What Is AVX-512 and Why Is Intel Killing It Off?
AVX-512 is an advanced vector extension instruction set developed by Intel. It was first introduced with the company’s Skylake-X processor in 2017 and was designed to improve performance for demanding workloads, such as scientific simulations, artificial intelligence, and data analytics.
AVX-512 uses 512-bit vector registers, which are twice the size of the previous AVX instruction set. It also includes a range of new instructions that enable more efficient processing of data-intensive tasks, such as matrix multiplication and cryptography.
Despite these benefits, Intel has recently announced that it is killing off AVX-512 for its upcoming Alder Lake processors. This decision has surprised some in the industry, as AVX-512 was widely expected to feature in future Intel processors.
So what has prompted Intel to make this move? One reason is that AVX-512 is a complex and power-hungry instruction set. It requires a significant amount of power to operate, which can impact the battery life of laptops and other mobile devices.
Furthermore, AVX-512 is not widely used by most applications. While it may provide significant performance gains for specific workloads, many programs do not require the advanced capabilities of AVX-512. This means that the additional hardware required to support the instruction set may be unnecessary for many users.
Another factor is the rise of alternative instruction sets, such as Arm’s Scalable Vector Extension (SVE) and RISC-V’s Vector Extension (RVV). These instruction sets offer similar performance benefits to AVX-512 but are designed to be more power-efficient and more widely supported across different platforms and architectures.