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Intel’s dGPU adventures—Xe

New tidbits about Intel’s Xe dGPU market

Posted: By Jon Peddie 01.28.21

In his own inimitable way, Intel’s Raja Koduri lit up the web this week with his Twitter reveal of a full die shot of the 2-tile, 7-nm Intel Xe HPC GPU. The giant package has 16 clusters with 128 EUs, 1024 EUs total, and 8192 cores. It is alleged to be based on the Intel Graphics 12.5 architecture (revealed in January 2020 during Intel Architecture day). It will be clocked at 1290 MHz, potentially generating 21.1 TFLOPs—twice that of a Sony PS5. The TDP of the Iris Xe discrete add-in card is 30 W.

Everyone who knew someone at Intel sent emails and left voice messages to people at Intel attempting to get more information.

Usman Pirzada at wccftech took Koduri’s die shot and annotated it with his estimates of the die’s portions, as shown in the following image.

Possible floor plan of Intel Xe HPC GPU (Source: Usman Pirzada)

 

Independently, Nathan Kirsch at Legit Reviews found intelligent life on planet Intel. It responded to his request for a demo to test DG-1 with the blockbuster reveal of a specialized BIOS needed to run the chip.

The Iris Xe discrete add-in card will be paired with 9th gen (Coffee Lake-S) and 10th gen (Comet Lake-S) Intel Core desktop processors and Intel(R) B460, H410, B365, and H310C chipset-based motherboards and sold as part of pre-built systems. These motherboards require a special BIOS that supports Intel Iris Xe, so the cards won’t be compatible with other systems.

And where will that specialized BIOS reside?

Asus lit up the web in late October with a subtle mention of an Intel dGPU in its VivoBook Flip 14 notebook. It looks to be the first offering with a DG-1.

The Intel Iris Xe add-in-card was co-designed with Asus and another partner as a solution for System Integrators to be paired 9th Gen and 10th Gen Intel Core value desktops based on Intel B460, H410, B365, and H301C chipsets. These motherboards require a special BIOS that supports Intel Iris Xe.

The Intel Iris Xe add-in card will be available in PRC, EMEA, and the US starting next month.

Intel continues to feed out tidbits piecemeal, taunting the industry with its lackluster DG-1. The thing is little more than a glorified Iris iGPU.

Asus’ VivioBook Flip 14 is $310 and on backorder (Source: Asus)

 

Looking to the future, Intel says the DG-1 is just the start, there is a 4-tile package in the works that will have a massive core count of 2048 EUs or 16384 cores and a graphics horsepower of 42 TFLOPs.

Intel says the its DG-1 graphics board information page will be updated soon.