Intel 12th-gen Alder Lake P & U-series vs AMD Ryzen 6000 U-series mobile CPUs

Intel 12th-gen Alder Lake P & U-series vs AMD Ryzen 6000 U-series mobile CPUs

AMD didn’t waste any time announcing its new Ryzen 6000 mobile CPUs for laptops. The new ‘Rembrandt’ APUs feature AMD’s latest RDNA2 graphics, Zen3+ performance cores with enhanced power management features, and more. The Ryzen 6000 series has as many as 10 mobile CPUs that’ll go head-to-head with Intel’s Alder Lake mobile parts which include Alder H-series, P-series, and the low-powered U-series. While the high-performance H-series chips from both manufacturers are bound to get a lot of attention from power users, we’re here to check out the Intel Alder Lake P and U-series vs Ryzen 6000 U-series comparison to find out the key differences between the low-powered parts.

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As a part of its Rembrandt APU lineup, AMD only has two low-powered processors in its U-series — the Ryzen 7 6800U and the Ryzen 5 6600U. These are the only two mobile CPUs that’ll be offered for traditional portable 15 W and 28 W hardware from AMD. The company did update three of its older 5000 series chips as a part of its “Barcelo” refresh in early 2022, but they’re not based on the new Zen 3+ architecture and are essentially just slightly higher clocked versions. While we’re not considered them for this comparison, we’re still adding them to our specifications table to give you an idea of what to expect. You will probably see a lot of new laptops powered by these updated Ryzen 5000 series chips but keep in mind that they’re not based on the new Zen 3+ architecture.

Rembrandt vs Alder Lake: Core configurations

AMD’s Ryzen 6000 U-series includes two processors — the Ryzen 7 6800U and the Ryzen 5 6600U. Both CPUs are rated for 15-28W TDP, which means it’s got the scalable performance to go head-to-head with Intel’s both P as well as the U-series chips. The Ryzen 7 6800U is an octa-core CPU with 16 threads while the Ryzen 5 6600U is a Hexa-cores chip with 12 threads. These Rembrandt chips don’t have a hybrid architecture as seen in the Alder Lake series. That being said, AMD is promising improved power efficiency thanks to the new Zen 3+ architecture and some other power management features.

The Ryzen 7 6800U, when pitted against the Core i7-1280P, we’re looking at a peak frequency of 4.7GHz for the Ryzen chip against the 4.8GHz peak on the P-cores for the Alder Lake. There’s no apples-to-apples comparison when comparing Alder Lake’s hybrid architecture with the regular cores on the Ryzen 6000U series, but AMD seems to have done a lot to improve the performance. We’ll have more to talk about the direct AMD vs Intel comparison when we get our hands on respective laptops powered by these new chips, but it’s safe to say that both Intel and AMD are claiming big numbers when it comes to the overall performance.

In gaming, for instance, AMD is claiming a 20-percent performance improvement with the Ryzen 7 6800U over the previous chip at 28W. We’re also expecting the Ryzen chips to perform better overall when it comes to power efficiency. AMD has mainly focused on improving the idle power consumption and power when using accelerators. It is, however, worth pointing out that AMD doesn’t have any chip lower than the 15W TDP threshold. So Intel’s 9W U-series chips with the BGA Type4 or UP4 design are going to be seen in more compact devices across the category. Here’s a quick look at the specifications of the table highlighting each series to give you an idea of what to expect:

Specification AMD Ryzen 7 6800U AMD Ryzen 5 6600U AMD Ryzen 7 5825U AMD Ryzen 5 5625U AMD Ryzen 3 5425U
Cores 8 6 8 6 4
Threads 16 12 16 12 8
Base Frequency 2.7GHz 2.9GHz 2GHz 2.3GHz 2.7GHz
Max Boost Frequency 4.7GHz 4.5GHz 4.5GHz 4.3GHz 4.1GHz
L2+L3 Cache 20MB 19MB 16MB 16MB 8MB
Default TDP 15W – 28W 15W-28 15W 15W 15W
GPU Compute Units 12 6 8 7 6
GPU Core Max Boost 2.2GHz 1.9GHz 2GHz 1.8GHz 1.6GHz
Node 6nm 6nm 7nm 7nm 7nm

As we mentioned earlier, we’ve also added the three new refresh Ryzen 5000 APUs to the table to give you an idea of the kind of performance you can expect from them. You may end up seeing them in a lot of new laptops this year too. These new chips, as you can see, are built on the 7nm process and are based on the Zen 3 core architecture. All of them are rated for 15W TDP which means they’re more likely to be in line with some of the Alder Lake U-series chips in terms of power efficiency. Interestingly, even the Ryzen 3 5425U is rated for 15W TDP.

28W Intel Alder Lake P-series mobile chips:

Specification Intel Core i7-1280P Intel Core i7-1270P Intel Core i7-1260P Intel Core i5-1250P Intel Core i5-1240P Intel Core i3-1220P
Cores 14 (6P + 8E) 12 (4P + 8E) 12 (4P + 8E) 12 (4P + 8E) 12 (4P + 8E) 10 (2P + 8E)
Threads 20 16 16 16 16 12
Base Frequency 1.8GHz (P-core) | 1.3GHz (E-core) 2.2GHz (P-core) | 1.6GHz (E-core) 2.1GHz (P-core) | 1.5GHz (E-core) 1.7GHz (P-core) | 1.2GHz (E-core) 1.7GHz (P-core) | 1.2GHz (E-core) 1.5GHz (P-core) | 1.1GHz (E-core)
Max Turbo Frequency 4.8GHz (P-core) | 3.6GHz (E-core) 4.8GHz (P-core) | 3.5GHz (E-core) 4.7GHz (P-core) | 3.4GHz (E-core) 4.4GHz (P-core) | 3.3GHz (E-core) 4.4GHz (P-core) | 3.3GHz (E-core) 4.4GHz (P-core) | 3.3GHz (E-core)
L3 Cache 24MB 18MB 18MB 12MB 12MB 12MB
Default TDP 28W 28W 28W 28W 28W 28W
Max Turbo Power 64W 64W 64W 64W 64W 64W
Processor Graphics 96EU 96EU 96EU 80EU 80EU 64EU

Moving on to the Alder Lake space, there are plenty of processors to go through. We have our vision set on the 28W P-series because these are the ones that will lock horns with the new 6000U series chips in the Ultrabook space. While the 15W Alder Lake processors also have competing mobile chips from AMD, it is the 9W Alder Lake processors that remain uncontested. AMD is likely to make some progress in the ultra low-powered processors space with its next-gen Ryzen 7000 series processors, but it seems like Intel has got that covered for now. This means we’re more likely to see Intel processors in newer and more innovative form-factor, at least initially.

15W Intel Alder Lake U-series mobile chips:

Specification Intel Core i7-1265U Intel Core i7-1255U Intel Core i5-1245U Intel Core i5-1235U Intel Core i3-1215U Intel Pentium 8505 Intel Celeron 7305
Cores 10 (2P + 8E) 10 (2P + 8E) 10 (2P + 8E) 10 (2P + 8E) 6 (2P + 4E) 5 (1P + 4E) 5 (1P + 4E)
Threads 12 12 12 12 8 6 6
Base Frequency 1.8GHz (P-core) | 1.3GHz (E-core) 1.7GHz (P-core) | 1.2GHz (E-core) 1.6GHz (P-core) | 1.2GHz (E-core) 1.3GHz (P-core) | 0.90GHz (E-core) 1.2GHz (P-core) | 0.90GHz (E-core) 1.2GHz (P-core) | 0.90GHz (E-core) 1.1GHz (P-core) | 0.90GHz (E-core)
Max Turbo Frequency 4.8GHz (P-core) | 3.6GHz (E-core) 4.7GHz (P-core) | 3.5GHz (E-core) 4.4GHz (P-core) | 3.3GHz (E-core) 4.4GHz (P-core) | 3.3GHz (E-core) 4.4GHz (P-core) | 3.3GHz (E-core) 4.4GHz (P-core) | 3.3GHz (E-core) N/A
L3 Cache 12MB 12MB 12MB 12MB 10MB 8MB 8MB
Default TDP 15W 15W 15W 15W 15W 15W 15W
Max Turbo Power 55W 55W 55W 55W 55W 55W 55W
Processor Graphics 96EU 96EU 80EU 80EU 64EU 48EU 48EU

9W Intel Alder Lake U-series mobile chips:

Specification Intel Core i7-1260U Intel Core i7-1250U Intel Core i5-1240U Intel Core i5-1230U Intel Core i3-1210U Intel Pentium 8500 Intel Celeron 7300
Cores 10 (2P + 8E) 10 (2P + 8E) 10 (2P + 8E) 10 (2P + 8E) 6 (2P + 4E) 5 (1P + 4E) 5 (1P + 4E)
Threads 12 12 12 12 8 6 6
Base Frequency 1.1GHz (P-core) | 0.8GHz (E-core) 1.1GHz (P-core) | 0.8GHz (E-core) 1.1GHz (P-core) | 0.8GHz (E-core) 1GHz (P-core) | 0.7GHz (E-core) 1GHz (P-core) | 0.7GHz (E-core) 1GHz (P-core) | 0.7GHz (E-core) 1GHz (P-core) | 0.7GHz (E-core)
Max Turbo Frequency 4.7GHz (P-core) | 3.5GHz (E-core) 4.7GHz (P-core) | 3.5GHz (E-core) 4.4GHz (P-core) | 3.3GHz (E-core) 4.4GHz (P-core) | 3.3GHz (E-core) 4.4GHz (P-core) | 3.3GHz (E-core) 4.4GHz (P-core) | 3.3GHz (E-core) N/A
L3 Cache 12MB 12MB 12MB 12MB 10MB 8MB 8MB
Default TDP 9W 9W 9W 9W 9W 9W 9W
Max Turbo Power 29W  29W  29W  29W  29W  29W  29W
Processor Graphics 96EU 96EU 80EU 80EU 64EU 48EU 48EU

Intel 12th-gen vs AMD Ryzen 6000: Memory configurations & Other key differences

When it comes to the memory configuration, the new Rembrandt mobile chips have updated memory controllers with support up to DDR5-5200 and LPDDR5-6400. This is a noteworthy upgrade that stands out from the rest. This is also particularly interesting because the new chips don’t support DDR4 memory modules, thereby making a clean cut to the DDR5 standard. In comparison, the 12th-gen Intel P-series and U-series chips have support for LPDDR4-4267 and LPDDR5-5200 as well as DDR4-3200 and DDR5-4800. While the 9W Alder Lake U-series chips lack DDR support, they still have LPDDR4-4267 and LPDDR5-5200 covered.

AMD is also stepping up from PCIe 3.0 to PCIe 4.0, supporting 8x for a discrete GPU and 12x lanes split between NVMe, SATA, and chipset. The new Ryzen 6000 series also has support for USB4 with which the OEMs can follow Thunderbolt 3 specifications. Below is a quick look at some of the key differences between Alder Lake P and U-series, and Ryzen 6000U series processors:

28W P-series & 15W U-series AMD Ryzen 6000 U-series
LP4x, LP5, DDR4, DDR5 LP5, DDR5
4x Thunderbolt 4 USB4 for Thunderbolt 3 specifications
WiFi 6E (Gig+) WiFi 6E (Gig+)
2×4 PCIe Gen 4
X12 PCIe Gen 3
PCIe Gen 4:
8x GPU, 4x NVMe
4x GPP, 4x NVMe/SATA
HDMI 2.0, DP 1.4 HDMI 2.0, DP 2.1 with AV1 Decode Accelerator

Final Thoughts

AMD Ryzen 6000 series mobile CPUs seem like they have a lot of potential but it remains to be exactly how powerful they are when it comes to real-world performance, especially the low-powered U-series parts. We’re only looking at two Ryzen 6000 U-series chips going against an entire unit of Alder Lake P and U-series for this Intel 12th-gen vs AMD Ryzen 6000 comparison. Besides the obvious differences in core configuration, we’ve also highlighted other differences in memory configurations and other features including how each CPU splits the PCIe lanes and more. The new laptops powered by both of these low-powered Intel and AMD processors will soon be available, and we’ll have more to talk about the overall performance once we test them. We’ll also update this article with some performance analysis and insights from our in-house testing. We’ll find out which one of these chips is worthy of the best CPUs tag, especially in the modern thin and light notebook space, so be sure to stay tuned.

About author

Karthik Iyer
Karthik Iyer

Karthik covers PC hardware for XDA Computing. When not at work, you will find him yelling at his monitors while playing video games.

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