Intel Meteor Lake CPUs might boast support for ray tracing

Changes to the Intel Graphics Compiler (IGC) indicate that 14th Gen Core processors may be the first chips from team blue to be capable of ray tracing

A 3D render of an Intel CPU, against a blue-teal background that looks like a circut board

Intel Meteor Lake CPUs will be the first chips from team blue to ditch the LGA 1700 socket, following the current 12th Gen and upcoming 13th Gen Core processors. However, in addition to marking the debut of a different amount of motherboard pins, it appears that the company may be planning to support ray tracing on the iGPUs of its 14th Gen components.

Indications of ray tracing features on Intel Meteor Lake CPUs were discovered by Coelacanth’s Dream (via Tom’s Hardware), as they were scouring through code patches for the Intel Graphics Compiler (IGC). However, it’ll be some time before we know how well the Xe-HPG architecture can handle the demanding graphics option compared to the best graphics cards.

The addition of ray tracing support strengthens the feature set of Intel Meteor Lake CPUs and the case for them being the best gaming CPU when they finally arrive, but team blue is largely playing catch up here. Current generation AMD Ryzen 6000 processors and the custom APU inside the Steam Deck can already handle it, thanks to their RDNA 2 based graphics chips.

AMD Ryzen 7000 CPUs will also support ray tracing, perhaps giving team red a considerable lead over team blue when it comes to ironing out iGPU performance when ray tracing is enabled.