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Haswell CPUs will contain vector processors and a more power on-die GPU. The chips are designed to power the next generation of "Ultrabooks".  (Source: ASUSTek)

An Intel corporate blog post seemed to confirm both the presence of vector coprocessor silicon and a 2013 release date for the 22 nm Haswell.  (Source: Intel)
Company looks to new 22 nm architecture to hold off AMD and ARM Holdings

Intel Corp. (INTC) has dropped a few hints to its upcoming 22 nm Haswell architecture, currently under development by the company's secret Oregon team.  In a post on the Intel Software Network blog titled "Haswell New Instruction Descriptions Now Available!", the company reveals that it plans to launch the new CPU in 2013.

Haswell will utilize the same power-saving tri-gate 3D transistor technology that will first drop with Ivy Bridge in early 2012.  Major changes architecturally reportedly include a totally redesigned cache, fused multiply add (FMA3) instruction support, and an on-chip vector coprocessor.

The vector process, which will work with the on-die GPU, was a major focus of the post.  The company is preparing a series of commands called Advanced Vector Extensions (AVX), which will speed up vector math.  It writes:

Intel AVX addresses the continued need for vector floating-point performance in mainstream scientific and engineering numerical applications, visual processing, recognition, data-mining/synthesis, gaming, physics, cryptography and other areas of applications. Intel AVX is designed to facilitate efficient implementation by wide spectrum of software architectures of varying degrees of thread parallelism, and data vector lengths.

According to CNET, Intel's marketing chief Tom Kilroy indicates that Intel hopes for the new chip's integrated graphics to rival today's discrete graphics.  

Intel has a ways to go to meet that objective -- its on-die GPU in Sandy Bridge marked a significant improvement over past designs (which were housed in a separate package, traditionally), however it also fell far short of the GPU found in Advance Micro Devices (AMD) Llano Fusion APUs.

Intel has enjoyed a love/hate relationship with graphics makers AMD and NVIDIA Corp. (NVDA).  While it's been forced to allow their GPUs to live on its motherboards and alongside its CPUs, the company has also fantasized of usurping the graphics veterans.  Those plans culminated in the company's Larrabee project, which aimed to offer discrete Intel graphics cards.

Now that a commercial release of Larrabee has been cancelled, Intel has seized upon on-die integrated graphics as its latest answer to try to push NVIDIA and AMD out of the market.  Intel is promoting heavily the concept of ultrabooks -- slender notebooks like the Apple, Inc.'s (AAPL) MacBook Air or ASUTEK Computer Inc.'s (TPE:2357) UX21, which feature low voltage CPUs and -- often -- no discrete GPU.

Mr. Kilroy reportedly wants ultrabook manufacturers using Haswell to shoot for target and MSRP of $599 USD, which would put them roughly in line with this year's Llano notebooks from AMD and partners.  It's about $100 USD less than current Sandy Bridge notebooks run.

Intel faces pressure from a surging ARM Holdings plc's (ARMH) who is looking to unveil notebook processors sometime next year.



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RE: wow no kidding
By Mitch101 on 6/24/2011 1:41:51 PM , Rating: 2
Now that I think about it Intel was going a different direction than AMD/NVIDIA. Intel was optimizing thier design for raytracing which current GPU's from AMD/NVIDIA are optimized for Rasterization. Since game engines are written around Rasterization this might explain why AMD/NVIDIA have such a lead of the Intel GPU's.

See Image Ray Tracing vs Rasterization
http://www.cdrinfo.com/images/uploaded/Ray-tracedV...

If I recall correctly from a number of articles Real Time Raytracing is a ways off but they would adopt a middle ground combining the best of both before reaching the ultimate goal.

My thought it if Intel can achieve 60FPS through raytracing while AMD/NVIDIA achieve 200FPS through Rasterization although the AMD/NVIDIA offering is faster the end result is Intel could have more realistic visuals.

Of course game engines would need to be written to render as ray tracing which as I understand very easy but the details arent.

Just my thoughts. Dont count out Intel.


RE: wow no kidding
By Motoman on 6/24/2011 2:08:05 PM , Rating: 1
...considering that Intel's marketshare in the Gaming Graphics market is, um, 0%...I wouldn't hold my breath waiting for any game manufacturers to start writing special rendering code for Intel chips.


RE: wow no kidding
By Mitch101 on 6/24/2011 3:47:05 PM , Rating: 2
In Gaming Graphics yes
http://store.steampowered.com/hwsurvey/videocard/

But Intel dominates in Integrated graphics.
http://software.intel.com/en-us/articles/common-mi...

Of course how many integrated graphics machines aren't being used and have a video card plugged in.

Don't underestimate companies with deep pockets.


RE: wow no kidding
By ClownPuncher on 6/24/2011 3:50:26 PM , Rating: 2
They really blew my socks off with larrabee. My larrabee card can play Crysis 4 maxed out!


RE: wow no kidding
By Alexvrb on 6/25/2011 3:28:21 PM , Rating: 2
Oh yeah well I'm running 4 Larrabee cards in SLIfireX on my NF1290FXH97 and I can run Crysis 4 in 6 monitor 3D mode maxed out!


RE: wow no kidding
By Motoman on 6/24/2011 7:50:15 PM , Rating: 1
Call me crazy but I don't think game producers build games with the intention that they'll be played on PCs not intended to play games. Like ones with integrated graphics.


RE: wow no kidding
By SPOOFE on 6/26/2011 9:20:59 PM , Rating: 2
They're absolutely crazy to ignore the largest market in existence. The guys that made Torchlight were geniuses; that game runs excellently on Intel graphics.


RE: wow no kidding
By Motoman on 6/27/2011 11:22:13 AM , Rating: 1
Uh-huh. Never heard of it.

Recon COD runs well on Intel graphics? Rift? Dare I say...Crysis?

If your assertion is correct, then every major gaming company is crazy. None of them do any work to accommodate Intel graphics - most of them buddy up with either ATI or Nvidia as it is.


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