Intel hopes to enter hybrid computing with Alder Lake
Intel hopes to enter hybrid computing with Alder Lake

Intel has announced its future plans for much of 2021, including a new IDM 2.0 strategy, a new process node naming system, and a new desktop GPU.

At Architecture Day 2021, the company outlined how some of these changes will be incorporated into the new chipset, starting with the Alder Lake product line scheduled for later this year.

Since the Build Day 2020 event last year, the company has been teasing that Alder Lake has the company's latest hybrid architecture.

It's not about delivering the next generation of high-performance processor cores, but about delivering a combination of x86 cores to improve performance and efficiency.

In addition, Alder Lake is the first chip to be brought to market via the newly renamed Intel 7 technology node.

Not to be confused with Intel 4 (formerly Intel's latest 7nm node). It is expected to be available to consumers under the codename Meteor Lake sometime in 2023.

Intel 7 is still using technology similar to the company's current 10nm technology, rather than planning a significant increase in manufacturing activity for Intel 4.

The new x86 performance core called Golden Cove is the successor to the Willow Cove core in the company's 11th-generation Tiger Lake processor.

The company claims that it is the most powerful processor ever. Meanwhile, the new x86 efficiency core (codenamed Gracemont) aims to become the world's most efficient x86 core while offering a higher PPI than Skylake chips.

In general, performance cores are similar to those of core processors. The efficiency kernel is similar to the kernel that appears in the Atom processor class.

Intel plans to combine these two cores into a hybrid architecture as a flagship product in its product line, starting with the Alder Lake chip, which will hit the market this fall.

Intel wants to get into hybrid computing

The company had already attempted to introduce hybrid architecture using Lakefield chips last year.

The company has released a full line of 9W to 125W chips that will use a new hybrid process. It combines high-performance cores with high-performance cores to deliver a broader range of performance when users need it and improve efficiency when performing low-end tasks.

The company has also teased several planned SoCs based on Alder Lake. This will take advantage of the new kernel.

This includes desktop SoCs with eight performance cores and eight efficiency cores, internal memory and graphics in addition to the output and input. Portable SoC with six performance cores and eight efficiency and imaging cores, supports Thunderbolt 4 and more powerful memory, on-board I/O and Xe graphics. In addition, the SoC with two performance cores and eight efficiency cores with a high level of interest.

The company also introduced a new topic manager scheduling technology. Designed to better manage the assignment of activities to performance or efficiency cores as needed.

Intel said it is working with Microsoft to ensure Thread Director is optimized for best performance on Windows 11.

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