Intel’s E-Cores Amplify Power Consumption in Select Games, Failing to Enhance Performance


November 17, 2023 by our News Team

Intel's 12th, 13th, and 14th Generation Core processors have been found to increase power consumption in select games, failing to enhance performance as intended.

  • Intel has introduced a new feature called APO to address this behavior in their latest desktop CPUs.
  • The introduction of APO provides a workaround for some users.
  • It appears that the "E" cores on the 12th, 13th, and 14th Generation Core processors, which are designed to improve power efficiency, are not delivering the expected results.


Intel’s E-Cores Amplify Power Consumption in Select Games, Failing to Enhance Performance

An interesting discovery has been made regarding Intel CPUs, thanks to the diligent investigation by GamersNexus. It appears that the “E” cores on the 12th, 13th, and 14th Generation Core processors, which are designed to improve power efficiency, are not delivering the expected results. Instead of enhancing performance, these cores seem to be increasing power consumption without providing any significant benefits.

The purpose of the E cores is to handle less sensitive threads, while the primary threads are prioritized for the P cores. However, in most games, it seems that the P cores are doing most of the heavy lifting while the E cores remain idle. This discrepancy was first noticed in Metro Exodus when running the game at the “Low” graphics preset.

Interestingly, enabling the Application Optimizer (APO) in Metro Exodus resulted in a reduction in power consumption and an improvement in performance. While this might sound like a positive outcome, it is not beneficial for the majority of gamers using Intel’s hybrid-core CPUs.

Upon closer examination, it was discovered that the E cores were being assigned threads that were better suited for the performance cores. This mismatch led to a decrease in performance and an increase in power draw. However, with APO enabled, this anomaly is corrected by the Windows scheduler, resulting in a significant reduction in power consumption of up to 230W. This is quite surprising considering that the E cores were initially intended to reduce power draw, not amplify it.

Fortunately, this issue seems to be limited to specific scenarios, such as running Metro Exodus at the “Low” graphics setting. Intel has introduced a new feature called APO to address this behavior in their latest desktop CPUs. However, it is important to note that APO is only supported on two of the fastest 14th Generation chips. This limitation poses a challenge for gamers using the 13th Generation counterparts, as they do not have access to this solution.

In conclusion, the discovery of the power consumption irregularity in Intel’s E cores is a significant finding. While these cores were designed to enhance power efficiency, they seem to be doing the opposite in certain gaming scenarios. The introduction of APO provides a workaround for some users, but its limited compatibility raises concerns for those using older generation CPUs. It remains to be seen how Intel will address this issue and whether future iterations of their processors will deliver the promised power efficiency improvements.

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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


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.





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