Intel Arc desktop GPUs first appeared in June of this year. The company opted to offer its products gradually to focus on certain areas and GPU versions. The first time we saw the Arc A750/A770 GPUs in action was in October this year.
These cards are now accessible all around the world. Intel is expected to release its fourth Arc GPU, the A580, before the end of this year. In addition to being the first ACM-G10 model to fall below the 200W TDP threshold, this represents the company’s final gasp for the low-to-midrange price bracket.
Gadgets360: We’re seeing modern GPUs consuming ridiculous amounts of power, even though manufacturers have moved to more efficient process nodes. 600W and 800W power supplies are becoming the norm now. Will Intel also follow this trend?
Raja Koduri: Performance per Watt, or delivering higher performance at lower power, is my top priority. There will always be someone with some skill who can say “I’m going to give you more juice”, but my focus is lower power. The other issue I find with just increasing power and bragging about benchmarks is that while it’s good from a marketing standpoint, [there is a limited] number of PC users who can just buy such a card and plug it in. It dramatically reduces your overall market, right?
Raja Koduri claims that Intel’s Battlemage and Celestial architectures for the next-generation gaming series are on schedule. However, he still needs to prepare to discuss potential dates. Koduri was prepared to discuss the power consumption patterns of graphics cards and where Intel sees the sweet spot for these cards.
The primary goal of Intel’s GPU is the faster performance at reduced power. This was revealed after being asked about a new trend of competition considering 600-800W GPUs. The search for increased power is merely marketing, significantly decreasing the possible market for such graphics cards.
According to Koduri, the golden spot for GPUs is between 200 and 225W TDP, where we see cards like the Arc A770/A750, Radeon RX 6700, and GeForce RTX 3060 series. He only suggests using a single power connector, albeit he does not specify which kind. Intel A7 GPUs already exceed this requirement by including two power ports.
Gadgets360: That mass-market approach, would that mean that you primarily focus on the mid- and lower-tier SKUs first and then push out high-end ones?
Raja Koduri: High-end has no limit right now. What is the definition of high-end? Is it 600 Watts? Obviously our partners and our customers want some halo SKUs for bragging rights, and we always like to figure out ways to enable that. But my priority at this point is getting that core audience, with one power connector. And that can get you up to 200-225W. If you nail that, and something a little above and a little below, all that falls into the sweet spot.
It will be fascinating to see whether Intel can produce competitive goods under 225W in the future. The AMD RX 7900 and NVIDIA RTX 4080+ GPUs already exceed 320W, although both systems cost more than $899. That’s different from what most players think of when they think of a sweet spot.