Intel has brought its own first-range discrete GPU to the market with the new Intel Iris Xe Max. The new Xe graphics architecture will be featured in Intel’s 11th Gen ‘Tiger Lake’ CPUs, which will be available for sale in some parts of the world.
First unveiled at Intel Architecture Day 2020, the Xe-LP microarchitecture was designed to address low-power applications like media decode, AI-feature acceleration and casual gaming. Some of the new laptops to include the GPU are Acer Swift 3X, the Dell Inspiron 15 7000 2-in-1, and the Asus VivoBook Flip TP470.
Intel announced that both integrated and discrete Xe GPUs could be used together to provide better graphics performance for AI-based tasks and other compute-intensive activities. Intel has claimed that Iris Xe Max graphics with 11th Gen Intel Core i7 can offer seven times faster AI-enhanced content creation than the 10th Gen Intel Core i7 with Nvidia GeForce MX350 GPU.
The conjunction to work with integrated GPUs will form a software framework called the Deep Link.
Activities like AI inferencing and video encoding would be accelerated through the combined capabilities of both the GPUs. The Deep Link can also adjust the power and thermal headroom between the GPU and CPU. Intel claims this can increase the CPU performance by 20% with an idle GPU.
“We set out to redefine the role of discrete graphics in thin-and-light laptops and address a growing segment of creators who want more portability. Iris Xe MAX graphics and Intel® Deep Link technology serve as examples of the kind of platform-level innovation that Intel plans to bring to market in the future as we execute our scalable Xe Roadmap,” said Roger Chandler, vice-president and general manager, Client XPU Product and Solutions in the Intel Architecture, Graphics and Software Group, in a statement.
In terms of gaming, Intel Iris Xe Max is positioned against Nvidia MX350 to deliver 1080p casual gaming experience in low-medium settings with 30fps frame rate.
More laptops by Intel have been teased with Xe-LP architecture speculated to be rolled out in the first half of 2021. More gaming-ready desktop GPUs would also likely be seen next year, as revealed by the company.