Intel's First Alder Lake CPUs To Ditch Efficient Cores Detailed In Specs Leak

Intel Alder Lake CPU
We know Intel will round out is Alder Lake lineup with more desktop SKUs, perhaps even announcing new models at the Consumer Electronics Show next month. The question is, will some of the SKUs rock solo with just Performance cores (P-cores) and leave out Efficient cores (E-cores) as rumored? There is more evidence to suggest that will be the case.

Most of you reading this probably already know this, but for the benefit of those who might not, Alder Lake is Intel's latest generation CPU architecture and it represents a pretty big departure from most past designs. Taking a cue from the mobile sector where's Arm has ruled the roost, Alder Lake mixes high-performance Golden Cove cores with power-efficient Gracemont cores in the same package.

Intel actually dabbled with a hybrid architecture in the x86 space before Alder Lake, with its Lakefield SoCs. Alder Lake is a much bigger play, though, and the underlying design will drive future architecture releases, including Raptor Lake and beyond.

The initial Alder Lake launch comprised six SKUs, and really just three different main models, each offered with ("K") or without ("KF") integrated Xe graphics. Here's a look...

Intel Alder Lake SKUs
As of right now, the lineup consists of the Core i9-12900K/KF, Core i7-12700K/KF, and Core i5-12600K/KF, each with an unlocked multiplier to facilitate easier overclocking. Each of the existing SKUs also contain both P-cores and E-cores. The Core i9-12900K, for example, sports a 16-core/24-thread configuration comprised of eight P-Cores with Hyper Threading support and eight E-cores that lack Hyper Threading.

There's been a lot of chatter about Intel introducing some Alder Lake CPUs that will exclusively feature P-cores. According to the folks at Videocardz, two of those models will be the Core i5-12400F and the Core i3-12100F. Intel also has a Core i7-12700F on tap, though it will feature both P-cores and E-cores. All three are said to be 65W TDP silicon, and will purportedly be packaged with Intel's recently leaked stock cooling solution.

If the site's information is correct, the Core i5-12400F will be a 6-core/12-thread CPU with all P-cores, clocked at 2.5GHz (base) to 4.4GHz (turbo). It's also said to have 18MB of L3 cache and 7.5MB of L2 cache.

Meanwhile, the Core i3-12100F will sit a few pegs down and be a 4-core/8-thread processor entirely made up of P-cores, and clocked at 3.3GHz to 4.3GHz. It will also have 12MB of L3 cache and 5MB of L2 cache, if the leaked information is correct.

As for the Core i7-12400F, it's said to be a 12-core/20-thread processor with eight P-cores clocked at 2.1GHz to 4.9GHz, four E-cores clocked at 1.6GHz (turbo clock is not known), and 25MB (L3) + 12MB (L2) cache.

It's not likely these will be the only additions to Alder Lake, assuming Intel makes an announcement at or around CES. We expect a whole bunch more SKUs to materialize, including some 35W models. But as always when it comes to leaks and rumors, we'll have to wait and see.