It's the cooling: Intel Tiger Lake laptops up to 50% slower than reference design

Posted on Thursday, Nov 19 2020 @ 14:30 CET by Thomas De Maesschalck
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NotebookCheck compared a bunch of laptops with the Intel Core i7-1165G7 "Tiger Lake" processor and concludes that (as is typical) exactly the same laptop processor performs very differently in different laptops.

The site notes all Tiger Lake-based laptops they've tested so far are significantly slower than the Core i7-1165G7 developer unit from Intel. The Acer SF514-55T is the fastest consumer model available right now, yet it's almost 20 percent slower than the reference design from Intel. With laptops like the Asus ZenBook Flip S UX371, performance can be 20 to 50 percent slower than the development kit.

So what's causing this? It's the cooling design:
So, why the wide performance deltas? It all has to do with Turbo Boost sustainability as some laptops are better equipped than others at running higher clock rates for longer due to higher temperature ceilings or better cooling solutions. Our CineBench R15 xT loop graph above shows that even the Acer SF514-55T can start out flying through the gate before performance eventually drops by over 30 percent as clock rates steadily decline over time.
The same is seen with integrated graphics performance. The average Tiger Lake-based laptop's Xe GPU is at least 20 percent slower than the reference design from Intel.


About the Author

Thomas De Maesschalck

Thomas has been messing with computer since early childhood and firmly believes the Internet is the best thing since sliced bread. Enjoys playing with new tech, is fascinated by science, and passionate about financial markets. When not behind a computer, he can be found with running shoes on or lifting heavy weights in the weight room.



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