The Intel HD Graphics 2500 (or Ivy Bridge GT1) is an integrated graphics card in the Ivy Bridge codenamed desktop processors. It is the successor the the Intel HD Graphics 2000 in the Sandy Bridge CPUs and performs between the old HD 2000 and 3000 GPU (see benchmarks below). Usually it is used in the cheaper desktop Ivy bridge CPUs. The mobile version is simply called Intel HD Graphics and integrated in the Pentium and Celeron line.
Compared to the faster HD Graphics 4000, the 2500 one features less Execution Units (6 versus 16) and only one texture sampler. Therefore, the performance is clearly worse and only suited for low demanding gaming. Intel states a 10 to 15% higher performance compared to the old Sandy Bridge based HD Graphics 2000. Therefore, only older casual games with low requirements are playable with the HD 2500.
A speciality of the Ivy Bridge GPUs is that 4x MSAA is supported in hardware now. However, 2x is only supported through software. The algorithm to support 2x is going through the 4x pipeline with a software algorithm, so performance is similar to 4x MSAA.
The integrated video decoder called Multi Format Codec Engine (MFX) was also improved and should allow even simultaneus 4K video decoding. DXVAChecker lists MPEG2, VC1, WMV9, and H264 as supported codecs. QuickSync for fast transcoding of videos was also optimized for higher performance and better image quality.
Another new feature is the support for up to 3 independent displays as AMD offers with theirs Eyefinity support (up to 6 displays).
Due to the 22nm 3D Tri-Gate production process, the power consumption is relatively low (the development was focused on performance per Watt).
The Intel HD Graphics (Bay Trail) is a low-end integrated Bay Trail graphics card found in certain Atom models (Z3770), nettops (J2850) and notebook SoCs (N3510). It supports DirectX 11 and is based on the Ivy Bridge GPU. Clock rates and shader cores, however, are considerably lower.
Compared to Ivy Bridge, which offers either 6 or 16 Execution Units, the HD Graphics (Bay Trail) comes with only 4 EUs. The core clock is significantly lower as well. Depending on the specific model, the maximum Turbo Boost is 896 MHz or less and the memory controller can support DDR3(L), DDR3L-RS or LPDDR3 in single- or dual-channel operation.
The fastest notebook models equipped with this GPU nearly match the performance of the HD Graphics (Sandy Bridge) and the AMD Radeon HD 6310. Therefore, older and less demanding Windows games like World of Warcraft or Half-Life 2 can be played fluently in very low settings. Performance is not sufficient for most modern titles.
Compared to competing ARM SoCs, Bay Trail outperforms the Adreno 320 (which can be found in different Qualcomm SoCs like the Snapdragon 600) and offers a performance similar to the Tegra 4 GPU. That is enough power to run even the most demanding Android games smoothly in very high resolutions as of 2013.
The integrated video decoder supports all popular codecs such as MPEG2, H.264, VC1, VP8 and MVC and is suitable for resolutions up to 4K up to 100 Mbit/s. The user can connect up to two displays via HDMI 1.4 (max. 1920 x 1080) or DisplayPort 1.2 (max. 2560 x 1600). Another new feature is the support for Wireless Display and Quick Sync, Intel's fast and power efficient H-264 hardware encoder. Some of these features are not available on all models.
Depending on the model, the power consumption of the entire SoC is somewhere between 2 and 10 W. The most efficient versions are therefore suitable for passively cooled tablets, whereas faster variants are used in larger subnotebooks with active cooling.
The Intel HD Graphics (Cherry Trail) is an integrated graphics card in the Cherry-Trail SoCs (e.g. Atom x7-Z8700). Based on a Broadwell GPU (Intel Gen8) and supports DirectX 11.2. Depending on the SoC offers 12 or 16 EUs.
Atom x7-Z8700: 16 EUs @ 200 - 600 MHz, dual-channel memory Atom x5-Z8500: 12 EUs @ 200 - 600 MHz, dual-channel memory Atom x5-Z8300: 12 EUs @ 200 - 500 MHz, single-channel memory
In Windows, gaming is limited to less demanding or quite old games. Using Android, even high end 3D games should run fluently. For example Team Fortress 2 was running on the Surface 3 (x7-Z8700) only in lowest settings and 1280x720 fluently (11 - 69 fps range).
The integrated video decoder is able to display even 4K videos (H.264 tested) fluently.
The Intel HD Graphics GPU in our review sample of the MS Surface 3 (Atom x7-Z8700) only supported DisplayPort 1.1 as it seems, as 4K (3840x2160) with 30 Hz was the maximum Refresh Rate we could achieve (no 60 Hz selectable with the pre-installed drivers).
Average Benchmarks Intel HD Graphics 2500 → 100%n=13
Average Benchmarks Intel HD Graphics (Bay Trail) → 54%n=13
Average Benchmarks Intel HD Graphics (Cherry Trail) → 89%n=13
- Range of benchmark values for this graphics card - Average benchmark values for this graphics card * Smaller numbers mean a higher performance 1 This benchmark is not used for the average calculation
The following benchmarks stem from our benchmarks of review laptops. The performance depends on the used graphics memory, clock rate, processor, system settings, drivers, and operating systems. So the results don't have to be representative for all laptops with this GPU. For detailed information on the benchmark results, click on the fps number.