It’s been awhile since Intel has been teasing their first, newly robust line up of discrete graphics cards. Since Raja Koduri from AMD joined up to Intel in 2018, Intel has been teasing a lot. I say a lot as in they’ve put out small things like a discrete Xe GPU, that performed as much as a GT 1030. Intel’s new CPUs had their Xe based iGPUs inside to prove that, yeah, Intel wasn’t playing around.
Right now, they’re taking the next step by fully rebranding their Xe GPU brand to Arc. Calling their first architecture release, Alchemist. A teaser video came out, showing games running on PC at the highest settings. From Days Gone, Chivalry, Mount & Blade: Bannerlands, Forza Horizon 4, and so on. All running at 60FPS or more.
New Look, New Shine
The former DG2, now named Alchemist, will have mesh shading, variable rate shading, AI based video acceleration, super sampling, and dedicated ray-tracing. They are going all-in to compete against both AMD and Nvidia head on.
The first line-up will be showcased at CES 2022, before they are released for consumers. As of now, they are at pre-production silicon stage. Official specs haven’t been revealed yet, but a lot of rumors suggest that their flagship product will have 512 execution units, 16GB of GDDR6 memory at 256-bit bus width, and running at very low TDP.
Intel To The Rescue?
2021 has been a difficult year to purchase GPUs. You could say the market is at the same stage it was in 2018 when the mining craze hit, and prices were ridiculously high. Right now, the mining craze, scalping, and GPU manufacturing problems are big factors as to why the prices are unbearable. Intel, if they produce these on mass scale, could do a lot changing those factors. Making GPUs more affordable.
Nvidia and AMD manufactures their GPU silicons from Taiwan. Meanwhile, Intel has set up factories in other countries, but mostly the US.