During the “The Full Nerd” podcast, Tom Petersen from Intel Arc discussed the recent advancements made by the company’s development team regarding drivers.
According to Petersen, the team has made remarkable progress in addressing significant API performance issues in DX9 and has also delivered a broad range of the release of drivers for the latest high-budget video games. on both day-0 and day-1. It has resulted in more driver releases than those offered by AMD.
Intel is now on par with NVIDIA regarding driver support, a significant achievement for the company. This progress demonstrates that Intel is actively working towards improving its software and driver support for its GPUs, which should provide a better overall experience for consumers.
After nearly two years of promoting its Xe Graphics, Intel has finally introduced the Intel Arc Alchemist GPU, which provides much-needed performance and competition in the dedicated GPU market. It marks Intel’s first proper discrete GPU since the i740 in 1998 or, more specifically, since the Intel Xe DG1 paved the way.
The market for high-end graphics cards is fiercely competitive, and Intel’s current integrated graphics solutions cannot compete, as they do not even register in our GPU benchmarks hierarchy. For instance, the UHD Graphics 630 ranks at only 1.8% of the RTX 3090 based on 1080p medium performance, highlighting the limitations of Intel’s previous graphics offerings.
In a recent announcement, Intel stated that their upcoming Arc A770 GPU would be released on October 12th with a starting price of $329, which is lower than the previously rumored price. The delay in release, however, may impact its success.
Nevertheless, Intel aims to exceed the performance of the RTX 3060 while providing more VRAM, which is a significant challenge for a company predominantly recognized for producing low-performance integrated GPUs.
Despite this, Intel has already launched its Alchemist laptops and desktop A380 and has released additional details about the Alchemist GPU architecture, providing a better understanding of what to expect. Intel has also been improving compatibility and performance issues on its existing graphics solutions, indicating they are preparing for a global launch. Overall, Intel’s entry into the GPU market is a promising prospect.
Intel has highlighted several enhancements in their latest GPU, including better DX12 scaling, improved ray tracing capabilities, and the possibility of incorporating AI. However, Intel has expressed reluctance in utilizing NVIDIA’s AI-based Frame Generation technology, citing concerns that such tasks should not be handled by AI. But this does not necessarily mean that Frame Generation is inferior; Intel may have reservations about NVIDIA’s approach.
David Wang, the leader of AMD’s Radeon Technologies Group (RTG), expressed a comparable perspective to Intel regarding NVIDIA’s use of AI for frame generation. In a recent interview, Wang acknowledged the advantages of NVIDIA’s approach, but he also suggested that AI could be utilized in other areas.
Intel has announced plans to release two SKUs, SKU3 (D23-P5) and SKU5 (D23-M3), towards the end of the first quarter. These SKUs, targeted at the upper mainstream market, will have a power consumption of 150W and 6GB 16 Gbps memory.
In addition, Intel intends to launch further Arc Alchemist GPUs in the third and fourth quarters under the name Alchemist+ (ACM+). These GPUs will comprise a 175-225W TDP model and a new SKU with a power consumption of 75-100W.
Intel and NVIDIA are currently using AI hardware for upscaling techniques in their GPUs, such as XeSS and DLSS. While AMD plans to release FSR 3 later this year, there is limited information beyond their claim that it will offer twice the performance of FSR 2. While FG (Frame Generation) via AI is a separate area, it’s interesting to ponder how Intel and AMD might adopt it in their GPUs.
Leaked information has revealed that Intel plans to introduce a soft refresh of the Arc Alchemist lineup, known as Alchemist+, later this year.
The company is also developing Battlemage, which will launch in 2024. Details about Battlemage are scarce, though additional details about Battlemage are anticipated to become accessible later this year.
Two Battlemage GPU variants are currently in development: Xe2-HPG for discrete and Xe2-LPG for integrated graphics. Raja Koduri is dedicated to the Arc GPU roadmap.
Intel has assured the gaming community that it will continue to offer the same performance-per-dollar ratio as the first generation of Arc. The company is determined not to disappoint gamers in the future.