Intel Confirms: 13th Gen or 12th Gen Processors to Lack Support for APO

November 15, 2023

Intel has confirmed that their upcoming 13th Gen and 12th Gen processors will not have support for APO, a technology that could have provided a significant performance boost.

  • Intel's 14th Gen Raptor Lake Refresh processors could see a performance uplift of up to 20% with the help of APO.
  • APO works by enhancing the clocks of the E-cores in gaming workloads.
  • The lack of APO support may be a software-level restriction.

Intel has confirmed that their upcoming 13th Gen and 12th Gen processors will lack support for APO (Application Optimizer), a technology that promises a significant performance boost. This news comes as a disappointment to many, especially considering the potential benefits APO could bring.

Previously, it was reported that Intel’s 14th Gen Raptor Lake Refresh processors could see a performance uplift of up to 20% with the help of APO. However, it has now been revealed that APO will only be supported on the higher-end 14th Gen processors, specifically the Core i7-14700k and the i9-14900k. The 13th Gen CPUs, including the Core i9-13900K and 13900KS, will not have APO support.

APO works by enhancing the clocks of the E-Cores in gaming workloads. However, most games do not utilize these E-cores effectively, and in some cases, their presence can even lead to performance regression. This is not because the E-cores are useless, but rather because the Windows scheduler is not yet fully capable of handling heterogeneous CPUs. Instead of assigning the E-cores to background processes that are not Latency-sensitive, the scheduler often assigns them to primary game threads, resulting in reduced performance.

To confirm whether APO is truly limited to the 14th Gen CPUs, Hardware Unboxed reached out to Intel. The response was clear: APO is indeed exclusive to the 14th Gen processors. Intel’s 12th, 13th, and 14th Gen processors share the same platform and have similar cores and architecture. While Raptor Lake introduced upgrades to the P-Cores by increasing the L2 cache, the Gracemont “E” cores remained unchanged.

Implementing APO requires updating the BIOS firmware and using the APO app. However, if you have a 12th or 13th Gen CPU, the app will not connect. This suggests that the lack of APO support may be a software-level restriction, similar to the initial block on AVX512.

Overall, the absence of APO support in the upcoming 13th Gen and 12th Gen processors is disappointing news for those hoping for a performance boost. While APO has shown promise in enhancing gaming workloads, its limited availability raises questions about Intel’s decision-making and their commitment to providing the best possible experience for users. As we await further developments in Intel’s processor lineup, it remains to be seen how this omission will impact the overall performance and competitiveness of their upcoming CPUs.


Background Information

About Intel: Intel Corporation, a global technology leader, is for its semiconductor innovations that power computing and communication devices worldwide. As a pioneer in microprocessor technology, Intel has left an indelible mark on the evolution of computing with its processors that drive everything from PCs to data centers and beyond. With a history of advancements, Intel's relentless pursuit of innovation continues to shape the digital landscape, offering solutions that empower businesses and individuals to achieve new levels of productivity and connectivity.

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Technology Explained

AVX512: AVX512 is a set of instructions used in modern computer processors to increase the speed and efficiency of certain operations. It stands for Advanced Vector Extensions 512, and it is an extension of the previous AVX instruction set. AVX512 is used in many applications, such as machine learning, artificial intelligence, and data analysis. It is also used in high-performance computing, where it can help speed up complex calculations. By using AVX512, computers can process more data faster and with greater accuracy. This makes it an invaluable tool for businesses and organizations that rely on large amounts of data.

CPU: The Central Processing Unit (CPU) is the brain of a computer, responsible for executing instructions and performing calculations. It is the most important component of a computer system, as it is responsible for controlling all other components. CPUs are used in a wide range of applications, from desktop computers to mobile devices, gaming consoles, and even supercomputers. CPUs are used to process data, execute instructions, and control the flow of information within a computer system. They are also used to control the input and output of data, as well as to store and retrieve data from memory. CPUs are essential for the functioning of any computer system, and their applications in the computer industry are vast.

E-Cores: E-Cores (Efficiency Cores) are a type of technology used in the computer industry to provide a more efficient and reliable way of powering and cooling computer components. They are made up of a combination of copper and aluminum, and are designed to be more efficient than traditional copper cores. E-Cores are used in a variety of applications, such as in CPUs, GPUs, and other computer components. They are also used in servers, laptops, and other electronic devices. The technology is designed to reduce heat and power consumption, while also providing a more reliable and efficient way of powering and cooling computer components.

Latency: Technology latency is the time it takes for a computer system to respond to a request. It is an important factor in the performance of computer systems, as it affects the speed and efficiency of data processing. In the computer industry, latency is a major factor in the performance of computer networks, storage systems, and other computer systems. Low latency is essential for applications that require fast response times, such as online gaming, streaming media, and real-time data processing. High latency can cause delays in data processing, resulting in slow response times and poor performance. To reduce latency, computer systems use various techniques such as caching, load balancing, and parallel processing. By reducing latency, computer systems can provide faster response times and improved performance.

P-Cores: P-Cores (Performance Cores) are a type of processor technology developed by Intel that is designed to improve the performance of computer systems. This technology is based on the concept of multi-core processors, which are processors that contain multiple cores or processing units. P-Cores are designed to increase the speed and efficiency of computer systems by allowing multiple cores to work together in parallel. This technology is used in a variety of applications, including gaming, video editing, and data analysis. P-Cores are also used in servers and other high-performance computing systems. The technology is also used in mobile devices, such as smartphones and tablets, to improve battery life and performance. P-Cores are an important part of the computer industry, as they allow for faster and more efficient computing.

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