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Core Temp CPU Monitor Adds Support for Intel 12th Gen Alder Lake, Meteor Lake

Image of a hand holding a processor.
(Image credit: Shutterstock)

Popular CPU temperature monitoring utility Core Temp recently got patched to version 1.17 with a few new updates, including support for not only Intel and AMD's latest and best CPUs, but some chips yet to be released as well. 

Core Temp version 1.17 adds full support for Rocket-Lake-S, which includes chips like the new Core i9-11900K. It also brings preliminary support for both Intel's 12th Gen Alder Lake desktop CPUs, which aren't expected to arrive until late 2021 or early 2022, and Intel's 3D-stacked Meteor Lake chips, poised for a 2023 release. 

It's very interesting to see Alder Lake support already because this new CPU architecture is radically different from anything Intel has produced so far. That means it will need some new types of monitoring to measure CPU core temperatures. Similar to the design of Arm chips, like the Apple M1 and other smartphone chips from Qualcomm and Samsung, the line will introduce a hybrid architecture. In the case of Alder Lake, this is a hybrid x86 architecture with two tiers of CPU cores: One set of high-performance cores and one set of high-efficiency cores.

Alder Lake will also be Intel's first desktop architecture to finally move off the super mature 14nm process and will instead use Intel's newly refined 10nm SuperFin process. SuperFin promises to achieve much higher performance-per-watt compared to 14nm.

So to monitor temperatures, programs like CoreTemp will have to monitor both the high-performance cores and the low-power cores, plus all the other sensors like CPU die and package temperature. Hopefully, CoreTemp will figure out a way to give users all this data without being overwhelming or confusing.

This same logic should also apply to Meteor Lake, which (for now) is also believed to have a hybrid x86 architecture featuring low-power and high-performance cores. Unlike Alder Lake, Meteor Lake is expected to be shipped on Intel's new 7nm EUV process. We don't know the exact details on this node, but it should provide a hefty efficiency upgrade over 10nm SuperFin if Intel wants to maintain its competitive edge against TSMC's 7nm and 5nm nodes.

Speaking of TSMC, Intel is planning on using some of TSMC's silicon for select Meteor Lake products in the future to offset recent delays related to its homebrewed 7nm node. To make this a reality, Meteor Lake will come with a 3D-stacked architecture, which will allow Intel to swap out Intel silicon for TSMC silicon and vise-versa.

Other Updates and Bug Fixes

In addition to new support for Intel CPUs, Core Temp version 1.17 also adds full support for AMD's latest Ryzen 5000 processors, as well as its for Zen 2 -based APUs, which include all of AMD's Ryzen 4000 mobile CPUs and some of AMD's Ryzen 5000 mobile processors. 

The update also brings numerous bug fixes, which we've listed below.

  • "Unsupported CPU" message when only some cores have HT enabled
  • AMD Epyc Rome/Threadripper 3rd gen platform detection
  • Gemini Lake platform detection
  • Whiskey Lake codename
  • Incorrect VID reporting on some Celeron/Pentium processors
  • Crash on Intel Banias based (Pentium/Celeron M) processors
  • Turbo multiplier detection on Nehalem/Westmere
  • Bugs related to response to DPI changesVID reporting on some AMD Athlon64 processors

Changes:

  • AMD Bulldozer based processors now display the amount of modules/threads instead of cores/threads
  • Improve accuracy of information on unsupported Intel CPUs