The GPU market has finally gone from a 1v1 deathmatch between Nvidia and AMD to a triple threat skirmish. This means more entertainment (read as work) for us and one more company fighting to win your pocket. Value and all, yes? Although, Intel’s Arc A770 isn’t here to wrestle with Nvidia or AMD’s best GPUs but rather with the budget ones. Intel is playing the price-to-performance ratio tactic to convince any unsuspecting consumer into thinking Intel is the better value for money. To us Indians, that sounds like a love letter but the real question is, is it? We’ll let the FPS counter decide.
Intel Arc A770 review in-progress
Converted price from $329 USD
Having another GPU player in the market is extremely important for everyone. The competition such as Nvidia won’t start claiming Moore’s law is dead to justify exorbitant prices for their latest GPUs (which Nvidia CEO already did), and the reigning underdog AMD won’t feel like an inferior option. So even if you’re not convinced by Intel’s offering, it’s important to know that both Nvidia and AMD have years of lead on Intel in terms of software optimization and backwards compatibility.
Intel, however, is starting top-down in terms of support. The compatibility for an Intel GPU with your system requires Windows 11, your willingness to play only DirectX 12 games, the latest bios update to enable Resizable BAR in the bios (which we’ll explain in a bit) and an Intel CPU which is 10th Gen or higher or an AMD Ryzen 3000 CPU or higher. These caveats make the Intel Arc A770 immediately less desirable to anyone not on the same hardware and software as mentioned. Although that is not all gloom and doom because Intel is working on pushing out updates to support older hardware and more games in the coming months and years but it’s something to consider as the situation stands in 2022.
Alright, jumping straight into the number game. Apex Legends, Valorant and Overwatch 2. All three are extremely important games for the budget segment primarily because these are free-to-play and as Indians, anything free is always worth looking into. Sort of like sukha puri demands. All three games are not DirectX 12 supported which means Intel Arc A770 immediately takes a beating against the RTX 3060.
But we’ll start off with something the Arc is truly good at and that’s 2K gaming. Forza Horizon 5 running at Extreme graphics settings with Ray Tracing and everything cranked up to its highest value, we got around a stable 67FPS on 1440p resolution. That 16GB VRAM really lets the Arc A770 maintain a stable output even under graphically demanding situations in the game. When the weather makes everything wet in Forza, the FPS ticker drops (obviously) because of more reflections but it doesn’t go below 62FPS which is a good sign. You can easily adjust the graphical settings to get above 90FPS without compromising much of Forza’s beauty.
Cyberpunk 2077 will output 20FPS on 2K with the highest possible settings and Ray-Traced reflections set to Psycho. Yes, we know that this is an unrealistic benchmark because even our resident RTX 3080 can’t push enough frames to keep the game playable at these settings but it’s a good way to check the GPU’s performance. What Nvidia and AMD have are AI-based super sampling methods which are available on Cyberpunk 2077 and many other games. Intel has something similar called XeSS but the support for it on launch is limited to a handful of games. Intel says that they’re working with developers and publishers to make XeSS available on future and past titles. And like we said, both Nvidia and AMD have the upper hand in terms of software support so if you opt for Intel, take that with a grain of salt.
Monster Hunter Rise runs between a surprising 120 to 130FPS at 2K resolution with the highest graphical settings. The game is fairly new and runs on the RE Engine but being able to play the latest titles on 2K at the best possible setting is not lost on the Intel GPU. Especially when you can hear the lingering voices of Intel engineers whispering price-to-performance in your ears.
Coming back to Overwatch 2, the game actually runs at 120FPS at 2K with the highest settings which in my opinion is fantastic even though it won’t beat Nvidia. My display is 2K at 144Hz so safe to say that the Intel is touching that number and keeping me smiling. But the graphic quality doesn’t look like it’s being rendered in 2K resolution to my eyes. It’s a fairly new game so it may be a fault of the drivers from the developer side or the fact that the Intel Arc A770 is passing DirectX 11 or older games through an emulation layer to work. Whatever it may be, this is worth understanding that Intel’s Arc A770 is still in its infancy stage and once it starts supporting more games, the future is quite promising for this GPU.
Especially with that massive 16GB VRAM. It’s quite a gift for video editors and content creators. We’ve only got limited time to test the Arc A770 but we’ll surely update this review with the benchmarks of the AV1’s performance. The AV1 video codec is even supported by Blackmagic DaVinci Resolve Studio.
The design of the Intel Arc A770 is quite frankly the best in business. It’s got a soft matte finish on the fan plates and even the RGB lighting is done with a sophistication that you’d expect from Intel and Intel only. Although, there’s a separate USB header port for the RGB lighting which we couldn’t connect because we didn't have any spare ports to plug into our Asus ROG Maximum XIII Hero motherboard. That said, even the I/O plate is made from premium materials. You get three DisplayPort 2.0 and one HDMI 2.1. We wish it had USB Type-C for VR headsets but that’s fine.
There’s a lot to unwrap with the Intel Arc A770 and the A750. We’ll be testing more games and benchmarking video edits on this thing for a few more days before giving out our final verdict. It’s clear that Intel has a pipeline and a product vertical to support for the future and since the holiday season is in full swing, we’ll also keep upcoming launches as part of our tests since Intel’s sights are on the latest games. As for older game support, Intel says it’s working on making more and more games as the days go by and we’ll soon have a fresh list of games that support Intel drivers and hopefully XeSS.
That said, our initial outing with Intel Arc A770 has been more than satisfying. It can keep up if not beat the Nvidia RTX 3060 cards, especially in Ray Traced games which we’ll test more of over the next few weeks.
|Xe-cores / XMX Engines:
|32 / 512
|Ray Tracing Units:
|2100 MHz Memory Config16GB GDDR6 @ 17.5Gbps
|PCIe Gen 4.0 x 16
|1x 8-Pin 1x 6-Pin
|HW Accelerated Media:
|AV1(E&D), HEVC(E&D), H.264(E&D), VP9 Bitstream & Decoding
|3x DP 2.0, 1x HDMI 2.1
|DirectX 12 Ultimate, OpenGL 4.6, OpenCL 3.0, Vulkan 1.3