If you’re looking to get into gaming, you’ve realized you need a graphics card to process any graphical information. There are two types of graphics cards, integrated graphics, and dedicated graphics, and we’re going to go over whether integrated graphics are any good for gaming. Integrated graphics are typically found with a CPU, and dedicated graphics can be brought from either AMD or NVIDIA.
Integrated graphics are a graphics processing unit that is built into the same die as a processor, this makes them more power-efficient compared to dedicated graphics. Integrated graphics are usually used for light applications that do not require any complex geometric data being processed, this includes browsing the web.
Answer: Integrated graphics cards are not good for gaming, and this is because they are not made for gaming but rather as a simple solution to output an image. This isn’t to say that integrated graphics cannot play games, they can, but extremely poorly. Very simple games that aren’t graphically intensive can run off integrated graphics, this includes Minecraft.
What CPUs Support Integrated Graphics
Most Intel processors will come with integrated graphics, and this includes desktops and laptops. There are some Intel processors that do not come with integrated graphics, and those are the CPUs that end with an F. So if you’re going to purchase an “F” or a “KF” processor, it will perform all the necessary CPU tasks, but the integrated graphics sector has been disabled. Intel features integrated graphics such as UHD Graphics 630, and UHD Graphics 770, every few generations, Intel will upgrade their iGPUs to be more proficient.
Ryzen processors do not normally feature integrated graphics, and even the top-tier processors don’t have it. The only Ryzen processors that feature integrated graphics are the processors denoted with a “G” at the end, so it’s quite literally the opposite of Intel CPUs. The most popular iGPUs from Ryzen are the Radeon Vega Graphics. With Ryzen, you will typically require a dedicated graphics card to receive an output.
If you build a PC with no dedicated GPU and iGPU, your system will send no output signal, so you will see nothing when connected to a motherboard. All computers require some sort of graphics solution whether it is integrated or dedicated, iGPUs are great if you want a simple PC that doesn’t break the bank.
Integrated Graphics Aren’t Meant For Gaming
Games are getting extremely complex with geometry, texture, and terrain data, and as newer games arise, they’re becoming extremely more GPU intensive. Even dedicated graphics cards struggle to handle certain games released today, so an integrated GPU will stand no chance even at the lowest graphical settings. Integrated graphics can serve as a nice backup GPU if your dedicated GPU fails, so they do have many uses.
Integrated graphics are more of a solution for laptops and desktops that aren’t processing intensive graphical information. Many laptops will feature integrated graphics as dedicated graphics can be quite power-consuming requiring bigger batteries and heavier cooling solutions. Most laptops aren’t made for gaming, so they will not have a dedicated graphics card installed.
Integrated graphics cards aren’t complete trash, they may be able to handle some older games depending on the integrated graphics you’re using. Intel has the best-integrated graphics, and with their latest UHD 770 graphics unit, you may be able to play games such as CSGO, League of Legends, and other older titles with little lag. Lowering the resolution can help as it reduces the impact it has on the RAM resulting in more FPS.
Performance Of Integrated Graphics (Benchmark)
The performance of integrated graphics can be measured up with dedicated graphics cards by using various benchmarking platforms. This should give you a general idea of where they stand in terms of gaming performance. Integrated graphics cards share resources with the CPU, this includes system memory, so if you have only 8GB of RAM, then your iGPU is really going to struggle.
The Intel UHD 770 and the Radeon RX Vega 11 Integrated graphics have pretty similar scores but far lower than the dedicated solutions. The UHD 770 and the RX Vega 11 integrated solutions have equivalent dedicated solutions that aren’t even used in bottom-tier gaming builds. The equivalent dedicated GPU is the GT 1030 and you’ll have the play on the lowest settings to get 60FPS in most games.
In games such as Forza Horizon 5, the UHD 770 will produce similar average frames compared to the GT 1030, but the gameplay on the UHD 770 will be far worse due to the lower 1% and 0.1% lows. Bad 1% and 0.1% lows cause stuttering and frame tearing which can ruin a gaming experience and make the game unplayable. Even though the average frame rates are practically the same, the gameplay is far different.
|Graphics Processing Unit||G3D Passmark Score (Higher Is Better)||Year Released|
|RX 6800 XT(Dedicated)||23185||2020|
|Intel UHD 770(Integrated)||2432||2022|
|Radeon RX Vega 11 PRD(Integrated)||2401||2018|
Integrated Graphics Are Good For Casual Use
Casual computing such as watching videos, working on assignments, and overall tasks that do not require intensive graphical processing will work perfectly fine on integrated solutions. It’s when you start pushing its limits with games such as GTA V, Far Cry, and Assassin’s creed that your iGPU will start to fall apart. Your integrated graphics can work perfectly fine even in 4K if you’re not running graphically intensive applications.
Integrated graphics can play older and non graphic intensive games pretty well such as Minecraft, CSGO, League Of Legends, and web browser games, this is because they’re not graphically intensive. And they can become playable if you really lower the graphical settings and resolutions, but the graphical detail will be so poor that it won’t be worth playing for most users.
If you wish to play the latest games at 1080P-4K, then you will require a dedicated graphics card which will obviously cost money but vastly improve your graphical capabilities past older games. You can put together a competent gaming build that can run games such as Assassins Creed, Battlefield, and GTA V at 1440P for under $750.
The verdict is that it depends on what types of games you play and what you define as good gaming. If you love playing games such as League of Legends and don’t require really high FPS, then integrated graphics can be perfect for you. Most gamers would like to play games at a decent graphical setting and resolution which most iGPUs won’t be able to do.
Integrated graphics aren’t meant for gaming, they’re meant to be a cost-effective solution for a PC to output a display. For gaming, dedicated graphics cards are your best option as they offer far superior graphical performance. The best-integrated graphics unit is equivalent to a really low-tier dedicated GPU, you can pick up a GTX 1060 for $200 used.