Today was the expected day and indeed, the reference technology, the one that made processors what they are today, the creator of some of the most important chips in the history of technology, the very famous Intel, has introduced Intel Raptor Lake-S, the thirteenth generation of Intel Corethe one that settles the jump to the hybrid architecture that we experienced last year with Alder Lake, and that responds to an AMD that, with reasons for it, is more competitive (that is, more eager to compete) with its newly released Ryzen 7000.
As I said, today was the expected day for the presentation of Raptor Lake-S, but not only did we have the date of its announcement. Actually, and over the months, we have already learned more and more details about this new generation, to the point that we have even been able, recently, to compare the specifications of Raptor Lake with those of Alder Lake, to be able to assess in a fairly detailed way the evolutionary leap between the two.
However, nothing is 100% official until its presentation, at which time a significant amount of more than interesting information is also released, such as improvements in technologies already present in previous generations, utilities that improve the management of the new integrated , , and so on. And, of course, performance, the clearest indicator of the generation jump for many users, and one of the main elements of confrontation between the different manufacturers for a long time.
We must take into account, yes, that Raptor Lake has some bridge generation, that It does not represent a great technological leap, as it did with Alder Lake and as we hope it will with Meteor Lake.. Be careful, at this point I consider it essential to clarify that this is not necessarily a negative thing, despite the fact that there are those who connote it that way. The thirteenth generation of Intel Core repeats the hybrid architecture model, but adds to it all the learning acquired with Alder Lake, thus providing a platform that combines excellent performance with great reliability, and also with improvements in terms of the efficiency.
The main sign that, as I mentioned before, we are facing a transition generation, is found in the upper graph, in which Intel collects the most notable points of Raptor Lake-S. As you can see, “Increase” and “Increased” are two of the most repeated words. More performance, more reliability, improvements, improvements and more improvements. Something that, starting from the base of Alder Lake, which has been a reliable and high-performance generation from day one, is something to keep in mind.
More cores, and faster
We expected it and it has. From the hand of Intel Raptor Lake-S arrives Raptor Cove, a new architecture of performance cores, directly responsible for the increase in the IPC that we have already been able to see in some tests that have been leaked in recent times. This improvement in performance cores is, of course, responsible for the fact that, with turbo mode, Raptor Lake-S can scale, in turbo mode, up to 5.8 gigahertz.
There is no news regarding the efficiency cores, which remain in the Gracemont architecture. But where there is no technological evolution, there is a quantitative one, since we see that the two top-of-the-range chips of this generation integrate 16 of them, compared to the eight of the previous generation. Now, that there is no evolutionary leap does not mean that there are no improvements. Quite the contrary, these cores will be able to reach 4.3 gigahertz in turbo mode, compared to 3.9 gigahertz that were capped in the previous generation.
It also improves DDR5 memory support, since Raptor Lake-S has native support for DDR5 at 5,600 megahertz. In this regard, although it has been known for a long time, also confirm that the thirteenth generation maintains compatibility with DDR4-3200, something that will surely end in this generation.
These improvements, to which we must also add the increase in the amount of cache memory, which we will see in detail in the processor table, according to Intel, provides an improvement in the performance of Raptor Lake-S, with respect to Alder Lake, of up to 15% in monowire, which scales up to an ostensible 41% in multithreaded mode.
The evolution data from generation to generation is important, of course, but what the vast majority really expect is the comparison with the main rival, AMD. And in that regard, these are the data provided by Intel regarding Ryzenin which we can also see the improvement over Alder Lake:
A tire advertising campaign said, a few years ago, that power without control is useless, and since I heard it at the time, it has always seemed to me to be a great success. The six CPUs announced today by Inteland marking the debut of Raptor Lake-S, share the K in their name, indicating that they are unlocked and therefore suitable for overclocking.
And in this regard we find one of the most interesting novelties of this generation, and it is that the performance management tools of the systems based on Raptor Lake-S now provide monitoring, at the core level, of the performance of the CPU, as well as simplified management modes, with which we can optimize the performance of the processor with a single click. For its part, the combination of DDR5-5600 memories with XMP 3.0, will also allow us to overclock the memory with a single click, thanks to predefined profiles and that assure us that we will obtain the best performance without sacrificing stability and, even less, security. of our system.
As far as software improvements are concerned, and as my colleague Isidro mentioned a few months ago, we are also faced with Intel Thread Director 2.0, a major revision of the software responsible for organizing and distributing the workload of the processor between the cores that form it. Thanks to the use of artificial intelligence (machine learning), its operation has been optimized on several levels, which should result in greater efficiency of the orchestration process.
Additionally, and we understand that thanks to the collaboration with Microsoft, Intel announces specific improvements when using one of these new processors with Windows 11 22H2thanks to the optimization of tasks and services (whether started by the system or initiated by the user) that are in the background, but are consuming resources.
All this set of improvements translates not only into better performance but, as I indicated at the beginning, also into greater efficiency, which we can quantify with the performance metric per watt/hour consumed. And in this regard, the data offered by Intel for the comparison between Raptor Lake-S and Alder Lake-S are more than remarkable, because as the table below shows, the current generation can provide, with a consumption of 65 watts, a performance similar to that provided by the previous one with 241 watts, almost 400%. Without a doubt, the learning provided by Alder Lake and the addition of more efficiency cores have a lot to do with this point.
Intel Raptor Lake-S: specifications and prices
The thirteenth generation of Intel Core debuts with six integrated although, to be more exact, we can talk about three, both with versions with (K) and without (KF) integrated GPU. Let’s see what each of them offers us in detail:
- Intel Core i9-13900K: 24 cores and 32 threads. 8 high-performance Raptor Cove cores at 3GHz-5.8GHz, normal and turbo mode, 16 high-efficiency Gracemont cores at 2.2GHz-4.3GHz, normal and turbo mode, 68MB cache (L3 + L2) and a TDP of 125 watts. Integrated GPU Intel UHD Graphics 770. It has 24 cores and 32 threads. Price: $589.
- Intel Core i9-13900KF: 24 cores and 32 threads. 8 high-performance Raptor Cove cores at 3GHz-5.8GHz, normal and turbo mode, 16 high-efficiency Gracemont cores at 2.2GHz-4.3GHz, normal and turbo mode, 68MB cache (L3 + L2) and a TDP of 125 watts. No graphics. Price: $564.
- Intel Core i7-13700K: 16 cores and 24 threads. 8 high-performance Raptor Cove cores @ 3.4GHz-5.4GHz, normal and turbo mode, 8 high-efficiency Gracemont cores @ 2.5GHz-4.2GHz, normal and turbo mode, 54MB cache ( L3 + L2) and a TDP of 125 watts. Integrated GPU Intel UHD Graphics 770. Price: $409.
- Intel Core i7-13700KF: 16 cores and 24 threads. 8 high-performance Raptor Cove cores @ 3.4GHz-5.4GHz, normal and turbo mode, 8 high-efficiency Gracemont cores @ 2.5GHz-4.2GHz, normal and turbo mode, 54MB cache ( L3 + L2) and a TDP of 125 watts. No graphics. Price: $384.
- Intel Core i5-13600K: 14 cores and 20 threads. 6 high-performance Raptor Cove cores at 3.5 GHz-5.1 GHz, normal and turbo mode, 8 high-efficiency Gracemont cores at 2.6 GHz-3.9 GHz, normal and turbo mode, 44 MB cache ( L3 + L2) and a TDP of 125 watts.
- Integrated GPU Intel UHD Graphics 770. Price: $319.
- Intel Core i5-13600K: 14 cores and 20 threads. 6 high-performance Raptor Cove cores at 3.5 GHz-5.1 GHz, normal and turbo mode, 8 high-efficiency Gracemont cores at 2.6 GHz-3.9 GHz, normal and turbo mode, 44 MB cache ( L3 + L2) and a TDP of 125 watts. No graphics. Price: $294.