Computing

Intel Boosts Gaming Performance with Latest Update

Arc Alchemist GPUs Receive Significant Improvements

The backs of the Arc A770 and Arc A750 graphics cards.
Image: Jacob Roach / Digital Trends

Intel has recently announced exciting updates for its Arc Alchemist GPUs, known for their affordability and suitability for budget-oriented builds. Since the release of their flagship GPU, the Arc A770, Intel has been diligently working on optimizing its performance through frequent driver updates. With over 30 updates later, Intel is eager to share the significant gaming performance improvements achieved with their GPUs and introduce a new open-source tool.

Improved DirectX 12 Performance

Initially, Intel’s discrete graphics cards performed well in games that utilized DirectX 12. However, they fell behind in titles that relied on DirectX 11 and DirectX 9. Intel now claims that the latest Arc drivers have addressed this issue, substantiated by their own benchmark tests using the Arc A750 GPU.

Impressive DX9 Performance Boost

When it comes to gaming in DX9 at 1080p, Intel reports performance gains across various games. For instance, Guild Wars 2 achieved a 10% improvement, while Counter-Strike: Global Offensive saw a remarkable 77% increase in frames per second (fps). League of Legends and Skyrim also showcased significant enhancements, with 45% and 77% higher fps, respectively. These improvements in esports games are great news for gamers considering an Intel Arc GPU since these cards were designed to handle such games, and now they seem even more playable.

Substantial Gains in DX11 Gaming

The improvements in DX11 gaming, while not as dramatic as in DX9, are still substantial. On average, games achieved between 5% and 33% higher fps. For example, League of Legends saw an increase from 340 fps to 376 fps, and GTA Online experienced a boost from 66 fps to 84 fps. Overall, Intel claims that its GPUs are now 19% faster in DX11 games on average, with 20% smoother 99th-percentile fps.

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Introducing XeSS and GPU Busy Metric

Intel briefly mentioned its competitor to Nvidia’s Deep Learning Super Sampling (DLSS), XeSS. Currently supported by over 70 games, XeSS may not be as impressive as Nvidia’s latest DLSS 3, but it still has its advantages and is gaining popularity. Intel is also introducing the GPU Busy metric, which indicates the level of GPU utilization per frame. This feature aims to achieve a better balance between CPU and GPU workloads in games.

The Arc A770 graphics card running in a PC.
Image: Jacob Roach / Digital Trends

PresentMon: A Performance Overlay Tool

Intel is also unveiling PresentMon, a new performance overlay tool that offers capture and telemetry options, similar to Nvidia’s Shadowplay. With PresentMon, users can track real-time average fps, GPU Busy, frequency, voltage, temperature, and memory usage while playing games. The tool also allows for game footage capture. Moreover, PresentMon supports multiple GPU vendors, provides integrated GPU telemetry and capture, and boasts broad API support. Power users can take advantage of command line options.

In summary, Intel’s latest update showcases impressive advancements. While their GPUs may not compete with the latest offerings from AMD and Nvidia, Intel continuously enhances its current lineup, making them both affordable and performance-focused. These newfound performance gains may likely contribute to the growing popularity of Arc GPUs in PC builds.

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