Published in Graphics

Intel shows its Xe-HPG roadmap and details the Arc Alchemist GPU

by on19 August 2021

Shows Intel Xe SS (Super Sampling) as well

During its 2021 Architecture Day Intel gave a few more details about its upcoming Intel Arc GPUs, including the full roadmap, more details about the Arc Alchemist GPU, as well as the Intel Xe SS (Super Sampling) technology.

While we have already heard all the codenames for future Intel Xe HPG GPUs, Intel has now revealed the full "multi-year" roadmap, detailing the Xe HPG Alchemist, launching in Q1 2022, as well as future GPUs, Battlemage, Celestial, and Druid. Unfortunately, Intel did not give out any dates for its future GPUs, but did note that the Intel Arc Druid will be based on Xe Next Architecture, rather than an updated Xe HPG architecture.

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Intel Arc Alchemist is built on the TSMC N6 manufacturing process

The big surprise is that Intel has confirmed that the Intel Arc Alchemist GPU (DG2) will be built using TSMC's N6 manufacturing process, and these will be the first GPUs built on that process when it launches in Q1 2022. The TSMC N6 manufacturing process is a half-node, and pretty much an improved TSMC N7 manufacturing process, which should relate to simplified manufacturing and slightly improved density.

Intel also noted that the Xe HPG GPU will have improved power efficiency and higher voltage/frequency, compared to the Xe-LP, but it is still not clear if these come from a different, improved, and smaller manufacturing process or other optimizations.

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Intel shows Arc Alchemist

Intel also provided some details regarding the actual Arc Alchemist Xe HPG GPU, previously known as the DG2, showing a full block diagram of the flagship GPU with 512 EUs.

The GPU will be based on Xe-Cores, something that Intel is describing as the "compute building block of Xe HPG-based GPUs. The Xe-Cores are grouped in so-called Render Slices (four Xe-Cores for Alchemist), with each of the Xe-Cores featuring 16 Vector Engines (256-bit) and 16 Matrix Engines, a Ray Tracing Unit, and a sampler.

A group of four Xe-Cores makes up a Render Slice, which shares geometry and rasterization frontends, and two pixel backends. A total of eight of these Render Slices makes up the Intel Arc Alchemist GPU, sharing Memory Fabric, which is basically a large L2 cache.

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Xe Super Sampling (Xe SS) is Intel's temporal-based upscaling technology

Intel also gave a bit more details about its Intel Xe Super Sampling technology, which is a temporal-based upscaling technology and it uses Xe SSD XMX instructions providing a high-quality 4K image. In its graphs, Intel did show that we will see a slightly higher frame render time compared to other traditional upscaling technologies, but it will still be lower than rendering a native 4K image.

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Intel Arc and Alchemist launching in Q1 2022

Intel's ambitious plan to enter the high-performance GPU market, which has been announced four years ago, will reach its goal in Q1 2022 with Intel Arc and the Alchemist GPU (DG2). We are certainly looking forward to the launch as well as hearing more about the actual memory configuration, performance, and pretty much all other juicy details.


Last modified on 21 August 2021
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