We are just days away from the launch of Intel’s new one Arc desktop graphics cardsthe A770 and A750, with a release date of October 12 to closely match Nvidia’s specifications RTX 4090 send. It is also the date of Microsoft’s Surface display, Google’s Cloud Next event, and Amazon Prime Day 2. If you need me on that day, you’ll be able to find me munching into a bin behind my local McDonald’s.
My fine eating habits aside, some interesting new information has emerged regarding Intel much-malignant GPU line. Completely out of left field, Acer has announced that it will be making a discrete GPU for desktop computers, and it’s not in partnership with Nvidia or AMD: no, the Arc A770 is Acer’s first ever graphics card.
Obviously, this is a gaming GPU; It carries Acer’s ‘Predator’ branding, with the name BiFrost. No, this is not a reference to the sexuality of the card or its Norse origins, but that this card has two fans. The interesting part? They are two completely different types of fans.
As you already have no doubt from the image, the Predator BiFrost sports a large, traditional GPU fan packed with RGB lighting at one end of the card, while a second, smaller fan is indented near the center. This second fan is called a ‘blower’, previously seen in Nvidia’s RTX 2000 Founders Edition and AMD’s RX 5000 cards.
Introducing the new @intelgraphics #IntelArc A770 GPU, which we’ve dubbed #PredatorBiFrost. Pave the way for a new generation of great gaming! pic.twitter.com/MmN4rAszItSeptember 30, 2022
Analysis: Striking design – efficient and optimistic
I’ve never seen a GPU like this before; blower cards have largely fallen out of fashion in favor of chunky outdoor fan designs. While the latter usually has two or three large fans and an exposed heatsink, the former has an enclosed casing that forces thermal waste air directly out the back of the card’s I/O (and by extension, your computer case ). They tend to use a steam room rather than conventional heat pipes.
Now, outdoor fan designs tend to be ‘better’, in that they allow for more heat dissipation – although some of that waste heat will dissipate inside your computer, so you’d better good case fans. With the amazing power of the RTX 4000 series, it is not surprising that Nvidia’s manufacturing partners are stuck with an open-air configuration. However, lower powered GPUs like Intel’s A770 make the blower approach more viable.
I don’t know exactly what’s inside the Predator BiFrost, but I’d be willing to bet that it has a vapor chamber and heat pipes (a similar design was featured in Nvidia’s RTX 3000 FE GPUs). Note that the blower fan is located pretty much directly above the GPU die itself, where the most heat will be generated. I think this means that the blower will remove most of the waste heat from the back of the card, while the larger fan plays a supporting – and aesthetic – role.
Thermal performance aside, it’s certainly an attractive design. This is a must have for Acer, which is entering a very competitive space in the GPU market. I’ve already seen a lot of people thinking that the BiFrost won’t be available separately but will come inside Acer’s pre-built Predator gaming personal computersbut to that I say: nonsense.
Acer announced this card on its own, not alongside a new line of Predator desktops. It makes sense; MSI and Asus, two of Acer’s biggest rivals in the PC gaming space, already make their own GPUs. It’s like Lenovo break into that market also, teaming up with Nvidia to release its own RTX 4090.
Exclusivity deals between GPU makers and third-party manufacturers are nothing new. Some have already lambasted Acer for its decision to partner with Intel, but Sapphire has been making AMD Radeon GPUs for years and is still going strong.
Personally, I’m excited to see more manufacturers getting into the graphics card industry. Although the Latest leaked benchmarks of the Arc A770 and A750 to be very significant, the price seriously aggressive.
With no RTX 4060 in sight, the budget space is currently wide open. After previous production partner Intel dropped the Arc line due to profitability concerns, it’s nice to see Acer stepping up to the challenge. I’m now excited to get my hands on a BiFrost card…