Intel’s 12th generation Core processors are finally here

28 Oct 2021

Image: Intel

CEO Pat Gelsinger said at the launch that Intel plans to outpace Moore’s Law by the end of the decade.

Intel has launched the first products in its 12th generation of Core processors, including a new gaming processor that it claims is the world’s best.

After reporting a 2pc dip in its PC business last week, Intel made a spate of announcements yesterday (27 October) at its Intel Innovation event, including the 12th Gen Alder Lake chips, developer updates, news of its Aurora supercomputer, and a new partnership with Google Cloud.

Future Human

The latest chips, which have made the “biggest performance leap in a decade”, according to Forbes, use new performance hybrid architecture that enables up to two times faster content creation than the previous generation.

With a max turbo boost of up to 5.2GHz and as many as 16 cores and 24 threads, Intel said the 12th generation processors are ideal for gamers and professional creators. It even hailed its new Intel Core i9-12900K chip as the “world’s best gaming processor”.

Built on Intel 7 technology, the chip maker said its new processors can deliver performance between nine and 125 watts for use in all PC segments, from ultra-thin and light laptops to heavy-duty desktops.

“The performance hybrid architecture of 12th Gen Intel Core processors is an architectural shift made possible by close co-engineering of software and hardware that will deliver new levels of leadership performance for generations,” said Gregory Bryant, VP and general manager of Intel’s Client Computing Group.

‘Go faster than Moore’s Law’

Intel CEO Pat Gelsinger said Intel wants to outpace Moore’s Law, or the assertion that the number of transistors on a microchip doubles about every two years, which was made by Intel founder Gordon Moore in 1965.

“Moore’s law is alive and well,” Gelsinger said at the company’s online Innovation event. “Today we are predicting that we will maintain or even go faster than Moore’s law for the next decade.”

The announcement is meant to boost Intel’s position in the global chip-making industry, where it has been facing increased competition from other giants such as Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company and Samsung.

It comes at a time when the global chip shortage has affected supply in the computing, smartphone and auto industries. Earlier this year, Gelsinger said it would take “another one to two years” for supply to catch up with demand. The company is looking at expansion in Ireland and Europe to boost production capacity.

Intel also announced that the Aurora supercomputer featuring its Xeon scalable processors and GPUs is set to exceed two exaflops of peak double precision compute performance. This would allow it to better handle high-performance computing, AI, machine learning and big data analytics workloads.

The company also said that it has entered into a partnership with Google to design Mount Evans, an IPU based on an application-specific integrated circuit that aims to simplify developer access to the technology in Google Cloud data centres.

“Developers are the true superheroes of the digitised world – a world which is underpinned by semiconductors,” said Gelsinger at the event yesterday. “We will not rest until we’ve exhausted the periodic table, unlocking the magic of silicon and empowering developers so that, together, we can usher in a new era of innovation.”

The six new desktop processors can be pre-ordered now and will be available from 4 November.

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Vish Gain is a journalist with Silicon Republic