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Intel will equip certain Alder Lake-M and Alder Lake-S processors with a GT3 Xe graphics engine

In brief: Alder Lake CPUs for desktops are almost here, but it’s not yet clear if Intel wants to launch mobile parts at the same time or space out the two releases. Rumors and leaks so far point to the November 2021 – April 2022 timeframe, and it looks like Alder Lake-M and Alder Lake-S CPUs could come with GT3 Xe graphics solutions.

Intel’s first batch of Alder Lake processors for desktops will break cover in the coming weeks, and we’ve already seen extensive leaks for everything from specifications, benchmark results, motherboard chipsets, new stock coolers, as well as what to expect in terms of pricing from several retailers, including Amazon.

The company has talked a lot about the general architecture improvements in Alder Lake during Architecture Day 2021 but didn’t go into a lot of detail, especially when it comes to its upcoming laptop and ultrabook processors. Luckily, a new leak spotted by Twitter user @Komachi_Ensaka in a new coreboot patch offers some insight into the integrated graphics that will be found in Alder Lake-M chips.

Previously, another coreboot patch revealed that Intel could have as many as four categories of Alder Lake CPUs for mobile devices, with Alder Lake-M being the ultra low power offering with a TDP of only 9 watts and a top-end configuration with two Golden Cove (performance) cores and eight Gracemont (efficiency) cores.

The new coreboot patch includes references for “INTEL_ADL_M_GT3,” likely Intel’s Alder Lake Mobile GT3 Xe solution, in addition to mentions of GT1 and GT2. GT3 will have 96 execution units that are now called Vector Engines, and we expect to see it in higher-end Alder Lake-M CPUs. Lower-end parts from that segment will utilize a different configuration with either 64 or 48 execution units.

For Alder Lake-S CPUs, it looks like Intel will stick with GT1, which is essentially the same UHD Graphics G1 engine that Intel has used in its 10th generation Ice Lake-U parts ported to the new Intel 7 process node. Meanwhile, Alder Lake-P CPUs will come with either GT2 or GT3 integrated graphics solutions with 96 execution units based on the Xe LP architecture.

It’s possible that Intel will bring back the Iris Pro branding for high-end integrated graphics under the usual GT3 moniker, but it’s too early to say for sure. As for when we can expect to see the first laptops with Alder Lake CPUs, a separate leak related to the production schedule for these parts suggests we will see them in the November 2021 – April 2022 timeline.

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