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posted by martyb on Thursday June 14 2018, @03:08AM   Printer-friendly
from the can-you-picture-that? dept.

Intel's First (Modern) Discrete GPU Set For 2020

In a very short tweet posted to their Twitter feed yesterday, Intel revealed/confirmed the launch date for their first discrete GPU developed under the company's new dGPU initiative. The otherwise unnamed high-end GPU will be launching in 2020, a short two to two-and-a-half years from now.

[...] This new GPU would be the first GPU to come out of Intel's revitalized GPU efforts, which kicked into high gear at the end of 2017 with the hiring of former AMD and Apple GPU boss Raja Koduri. Intel of course is in the midst of watching sometimes-ally and sometimes-rival NVIDIA grow at a nearly absurd pace thanks to the machine learning boom, so Intel's third shot at dGPUs is ultimately an effort to establish themselves in a market for accelerators that is no longer niche but is increasingly splitting off customers who previously would have relied entirely on Intel CPUs.

[...] Intel isn't saying anything else about the GPU at this time. Though we do know from Intel's statements when they hired Koduri that they're starting with high-end GPUs, a fitting choice given the accelerator market Intel is going after. This GPU is almost certainly aimed at compute users first and foremost – especially if Intel adopts a bleeding edge-like strategy that AMD and NVIDIA have started to favor – but Intel's dGPU efforts are not entirely focused on professionals. Intel has also confirmed that they want to go after the gaming market as well, though what that would entail – and when – is another question entirely.

Previously: AMD's Radeon Technologies Group Boss Raja Koduri Leaves, Confirmed to be Defecting to Intel
Intel Planning a Return to the Discrete GPU Market, Nvidia CEO Responds


Original Submission

Related Stories

AMD's Radeon Technologies Group Boss Raja Koduri Leaves, Confirmed to be Defecting to Intel 7 comments

The boss of AMD's Radeon Technologies Group is leaving the company:

Remember when we reported on the Radeon Technologies Group boss, Raja Koduri, taking a leave of absence with an intent to return to the fold in December? That isn't going to happen, according to a memo Raja has written to his team, because today is his last day in the job.

[...] Our sources tell us that Lisa Su, AMD CEO, will continue to oversee RTG for the foreseeable future. AMD appreciates that such an important role cannot be the sole domain of the CEO, and to this end is actively searching for a successor to Raja. We expect the appointment to be made within a few months.

The rumor mill suggests that Koduri will take a job at Intel, which would come at an interesting time now that Intel is including AMD graphics and High Bandwidth Memory in some of its products.

Update: Intel to Develop Discrete GPUs, Hires Raja Koduri as Chief Architect & Senior VP

Also at HotHardware and Fudzilla.

Previously: Interview With Raja Koduri, Head of the Radeon Technologies Group at AMD


Original Submission

Intel Planning a Return to the Discrete GPU Market, Nvidia CEO Responds 15 comments

Intel isn't just poaching a prominent AMD employee. Intel is planning a return to the discrete GPU market:

On Monday, Intel announced that it had penned a deal with AMD to have the latter provide a discrete GPU to be integrated onto a future Intel SoC. On Tuesday, AMD announced that their chief GPU architect, Raja Koduri, was leaving the company. Now today the saga continues, as Intel is announcing that they have hired Raja Koduri to serve as their own GPU chief architect. And Raja's task will not be a small one; with his hire, Intel will be developing their own high-end discrete GPUs.

[...] [In] perhaps the only news that can outshine the fact that Raja Koduri is joining Intel, is what he will be doing for Intel. As part of today's revelation, Intel has announced that they are instituting a new top-to-bottom GPU strategy. At the bottom, the company wants to extend their existing iGPU market into new classes of edge devices, and while Intel doesn't go into much more detail than this, the fact that they use the term "edge" strongly implies that we're talking about IoT-class devices, where edge goes hand-in-hand with neural network inference. This is a field Intel already plays in to some extent with their Atom processors on the GPU side, and their Movidius neural compute engines on the dedicated silicon sign.

However in what's likely the most exciting part of this news for PC enthusiasts and the tech industry as a whole, is that in aiming at the top of the market, Intel will once again be going back into developing discrete GPUs. The company has tried this route twice before; once in the early days with the i740 in the late 90s, and again with the aborted Larrabee project in the late 2000s. However even though these efforts never panned out quite like Intel has hoped, the company has continued to develop their GPU architecture and GPU-like devices, the latter embodying the massive parallel compute focused Xeon Phi family.

Yet while Intel has GPU-like products for certain markets, the company doesn't have a proper GPU solution once you get beyond their existing GT4-class iGPUs, which are, roughly speaking, on par with $150 or so discrete GPUs. Which is to say that Intel doesn't have access to the midrange market or above with their iGPUs. With the hiring of Raja and Intel's new direction, the company is going to be expanding into full discrete GPUs for what the company calls "a broad range of computing segments."

Intel Linux Graphics Driver Adding Device Local Memory - Possible Start of Discrete GPU Bring-Up 7 comments

Submitted via IRC for Bytram

Intel Linux Graphics Driver Adding Device Local Memory - Possible Start of dGPU Bring-Up

A big patch series was sent out today amounting to 42 patches and over four thousand lines of code for introducing the concept of memory regions to the Intel Linux graphics driver. The memory regions support is preparing for device local memory with future Intel graphics products.

The concept of memory regions is being added to the Intel "i915" Linux kernel DRM driver for "preparation for upcoming devices with device local memory." The concept is about having different "regions" of memory for system memory as for any device local memory (LMEM). Today's published code also introduces a simple allocator and allowing the existing GEM memory management code to be able to allocate memory to these different memory regions. Up to now with Intel integrated graphics, they haven't had to worry about this functionality not even with their eDRAM/L4 cache of select graphics processors.

This device-local memory for future Intel GPUs is almost surely for Intel's discrete graphics cards with dedicated vRAM expected to debut in 2020. For the past several generations of Iris Pro with eDRAM, the Intel Linux driver has already supported that functionality. The patch message itself makes it clear that this is for "upcoming devices" but without enabling any hardware support at this time. This memory region code doesn't touch any of the existing hardware support such as the already mainlined Icelake "Gen 11" graphics code.

Previously: Intel Planning a Return to the Discrete GPU Market, Nvidia CEO Responds
Intel Discrete GPU Planned to be Released in 2020
Intel Announces "Sunny Cove", Gen11 Graphics, Discrete Graphics Brand Name, 3D Packaging, and More


Original Submission

Leaked Intel Discrete Graphics Roadmap Reveals Plans for "Seamless" Dual, Quad, and Octa-GPUs 14 comments

Intel has teased* plans to return to the discrete graphics market in 2020. Now, some of those plans have leaked. Intel's Xe branded GPUs will apparently use an architecture capable of scaling to "any number" of GPUs that are connected by a multi-chip module (MCM). The "e" in Xe is meant to represent the number of GPU dies, with one of the first products being called X2/X2:

Developers won't need to worry about optimizing their code for multi-GPU, the OneAPI will take care of all that. This will also allow the company to beat the foundry's usual lithographic limit of dies that is currently in the range of ~800mm2. Why have one 800mm2 die when you can have two 600mm2 dies (the lower the size of the die, the higher the yield) or four 400mm2 ones? Armed with One API and the Xe macroarchitecture Intel plans to ramp all the way up to Octa GPUs by 2024. From this roadmap, it seems like the first Xe class of GPUs will be X2.

The tentative timeline for the first X2 class of GPUs was also revealed: June 31st, 2020. This will be followed by the X4 class sometime in 2021. It looks like Intel plans to add two more cores [dies] every year so we should have the X8 class by 2024. Assuming Intel has the scaling solution down pat, it should actually be very easy to scale these up. The only concern here would be the packaging yield – which Intel should be more than capable of handling and binning should take care of any wastage issues quite easily. Neither NVIDIA nor AMD have yet gone down the MCM path and if Intel can truly deliver on this design then the sky's the limit.

AMD has made extensive use of MCMs in its Zen CPUs, but will reportedly not use an MCM-based design for its upcoming Navi GPUs. Nvidia has published research into MCM GPUs but has yet to introduce products using such a design.

Intel will use an MCM for its upcoming 48-core "Cascade Lake" Xeon CPUs. They are also planning on using "chiplets" in other CPUs and mixing big and small CPU cores and/or cores made on different process nodes.

*Previously: Intel Planning a Return to the Discrete GPU Market, Nvidia CEO Responds
Intel Discrete GPU Planned to be Released in 2020
Intel Announces "Sunny Cove", Gen11 Graphics, Discrete Graphics Brand Name, 3D Packaging, and More

Related: Intel Integrates LTE Modem Into Custom Multi-Chip Module for New HP Laptop
Intel Promises "10nm" Chips by the End of 2019, and More


Original Submission

Intel to Stop Selling Xeon Phi Processors This Year 7 comments

The Larrabee Chapter Closes: Intel's Final Xeon Phi Processors Now in EOL

Intel this week initiated its product discontinuance plan for its remaining Xeon Phi 7200-series processors codenamed Knights Mill (KML), bringing an end to the family of processors that have now been superceded by the likes of Intel's 56-core Xeon Platinum 9200 family. Xeon Phi parts have been used primarily by supercomputers during its lifetime.

Customers interested in final Intel Xeon Phi 7295, 7285 and 7235 processors will have to place their final orders on these devices by August 9, 2019. Intel will ship the final Xeon Phi CPUs by July 31, 2020. Intel's Knights Mill processors feature 64, 68, or 72 upgraded Silvermont x86 cores paired with AVX-512 units and MCDRAM. The parts were essentially Knights Landing parts optimized for Deep Learning applications.

Also to be superceded by Intel Xe GPUs.

Related: Intel Discrete GPU Planned to be Released in 2020
Leaked Intel Discrete Graphics Roadmap Reveals Plans for "Seamless" Dual, Quad, and Octa-GPUs


Original Submission

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  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday June 14 2018, @03:54AM (5 children)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday June 14 2018, @03:54AM (#692686)

    The problem with nvidia is they hobble the features of their gpus to try to upsell you, and make you install telemetry to use their drivers, and you have to install (including giving them an email address and filling out a survey) their proprietary cuda platform and cudnn libraries to use it.

    Something tells me intel will choose the same route, but if they instead strategically partner with amd to get open versions of all that it would be great.

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday June 14 2018, @04:12AM (2 children)

      by Anonymous Coward on Thursday June 14 2018, @04:12AM (#692693)
      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday June 14 2018, @04:29AM (1 child)

        by Anonymous Coward on Thursday June 14 2018, @04:29AM (#692699)

        Thanks, what about the other aspects?

        • (Score: 2) by takyon on Thursday June 14 2018, @04:50AM

          by takyon (881) <reversethis-{gro ... s} {ta} {noykat}> on Thursday June 14 2018, @04:50AM (#692702) Journal

          Who knows? We can't put it past Intel to include telemetry. It seems to be targeted for businesses/universities and machine learning first rather than gaming. Maybe they will use it as the successor to the cancelled Xeon Phi "Knights Hill" chip [wikipedia.org].

          I think we can be cautiously optimistic about Intel's discrete GPU. Nvidia just abuses their #1 position, and Intel can't do that starting at #3 (...in discrete GPUs. Intel leads in integrated GPUs, but not if you include ARM smartphone SoCs with Adreno/PowerVR/Mali/etc. graphics).

          One test: Will they support G-Sync [wikipedia.org] or FreeSync [wikipedia.org]? Hopefully, details like that will start to get leaked/released in 2019.

          --
          [SIG] 10/28/2017: Soylent Upgrade v14 [soylentnews.org]
    • (Score: 2) by Taibhsear on Thursday June 14 2018, @03:32PM (1 child)

      by Taibhsear (1464) on Thursday June 14 2018, @03:32PM (#692961)

      In windows, just uncheck the Geforce Experience software when you install the driver package. No login bs required, still get all the drivers. (Not going to lie, I still yelled at the screen a lot when they first implemented that login bullshit though.) In linux they haven't required logins for anything yet that I've encountered.

      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday June 14 2018, @03:51PM

        by Anonymous Coward on Thursday June 14 2018, @03:51PM (#692970)

        For the log-in I was referring to: https://developer.nvidia.com/cudnn [nvidia.com]

  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday June 14 2018, @06:59AM (1 child)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday June 14 2018, @06:59AM (#692740)

    so it's december 2020? for christmas?

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