In brief: Intel is expected to reveal the non-K versions of Alder Lake (12th-gen Core) at CES on Tuesday, but Asus and Colorful have confirmed some of their specifications in advance. Some models are a bit disappointing, while others are compelling options for the non-overclockers out there.

It’s not uncommon for motherboard vendors to include unreleased processors in their lists of supported hardware, which is what’s happened here.

In the tables below, we have core counts, base clocks, and TDPs from Asus and Colorful, and the boost clocks from leaked marketing materials and prematurely published product pages. Not included in the tables are the leaked prices from Best Buy, but you can look at those here.

  i9-12900/F* i9-12900T i7-12700/F i7-12700T
P-Cores 8/16 8/16
E-Cores 8/8 4/4
Boost Clock 5.1 GHz ? 4.9 GHz ?
Base Clock 2.4 GHz 1.4 GHz 2.1 GHz 1.4 GHz
TDP 65 W 35 W 65 W 35 W

According to Asus, Alder Lake uses two steppings: C-0 and H-0. Both the i9 and i7 families use the C-0 stepping, which has eight performance and eight efficiency cores. The H-0 stepping has six performance cores and no efficiency cores.

  i5-12600 i5-12600T i5-12500 i5-12500T i5-12400/F i5-12400T
P-Cores 6/12 6/12 6/12
Boost Clock 4.8 GHz ? 4.6 GHz ? 4.4 GHz ?
Base Clock 3.3 GHz 2.1 GHz 3.0 GHz 2.0 GHz 2.5 GHz 1.8 GHz
TDP 65 W 35 W 65 W 35 W 65 W 35 W

Intel separates the two steppings at the junction between the 12600K, which uses the C-0 stepping, and the 12600 (non-K), which uses the H-0 stepping. Because of this, the 12600K has four efficiency cores that the non-K doesn’t have.

All of the non-K i5 and i3 processors use the H-0 stepping.

  i3-12300 i3-12300T i3-12100/F i3-12100T
P-Cores 4/8 4/8
Boost Clock ? ? 4.3 GHz ?
Base Clock 3.5GHz 2.3 GHz 3.3 GHz 2.2 GHz
TDP 60 W 35 W 60/58* W 35 W

It might’ve made sense for entry-level parts to use efficiency cores. But, because the H-0 stepping has none, they’re stuck with hungry performance cores.

Intel will announce these processors in a few days, and we’ll be benchmarking them and drawing conclusions soon. But in the present, they seem like a worthy addition to the Alder Lake generation, which is all that we can ask for.

Image credit: Niclas Illg