Performance-boosting Intel Arc driver updates will support desktop Ark and mobile Core Ultra

The latest Intel Arc Graphics driver update includes support for the new Core Ultra processor line-up, and future updates will include Meteor Lake.

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Intel Arc 'Game On' driver updates and releases over the past year have been a string of good news stories for the company's first foray into discrete graphics cards for PC gaming. From a massive boost in DirectX 11 performance that has seen double-digit improvements to smoothness and overall frame-rate performance, there has also been a gigantic 2.7X increase in AI performance.

The new Core Ultra range includes Intel Arc graphics.

The new Core Ultra range includes Intel Arc graphics.

With the launch of the new Meteor Lake-powered Core Ultra series of processors for laptops overnight - which are available with integrated Intel Arc graphics, many have wondered if Intel's steady stream of driver releases for day-one game support and performance increases for older titles will be available for those that pick up a new Core Ultra laptop.

The answer is yes, and this can be seen with the latest Intel Graphics Driver release for Intel Arc GPUs (31.0.101.5081 WHQL and 31.0.101.5122 WHQL), which includes support for the Intel Core Ultra processor family.

This is great news because the new Arc GPU in Meteor Lake includes up to eight new Xe LPG cores that put its performance on par or greater than the Radeon 780M in the impressive Ryzen 7 7840U. The performance would make the Core Ultra processor great for gaming handhelds like the Steam Deck or ROG Ally because the 1080p performance is up there.

Although the latest driver release is specifically for the new Core Ultra line-up, it covers the entire Intel Arc line-up - with one of the legacy titles getting a performance increase, the awesome Battlefield 1, which gets up to a 30% improvement when playing at 1080p with Ultra settings.

Interestingly, the driver update includes a few issues specific to Intel Core Ultra products with Arc Graphics, including Diablo 4 corruption on the terrain, Uncharted: Legacy of Thieves Collection crashing, and The Talos Principle 2 crashing with "certain Upscaling Presets."

Intel plans to include the Core Ultra Series in future driver updates to ensure that performance and day-one game updates are available for all Arc users. However, as we're talking about laptops, OEM driver releases will override dedicated Intel Arc driver updates and vice versa.

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NEWS SOURCES:intel.com, pcgamer.com

Kosta is a veteran gaming journalist that cut his teeth on well-respected Aussie publications like PC PowerPlay and HYPER back when articles were printed on paper. A lifelong gamer since the 8-bit Nintendo era, it was the CD-ROM-powered 90s that cemented his love for all things games and technology. From point-and-click adventure games to RTS games with full-motion video cut-scenes and FPS titles referred to as Doom clones. Genres he still loves to this day. Kosta is also a musician, releasing dreamy electronic jams under the name Kbit.

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