Are Integrated Graphics Good For Gaming?

are intel hd graphics good

Depending on your needs and the nature of your business, an integrated graphics card may or may not be adequate.

An integrated graphics card is sufficient if you use your PC for casual and office duties like browsing, word processing, casual photo and video editing, etc.

You will find an I-GPU inadequate if you are a professional photo and video editor. An I-GPU may be incredibly underpowered if you play video games professionally or avidly.

I will discuss whether integrated graphics cards are enough for gaming, casual use, and editing tasks in the following content.

What Is Integrated Graphics?


Because the graphics card is incorporated into the computer’s processor, the GPU and CPU share power with the integrated graphics card for ordinary PC tasks like online browsing, social media, and resource-light work like spreadsheets, document editing, and project management applications; integrated GPUs are best.

image of Intel Core i9 Chip

A computer’s CPU, or central processing unit, is responsible for carrying out the operations (via calculations) required to run your computer.

While a GPU (or graphics processing unit) functions similarly to a CPU, its primary responsibility is the processing of data and instructions related to graphics.

When a CPU and GPU are found on the same chip, this situation is referred to as integrated graphics. As a result, if you select a processor with integrated graphics, it will be capable of handling both standard CPU tasks and GPU tasks.

The computer has integrated graphics if the graphics processing unit (GPU) and the central processor unit (CPU) are housed on the same chip.

How Good Are Integrated Graphics?


Except for all the high-end CPUs, today’s CPUs all come equipped with an integrated GPU. Several good reasons why systems with integrated GPU models are likely the most popular. Your CPU’s integrated or built-in graphics can provide functional or even excellent performance.

CGI of Intel graphics chip

Everything relies on the games you wish to play, the acceptable graphical settings, and the age of your CPU. The critical thing you should focus on in this situation is gaming. For most common PC uses, integrated graphics will be perfectly adequate.

Professional tasks can also rely on a system’s GPU. These include rendering graphics, video editing, and GPU-accelerated computing using NVIDIA CUDA and OpenCL, among others. You’ll likely be aware if your workflow needs a strong GPU.

For everyday computer tasks like web browsing, media playback, video conferences, document creation, and photo editing, integrated graphics should be adequate. However, gaming is altogether different.

Which Games Will Run On Integrated Graphics?


Integrated graphics can’t handle 4K games with ray tracing; they can’t compete with GPUs. But with suitable games, they may be fun.

  1. Undertale: Explanation is hard. 90s RPG enthusiasts will like the game’s characters and music. I recommend replaying Undertale to uncover its secrets.
  2. Minecraft: A worldwide all-ages hit. Minecraft is popular because it runs on smartphones, laptops, Xbox, and low-end PCs.
  3. Don’t Starve: Randomly-generated, art-styled survival game. You play a scientist who must survive in the wild. You must avoid dying.
  4. Papers, Please: is rare. Your dystopian European persona approves border crossings. Passports and entrance permits are required.
  5. The Binding of Isaac: A roguelike dungeon crawler. The game is well-optimized and runs smoothly on integrated graphics. Two expansions introduce characters, equipment, and map layouts.
  6. Spelunky: Classic platformer. Random platformer roguelike. You play a spelunker who chases treasure in caverns.
  7. Cuphead: 1930s-style side-scrolling action game. Cuphead and Mugman are your characters. They quarrel after losing a devil’s deal.
  8. Game Dev Tycoon: A fun game about game dev. No micromanagement, yet a challenge. Grow your game startup from a garage to a multi-billion dollar enterprise.
  9. Mountain: Not a game in the traditional sense, but a pleasant diversion about a vulnerable mountain region.
  10. Aperture Tag: The Initiative to Test Paint Guns Fun, inexpensive small game that builds on Portal 2’s numerous colors.
  11. The Binding of Isaac – Rebirth: This roguelike dungeon crawler is a lot of fun, but it can be quite challenging!
  12. Stardew Valley: Harvest Moon enthusiasts will enjoy it. The relaxing visuals and captivating movement are simple but beautiful.
  13. Every Counter-Strike game: CS is for those who want to play shooters but don’t have high FPS. Competitive community with a casual following.
  14. Democracy 3: A politics game: Great entertainment that shows no matter your politics, someone will kill you.
  15. FTL: A rapid real-time tactical game. You operate a spaceship delivering important intelligence to the Fed though being hunted by a rebel fleet.
  16. The Escapists: A cute little game about breaking out of jail features multiplayer!
  17. DLC Quest: A tongue-in-cheek game about DLC: Play the game to earn money for DLC!
  18. Gods Will Be Watching: A grim science fiction game in which a band of cyber rebels fights an oppressive government.
  19. Grow Home: A pleasant plant-growing game that requires a controller to play.
  20. Organ Trail: Director’s Cut – Throwback to the Oregon Trail games, navigate a zombie-infested America to reach Oregon.

How Far Can You Push Integrated Graphics?


Everyone else should feel comfortable using graphics incorporated into their devices. It is feasible to use it for gaming in a more relaxed setting.

ps4 controller along with a gaming laptop
Credits: Unsplash

Most Adobe products don’t even come close to requiring something like that. Also, for your processor to be capable of handling 4K video, it needs to have been manufactured within the last few years.

Unless you have specific requirements, the gains of integrated graphics, which include a smaller device size and improved battery life, will likely outweigh the advantages of discrete graphics, which include a higher resolution but shorter battery life.

Are 4K And VR Gaming Possible With Integrated Graphics?


It is necessary to make some common trade-offs to get a playable experience on integrated graphics. First, playing games at resolutions higher than 1080p, much less 4K, is simply not an option.

It is advised to start with a fundamental resolution of 720p and adjust the resolution under the results your integrated graphics provide.

a guy playing fps games on laptop
Credits: Fredrick Tendong

Games are not really the focus of integrated graphics. Although they are excellent for very light gaming, you should get a dedicated graphics card if you are an avid player.

You won’t have access to every game and must reduce the detail settings. In many instances, 4K gaming is prohibited.

How To Know If A PC Has Integrated Graphics?


Check the connections on the back of your desktop computer to see whether there is an inbuilt graphics card. Locate the monitor cord that links the computer to the monitor. Look at the location of the computer’s cable connection.

Your computer has an integrated graphics card if the VGA, HDMI, or DVI connector is close to the mouse, keyboard, and USB ports.

However, if the connector is found in one of the expansion slots, it is a removable graphics card rather than an integrated video card.

The majority of Intel CPUs have inside graphics. However, CPU models whose last letter is “f” will not support integrated graphics. It is also beneficial to know that there is no integrated graphics capability in the 9th generation of Intel processors.

My Final Thoughts On It!

Whether an integrated graphics card is adequate depends on your use case. I-GPUs are undoubtedly insufficient for AAA and high-level games. They are also inadequate for expert designing and editing tasks.

An integrated graphics card is adequate for regular, casual gaming playing popular online games with minimal graphics and casual editing.

However, it is crucial to keep in mind that not all integrated graphics processing units (I-GPUs) are created equally. Even though more recent integrated graphics processing units (I-GPUs) are fantastic for casual gaming, older I-GPUs, such as the Intel HD 5000 and 4000, should not be used

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)


Douglas Crawford
Douglas Crawford

A hardcore gamer who plays games 24/7 just decided to share his gaming passion on this platform. Meet your best friend and a nerd gaming buddy. I mostly write anything related to graphics cards, monitors, and games.