According to a report by ITHome, Intel will be leveraging TSMC’s 6nm fabrication technology to build its new-generation Intel Xe HP gaming graphics cards.
Earlier this week, Intel stated that next-gen enthusiast-class Intel HPG discrete cards will arrive by next year. However, it was difficult to see a viable path forward, considering Intel’s issues with the fabrication processes below 14nm and the delay of their own 7nm fab until next year. It appears that Intel will be breaking with tradition and tapping TSMC to manufacture its graphics cards, easing pressure on its own fabs, and making it possible for Xe HPG parts to actually compete with AMD’s 7nm hardware.
For reference, TSMC’s 6nm process. will be a more refined version of its tried and tested 7nm node. Unlike the latter, it’ll leverage EUV technology and is expected to be 20% denser.
What’s less clear at this point is exactly how powerful Intel’s Xe enthusiast-class lineup will end up being. Problems with power efficiency and unsatisfactory performance levels have dogged Intel Xe parts for years at this point. Intel’s previous attempt at a discrete graphics card, Larrabee, failed spectacularly. Will the TSMC tie-up be enough to help Intel compete with AMD and NVIDIA in the graphics space? Only time will tell.