AMD slaps down Intel Arc potential

Radeon RX 6500M vs. Intel Arc A370M. No contest, says AMD.

Last week Intel officially debuted Arc mobile GPUs destined for a wide range of laptops this summer. Joining Nvidia and AMD to make a three-horse discrete graphics race for the first time ever, Arc is a big deal. Marketing wars have begun in earnest as AMD reckons its Radeon RX 6500M GPU takes rival Intel Arc A370M to the framerate cleaners.

Launching this PR offensive by an innocuous post on Twitter, AMD believes the RX 6500M is quite a bit faster than the premier Arc 3 GPU when gaming at 1080p.

There are more provisos than we care to shake a stick at. Though medium settings are described, exactly what are they? Is AMD boosting framerate by implementing FidelityFX Super Resolution (FSR)? How exactly was the Intel Arc A370M tested? Were the two laptops housing these cards identically configured? So on and so forth.

More questions than answers, and AMD has naturally chosen games it does best in, but we can ask is the comparison even apt in the first place? The answer is yes because both GPUs vie for supremacy in the same segment.

Intel Arc A370MAMD Radeon RX 6500M
FabricationTSMC N6TSMC N6
GPU core speed1,550MHz2,191MHz
Die Size157mm²107mm²
Memory size, type, width4GB, GDDR6, 64-bit4GB, GDDR6, 64-bit
Hardware ray tracingYesYes
Nominal power budget35-50W50W

Designed for thin-and-light gaming laptops

Vital specifications reinforce their comparative nature. On first blush, Intel takes up a heck of a lot more die size considering both GPUs are hewn from the same process at TSMC, and this is most likely due to the extra AI-specific technologies present in Arc.

Is AMD being smart here, though? We say this as RX 6500M is naturally plumbed in with a 50W TDP while Arc A370M spools up from 35-50W. Is AMD comparing a 50W GPU to benchmarks posted by a 35W Intel? Again, this is something we don’t know, but even if this is the case, the performance delta between the pair remains considerable.

There’s no talk of video capabilities as this is an area where, on paper, Intel appears stronger than AMD. But why draw attention to your competitor’s strengths?

The first blows in the GPU race have been struck. A stiff right jab from AMD, but what will Intel’s counter be? Incoming PR haymaker, no doubt.