Intel’s upcoming iGPU might destroy both Nvidia and Apple M2

Intel’s upcoming iGPU might destroy both Nvidia and Apple M2

Intel Meteor Lake might not see the light of day on desktops (not anytime soon, at least), but it seems that the mobile chips are going strong.

According to inside sources, laptops equipped with Meteor Lake chips may not even need a discrete graphics card — the integrated GPU is going to be powerful enough to rival Nvidia’s GTX 1650. That’s not all, though. It appears that Intel might even be able to compete against Apple’s M2 chip, but in a different way.

Today’s scoop comes from YouTuber Moore’s Law Is Dead, who cites anonymous industry sources when he claims that the iGPU on Meteor Lake chips is going to be rather impressive indeed. If all of the rumors check out, laptop makers might be able to skip using an iGPU in entry-level gaming laptops.

Funnily enough, the exciting update on Meteor Lake’s iGPU comes not from Intel, but from an internal presentation from AMD. Moore’s Law Is Dead shows a slide from the presentation that talks about the performance of AMD’s own 45-watt Phoenix APU with an RDNA 3 GPU. It also includes a prediction regarding a 45-watt Meteor Lake Chip.

The Meteor Lake chip comes with 128 execution units (EUs), but Wccftech reveals that there will also be a weaker design with 64 EUs. AMD places the 128-EU chip conveniently behind the Ryzen 7000 Phoenix APU, but Moore’s Law Is Dead claims that its performance may actually be better than AMD hopes.

The YouTuber pins the Meteor Lake chip somewhere between the Phoenix 45W and the Strix Point 45W with RDNA3+ graphics. The difference between the two is that the Phoenix APU’s integrated GPU comes with 12 compute units (CUs), whereas the Strix Point features 16 CUs. The former is said to be an equivalent of Nvidia’s 50-watt GTX 1650, while the latter is compared to the RTX 3050 with 35 watts.

So, Intel Meteor Lake might have an iGPU that’s powerful enough to rival the GTX 1650, and its final performance may land somewhere between the GTX 1650 and the RTX 3050. That’s bound to place it among the best CPUs in laptops this year, at least as far as integrated graphics are concerned.

Not using an integrated graphics card while still delivering decent gaming performance could be huge for slim and power-conservative laptops. Moore’s Law is Dead notes that manufacturers could be looking at a large increase in battery life.

If these Intel-based laptops could reach close to the battery life of the M2 MacBook Pro, that would mark a victory all around for Intel Meteor Lake. Nvidia’s GTX 1650-level graphics with a battery life that exceeds 13 to 15 hours? Sounds like a win for entry-level gamers.

Intel’s Meteor Lake chips are said to come out near the end of the year, but seemingly only in laptops. The desktop range is still up in the air — it seems that Intel may launch a Raptor Lake refresh instead of a brand-new generation.