In December 2016, word began circulating that Intel would be using AMD's graphics technology in the future CPUs to replace its own integrated graphics. Over the months, both Intel and AMD stayed tight lipped on the subject and now, it looks like the rumours were true all along. Today, Intel announced its new Core H-series processors, featuring Intel's own CPU cores, as well as a semi-custom GPU design from AMD's Radeon Technologies Group, all on the same chip.
Intel's Christopher Walker made the announcement today, stating that these new Core H-series processors will pave the way for thinner and lighter enthusiast laptops. These new processors will be part of Intel's 8th Gen Core family, combining the CPU with HBM2 and a Radeon GPU in one package. This will save up a lot of space on the motherboard previously used by discrete components, which will free up OEMs to shrink down high-performance laptop sizes. Alternatively, we could see bigger batteries, or beefier cooling solutions put in place.
Image credit: Intel
Intel worked closely with AMD's Radeon Technologies Group to design the semi-custom graphics chip being used. As Intel puts it, this is a prime example of how the two companies can “compete and work together, ultimately delivering innovation that is good for consumers”.
AMD's VP and GM of RTG, Scott Herkelman, added a statement of his own: “Our collaboration with Intel expands the installed base for AMD Radeon GPUs and brings to market a differentiated solution for high-performance graphics. Together we are offering gamers and content creators the opportunity to have a thinner-and-lighter PC capable of delivering discrete performance-tier graphics experiences in AAA games and content creation applications.”
While the AMD collaboration will be the biggest takeaway from this announcement, Intel is keen to point out that its new Embedded Multi-Die Interconnect Bridge is at the heart of the design. This small intelligent bridge allows information to be passed in extremely close proximity while also eliminating various manufacturing and design complexities. With EMIB in place as well as a new power-sharing framework, the new Core H-series should be extremely efficient and powerful at smaller sizes than ever before.
There are no specific performance numbers yet but these new Core H-series processors should start showing up in laptops at some point in Q1 2018.
KitGuru Says: Just when you think AMD can't possibly have anything left to announce this year, something new comes along. It will be very interesting to see how Intel's new Core H CPUs perform, particularly up against AMD's new Ryzen Mobile processors, which includes Vega Integrated Graphics.