Intel seems to be bringing back something that Nvidia and AMD had long given up: the ability and incentive to run dual graphics cards in one system.
Multi-GPUs were once a big deal, but the latest generation abandoned that idea for a variety of reasons. However, Intel has reportedly confirmed that you can run multiple Intel Arc GPUs at once. Will that help Intel capture some of the Nvidia and AMD customer base?
A few years have passed since some of us longed for a dual-GPU setup with one of Nvidia’s latest and greatest. Stacking Titan GPUs was something many gamers longed for, but realistically most of us couldn’t afford it – and the performance gains weren’t quite worth it for the average player.
While the technology persists in the high-performance computing (HPC) segment and among professionals, consumers are now sticking to a single graphics card. Intel seems eager to shake things up in that regard.
According to TweakTown, citing an Intel representative, the company is currently preparing its oneAPI software to support multiple GPUs. Intel was even supposed to show off a dual-Arc system during SIGGRAPH 2022, but was unable to do so. Why? TweakTown claims Intel couldn’t find a chassis big enough for two GPUs in time for the event. This is true, since Intel seemingly only had a small NUC chassis on hand, equipped with a single Arc A770 Limited Edition GPU.
It was also revealed that the multi-GPU oneAPI support was initially created with gamers in mind, so it would be available on the Arc consumer video cards. However, Intel also plans to expand into the Arc Pro range so that gamers and professionals alike can stack multiple Arc graphics cards in their systems.
Linus Tech Tips
Multi-GPU support is an interesting addition to Intel Arc. At this point, it’s hard to deny that Intel will have a hard time competing with AMD and Nvidia. Sure, the lineup could pack a punch with some Team Green and Team Red GPUs, but we’ve got next-gen cards coming out in the coming months – Intel will definitely fall behind.
Using dual Intel Arc GPUs versus a single Nvidia or AMD card may prove viable, and if the cards are priced lower it could even be a good option. On the other hand, with the extra power consumption, the requirement for a roomy chassis, and the thermal concerns, there were plenty of good reasons why AMD and Nvidia stopped pushing for dual-GPU setups. Intel could reveal more about the technology soon, so maybe we’ll find out about the exact plans then.