Despite the company''s initial promise that it would flood the market with a wide spectrum of desktop and laptop models, there is yet to be any Intel Arc GPU outside of South Korea and China. However, judging by early benchmarks and the relatively slow driver development around Team Blue''s discrete GPUs, the company might have decided to take a slower approach to release them on the worldwide market.
Intel said it would use its desktop graphics cards from the Arc A-series in China for a few months. The first model to hit the market was the Arc A380, an entry-level processor, which was launched a week ago for a price of 1,030 yuan, or a little more than $150.
The new graphics card is rather disappointing in terms of cooling, video outputs, or the overall aesthetic. However, Intel claims it is up to 25 percent faster than AMD''s similarly priced Radeon RX 6400. But the Arc A380 does have several features, including six gigabytes of GDDR6 memory connected to a 96-bit bus, a PCIe 4.0 x8 interface, and three DisplayPort 2.0 ports.
According to an early independent investigation by Bilibili user Shenmedounengce, the Intel component does not perform well outside of synthetic benchmarks, where it does fall between the Radeon RX 6500 XT and Nvidia''s RTX 3050. If you fire up the 3DMark Port Royal and Timespy tests, you''ll get the impression that the A380 has some ray-tracing benefits when it comes to AMD''s entry-level offerings.
In real-world gaming trials, the Arc A380 proved to be less powerful than AMD''s Radeon RX 6400, and includes popular titles such as PUBG, GTA 5, Shadow of the Tomb Raider, League of Legends, Forza Horizon 5, and Red Dead Redemption 2. In fact, Intel''s entry-level graphics card appears to perform worse than Nvidia''s GTX 1650 across DirectX 11, DirectX 12, and Vulkan titles.
It wouldn''t be easy to find an excuse for such poor performance against a GPU that Nvidia created back in 2019, despite the card being paired with an Intel Core i5-12400 CPU, which is a great gaming processor.
This raises the question whether Intel intends to spend more time developing Intel Arc drivers, but the performance of the A380 GPU is disappointing unless you consider the relatively low price. Higher-end models may tell a different story, but we''ll have to wait and see.