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Intel just revealed Xe HPG GPU specs — should Nvidia worry?

Intel Xe HPG
(Image credit: Intel)

Last week, Intel was hoping people would piece together clues from a scavenger hunt to learn more about the Xe HPG graphics card. Now the company has accidentally made things easier by publishing a whole host of reference materials on its own website.

Twitter user @Komachi_Ensaka (via Videocardz) found that the cards were searchable from the Intel.com homepage, and was able to find information by looking up “DG2” (the working codename: discrete graphics 2). You can’t get much further without having a log in, but the summary of the locked pages still reveals a few interesting bits of information for those looking for alternatives to Nvidia and AMD’s cards. 

First of all, Intel seems to have inadvertently confirmed that there will be several discrete graphics cards with a range of execution units (EU) going from 96 EU to 512 EU. The more execution units, the faster the card – and for comparison’s sake, 512 EU would give you up to 4,096 cores, meaning this mystery card could theoretically offer similar performance to AMD’s Radeon RX 6700 XT. Of course, with limited clues as to the architecture of the Xe HPG, it’s hard to know if real-world performance will be better or worse. 

In all, the document names seem to indicate five laptop GPUs with 96, 128, 256, 384 and 512 EUs, and two desktop cards with 512 EUs. Multiple listings suggest memory configurations of 4GB, 6GB, 8GB and 16GB, depending on the SKU, suggesting that Intel is targeting all kinds of budgets.  

While no release dates are indicated, there is a reference to Tiger Lake H laptops, which would suggest that the first Xe HPGs will launch this year — even if it’s just the laptop variants. It would certainly make sense for Intel to test the waters with a mobile chipset first, given the company has a lot of control over Intel Evo certified laptops, which would let the GPU debut in the most performance-friendly conditions.  

Market conditions may work in the company’s favor. While plenty of people might prefer to stick to what they know with GPUs from Nvidia or AMD, the well documented graphics card shortage has made grabbing one nearly impossible for gamers. Even second-hand cards go for a fortune on eBay, thanks in part to their superb performance at mining cryptocurrency

If the shortages continue for the foreseeable future, then maybe more gamers will be inclined to give Intel a go — especially if future benchmarks prove that the Xe HPG is a serious contender. 

Alan Martin

Freelance contributor Alan has been writing about tech for over a decade, covering phones, drones and everything in between. Previously Deputy Editor of tech site Alphr, his words are found all over the web and in the occasional magazine too. When not weighing up the pros and cons of the latest smartwatch, you'll probably find him tackling his ever-growing games backlog. Or, more likely, playing Spelunky for the millionth time.