Intel could unveil a dedicated graphics card at CES 2019

Intel reportedly plans to release dedicated Arctic Sound graphics chips in 2020

Intel could unveil a dedicated graphics card at CES 2019

It should be well known by now that Intel plans to enter the dedicated graphics card market, seeking to regain dominance in the enterprise markets in a world where more and more workloads become accelerated by GPUs.  

Before now Intel’s dedicated graphics chips were rumoured to arrive in 2020 using Intel’s “Arctic Sound” architecture for both the enterprise and gaming markets, though now sources from TweakTown have stated that Intel is planning a CES 2019 launch. 

Intel has reportedly been working on dedicated graphics technology for several years, with recent hires like Raja Koduri and Chris Hook assuming key roles that will accelerate the development of Intel’s roadmap and give the company a graphic-oriented marketing strategy respectively.  

One huge problem that could get in the way of any Intel GPU plans is the state of the company’s 10nm manufacturing process, as both AMD and Nvidia are expected to transition to TSMC’s 7nm manufacturing process in the same year. Building a new graphics chip on 14nm could place Intel at a disadvantage, especially if they target the high-end of the gaming market. 

 

Intel could unveil a dedicated graphics card at CES 2019

 

While Intel’s current Kaby Lake-G series of gaming chips have proven to be highly capable, the performance offered here is mostly due to Intel’s use of custom Radeon Vega silicon, though that doesn’t mean that Intel has no tricks up their sleeve. 

While Intel is currently behind both AMD and Nvidia in the graphics market, the company is ahead of their competitors in other areas.  Intel’s EMIB (Embedded Multi-die Interconnect Bridge) technology offers Intel the opportunity to create multi-die silicon without the need for expensive/complicated silicon interposers (which are used in AMD’s RX Vega 56/64 graphics cards). This technology leaves Intel in a unique position where they can utilise HBM2 memory with lower manufacturing costs than their competition, decreasing production costs and some silicon failure.  

There is a lot of potential hurdles that stand in the way of an early 2019 launch for their dedicated graphics products, from process tech to relative performance levels. TweakTown thinks that Intel plans to offer a product for the enterprise market first, with plans to create gaming products later in 2019, though this assumes that everything goes perfectly on the architecture and manufacturing sides. 

It is possible that Intel has plans to have a dedicated graphics processor ready for CES 2019, with plans to either bring forth or scrap a consumer release depending on how capable their silicon proves to be. Intel doesn’t want to enter the GPU market with a sub-par product, making it critical that the company offers a good price/performance ratio and enough raw power to be usable by mid-high-end PC users.

You can join the discussion on Intel’s rumoured CES 2019 launch of graphics products on the OC3D Forums.