Intel Arc GPU vs Intel Integrated Graphics: What’s the Difference?

Intel Arc graphics and Intel integrated graphics are part of one single brand, Intel. However, they considerably differ from each other on various factors. Let’s get started and find out what they are and what makes them best for their own category. 

What is Intel Integrated Graphics?

Integrated graphics means the GPU is built on the processor. The graphics hardware doesn’t have a separate memory slot for the graphics unit. In integrated graphics systems, the GPU shares the memory with the GPU. Also, since graphics are built on the processor, they consume less power and generate less heat. Integrated graphics are available in small form factors such as laptops. However, you may find them in desktop models too. 

Benefits of Intel Integrated Graphics (Intel Iris Xe MAX Graphics 100)

  • Affordable: Since these graphics are integrated into the CPU, it removes the need for a separate GPU. As a result, users save considerable money. Cost-effectiveness: Since these graphics have been integrated into the CPU, it eliminates the need for a separate graphics card, which can save users money.
  • Power Efficiency: Integrated graphics are more power efficient than discrete graphics, meaning they consume less power. It helps reduce energy consumption and extend battery life in laptops. 
  • Compatibility: Intel integrated graphics are compatible with most software and operating systems, which makes them an ideal choice for many users.
  • Occupy Less Space: Integrated graphics don’t need a separate graphics card. As a result, these save significant space in a computer or laptop case.
  • Optimal Performance: Integrated graphics may not offer the same performance as dedicated graphics but deliver optimal performance for many tasks, including basic-level gaming. 

What is Discrete Graphics (Intel Arc GPU)? 

Unlike integrated graphics, discrete graphics are separate from the processor. Discrete graphics have their own memory and don’t share it with the CPU. Also, discrete graphics consume more power and generate significant heat. However, they have inbuilt memory and their own power. As a result, they offer better performance than integrated graphics. Discrete graphics are most commonly available on PCs. But laptops may also contain these graphics. 

Benefits of Intel Arc GPU 

  • Powerful Performance: These Graphics are designed to provide highly graphic-demanding applications such as gaming, content creation etc. 
  • Ray Tracing Units: The Intel Arc supports ray tracing that renders appropriate lighting and reflections in visuals in games and other applications, making them appear more realistic than ever. 
  • AI Accelerated Hardware: Intel Arc GPU has dedicated hardware for AI acceleration, making it capable of running machine learning and AI workloads. 
  • Support Media Capabilities: Intel Arc GPUs come with the latest media codecs, such as AV1. It offers efficient and high-quality decoding, encoding and video playback.
  • Multi-display Support: Intel Arc GPUs can support multiple displays simultaneously, allowing users to connect multiple monitors and set up a full-blown computing machine.


Intel Arc Graphics vs Integrated Graphics


Parameters Integrated Graphics for laptop  Integrated graphics for desktop Intel Arc graphics for 


Integrated graphics for desktop
Name Intel Iris Xe MAX Graphics 100 for laptops Intel Iris Xe MAX Graphics 100 for Desktops Intel Arc 3 A350M

Intel Arc 3 A370M

Intel Arc 5 A550M

Intel Arc 7 A730M

Intel Arc 7 A770M

Intel Arc 3 A310

Intel Arc 3 A380

Intel Arc 7 A750

Intel Arc 7 A770

Memory Uses shared memory with CPU Uses shared memory with CPU 4-12 GB 4-12 GB
Purpose For everyday computing tasks and entry-level gaming For everyday computing tasks and entry-level gaming For high-performing gaming and graphics-intensive tasks For high-performing gaming and graphics-intensive tasks
Release Date Integrated graphics release date: October 31, 2020  Integrated graphics release date: October 31, 2020 Intel Arc GPU Release date: March 30, 2022 Intel Arc GPU Release date:

October 12, 2022


Intel Arc GPU vs Intel Integrated Graphics: Runthrough 

  • Purpose: Intel-integrated graphics are GPUs integrated into the CPU chip itself. These graphics can perform basic computing functions like web browsing, media streaming etc. On the other hand, Intel Arc graphics are discrete graphics used for high-level gaming and graphics-intensive tasks like video editing, 3D rendering etc.
  • Performance: Intel integrated graphics are suitable for entry-level gaming, but they aren’t as powerful as discrete ones to offer enough power to demanding games and professional applications.  These graphics enhance the gaming experience using advanced technologies such as ray tracing and AI-based upscaling. As a result, Intel Arc GPUs are much more powerful than Intel integrated graphics.


  • Cost: Intel integrated graphics laptops are comparatively affordable, whereas intel arc gaming laptops & PCs are more expensive because they require a dedicated graphics slot in the motherboard. Integrated graphics are built into the CPU, so the cost of buying a separate graphics card reduces. 


If you want to understand what these graphics are all about. Just remember that Intel arc graphics are high-performing discrete GPUs designed for gaming and professional graphics tasks, whereas Intel integrated graphics are basic GPUs with decent computing capacities.