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Alder Lake iGPU Hits 2.4 GHz For 61% Performance Uplift

Alder Lake
Alder Lake (Image credit: Intel)

YouTube personality SkatterBencher demonstrated in a recent video how overclocking Alder Lake's iGPU could lead to significant performance gains. The iGPU hit 2,378 MHz, delivering over 60% higher performance in different workloads.

Intel's 12th Generation Alder Lake K-series processors come with the UHD Graphics 770 engine, based on the Xe-LP architecture and 10nm process. The Alder Lake GT1 is at the heart of the UHD Graphics 770 solution and features up to 32 Execution Units (EUs). Since there are eight ALUs per EU, the UHD Graphics 770 amounts to 256 ALUs in total.

The UHD Graphics 770 engine has a 300 MHz base clock, but the boost clock varies from one Alder Lake chip to another. For example, the Core i5-12600K and Core i7-12700K have iGPUs that can boost to 1,450 MHz and 1,500 MHz, respectively, whereas the one for the Core i9-12900K tops out at 1,550 MHz. SkatterBencher overclocked the iGPU for his Core i9-12900K to an impressive 2,378 MHz, resulting in a 53% increase in boost clock speed.

The YouTuber experimented with different strategies to maximize the overclock on the Core i9-12900K's iGPU. The one that proved most fruitful and the most aggressive included enabling Asus' Multi-Core Enhancement (MCE) feature, which maxes out the power and current limits, XMP 3.0, increasing the BCLK to 116 to overclock the processor and iGPU.

UHD Graphics 770 Benchmarks

Stock2.4 GHz OverclockDifference
Geekbench 5 OpenCL9,64114,41049%
Geekbench 5 Vulkan9,53714,53852%
Furmark 1080p9251,41153%
AI Benchmark1,3522,04851%
3DMark Night Raid13,44118,96541%
Unigine Superposition (720p, Low, OpenGL)5,8608,41344%
Spaceship (1080p, High)14.122.761%
CS:GO FPS Bench (1080p)52.7978.4949%
FF XV (Standard, 1080p)14.5520.4841%
HandBrake882.2771,015.66315%

The overclocked iGPU delivered over 40% performance gains in various synthetic benchmarks and reached 61% in the Spaceship benchmark, which uses the Unity engine. Unfortunately, SkatterBencher only tested two games: Counter-Strike: Global Offensive and Final Fantasy XV.

The iGPU pumped out 49% higher performance in Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, increasing frame rates from 52.79 FPS to 78.49 FPS. There was a 41% increase in Final Fantasy XV; however, the iGPU could not hit the 30 FPS target. The YouTuber used the standard preset at 1080p (1920 x 1080) resolution.

In a real-world workload, such as HandBrake, we only saw a 15% performance increase.

The UHD Graphics 770 engine may get you by if you're a casual gamer who plays at 720p or 1080p with very low eye candy. Unfortunately, as SkatterBencher has proven, the iGPU doesn't perform well outside of synthetic benchmarks, even with a substantial overclock. Then again, the UHD Graphics 770 has a 15W power budget, so there's only so much you can do with it.