Watch a prototype Intel Arc Alchemist GPU be unboxed

mongeese

Posts: 611   +122
Staff member
Forward-looking: In the last few days, engineering samples of the Intel Arc Alchemist GPUs have popped up in photos and a video. Sure, they don’t reveal much, but they show that Intel is making steady progress towards their release.

Above is a photo of an Arc GPU given to VideoCardz by an anonymous source. It depicts a combination of design elements from the previous two photographed prototypes: the black shroud seen in May and the black PCB pictured in October.

Four ports can be seen on the left; one HDMI and three DisplayPort. According to a leaked driver update, Arc GPUs will be some of the first to support DisplayPort 2.0.

In the video below, which may be from the same source that provided VideoCardz with the photographs, the GPU is pulled out of a shipping box.

Its small size (for a modern GPU) stands out. It’s dual-slot, and standard height and width, leaving only enough room for two fans. It won’t have impressive cooling, but it won’t need to: with only an 8 + 6 pin PCIe connector, it’s limited to 225W.

Below is a photo of the GPU’s PCB taken from the rear by an anonymous source. It’s likely that the final version will have a backplate, but it’s convenient that this prototype doesn’t because we can take a look at its internals.

As rumored, there are the traces for eight memory modules around the GPU die. If they’re used with 2 GB memory modules, they’ll provide 16 GB of VRAM.

Intel is evidently distributing their prototypes to partners, which suggests that they’re nearing the final phases of development. Some commentators believe that Intel can still squeeze the release into Q1 with a mid-March launch, but it’s equally likely that Intel will need longer to manufacture the cards and finalize the drivers.

In some ways, Intel has caught a lucky break with the chip shortage. If AMD and Nvidia weren’t raking in record profits by re-releasing old architectures at insane prices, then they probably would’ve released a new generation of GPUs by now and left Intel in the dust. As it is, Intel could arrive just in time with an RTX 3070 / Ti competitor that could be in hot demand.

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QuantumPhysics

Posts: 6,308   +7,248
A 3070Ti competitor is great.

It would be nicer to have a 3080/Ti competitor, but I'm sure the market will take what it can get.

The only question: will their driver updates be as aggressive and thorough as NVIDIA's?
 

QuantumPhysics

Posts: 6,308   +7,248
I think it important to note that the entire point of Alchemy was to try and turn otherwise useless devalued metals into Gold.

Will intel strike Gold here?
 

Sausagemeat

Posts: 1,597   +1,422
I play games for about 10 hours a week on average and I currently have a system with an RX480. This is no longer suitable for modern titles at 1080p60. So if Intel can sell a card for $200-$300 that can breathe some life into my existing monitor that would be great. Currently my only choice is an RTX3050 and if it was in stock at £250 I’d begrudgingly buy one. But it isn’t.
 

grumblguts

Posts: 476   +411
Hope its good because after the way AMD and Nvidia have treated everyone with their despicable treatment towards us for a few people they dont deserve our sales, we not valued. I be buying intel when they come out. I just hope they dont do the same.
 

Nobina

Posts: 3,872   +4,364
I'm most curious about Intel GPU drivers. How many games out there had bugs that AMD and Nvidia fixed in a driver update. Intel won't have those and it will take them a long time to fix whatever issues older games had. How many games out there check for your GPU and if it's not recognized it might not run or run properly? Compatibility could be an issue for Intel.
 

MarcusNumb

Posts: 60   +58
Let's see the price and the driver support first cause Intel is "new" in this battle. Anw, I'm looking forward to this, hopefully next year we can see the prices go back to "normal".
 

nodfor

Posts: 287   +491
I play games for about 10 hours a week on average and I currently have a system with an RX480. This is no longer suitable for modern titles at 1080p60. So if Intel can sell a card for $200-$300 that can breathe some life into my existing monitor that would be great. Currently my only choice is an RTX3050 and if it was in stock at £250 I’d begrudgingly buy one. But it isn’t.
An 6600 XT would be an actual upgrade but if you have a hard price ceiling you will need to wait and hope the price drops.

For the Intel gpu, too little too late (like I have said again)
Getting a mid range competitor in stock a few months before the next gen, not good enough...
 

Lounds

Posts: 1,174   +1,075
16GB of VRAM, this card will not be affordable. All intel will do is price their cards to whatever Nvidia's average is. I doubt they will sell them at competitive prices because there's too much demand for GPUs currently that these will sell themselves no matter the price.
 

Tom Yum

Posts: 182   +438
People thinking Intel GPU's will solve the current GPU shortage/pricing issues are forgetting that these are being made at TSMC on their newish 6nm process, the exact same process that can't produce enough AMD GPU's either. The only way that Intel will get enough capacity is to outbid AMD (and Qualcomm, and MediaTek, and every other TSMC 6 user), driving prices even higher, not lower, and worsening availability, not increasing it.

Then factor in Intel GPU driver support which is poor at best especially when it comes to updates following new games, and there is very little to be positive about.

If Intel were using their own fabs it would be a different story, but they aren't, likely because they don't have enough capacity themselves. The fix for the GPU shortage is just more capacity which takes time (years), Intel won't be providing any silver bullet here.
 

Dimitrios

Posts: 1,069   +881
People thinking Intel GPU's will solve the current GPU shortage/pricing issues are forgetting that these are being made at TSMC on their newish 6nm process, the exact same process that can't produce enough AMD GPU's either. The only way that Intel will get enough capacity is to outbid AMD (and Qualcomm, and MediaTek, and every other TSMC 6 user), driving prices even higher, not lower, and worsening availability, not increasing it.

Then factor in Intel GPU driver support which is poor at best especially when it comes to updates following new games, and there is very little to be positive about.

If Intel were using their own fabs it would be a different story, but they aren't, likely because they don't have enough capacity themselves. The fix for the GPU shortage is just more capacity which takes time (years), Intel won't be providing any silver bullet here.

Very well said. Thank god I'm not the only one that sees it exactly like this. So many people are caught in the moment. Hope & Reality are two different things that get confused in the tech world.
 

Nathan Gamble

Posts: 8   +3
People thinking Intel GPU's will solve the current GPU shortage/pricing issues are forgetting that these are being made at TSMC on their newish 6nm process, the exact same process that can't produce enough AMD GPU's either.

They CAN produce enough GPUs. The main factor preventing more GPUs being made is the supply of ABF substrate. TSMC has enough capacity to make the actual GPU dies, the dies just can't all be used because there's no substrate to install them onto. Rumours are that substrate shortages will start to recover between now and the middle of the year though.

Intel and AMD mostly buy their ABF substrate from different sources (though there is some overlap).
 

Sausagemeat

Posts: 1,597   +1,422
An 6600 XT would be an actual upgrade but if you have a hard price ceiling you will need to wait and hope the price drops.

For the Intel gpu, too little too late (like I have said again)
Getting a mid range competitor in stock a few months before the next gen, not good enough...
Oh after the last two cards I’m not buying a Radeon again. Intel maybe but really I want a GeForce, I’ve just had better luck with GeForce over the years and every single Radeon I’ve had has caused me pain, anger and intense frustration! I fully understand why their market share is declining.

Also where I live a 6600 XT costs like £400-£500 and that’s just far too much money. Even at MSRP it’s too much.
 

hahahanoobs

Posts: 4,597   +2,562
People thinking Intel GPU's will solve the current GPU shortage/pricing issues are forgetting that these are being made at TSMC on their newish 6nm process, the exact same process that can't produce enough AMD GPU's either. The only way that Intel will get enough capacity is to outbid AMD (and Qualcomm, and MediaTek, and every other TSMC 6 user), driving prices even higher, not lower, and worsening availability, not increasing it.

Then factor in Intel GPU driver support which is poor at best especially when it comes to updates following new games, and there is very little to be positive about.

If Intel were using their own fabs it would be a different story, but they aren't, likely because they don't have enough capacity themselves. The fix for the GPU shortage is just more capacity which takes time (years), Intel won't be providing any silver bullet here.
Their thoughts only go as far as "now" and "gimme now."
 

Theinsanegamer

Posts: 3,512   +5,920
Oh after the last two cards I’m not buying a Radeon again. Intel maybe but really I want a GeForce, I’ve just had better luck with GeForce over the years and every single Radeon I’ve had has caused me pain, anger and intense frustration! I fully understand why their market share is declining.

Also where I live a 6600 XT costs like £400-£500 and that’s just far too much money. Even at MSRP it’s too much.
I'm kinda in the same boat, after both vega 64s died on me, now my 480 is showing signs of memory faulting. The random flickering during web browsing has been getting worse too.

Wether it be windows driver suckage or poor card quality I can thav eGPUs failing like this when they are so hard to replace. If this market continues as it is I'll just hav eto bite the bullet, pay an insane price for a 4080, and keep that sucker for a decade.
They CAN produce enough GPUs. The main factor preventing more GPUs being made is the supply of ABF substrate. TSMC has enough capacity to make the actual GPU dies, the dies just can't all be used because there's no substrate to install them onto. Rumours are that substrate shortages will start to recover between now and the middle of the year though.

Intel and AMD mostly buy their ABF substrate from different sources (though there is some overlap).
I've heard this before but have never seen a source for it.
 

Neatfeatguy

Posts: 926   +1,606
I hope it`s better at mining than Nvidia`s LHR cards. That would be a win win. Cheaper better hashrate cards for miners and forcing Nvidia to lower prices for gamers. Cause I`m not gonna buy Intel until third gen or so if all goes well.

Watch - Intel cards release and they walk all over LHR cards from Nvidia for mining....

All of a sudden a "new" driver from Nvidia will come out that will fully unlock any LHR model because Nvidia will start losing sales to miners and they will want to keep that money train rolling.
 

Rdmetz

Posts: 398   +189
Hope its good because after the way AMD and Nvidia have treated everyone with their despicable treatment towards us for a few people they dont deserve our sales, we not valued. I be buying intel when they come out. I just hope they dont do the same.

If you believe ANY of these companies give a damn about you you're the one whose likley to be let down...

It's just business and they have a job to do and that's make money and as much as they can til the market won't give them anymore.

If you want to blame anyone blame your fellow gamers who overpaid or the miners (but really they too are just doing business as usual)

If you chose you too could buy any number of over priced gpu's then set them out to make that money back up for you.

This is just the reality of the world we live in.

Unless you want to admit capitalism is a failure and you'd rather have something like socialism or communism take its place?

Either get with making the system work for you or learn that you ultimately will be the one who others profit from in one way or another.

I don't let anyone profit from me I've made sure my last 3 gpu upgrades cost me nothing and even before then for a decade I was constantly on the latest and greatest every year and yet I was only spending on average about $250 a year.

The last 3 upgrades not only cost me zero out of pocket they actually made me money 1080ti (sli) to 2080ti made $250, 2080ti to 3080 made $300 then 3080 to 3080ti I made $50.

Learn to play their games or perish that's also I can tell ya...
 

Bobbydpue

Posts: 371   +246
Hope its good because after the way AMD and Nvidia have treated everyone with their despicable treatment towards us for a few people they dont deserve our sales, we not valued. I be buying intel when they come out. I just hope they dont do the same.
AMD and NVIDIA are companies they don't care about you any more or any less than Intel will. The issue is demand being much higher than supply. It's a seller's market and who knows when that will stop being the case if ever. I thought the video card shortage and crypto crisis was going to be over a long time ago, but it's still going on.
 

Bobbydpue

Posts: 371   +246
Watch - Intel cards release and they walk all over LHR cards from Nvidia for mining....

All of a sudden a "new" driver from Nvidia will come out that will fully unlock any LHR model because Nvidia will start losing sales to miners and they will want to keep that money train rolling.
I just don't see that happening at all unless there are enough Intel cards to meet demand and their first gaming focused video card is amazing. Neither scenario on its own is likely and both at the same time is even less likely.
 

Bobbydpue

Posts: 371   +246
An 6600 XT would be an actual upgrade but if you have a hard price ceiling you will need to wait and hope the price drops.

For the Intel gpu, too little too late (like I have said again)
Getting a mid range competitor in stock a few months before the next gen, not good enough...
How can you form an opinion on Intel's new video card with so little information? Next gen doesn't matter unless there are enough of them to go around which isn't likely .
 

emmzo

Posts: 672   +910
Watch - Intel cards release and they walk all over LHR cards from Nvidia for mining....

All of a sudden a "new" driver from Nvidia will come out that will fully unlock any LHR model because Nvidia will start losing sales to miners and they will want to keep that money train rolling.
Lol, yes, most likely...