At its inaugural Intel Innovation event, the company launched its 12th generation line-up of CPUs led by the flagship Core i9-12900K processor which Intel says is the, "world's best gaming processor."
The Core i9-12900K features 16-cores split even into what Intel terms as performance and efficiency cores (P and E cores). The processor can handle 24 threads, capable of reaching clock speeds of up to 5.2GHz and features Intel's Turbo Boost Max 3.0 technology. The company says that you can expect a jump of 19 percent in performance compared to the 11th generation Intel CPUs.
The second CPU that was unveiled was the Core i7-12700K which features eight P-cores and four E-cores for twelve cores in total, and can boost up to 4.9GHz while handling 20 threads. Intel Core i5-12600K rounds out the launch offerings with ten cores (six P-cores and four E-cores) and 16 threads. It can boost up to 4.9GHz.
After stumbling through the previous generation of processors, the 12th generation represents a fresh approach for Intel. These are the fist chips to be made on Intel's new 10nm process called Intel 7.
More than the process, it also features a brand new hybrid architecture that splits power and efficiency cores instead of using all high powered cores in a chip. The Alder Lake architecture is similar to what ARM is doing in the field of mobile processors. P-Cores or high power cores kick in when there is a demand for high performance, and the CPU scales back to E-cores during the down time.
These new chips will need a new motherboard based on Intel's Z690 chipset. The flip side is that it adds more to the experience such as Wi-Fi 6E and USB 3.2 support. Intel is also working closely with Microsoft to optimise the CPUs for Windows 11, using the company's new Intel Thread Director software.
The new hybrid chips could usher in a new wave of Intel branded mobile chips and CPUs designed for ultra-portables and other devices in the future.