3200, LPDDR5-5200, and LPDDR4x-4267.

Alder Lake-P parts are rated at a 28 W base TDP with a max TDP of 64 W and have a package size of 50x25x1.3 mm. Alder Lake-U is offered in two TDP variants — 9 W and 15 W. ADL-U 15 W has the same BGA package size as that of ADL-P. ADL-U 9W, however, comes in a 28.5x19x1.1 mm package.

Intel also detailed some platform enhancements, particularly the new image processing that supposedly offers a 10x improvement over 10th gen processors. 

The 28 W ADL-P and 15 W ADL-U CPUs offer a total of eight PCIe Gen4, 12 PCIe Gen3 lanes, and can support four Thunderbolt 4 connections. The 9 W ADL-U CPUs have to make do with just four PCIe Gen4, 10 PCIe Gen3, and two Thunderbolt 4 connectors owing to the reduced power limits.

Alder Lake-P - Platform features. (Source: Intel)
Alder Lake-P - Platform features. (Source: Intel)
Alder Lake-U - Platform features. (Source: Intel)
Alder Lake-U - Platform features. (Source: Intel)
Wi-Fi 6E, Thunderbolt 4, and IPU 6. (Source: Intel)
Wi-Fi 6E, Thunderbolt 4, and IPU 6. (Source: Intel)
IPU 6 improvements with IMX488 sensor. (Source: Intel)
IPU 6 improvements with IMX488 sensor. (Source: Intel)

Performance: 35 W Core i7-1280P 70% faster in multi-core than Core i7-1195G7

Intel claims "enthusiast-level performance" with ADL-P. Taking the Tiger Lake Core i7-1195G7 at 28 W to offer 100% relative performance, Intel showed that the Core i7-1265U is able to offer around 20% better multi-core performance at 28 W while matching the AMD Ryzen 7 5800U (~16 W) and comfortably leading the Apple M1 (12 W).

The Core i7-1265U's stated performance does raise a few questions, however. Intel said in the footnotes that the Core i7-1265U was run at a fixed PL1 at 12 W, 15 W, 20 W, and 28 W with Dynamic Tuning enabled at 25 W. From the graph, it is clear that the Ryzen 7 5800U is able to offer higher performance at ~16 W compared to the Core i7-1265U.

There's another thing to consider as well. The Core i7-1265U offers 2 P-cores and 8 E-cores while the Ryzen 7 5800U offers 8C/16T. The Ryzen 7 6800U will also offer an 8C/16T configuration with further enhancements to power efficiency. So, while it is good to see the Core i7-1265U match Ryzen's multi-core performance with just two hyperthreading-enabled cores and 12 threads, it seems to require more SoC power to achieve the same.

We do not know the relative performance figures of 9 W ADL-U parts such as the Core i7-1260U, but AMD could have a potential advantage in ultra-thin form factors. Besides, the 6 nm Ryzen 6000 series will also include an RDNA 2 iGPU that should offer much better performance overall compared to the 11th gen Xe graphics that Intel continues to use in the 12th gen.

Core i7-1265U and Core i7-1280P compared with Core i7-1195G7, Core i9-11980HK, M1, M1 Pro, and Ryzen 7 5800U. (Source: Intel)
Core i7-1265U and Core i7-1280P compared with Core i7-1195G7, Core i9-11980HK, M1, M1 Pro, and Ryzen 7 5800U. (Source: Intel)
Footnotes
Footnotes
Core i7-1280P - Blender
Core i7-1280P - Blender
Core i7-1280P and Core i7-1265U - WebXPRT 4 and PugetBench for Photoshop. (Source: Intel)
Core i7-1280P and Core i7-1265U - WebXPRT 4 and PugetBench for Photoshop. (Source: Intel)
Core i7-1280P and Core i7-1265U - CrossMark. (Source: Intel)
Core i7-1280P and Core i7-1265U - CrossMark. (Source: Intel)
Core i7-1280P with Xe Graphics - Gaming performance. (Source: Intel)
Core i7-1280P with Xe Graphics - Gaming performance. (Source: Intel)
Footnotes
Footnotes

Things start to get interesting with the Core i7-1280P. Intel shows the ADL-P top dog to offer up to 20% higher multi-core performance than the Apple M1 Pro 8-core at 35 W and about 40% better relative performance than the Ryzen 7 5800U. Once again, Intel limits the PL1 of the Core i7-1280P to 20 W, 28 W, and 35 W. With six P-cores and eight E-cores, the Core i7-1280P looks to be quite promising. 

In Blender CPU, Intel said that the Core i7-1280P can finish the task in 50% lesser time compared to the Core i7-1195G7. However, both the M1 Pro and the Ryzen 7 5800U don't seem to be that far off. Intel also spoke about how Thread Director can intelligently assign tasks to the corresponding cores as per need. For instance, the P-cores can take over foreground tasks while the E-cores tend to background processes. 

Availability: 250+ designs expected in 2022

Intel said that it expects more than 250 designs in 2022 featuring Alder Lake-P and Alder Lake-U processors. New foldable designs are also on the anvil with 9 W ADL-U chips, and Intel is even extending the new Evo 3 specification to accommodate foldables.

Alder Lake-P and Alder Lake-U design scaling. (Source: Intel)
Alder Lake-P and Alder Lake-U design scaling. (Source: Intel)
Alder Lake-P SKUs. (Source: Intel)
Alder Lake-P SKUs. (Source: Intel)
Alder Lake-U 15 W SKUs. (Source: Intel)
Alder Lake-U 15 W SKUs. (Source: Intel)
Alder Lake-U 9 W SKUs. (Source: Intel)
Alder Lake-U 9 W SKUs. (Source: Intel)

Around 8 odd designs will also offer exclusive Evo 3 features such as the Intel Visual Sensing Controller that will be embedded in the lid electronics to provide ultra-low power user presence sensing. 5G is now part of the Evo spec as well with 15+ designs expected to feature 5G connectivity. 

Intel is bringing a new Multi Device Experience feature to select Evo 3 laptops this holiday. Multi Device Experience allows seamless roaming between laptop, phone, tablet, and even smartwatches.

Intel Evo 3 specifications. (Source: Intel)
Intel Evo 3 specifications. (Source: Intel)
Intel Evo 3 Intelligent Collaboration. (Source: Intel)
Intel Evo 3 Intelligent Collaboration. (Source: Intel)
Intel Visual Sensing Controller. (Source: Intel)
Intel Visual Sensing Controller. (Source: Intel)
Intel Evo 3 - Multi Device Experience. (Source: Intel)
Intel Evo 3 - Multi Device Experience. (Source: Intel)
Intel Evo 3 Foldable Display Spec. (Source: Intel)
Intel Evo 3 Foldable Display Spec. (Source: Intel)
 

Source(s)

Intel Press Brief

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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > News > News Archive > Newsarchive 2022 02 > Intel details Alder Lake-P and Alder Lake-U: Significant multi-core gains over Core i7-1195G7, but Ryzen 7 5800U shows higher efficency at 15 W
Vaidyanathan Subramaniam, 2022-02-23 (Update: 2022-02-23)