Intel overclocked its Arc A750 to 2.7GHz using a factory air cooler

In the context: Intel marketer Ryan Shrout joined seasoned engineer Tom Petersen in the lab to revisit the upcoming Arc Alchemist GPUs. This time, they took a closer look at the cooling capacity and overclocking potential of the Arc A750 and Arc A770 Limited Edition cards.

In some context, Limited Edition cards are just Intel’s version of Nvidia Founder’s Edition cards – they are neither special nor limited. Shrout emphasized that they will be available from day one and in large quantities.

So the question is: do you want it? This is Intel’s first attempt at a graphics card. sounds like they did a decent job. In this video, Schrout and Petersen focused mainly on the A750 Limited Edition, but by the looks of it, the A770 Limited Edition uses a similar circuit board and cooler.

The cooler itself is a dense array of aluminum fins sandwiched between two fans and a large copper vapor chamber. The vapor chamber is in contact with the GPU itself, as well as GDDR6 and VRM, and connects to four 10 x 3mm flat heat pipes that run across the side of the card.

Under the cooler, the PCB has 8-pin and 6-pin headers that connect to six VRMs located to the right of the eight GDDR6 modules surrounding the GPU. Output is provided by one HDMI 2.1 port and three DisplayPort 2.0 ports.

Petersen says the board is designed to be overcooled, making overclocking possible. To prove his point, he fires up a machine with an A750 processor and attempts to overclock it using the Arc Control software.

As far as overclocking methodology is concerned, Petersen’s approach is not the best. He starts with the inexplicably and nonsensically named “increase performance” slider, and when pushing it higher stopped affecting clock speed, he increased the power limit to a maximum of 228 watts. It then began to incrementally increase the voltage offset, eventually declaring itself over as the GPU passed 2700MHz at a 50mV offset.

No stress tests or temperature tests. There is no explanation on how to rollback settings after pushing too hard and crashing the system.

Petersen was actually overclocking while running Hitman 3 in the background – so that’s sort of a measure of stability. He used the game to measure the performance gain from overclocking. At default settings, the GPU ran at 2400 MHz and hit ~90 fps. At 2719MHz it hit ~96fps, a performance boost of almost 7% comes at the expense of a 13% overclock, which isn’t too bad.

It’s a little strange that the A750 originally ran at 2400 MHz. Its game clock – the only clock speed listed by Intel in the data sheet – is 2050 MHz. Compared to that, 2400MHz is a 17% overclock and 2719MHz is a 33% overclock.

At the end of the video, Shrout and Petersen finally address the elephant in the room: price and availability. All they say is, “We know you’re up for it. We want to share it too – it will be very soon.”

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