Intel Arc and Alchemist: everything explained

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Image source: INTEL

Intel Arc is expected to arrive in the first quarter of 2022.

For a long time, Intel and Nvidia dominated the PC and laptop space with their CPUs and GPUs, respectively. Lately, AMD has offered fierce competition to both parties in the respective fields. While Intel has managed to maintain a lead in some areas on the processor side, it is on the GPU side that Intel has been held back. Fans have been waiting for the company to release its own GPU that would go hand in hand with the best, and that wait is now almost over. Intel is preparing to launch its own line of GPUs, and the two names you will often hear in reference to them are Intel Arc and Alchemist. We interviewed Mr. Akshay Kamath, PC Client Sales Manager, Intel India, to find out a little more about the upcoming GPU line and here’s everything you need to know.

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Image source: INTELAkshay Kamath – PC Client Sales Director (India) – Intel

Here are all the questions:

1. Why did Intel take so long to enter the GPU market given that gaming has been a priority for Intel for many years?

Considering the current dynamics of the discrete GPU market and Intel’s technology and scale, we felt that the discrete GPU market is ripe for market disruption and much-needed competition. We built the Xe architecture to evolve the breadth of the GPU spectrum from the Xe LP architecture focused on efficiency and mobility, the Xe HPG focused on games and enthusiasts, to the Xe HPC architecture. focused on AI and the data center.

2. What kinds of needs is Intel meeting with the new GPU? Will it be gamer-only focused or will there also be an emphasis on content creation tasks?

Our Xe architecture is extremely scalable, which allows us to adapt the next GPU to various needs. New Intel (R) Arc (TM) graphics solutions will deliver high-performance gaming, immersive visuals, game streaming and creative experiences. Intel’s long-term vision, starting with the game-focused Codename Alchemist SoCs, is to deliver frictionless gaming and content creation experiences to gamers and creators around the world, offering them innovation and choice of hardware, combined with open and accessible software tools.

3. Nvidia offers the GeForce range for consumer games, but there is also Quadro for professionals in 3D, animation, etc. Is Intel planning a separate series for these users or will the Alchemist suit them as well?

We will share more information around the launch.

4. Do you have a tentative launch date for new GPUs?

We are targeting Alchemist products to be on the market in the first quarter of 2022.

5. Are there any built-in limiters to prevent the use of Intel GPUs for mining?

Xe HPG was designed as the first gaming microarchitecture, and our priority is supporting gamers.

6. Intel shared two brand names: Arc and Alchemist. Can you define which products they correspond to?

Intel Arc is the hallmark of Intel’s consumer discrete graphics products and Alchemist is the codename of the SoC family based on our new high performance Xe HPG discrete graphics microarchitecture. Alchemist SoCs were previously called DG2. Players and creators are at the forefront of telling and creating unique and amazing stories. The narrative flow of a story, with various intrigue and character inflections, is called the story arc. Every game, player, and creator has a story to tell, and every story has an arc. Inspired by this, we are announcing Intel® Arc ™ as our consumer high performance graphics brand.

This mark represents Intel’s commitment to empowering users to discover and create incredible new stories. It also represents our commitment to delivering frictionless gaming and content creation experiences, offering a greater choice of hardware coupled with open and accessible software tools and services.

7. Can you share more information on how XeSS works? We have seen two different implementations of Nvidia and AMD and want to understand Intel’s approach in this regard.

XeSS or Xe Super Sampling is a new upscaling technology that enables high performance, high fidelity visuals. It uses deep learning to synthesize images very close to the quality of native high resolution rendering. It works by reconstructing subpixel details from neighboring pixels, as well as previous moving-compensated images. This reconstruction is performed by a neural network trained to deliver high performance and high quality, with up to twice the performance.

8. Intel uses TSMC to manufacture GPUs and given that the demand is so high, how will Intel ensure sufficient supply in the market?

We work closely with TSMC to ensure a robust supply chain.

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