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Alder Lake HX: The most powerful Intel chip for laptops

Intel can’t offer more power for laptops at the moment: the company has introduced the Alder Lake HX family, whose Core i5, Core i7, and Core i9 chips are said to be the best equipment for mobile workstations and high-end gaming machines.

Mobile warming up with up to 157 watts turbo TDP

Since the beginning of this year, laptops with the 12th generation Core mobile processors are available. It all started with the Alder Lake H and HK families. Alder Lake HX now introduces a chip class that once again places itself above this offering – a novelty compared to the “Tiger Lake” family, which was led by the Core i9-11980HK. The new extra class includes loud anandtech Core i5, Core i7, and Core i9 models and is rounded off by the Core i9-12950 HX chip at the top. It’s intended to appeal to customers who want the maximum performance that Intel currently has to offer for mobile, but with PCIe 5.0 and a TDP of 55 watts, it also comes with features previously reserved for the desktop.

Key Features of Intel Alder Lake HX

  • Up to 16 cores (8 performance cores and 8 efficiency cores, each labeled P for performance and E for efficiency (P+E) in the following table) and 24 threads with a processor base power of 55 W.
  • Access x16 PCIe Gen 5.0 through the processor and 4×4 PCIe Gen 4.0 through a dedicated platform controller hub (PCH) for higher bandwidth and faster data transfers.
  • Memory support for up to 128 GB DDR5/LPDDR5 (up to 4800 MHz/5200 MHz) and DDR4 (up to 3200 MHz/LPDDR4 4267 MHz) with Error Correcting Code (ECC) function.

Intel starts with a total of seven models, the technical data of which we have summarized for you below:

Intel Alder Lake HX Series (12th Gen Core)

 Nuclei (P+E)wiresBasic (P+E)Turbo (P+E)L3 cacheTDP (basic)TDP (Turbo)
Core i9-12950HX (vPro)8+8 (16)242.3/1.7GHz5.0/3.6GHz30MB55W157 w
Core i9-12900HX8+8 (16)242.3/1.7GHz5.0/3.6GHz30MB55W157 w
Core i7-12850HX (vPro)8+8 (16)242.1/1.5GHz4.8/3.4GHz25MB55W157 w
Core i7-12800HX8+8 (16)242.0/1.5GHz4.8/3.4GHz25MB55W157 w
Core i7-12650HX6+8 (14)202.0/1.5GHz4.7/3.3GHz24MB55W157 w
Core i5-12600HX (vPro)4+8 (12)162.5/1.8GHz4.6/3.3GHz18MB55W157 w
Core i5-12450HX4+4 (8)122.4/1.8GHz4.4/3.1GHz12MB55W157 w

As usual, Intel also provides some benchmarks for the presentation, which, as always, should be treated with a bit of caution until independent testing is done. Here the top model Core i9-12950HX is sent into the race against its predecessors Core i9-11980HK and Core i9-12900HK, but it also has to prove itself against the competition from AMD. The peak in performance gain is achieved with the Blender 3.1 – Car Demo, here you want to be able to beat your own Core i9-12900HK by 81 percent.

Like the K chips, HX chips also have the ability to overclock cores – including the efficiency cores – and memory. How far you can go here, of course, strongly depends on the design of the laptop manufacturers, who can set their own XMP profiles here. In addition to the ability to overclock the memory, ECC RAM is also supported – an important feature for some workstation applications. Last but not least, the generous PCI expansion with x20 PCIe Gen 4 and x16 Gen 5 lanes will delight users with high connectivity needs.

Mark Goodman

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