But you still get better graphics performance with a discrete GPU, which is why Intel is partnering with AMD to launch its first Intel CPU + AMD GPU processors this year. And the company hired AMD’s chief GPU architect Raja Koduri last year to help develop new graphics technology in-house.
Now Intel is showing off a prototype for an upcoming discrete GPU.
Update: It turns out Intel presented a paper describing a new power management technique for exiting GPU technology rather than a new discrete graphics solution, contrary to earlier reports. According to an Intel spokesperson:
Last week at ISSCC, Intel Labs presented a research paper exploring new circuit techniques optimized for power management. The team used an existing Intel integrated GPU architecture (Gen 9 GPU) as a proof of concept for these circuit techniques. This is a test vehicle only, not a future product. While we intend to compete in graphics products in the future, this research paper is unrelated. Our goal with this research is to explore possible, future circuit techniques that may improve the power and performance of Intel products.
The original article continues below.
According to PC Watch, Intel announced the new graphics processor at the ISSCC event in San Francisco.
It’s still very much a work in progress and it’s unclear when it’ll be ready to ship, or if Intel will ever ship this particular GPU. It could be more of a demonstration project, and at this point it seems to be designed to bring better graphics performance to low-end PCs, which means it’s not going to be competitive with the latest high-end graphics cards from AMD or NVIDIA.
But here’s what we know o far:
- There’s a 14nm chip with the GPU and a system agent with a control system and input/output features and an FPGA bridge to connect the GPU to the PC.
- The chip has 1.5 billion transistors
- It has a frequency range of 50 MHz at 0.51 volts to 400 MHz at 1.2 volts.
- One of the key things Intel seems to be focusing on is efficiency, bringing the same kind of fine-grained power controls to GPUs that the company already offers for CPUs.