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Intel 12th Gen Alder Lake mobile chips debut at CES 2022 — Can they stack up to AMD and Apple's best?

Intel 12th Gen Alder Lake H-Series mobile chip
(Image credit: Intel)

Intel may not have a physical presence at CES 2022, but it isn't sitting things out with today's remote presentation highlighting a number of new additions to the company's 12th Gen Alder Lake lineup along with advancements to the Intel Evo platform.

The headliner is the flagship Core i9-12900HK chip, which Intel claims is "the fastest mobile processor ever" and we'll certainly be thrilled to put that claim to the test as soon as we get our hands on a laptop powered by this new super chip.

Intel 12th Gen H-Series

Intel's had a rough couple of years in the mobile processor realm with the rise of AMD followed by the emergence of Apple's M1 chips. Its 12th Gen chips are a chance for it to regain some of the ground that it lost with the same new design architecture that we saw in the desktop Alder Lake chips last fall balancing between 14 cores (6 performance and 8 efficiency).

Leading the charge are the 45W H-Series chips. Intel claims these Alder Lake chips are up to 40% faster than their 11th Gen counterparts and thanks to the new hybrid architecture should offer improved battery life as well. However, power is the real selling point for H-Series. Intel reports that the Core-i9-12900HK is 28% faster than the Core i9-11980HK when it comes to gaming and content creators will see even larger gains with up to 43% higher performance for 3D rendering. 

Systems powered by the 12th Gen H-Series will start shipping in February, follow our CES 2022 coverage for details on some of the H-Series laptops arriving next month.

Intel Evo Project Athena 3rd Edition Specification Target Highlights infographic

(Image credit: Intel)

Intel 12th Gen U- and P-Series

Coming later in 2022 are the new 12th Gen U- and P-series mobile processors, which similarly offer 14 cores and 20 threads, but tipped towards efficiency over power. 

The brand new P-series looks to bridge the gap between the H- and U-series processors, operating at a base 28W it will be found in thin-and-light laptops that still need to deliver high-end performance.

By comparison, the 12th Gen U-series will run at a base 9 to 15W, making it the perfect choice for the ultra-thin-and-light market. 

Intel stated that the U- and P-series processors will be available in the first quarter of 2022 in both Windows and Chrome OS systems.

Sean Riley has been covering tech professionally for over a decade now. Most of that time was as a freelancer covering varied topics including phones, wearables, tablets, smart home devices, laptops, AR, VR, mobile payments, fintech, and more.  Sean is the resident mobile expert at Laptop Mag, specializing in phones and wearables, you'll find plenty of news, reviews, how-to, and opinion pieces on these subjects from him here. But Laptop Mag has also proven a perfect fit for that broad range of interests with reviews and news on the latest laptops, VR games, and computer accessories along with coverage on everything from NFTs to cybersecurity and more.