It feels like just yesterday that Intel’s first foray into the discrete gaming GPU market made its debut, albeit with more of a stumble than a bang. And judging by the results of hardware reviews and benchmarks, it’s clear that the company has a long way to go before it can truly disrupt Nvidia’s stranglehold on the desktop GPU market.
But despite what many thought was a lackluster debut, it seems that the tech giant is sticking with its plans to release new cards based on the Arc architecture. In an interview with PCWorld for their Full Nerd podcast, Intel Arc spokesperson Tom Petersen outlined the progress that has been made since the original cards launched back in 2022 and also talked about the next steps for the brand.
One of the key things that Petersen mentioned was that the company is actually selling more than it expected, and that the recent price drop on the original Arc A-series models had helped with this. He also emphasized that the company’s workstation GPU models have been doing exceptionally well. This is largely due to the fact that they offer a lot of features that other GPUs simply don’t. These include support for AV1 encoding, which is a huge win for those who create video content or run render farms.
Petersen also talked about the upcoming release of the second-gen Arc GPUs, which will be called ’Battlemage’ and that they should launch in 1H 2024. He also confirmed that the original A-series models would continue to be available for a while after that. It’s unclear how much longer they will remain in stock, though, given that the current generation has been a bit of a failure.
The main issue with the A-series has been performance, and a look at benchmarks and reviews by hardware publications like Tom’s Hardware show that the current model can barely compete with 4-year-old Nvidia cards at best. The only exception is the Arc A380, which was aimed at entry-level systems and is somewhat competitive against Nvidia’s RTX 1650.
The two new models that will be released later on are the A570M and the A530M, both of which are mobile cards. The former is a beefed-up version of the existing A550M with 16 Xe cores and a clock speed of up to 1.3GHz, while the latter is a laptop card that will feature 12 Xe cores and a power usage of up to 95W. Both of these cards will be sold with a first-party cooler setup and a design that is reminiscent of Nvidia’s Founders Edition models. This is likely to help with sales, as the cards will be similar in price to Nvidia’s RTX 3060 and RTX 3070.