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PC chip names are a complicated mess

PC chip names are a complicated mess

2023-05-01 10:50:38

Over the weekend people seen an uncommon processor title within the on-line database for an Ashes of the Singularity benchmark. The chip is an Intel Core Extremely 5 1003H processor, which is described as an 18-core chip with built-in graphics.

It’s unclear if this title is actual or not (there’s some evidence that it could be, because it exhibits up in different places as nicely), however it appears to be like like a attainable rebranding for Intel’s upcoming 14th-gen Core chips primarily based on Meteor Lake expertise. And it may very well be simply the newest in an extended line of strikes that makes it more durable than ever to know what to anticipate by way of efficiency or energy effectivity from a processor.

Ashes of the Singularity benchmark (by way of @Benchleaks)

Intel has been utilizing Core i3, Core i5, Core i7, and Core i9 branding for its chips for greater than 15 years. Usually talking, the upper the quantity, the extra highly effective the processor.

However that math has gotten much more sophisticated over time. First, as a result of this 12 months’s Core i5 processor may really ship higher efficiency than a Core i7 chip from just a few years in the past. Second, as a result of a Core i7 desktop chip may outperform a Core i9 laptop computer chip. And third, as a result of even these issues don’t inform the entire story: Intel additionally provides a collection of numbers and letters after the Core i3 which are supposed to offer you an concept of issues like chip technology and efficiency.

For just a few years Intel additionally added G1, G4, and G7 to the tip of chip names so you might get a way of whether or not it had Intel UHD or Intel Iris Xe graphics, and the way highly effective that built-in GPU can be. However the firm did away with that when launching it’s Twelfth-gen “Alder Lake” chips in 2021.

Oh, after which Intel determined to blur the strains between its “Core” processors and lower-cost, lower-performance chips that was branded Celeron and Pentium Silver: the latest chips in that family are primarily based on “Alder Lake-N” structure and embrace names like Intel Processor N100, Intel Processor N200, and Intel Core i3-N305.

You’ve at all times needed to know the way to learn the digits and letters after the Core i3/i7/i9 to determine whether or not you had been taking a look at a brand new chip or an outdated one, or the place the processor fell with respect to its contemporaries by way of efficiency. Now you additionally have to know the way to inform for those who’re taking a look at a Core i3 chip primarily based on “N” structure (which implies it’s all Effectivity cores with no Efficiency cores) or “U” or increased tech (with a hybrid structure that mixes Effectivity and Efficiency cores).

So let’s check out that new “Core Extremely 5 1003H” processor. If that’s an actual title, does it resolve any issues? The one one which I can see is that it provides Intel a possibility to scale back the variety of numbers.

In contrast with a current-gen chip just like the Intel Core i5-13500H, for instance, it appears to be like like “Extremely 5” might change “i5” and “1003H” might change “13500H.” However that 13 really tells us one thing – that it is a Thirteenth-gen chip, launched in or round 2023.

Once more, I don’t know if Intel is actually planning to drop the “Core i” branding and/or change from 5-digit numbers to 4-digits. Given how complicated issues have gotten over time, a rebrand wouldn’t essentially be a foul factor. But when that is what Intel’s rebrand appears to be like like, it might simply add to the confusion fairly than assuaging it.

Oh, and in case you thought this may simply be an Intel drawback, AMD’s current adjustments to its chip-naming scheme is arguably even worse.

Final 12 months the corporate unveiled a brand new system for cell chip names that are ostensibly designed to let you realize somewhat concerning the chip by giving every digit within the title a which means. However a very powerful quantity is the third digit, which tells you the CPU structure, whereas the primary digit is virtually meaningless because it solely tells you the 12 months a processor was launched.

Whereas that may have been helpful data just a few years in the past when AMD was releasing newer, extra highly effective chips yearly, now the corporate has made a behavior of blending and matching present and previous-gen CPU structure.

See Also

You virtually want a decoder ring to determine {that a} Ryzen 5 7520U processor options Zen 2 CPU cores and a Ryzen 3 7330U chip has Zen 3+ cores and delivers stronger single-core and multi-core performance. And each of these are utilizing previous-gen expertise: if you’d like a chip with Zen 4 CPU cores then you definately want a Ryzen 7040 collection chip.

Oh, and since AMD can also be mixing and matching its present and previous-gen GPU structure and failing to incorporate any of that data in its chip names, you actually do want to have a look at a list of all the company’s chips to determine which has the mixture of CPU and graphics applied sciences that you really want.


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