The Core i7-4950HQ Mobile CRB

At a high level, Iris Pro 5200 would seem to solve both problems that plagued Intel graphics in the past: a lack of GPU hardware and a lack of memory bandwidth. As a mostly mobile-focused design, and one whose launch partner isn’t keen on giving out early samples, it seemed almost impossible to evaluate Iris Pro in time for the Haswell launch. That was until a week ago when this showed up:

What may look like a funny mid-tower from a few years ago is actually home to one of Intel’s mobile Customer Reference Boards (CRB). Although the chassis is desktop-sized, everything inside is optimized for mobile. It’s just easier to build things larger, especially when it comes to testing and diagnosing problems.

The silicon on-board is a 47W Core i7-4950HQ, the lowest end launch SKU with Iris Pro 5200 graphics. The chassis is obviously overkill for a 47W part, but the performance we get with this machine should be representative of any i7-4950HQ system with a cooler capable of dissipating 47W.

If you read our Haswell CPU review you’ll know that Intel tried to be stingy with telling us die sizes and transistor counts for the bulk of the Haswell lineup, electing to only give us data on dual-core Haswell GT3 and quad-core Haswell GT2. Knowing that mobile parts ship without integrated heat spreaders, I went to work on pulling off the i7-4950HQ’s heatsink (after I finished testing, just in case).

With the heatsink off and thermal paste wiped off, I used my bargain basement calipers to get a rough idea of die area. This is what I came up with:

Intel Haswell
  CPU Configuration GPU Configuration Die Size Transistor Count
Haswell GT3e (QC) Quad-Core GT3e 264mm2 + 84mm2 ?
Haswell GT2 (QC) Quad-Core GT2 177mm2 1.4B
Haswell ULT GT3 Dual-Core GT3 181mm2 1.3B

The Crystalwell die measures 7mm x 12mm (84mm^2), while the quad-core Haswell + GT3 die is a whopping 264mm^2 (16.2mm x 16.3mm). Working backwards from the official data Intel provided (177mm^2 for quad-core GT2), I came up with an 87mm^2 adder for the extra hardware in Haswell GT3 vs. GT2. Doubling that 87mm^2 we get a rough idea of how big the full 40 EU Haswell GPU might be: 174mm^2. If my math is right, this means that in a quad-core Haswell GT3 die, around 65% of the die area is GPU. This is contrary to the ~33% in a quad-core Haswell GT2. I suspect a dual-core + GT3 design is at least half GPU.

Crystalwell: Addressing the Memory Bandwidth Problem The Comparison Points
POST A COMMENT

177 Comments

View All Comments

  • beginner99 - Saturday, June 01, 2013 - link

    Impressive...if you ignore the pricing. Reply
  • tipoo - Sunday, June 02, 2013 - link

    ? Reply
  • velatra - Saturday, June 01, 2013 - link

    On page 4 of the article there 's a word "presantive" which should probably be "representative." Reply
  • jabber - Saturday, June 01, 2013 - link

    May I ask why The Sims is never featured in your reviews on such GPU setups?

    Why? Well in my line of business, fixing and servicing lots of laptops with the integrated chips the one game group that crops up over and over again is The Sims!

    Never had a laptop in from the real world that had any of the games you benchmarked here. But lots of them get The Sims played on them.
    Reply
  • JDG1980 - Saturday, June 01, 2013 - link

    Agreed. The benchmark list is curiously disconnected from what these kind of systems are actually used to do in the real world. Seldom does anyone use a laptop of any kind to play "Triple-A" hardcore games. Usually it's stuff like The Sims and WoW. I think those should be included as benchmarks for integrated graphics, laptop chipsets, and low-end HTPC-focused graphics cards. Reply
  • tipoo - Saturday, June 01, 2013 - link

    Because the Sims is much easier to run than most of these. Just because people tried running it on GMA graphics and wondered why it didn't work doesn't mean it's a demanding workload. Reply
  • jabber - Saturday, June 01, 2013 - link

    Yes but the point is the games tested are pretty much pointless. How many here would bother to play them on such equipped laptops?

    Pretty much none.

    But plenty 'normal' folks who would buy such equipment will play plenty of lesser games. In my job looking after 'normal' folks thats quite important when parents ask me about buying a laptop for their kid that wants to play a few games on it.

    The world and sites such as Anandtech shouldnt just revolve around the whims of 'gamer dudes' especially as it appears the IT world is generally moving away from gamers.

    It's a general computing world in future, rather than a enthusiast computing world like it was 10 years ago. I think some folks need to re-align their expectations going forward.
    Reply
  • tipoo - Sunday, June 02, 2013 - link

    I mean, if it can run something like Infinite or even Crysis 3 fairly well, you can assume it would run the Sims well. Reply
  • Quizzical - Saturday, June 01, 2013 - link

    It would help immensely if you would say what you were comparing it to. As you are surely aware, a system that includes an A10-5800K but cripples it by leaving a memory channel vacant and running the other at 1333 MHz won't perform at all similarly to a properly built system with the same A10-5800K with two 4 GB modules of 1866 MHz DDR3 in properly matched channels.

    That should be an easy fix by adding a few sentences to page 5, but without it, the numbers don't mean much, as you're basically considering Intel graphics in isolation without a meaningful AMD comparison.
    Reply
  • Quizzical - Saturday, June 01, 2013 - link

    Ah, it looks like the memory clock speeds have been added. Thanks for that. Reply

Log in

Don't have an account? Sign up now