Intel Arc Alchemist Desktop Graphics Card Smiles For The Camera And It's A Beauty
Near the end of Intel's Arc Alchemist mobile discrete GPU reveal today, there was a 'But wait, there's more!' moment, equivalent to the post-credit teasers that often accompany Marvel superhero movies. Though instead of teasing an upcoming flick, Intel shared a first look at the finished design for its upcoming Arc Alchemist graphics card. And boy, is it a beauty.
The entire teaser is 49 seconds long, part of which opens with some fancy rendered graphics effects. It's almost like a CAD model coming to life, and about halfway through is when we get our first look at the exterior of the card. Check it out (in up to 4K)...
If the render is any indication of the physical product, then it's safe to say Intel didn't fumble the design with its first foray into the discrete graphics card market in a very long time. At least to our eyeballs, Intel's shroud design is not too over the top and it's not too understated. Goldilocks would approve (as do we).
We actually have it on good authority that Intel's Senior Director of Graphics Product Marketing Martyn Stroeve lead the design of this Arc fan shroud. And to our point above, it apparently looks as good in the hand as it does in the video, and feels super premium to boot.
One thing you may notice is the Limited Edition moniker on the shroud. This is essentially Intel's Founders Edition or reference model. Many other add-in board (AIB) partners will be coming out with their own custom designs, just as they do for AMD and NVIDIA. As for Intel's own design, this looks to be a 2-slot cooling solution. It's possible Intel's hardware partners will release 2.5-slot (effectively 3-slot) solutions, but we'll have to wait and see.
Internally, the video shows a neatly packed design with an aluminum finned block and what appear to be four heat pipes extending nearly the full length of the card. We don't get a peek at the printed circuit board and its components (GPU, memory), unfortunately, but the cooling elements look pretty metal (see what we did there?).
We also have it on good authority that Intel is working to put some things in place to ensure as many of these cards go directly to gamers at MSRP as possible. It's not yet clear how exactly Intel will go about that as the details are still being worked out. However, what's been made clear to us is that there is a big effort towards that goal. Fingers crossed Intel is successful.
We'll find out soon enough—the first Arc Alchemist desktop cards are scheduled to release this summer.