Intel Arc desktop GPUs may be on the way (but not the flagship)

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Arc Alchemist graphics cards in the midrange and affordable category could be available in a matter of weeks.

image credits: arstechnica

According to new speculations, the first Arc Alchemist desktop graphics cards could be available by the end of May.

This information comes from Wccftech, which claims to have heard from people in Taiwan who are familiar with Intel’s newest supply chain and upcoming Arc GPU launch.

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If this is true – and we should proceed with caution – the theory is that Intel has three Alchemist desktop cards in the works, two of which will be released first, followed by a third model a few ‘weeks’ later.

The flagship (A780) will not be one of those three, with the Arc A750 and A380 models — the more powerful mid-range and budget offerings, respectively – arriving first, followed by the A580, the lower-end of the mid-range.

The A750 and A380 graphics cards will be available in late May to early June, and the A580 in July (tentatively).

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Pricing to compete with Nvidia?

We already know that Intel has confirmed Arc desktop cards for Q2 of this year, which suggests they’ll be available in May or June, which matches what we’ve heard so far. Perhaps a Computex debut later in May would be more appropriate…

Given the way Intel has handled things thus far (with the initial Arc launch for laptop GPUs coming exactly at the end of March when it was scheduled for Q1 – thus just squeezing into that period), we – and many others – were expecting a last-minute release late in June.

Of course, despite this story, there’s no way of knowing if we’ll still have to wait until late June, because even if it’s accurate and these launch targets reflect Intel’s current plans, things might still go wrong. After all, this is a launch that Intel must get right the first time, which includes not only the hardware but also the software (driver quality is going to be crucial).

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In terms of how powerful these graphics cards will be, Wccftech believes the Arc A750 will be the equal of Nvidia’s RTX 3060, with pricing expected to be around $350 in the US (which is a little more than Team Green’s recommended price for the 3060).

The A580 will reportedly be able to match the power of an RTX 3050 for roughly $280, while the A380 will be able to match the GTX 1650 for around $150, according to the tech site — large, large piles of condiments should be applied here, naturally.

The best prediction, then, is that price tags will be broadly in line with Nvidia’s, which is at least better than prior indications of higher-end versions that may reportedly even exceed Team Green’s prices. In some ways, the prospect of Intel going for broke with its launch pricing by undercutting the competition appears to be receding, but we can’t rule anything out just yet.

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