What Are Integrated Graphics? & What Are They Used For?

If you think there is only one type of computer graphics card, you are dead wrong. Computer GPUs are classified into a couple of types namely Discrete Graphics Cards, Integrated Graphics, and a few more.

what is an integrated graphics card
Image Source: Unsplash

Unnecessary to say but there is no competition between Integrated Graphics and Dedicated Graphics Cards. There’s no doubt that Integrated Graphics have improved a lot with release of every new generation of processors. However, they still lack the Dedicated Graphics Card level performance.

Since the concept of Discrete Graphics Cards has been discussed in one of the previous articles, I will turn your attention to the Integrated Graphics in this post.

What Are Integrated Graphics?

Integrated Graphics are GPU Chips that are installed into the motherboard or the Central Processing Unit (CPU) of a computer by the manufacturer. The Integrated Graphics act as a Dedicated Graphics Card substitute for a computer to display images, videos, or animation and generating graphics for every single digital object you see on the screen. It is also important to understand that Integrated GPUs use resources from the RAM and the CPU to perform graphics-related tasks.

Integrated Graphics are an affordable and energy-efficient graphics solution for desktops and laptops. integrated Graphics has no issues in processing mid-level graphics including high-definition media files and applications.

Characteristics Of Integrated Graphics


After going this down in the post, you now know that Integrated Graphics are built into the CPUs or Motherboards from the manufacturer, that’s why you don’t need to spend any extra dime on graphics as you’ll be purchasing a processor that already has a GPU in it.

Small Form Factor

As they are built inside the central processing unit, they don’t take up extra space when comparing them with the traditional Graphics Cards. If the technology behind Integrated Graphics wasn’t born, we would’ve witnessed bulkier/heavy laptops that drew a whole lot of power.

No Heat Issues

It is a widely accepted fact that heat issues are quite common in electronic devices. A PC component dealing with heat issues can lose its operational strength as well as a few years of its lifespan. As Integrated Graphics draw lesser power, they usually produce lesser heat.

Drawbacks Of Integrated Graphics

Integrated Graphics carry multiple drawbacks that limit the graphics processing capabilities of a PC. For instance, they aren’t exactly what you’ll call high-performing Graphics Solutions. I will put it this way, there is no way you can expect Integrated Graphics to perform graphically-demanding operations.

An additional negative trait, you can’t upgrade Integrated Graphics themselves. I would just say, you better don’t even think of it, period. However, you can indeed buy a dedicated graphics card for your system and upgrade your GPU.

Integrated Graphics are a bad option to render 3D images or videos. Given their limited capacity, they can’t render 3D content. If you are someone who has to work on 3D applications, then you better stop using your Integrated Graphics and buy your system a dedicated Graphics Card.

Uses Of Integrated Graphics

Depending on your usage, Integrated Graphics can be the best or worst asset of your computer.

Integrated Graphics are usually intended to help you get a display on your screen and be able to perform some basic graphics processing tasks. Yes, you can view HD Images and watch 1080P videos, but don’t expect to be playing videos in 8K Resolution.

The Integrated Graphics are also great for playing old or less-demanding offline and online video games that don’t require a lot of resources to run.

Frequently Asked Questions

Wrap Up

If your computer activities don’t include playing ultra HD media files or applications and AAA games, then Integrated Graphics are more than enough for you.

Take my example, since I don’t have to deal with high graphics processing during my personal time on the computer, I am pretty satisfied with the Integrated Graphics of my home computer.

Unless heavy graphics processing is your requirement, you don’t need to have a Dedicated Graphics Card installed on the computer.

Share It!
Bilal Khan
Bilal Khan

Bilal might look like a Bearded Caucasian right out of a Viking movie but trust me he's a native Pakistani. He has a long list of hobbies among which staying updated on the Latest Technology and Hardware happens to be on the top. If you are looking for detailed hardware explanations through no tricky terminologies, follow him to read Tech Content curated perfectly for the human brain.

Articles: 87
Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *