Intel details its upcoming Rocket Lake architecture – Double Digit IPC improvements expected

Intel details its upcoming Rocket Lake architecture - Double Digit IPC improvements expected

Intel details its upcoming Rocket Lake architecture – Double-Digit IPC improvements expected

Following the reveal of AMD’s Ryzen 5000 series of processors and their Zen 3 architecture, Intel has decided to follow suit by releasing information about their upcoming 11th generation of Codename: Rocket Lake CPUs, hoping to take the shine away from their competitor’s upcoming processors. 

Previously, Intel confirmed that their Rocket Lake series of processors would release in Q1 2020, several months after the release of AMD’s Ryzen 5000 series. 

Intel’s 11th Generation of Core-S Rocket Lake processors are based on Intel’s Cypress Cove CPU core design, a 14nm version of the 10nm Sunny Cove cores used on Ice Lake processors. Rocket Lake will also feature Xe integrated graphics (the same GPU architecture as Tiger Lake) and supports 20 CPU PCIe 4.0 lanes. 

With Rocket Lake, Intel is also boasting support for “Deep Learning Boost”, VNNI, integrated USB 3.2 Gen 2×2 and an upgraded media encoder. Alongside these processors, Intel also plans to release a 500-series motherboard chipset.  

Intel details its upcoming Rocket Lake architecture - Double Digit IPC improvements expected  
With Cyprus Cove, Intel promises “Double Digit” IPC improvement, failing to specify the exact IPC gains of the architecture. AMD’s Zen 3 core designs offer AMD users a 19% IPC gain over Zen 2, with Intel’s claims suggesting that their IPC gains are somewhere between 10% and 19%. If Intel’s gains were larger than AMD’s, they would be boasting about it. 

With 20 CPU PCIe 4.0 lanes, Comet Lake will offer users four more lanes of PCIe connectivity than the company’s current-generation Comet Lake processors. This is enough for a PCIe 4.0 SSD to be connected directly to Intel’s Rocket Lake processors alongside a PCIe 16x GPU. 

Intel also plans to increase their official memory support to DDR4 3200MHz speeds, though higher speeds will be possible on high-end motherboards at an unofficial level. IE, higher memory speeds are technically considered overclocking. 

With their new Xe integrated graphics unit, Intel promises a 50% increase in iGPU performance over today’s Gen9 iGPUs. This upgrade will allow PC users to get a lot more from Intel’s integrated GPUs, though gamers will still want to purchase discrete graphics processors. 

Intel details its upcoming Rocket Lake architecture - Double Digit IPC improvements expected  

With Rocket Lake, Intel’s offer customers up to eight CPU cores and sixteen threads, fewer cores than are available on today’s i9-10900K processor. This makes it possible that some applications may run faster on Intel’s 10-core Rocket Lake processors than on an 8-core Comet Lake processor. A “double-digit” IPC gain may not be enough to beat a CPU with 25% more cores in multi-threaded workloads. Intel is expected to ship Rocket Lake with the same TDPs as their Comet Lake predecessors, despite their decreased core counts. 

When compared to AMD’s latest offerings, Intel’s Rocket Lake architecture will offer consumers half as many cores. With this in mind, Intel will be relying heavily on single-threaded performance gains and their AI enhancements to gain an advantage over AMD, though it remains to be seen if they will be able to beat AMD in this regard. 

Intel details its upcoming Rocket Lake architecture - Double Digit IPC improvements expected  

As it stands, Intel’s Rocket Lake architecture sounds like a tough sell to consumers, though it remains to be seen how well these processors will perform in real workloads. 

You can join the discussion on Intel’s upcoming Rocket Lake processors on the OC3D Forum.