At CES 2021, Intel announced four new processor families. Intel gave details about their new vPro processors and highlighted their new 11th Gen Intel Core H-series mobile processors. But the more intriguing news, at least for me, is they gave a little bit of information about the upcoming 11th gen Rocke Lake-S processor. Intel revealed some of the key features of their new processor and showed some performance numbers. A slide comparing the gaming performance of the Intel Core i9-11900K vs AMD’s Ryzen 9 5900X was also previewed. More details below.
11th Gen Intel Core i9-11900K Rocket Lake-S Processor Competes In Gaming Performance
According to Intel, the upcoming 11th Gen Intel Core Rocket Lake-S processors for desktop offers up to 19% IPC improvement. It will also offer up to 50% better integrated graphics performance thanks to Intel’s Xe graphics architecture. It also features up to 20 CPU PCIe 4.0 lanes; Intel Deep Learning Boost/VNNI support; integrated USB 3.2 Gen 2×2 (20G) and will feature a new Intel 500 series chipset.
The Intel Core i9-11900K is an 8-core, 16-thread processor with a speed of up to 5.3GHz single-core boost; or 4.8GHz all-core turbo boost. No, I didn’t get the numbers wrong; the flagship CPU is an 8-core 16-thread CPU. It’s two fewer cores and four fewer threads compared to the current flagship i9-10900K.
Since the 11th Gen CPUs are still on a 14nm++++ fab process, I guess Intel has no choice but to sacrifice the number of cores in exchange for “newer” or additional features and higher IPC. This means Intel gets a boost in their single-threaded performance; plus new features like support for PCIe 4.0 and others. But it won’t be able to compete with AMD’s processors when it comes to multi-threaded tasks.
Below is a slide showed by Intel comparing their flagship Intel Core i9-11900K vs AMD’s Ryzen 9 5900X. Intel included seven game titles and was tested in 1080p resolution. As you can see from the slide below, the Intel Core i9-11900K was able to “beat” the AMD Ryzen 9 5900X by a few percentages, with 8% being the highest.
Right now, I think I can already guess how things will look like in March. Intel will probably regain the titles as “the best gaming CPU”. Or perhaps at least match AMD’s Ryzen 5000 in gaming. Most probably both will just trade blows, depending on the titles or scenario.
But I am also certain that AMD will take the lead when it comes to multi-threaded performance due to the sheer number of cores and threads. If Intel will offer more competitive or attractive pricing for the 11th Gen CPUs vs AMD’s Ryzen 5000 CPUs, perhaps they may be able to convince gamers to choose Intel (again).
12th Gen Intel Alder Lake Processor – Beyond Rocket-Lake S
Aside from Rocket Lake-S, Intel shared some bits of information regarding their next-generation architecture. According to Intel, Alder Lake “represents a significant breakthrough in x86 architecture and Intel’s most power-scalable system-on-chip”. Alder Lake will feature a new socket, LGA1700, and will support DDR5 memory. After so many years of being stuck on 14nm, this new CPU is Intel’s first built on a new and “enhanced version of 10nm SuperFin” process.
So, if you really want something new from Intel and expect a significant performance improvement, I think the Alder Lake processor would be it. We don’t have to wait long as Intel is planning to release Alder Lake towards the second-half of 2021.
On the flip side, AMD is also expected to release its Zen 4 architecture. AMD’s Zen 4 will not only support DDR5 memory, but it will support PCIe 5.0 as well. I think the second half of this year is when things will really heat up.