With the departure of Intel’s Accelerated Graphics Unit head Raja Koduri, many feared that Intel Arc’s future was in critical doubt, however there’s some trigger for hope as Intel reportedly positioned a really giant order with TSMC for Intel Arc GPUs for its next-gen graphics card lineup.
The brand new report comes from Taiwanese outlet Commercial Times (opens in new tab), which cites insider sources to say that not solely has Intel put in orders for TSMC silicon to energy its subsequent GPU line, Intel Arc Battlemage, but additionally the road after that, Intel Arc Celestial. This can be a very sturdy signal that Intel is totally committing to its graphics card division after a reasonably rocky begin.
Intel Arc Alchemist hasn’t gained the form of foothold within the GPU market that lots of us have hoped for, particularly since they’ve typically been fairly powerful to come up with and people playing cards that do exist in avid gamers’ PCs have had some notable driver optimization points. Nonetheless, the AMD and Nvidia duopoly does not do any of us any good, so having a 3rd participant within the struggle would add some much-needed competitors.
That could be coming prior to anticipated, as one trade supply stated that the next-gen Battlemage playing cards, constructed on Intel’s Xe2 structure, will launch within the second half of 2024, with Intel Arc Celestial touchdown within the second half of 2026. This could put it a number of months after the launch of most of Nvidia and AMD’s greatest graphics playing cards of this era, so Intel remains to be behind the opposite two main gamers when it comes to manufacturing cadence. Nonetheless, higher late than in no way.
The supply additionally signifies that Intel Arc Battlemage shall be constructed on TSMC’s 4nm course of, with Celestial fabbed on its 3nm course of.
Intel Arc remains to be within the struggle
I used to be very involved when Raja Koduri left Intel, since his departure might very properly have signalled the top of Intel’s discrete graphics card division. The financial system hasn’t been within the biggest form, and Intel’s financials have appeared a bit soggy this previous 12 months, so there’s each cause to suppose Koduri’s exist was the ultimate blow for the challenge.
That does not appear to be the case, and as Tom’s Hardware (opens in new tab) notes, Intel is taking Arc Alchemist as a studying expertise on tips on how to higher construct Battlemage reasonably than as a trigger for abandoning the trouble altogether.
Given the rampant value inflation for GPUs in recent times, together with from historically budget-friendly AMD, we desperately want one other graphics card producer placing out high quality product to assist hold costs down. The high-cost of entry for the market means solely Intel can actually step into that area, so its exit after Alchemist would have been extraordinarily discouraging.
Fortuitously, reviews of Intel Arc’s demise have been untimely, and the hope of a aggressive, and hopefully extra reasonably priced, line of graphics playing cards lives one other day.