Intel Xe GPUs Will Have Hardware Accelerated Ray Tracing Support

At the recent FMX conference in Germany, Intel announced some pretty big news about their upcoming Xe graphics cards. A lot is still under wraps, but the company has confirmed that their GPUs will support ray tracing at a hardware level, putting them directly in competition with NVIDIA’s Turing based RTX line-up. This also means the Intel GPUs will pretty much leave the Pascal and non-RTX Turing cards in the dust, as far as ray tracing is concerned. Here’s an excerpt from the official press release:

“Intel® architecture processors are the flexible, large memory capable, performance engines that drive the end-to-end creative process for visual effects and animated feature films. Today’s available GPUs have architecture challenges like memory size limitations and performance derived from years of honing for less sophisticated, “embarrassingly parallel” rasterized graphics use models. Studios continue to reach for maximum realism with complex physics processing for cloth, fluids, hair and more, plus modeling the physics of light with ray tracing. These algorithms benefit from mixed parallel and scalar computing while requiring ever growing memory footprints. The best solutions will include a holistic platform design where computational tasks are distributed to the most appropriate processing resources.

David Blythe’s recent blog provided initial insights into our exciting new Intel® Xarchitecture currently under development. We are designing the Intel® Xarchitecture as a cohesive acceleration companion to our continuing roadmap of Intel® Xeon® processors. As David closed his blog he mentioned, “We will look forward to sharing more details on the Intel® Xarchitecture in the months ahead.” I’m pleased to share today that the Intel® Xarchitecture roadmap for data center optimized rendering includes ray tracing hardware acceleration support for the Intel® Rendering Framework family of API’s and libraries.

Your existing investments in graphics and rendering solutions based on Intel® Rendering Framework open source products will seamlessly map to the exponential performance benefits of these flexible accelerated platforms.  Further, ray tracing as a general computational guru technique for a variety of simulation computation beyond rendering is rapidly growing. To put it succinctly in my own words “Leave no transistor behind” by creating a holistic software and compute environment ready to maximize your workflow for exponential benefits.”

For more information, you can read the full press release below:

Thinking ‘Exponential” with Intel® Xarchitecture compute and graphics processors

Intel® architecture processors are the flexible, large memory capable, performance engines that drive the end-to-end creative process for visual effects and animated feature films. Today’s available GPUs have architecture challenges like memory size limitations and performance derived from years of honing for less sophisticated, “embarrassingly parallel” rasterized graphics use models. Studios continue to reach for maximum realism with complex physics processing for cloth, fluids, hair and more, plus modeling the physics of light with ray tracing. These algorithms benefit from mixed parallel and scalar computing while requiring ever growing memory footprints. The best solutions will include a holistic platform design where computational tasks are distributed to the most appropriate processing resources.

David Blythe’s recent blog provided initial insights into our exciting new Intel® Xarchitecture currently under development. We are designing the Intel® Xarchitecture as a cohesive acceleration companion to our continuing roadmap of Intel® Xeon® processors. As David closed his blog he mentioned, “We will look forward to sharing more details on the Intel® Xearchitecture in the months ahead.” I’m pleased to share today that the Intel® Xarchitecture roadmap for data center optimized rendering includes ray tracing hardware acceleration support for the Intel® Rendering Framework family of API’s and libraries.

Your existing investments in graphics and rendering solutions based on Intel® Rendering Framework open source products will seamlessly map to the exponential performance benefits of these flexible accelerated platforms.  Further, ray tracing as a general computational technique for a variety of simulation computation beyond rendering is rapidly growing. To put it succinctly in my own words “Leave no transistor behind” by creating a holistic software and compute environment ready to maximize your workflow for exponential benefits.

Partnership and community: announcing Intel Graphics and Visualization Institutes of XeLLENCE

In order to better ensure advanced graphics and visualization capabilities are broadly available to the professional rendering, scientific visualization and virtual design communities, I am thrilled to announce that Intel® is supporting the establishment of Intel® Graphics and Visualization Institutes of XeLLENCE (Intel® GVI). Three world class founding institutions have been selected:

– Scientific Computing and Imaging Institute (SCI) at University of Utah, supported by Dr. Chris Johnson.

– Texas Advanced Computing Center (TACC) at University of Texas, Austin with Kitware, Inc, supported by Dr. Paul Navratil and Dr. Berk Geveci.

– Visualization Institute of the University of Stuttgart (VISUS), supported by Dr. Ing. E. h. Thomas Ertl and Dr. rer. nat. Guido Reina.

These institutions have already made significant open research and open source contributions related to Intel Rendering Framework, large scale graphics and visualization and we look forward to working with them to bring their energy and expertise to enable all creative and scientific communities to better utilize Intel® Xarchitecture enabled platforms. I highly recommend you track the output of these institutes for the revolutionary ideas and solutions they have and will continue to deliver individually, collectively and openly for all to use and benefit from.

 “The Scientific Computing and Imaging (SCI) Institute, an international leader in visualization, imaging and scientific computing, is thrilled to be selected as a member in this elite founding group of Intel Graphics and Visualization Institutes of Xellence. As future Intel Xe architecture products are deployed to further augment visual computing, we look forward to ongoing research and open source contributions in collaboration with Intel and the Intel GVI centers. “

– Dr. Chris Johnson, Founding Director, Scientific Computing and Imaging Institute, University of Utah

“At VISUS at University of Stuttgart, we constantly look for new ways of harnessing modern hardware to allow for interactive visualization of ever-growing data. With Intel Rendering Framework utilizing software defined visualization, we have been able to bring our approaches to HPC systems and maintain interactive performance while dramatically increasing visual fidelity through OSPRay ray tracing.  With our status as an Intel Graphics and Visualization Institute of Xellence, and the ability to utilize the IntelXe architecture scaled across a variety of compute platforms, we will enable even more comprehensive approaches that reflect our overarching goal most closely: distributing computational loads over different resources that maximize each’s strengths; enabling discovery and user engagement though seamless interactivity and visual quality for the rapidly growing data set sizes of tomorrow. We are very excited and honored to be among the select few foundational Intel® GVI institutions poised to deliver impactful research contributions to graphics and visualization.”

– Dr.-Ing E. h.. Thomas Ertl, Head of the Visualization Research Center of the University of Stuttgart (VISUS), Vice Rector for Research and Advanced Graduate Education.

“TACC is honored to continue our partnership with Kitware and Intel to provide high-performance, high-fidelity visual analysis tools to scientists to help them better understand and better communicate their findings. Intel’s support for groundbreaking visual analysis work through the Intel Graphics and Visualization Institutes of Xellence Institutes will provide researchers more powerful analysis sooner in the discovery workflow. Through use of the Intel Rendering Framework and future Intel Xarchitecture products, the Intel GVI centers will demonstrate that powerful interactive analysis can be achieved independent of underlying rendering architecture.”

– Dr. Paul Navratil, Director of Visualization, Texas Advanced Computing Center.

“Kitware is excited to be an included partner in the Intel Graphics and Visualization Institute of Xellence, continuing our long collaboration with TACC and Intel for delivering compelling, state of the art, open source solutions for large scale, high fidelity graphics and visualization.   Through the joint efforts with the Intel IGVI, we look forward to enhancing our partner’s and user’s experience with applications like ParaView and the Visualization Toolkit (VTK) by including the capabilities of future Intel Xarchitecture products.”

– Berk Geveci, Sr. Director of Scientific Computing

Through collaboration with Intel® Graphics and Visualization Institutes of XeLLENCE and our industry partners who leverage Intel® Rendering Framework, Intel® Xeon® Scalable processors and, in the future, Intel® Xe architecture; Intel will continue to enable delivery of leadership solutions for high fidelity studio assets creation.

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Featured Image Credit: Cristiano Siqueira

Intel 10th Gen Processors for Laptops Leaked, Might Be Out This Year

We’ve seen our fair share of leaks regarding Intel hardware in recent times, and it doesn’t seem like they’re going to stop anytime soon. Thanks to reliable leakers like Momomo_us and Komachi, we now have our eyes on Intel’s 10th gen CPU line up for notebooks.

The leak shows 14nm Comet Lake U and 10nm Ice Lake U processors, which may be announced later in the second half of this year. As expected, there will be multiple SKUs in all Core i7, Core i5 and Core i3 families, the rumoured names for which you can check out below:

Rumored Intel 10th Gen Ice Lake-U Processors:

  • Core i7-1065G7
  • Core i5-1035G7
  • Core i5-1035G4
  • Core i5-1035G1
  • Core i5-1034G1
  • Core i3-1005G1

The Core i7-1065G7 is expected to be the flagship, with 4 cores, a base clock of 1.3 GHz and boost clock speed of 3.5 GHz on all cores. It is said to have a TDP of 15W and will be one of the first chips to use Intel’s Gen 11 graphics.

Rumored Intel 10th Gen Comet Lake-U Processors:

  • Core i7-10710U
  • Core i7-10510U
  • Core i5-10210U
  • Core i3-10110U

The top model in the 14nm Comet Lake-U CPUs is supposed to be the Core i7-10710U with 6 cores. What gives credibility to these names is an entry spotted by Twitter user TUM_APISAK that lists specs similar to the ones pointed out by the leaks, suggesting that these chips do exist and may surface soon.

Considering intel just announced the 9th gen processor line-up for laptops, it’ll be really interesting to see how and when they plan to release the 10th gen CPUs, and how the upcoming parts will fit into their plans for the existing range of products. In any case, with a bulk of new announcements expected in the next few months, things are bound to get exciting for the gaming community.

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Intel CPU Shortage To Continue Till Q3 2019

In a recent earnings conference call, Intel admitted that overcoming the CPU shortage will take until Q3 2019, despite an investment of $1.5 billion in an effort to increase the production capacity. The shortage has plagued the entire PC market since the second half of last year.

The 10nm chips are also rumoured to be revealed later this year, but no concrete information is available regarding the exact release schedule. Here’s what Intel CEO said in the call according to the transcript:

“Specific areas where we need to improve execution include meeting customer demand and delivering on our 10-nanometer lineup of products, and we are making progress. Our supply constraints have had a disruptive impact on our customers and ecosystem. We’ve committed never again to be a constraint on our customers’ growth. We’ve increased capacity to improve our position in the second half, although product mix will continue to be a challenge in the third quarter as our teams align available supply with customer demand.

As I shared earlier, our confidence in 10-nanometer is also improving. In addition to the manufacturing velocity improvement I described earlier, we expect to qualify our first volume 10-nanometer product, Icelake, this quarter and are increasing our 10-nanometer volume goals for the year. I’ll shift now to our full year outlook. Going forward, George will deliver our forecast. But given this is his third week with us, I’ll share my thoughts on our full year reset and he’ll review our first quarter results and second quarter guide.”

The interesting thing to note, is that according to Intel’s roadmap, the SKUs for CPUs will continue using the 14nm process well until the end of 2020, even 2021. Maybe even after that, which really begs the question whether Intel plans to announced the 10nm chips any time soon.

Another noteworthy factor is that due to the shortage of CPUs, Intel has been jacking up the prices of currently available processors, while AMD prices have remained more or less stable. This has led to AMD gaining a considerable share in the CPU market, and if the trend continues, it could very well spell trouble for the blue team.

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Intel’s 10nm Ice Lake CPUs Coming Later This Year

After an incredibly long wait, it seems like we may finally get to see Intel’s 10nm Ice Lake processors this year.

In its Q1 earnings call, Intel confirmed that the 10nm CPUs are well in development and will be revealed sometime this year for laptops. The production was started in Q1, but the notebook chips will start shipping by Q3 and should be available in stores by the end of 2019. The first one is expected to be an updated Dell XPS laptop.

The Ice Lake CPUs will use Intel’s 10nm Sunny Cove architecture, which was first announced back in 2015. Since then, Intel has faced a lot of problems which led to rumours that the company might just cancel the 10nm production entirely, but this news should finally put those rumours to rest.

These processors are expected to come with a huge performance bump. Intel has confirmed that these will be the first chips to have Gen11 integrated graphics. Apart from that, they will also have built-in Thunderbolt and WiFi 6 support.

Recently, Intel revealed its line-up of 9th gen processors for laptops, including the 8 core/16 thread, unlocked Core i9-9980HK that boosts up to a whopping 5 GHz. The line-up ranges all the way from Core i5 processors to i9, and are available in the latest laptops from all major partners, with graphics options ranging from GTX 1650 to the RTX 2080 MaxQ.

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Intel Brings 9th Gen 8 Core Processors To Laptops

Intel has announced it’s latest line-up of 9th gen Core processors for laptops, finally bringing 8 core processing power to mobile platform. These range all the way from a 4 core, 8 thread Core i5-9300H to a full 8 core, 16 thread Core i9-9980HK.

The showstopper, the unlocked Core i9-9980HK has a base clock speed of 2.4 GHz and boosts up to a whopping 5 GHz, which is the same as the desktop variant, 9900K. This is overclockable as the ‘K’ suffix suggests, and is going to be a massive boost in performance. It has 8 cores with HyperThreading, i.e. 16 threads (2 threads per core). There’s a locked, non-overclockable version as well, the Core i9-9880H with a base clock speed of 2.3 GHz and a boost clock of 4.8 GHz. All the processors have a 45 W TDP.

Apart from that, the line-up has a Core i7-9750H and i7-9850H, both with 6 cores and 12 threads, and a Core i5-9400H and a Core i5-9300H, both with 4 cores and 8 threads. Intel claims a performance boost of 56% in titles like Total War: Warhammer and up to 38% faster in titles like Civilization VI. Gameplay recording and streaming performance claims are up to 2.1 times faster compared to older processors.

Intel also claims enormous gains in creation capabilities. 4K video editing is supposed to be 54% faster when compared to a 3 year old PC, and an overall performance increase of 33% (compared to a 3 year old PC). So, if you just bought a gaming laptop, or bought one last year, you should still be set. But if you’re using something older, the 9th gen laptop processors may actually provide a good upgrade option.

You can read more about the 9th gen Intel Core processors for laptops on the official website.

Starting April 23, 2019, laptops powered by the 9th Gen Intel Core mobile processors will launch from OEMs including Acer, ASUS, Dell, HP, Lenovo and MSI, as they introduce the most compelling laptops for gaming and content creation.

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Intel’s 9th Gen T Series CPUs with Low TDP Coming Next Month

Intel is on its way to launch its 35W TDP 9th gen processors, and we could get to see them very soon. In fact, if the latest leaks are to be believed, they may be launch by mid of next month i.e. 15th May.

The leak comes from momomo_us on Twitter, who lists the entire line-up of the upcoming T series processors along with the specs. We should expect 9 different variants, including 7 Core and 2 Pentium ones. Here’s the complete range, according to the post:

  • Core i9-9900T
  • Core i7-9700T
  • Core i5-9600T
  • Core i5-9500T
  • Core i5-9400T
  • Core i3-9300T
  • Core i3-9100T
  • Pentium G5600T
  • Pentium G5420T
  • Pentium G4930T

All the processors are made for 35 W TDP, where the “T” stands for lower TDP compared to their more power hungry counterparts. These would be ideal for small, compact form factor PCs and maybe even laptops. Heading the line-up is the Core i9-9900T with 8 Cores and 16 threads, with its clock speed dropped to 2.1 GHz in order to achieve the low TDP. The max clock speed we see is 3.3 GHz for the Pentium G5600T and the minimum is 1.8 GHz for the Core i5-9400T. You can check out the complete line-up below:

Source: WCCFTech

The price listed for the Core i9-9900T is $590, about $90 less than the Core i9-9900K’s $680. The difference doesn’t seem enough, considering the 9900K has a clock speed of 3.6GHz and boosts up to 5.0 GHz. But the pricing isn’t definite and we don’t have any performance numbers for any of the T series processors, so we can only talk based about speculations. More information should be available as we get closer to the actual launch date, so stay tuned!

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