YouTuber ScatterBencher (opens in new tab) has shown off some GPU-Z screenshots teasing impressive graphics card overclocking work in progress. The OC expert, known by the handle MassMan on HWBot, has coaxed the lethargic Intel Arc A380 graphics card into a sprightly 3.1 GHz performer. That clock speed represents a 55% uplift compared to stock and far exceeds factory overclocked samples.
The 3.1 GHz Intel Arc A380 tale raises quite a few questions. First, why overclock the Arc A380 to extremes? Probably just ‘because it is there,’ to coin a mountaineering phrase. The question of how is more involved, and we will have to take a few educated guesses, as ScatterBencher hasn’t divulged his technique for this feat.
ScatterBencher shared his results on Twitter, and bemoaned his techniques taking “2 steps forward, 1 step back.” Tuning GPUs is full of compromises and balances. Every GPU model and every individual GPU sample will have its optimal settings, which require steps forward and backward to pinpoint.
The screenshots show the 3.1 GHz overclock in the center section, reported by the sensors tab, as well as the HWInfo section. However, the same sections also provide the most significant clues to ScatterBencher’s methods. The reported board power draw of 17.4W is nonsensical. This leads us to believe that the overclocker has volt-modded the Arc A380 PCB, and sysmon tools thus misreport this stat. With the mod in effect, overclockers aren’t restricted by manufacturer-set power limits.
The feat ties in nicely with our report from mid-July, where an overclocking enthusiast showed impressive performance gains from giving the A380 an extra 43-57% of power. We concluded at the time that Arc A380 power limits were holding back its performance. It certainly looks like this little GPU loves eating watts, and can gain some worthwhile performance when it gets extra juice, but Intel’s designers want it at 75W stock - for market segmentation and similar practical reasons.
Hopefully, ScatterBencher (opens in new tab) and other GPU overclocking enthusiasts will reveal more about their methods. It would also be good to see what gaming performance uplifts a 3.1 GHz Arc A380 might deliver. Meanwhile, we look forward to Intel significantly expanding its Arc Alchemist lineup.