Intel has released a new patch to its graphics system controller firmware update library for Linux. This patch reveals two DG2 SKUs, including variants with 128 EUs and 256 EUs running on a new die known as SOC3. According to hardware leaker Komachi_Ensaka on Twitter, he believes this new die could pack a total of 256 EUs since the biggest SKU mentioned in the patch notes was a 256 EU model.
The latest development is quite attractive since it means there is evidence Intel is making a third die for its discrete DG2 GPUs, whereas previously we've only theorized that Intel would use two dies and disabled cores for lower-end/mid-range SKUs when necessary.
We initially thought Intel would use its maximum 512EU die for both its mid-range 256 EU SKU, 448 EU SKU, and flagship 512 EU configuration. But, if a 256EU die is going to be around, Intel can use both its flagship die and this mid-range SOC3 die for multiple mid-range and high-end SKUs.
Intel might be making a lot of mid-range DG2 SKUs, to the point where making a dedicated 256 EU die will be needed, instead of using a lot of 512 EU dies with disabled cores -- which wastes extra silicon that the chipmaker can use elsewhere.
However, VideoCardz speculates that SOC3 might not be on the cards for Intel as the company has not announced the die in leaked slides. So there's also a chance that Intel could scrap 256 EU die.
Early leaks claimed that there would be three tiers of DG2 GPUs coming from Intel, a baseline A300 series with a max of 128 EUs and 6GB of VRAM, a mid-range A500 series with a maximum of 256 EUs, and 12GB of VRAM, and a flagship A700 series with a maximum of 512 EUs and 16GB of VRAM.
If Intel plans to release a SOC3 die in the future, each series of DG2 GPUs will have its die. The A300 series will get its own 128 EU die, the A500 series will get the SOC3 die with 256 EUs, and the A700 series with SOC1 featuring a 512 EU die.
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Aaron Klotz is a freelance writer for Tom’s Hardware US, covering news topics related to computer hardware such as CPUs, and graphics cards.
Please don't suck. Please don't suck. Please don't suck.Reply
I'm rooting for Intel here. I get mad at them for stifling improvements in the laptop space, but I do want them to succeed overall. Strong products and competition is good for the industry, customers, and future technology. Intel could do a lot of good for the GPU space. Looks like Intel is following in the footsteps of their more established GPU competitors.
Disabling half of the die isn't a particularly cost-effective way of making mid-range chips, so it would make sense for Intel to make a separate SKU for those if it wants to ship significant volume.Reply