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).
Depending on the processor, the HD graphics offers a different base and Turbo Boost clock speed. Currently there are three different models:
Power Saving e.g. Celeron 847: base 350MHz, Turbo 800MHz
Celeron e.g. Celeron B810: base 650MHz, Turbo 950MHz
Pentium e.g. Pentium B950: base 650MHz, Turbo 1100MHz
Furthermore, the slow CPU performance of some models may influence the games a lot. For example, although the GPU in the Celeron B710 differs not much from the Pentium B950, the gaming performance was clearly worse and many games were unplayable.
As the Intel HD Graphics 3000 and 2000, the processor graphics card is able to use part of the last level cache of the processor (2MB usually for the entry level CPUs). This could be seen as a small amount of very fast dedicated memory.
Altought 2x Antialiasing (AA) is supported, the chip is as fast as when rendering 4x AA. In the Unigine Valley benchmark a similar HD 3000 i7-2637M for example reached the same score with 2x AA and 4x AA.
The feature set compared to the HD Graphics 3000 is also reduced in these entry level CPUs. E.g. Intel Quick Sync (for de- and encoding of HD videos), In Tru 3D, Clear Video HD are usually deactivated.
The Intel HD Graphics 4000 (GT2) is a processor graphics card that is included in the Ivy Bridge processors of 2012 (3rd generation of core, e.g. Core i7-3770). The base clock can be automatically overclocked using Turbo Boost technology. Depending on the processor model, the base and turbo clock rate may differ greatly resulting in different graphics performance of ULV parts compared to high-end desktop and laptop quad-core parts.
Compared to the Intel HD Graphics 3000 in Sandy Bridge CPUs, the HD 4000 card was completely redesigned and offers improved DirectX 11 capable shaders, Hardware Tessellation, a dedicated level 3 cache (before the Last Level Cache LLC of the CPU) and DirectCompute support. The IPC (instructions per clock) can therefore be even 2x as fast as with Sandy Bridge and overall up to 60% more performance (3DMark Vantage) should be possible.
First benchmarks position the HD Graphics 4000 (in a fast quad core desktop CPU) on a level with a dedicated Nvidia GeForce GT 330M and therefore above the AMD processor graphics Radeon HD 6620G. In our extensive tests with games the HD Graphics 4000 was able to beat the HD 6620G in a fast Core i7-3820QM by about 15%. In the slower i7-3610QM and a dual core i5 it was on a similar level as the 6620G. Therefore, casual gamers that wont mind reducing the quality settings in high end games, may be happy with the performance of the HD Graphics 4000. Beware, that the HD Graphics 4000 is used with different clock speeds depending on the CPU model. The ULV CPUs (Core ix-3xx7U) for example feature lower clock speeds and cant maintain the Turbo frequency as good as the 35 - 55 Watt models. Therefore, the ULV version is about 30% slower on average.
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 (depends on how the HD 4000 is used in the laptop - maybe only with a DisplayPort / eDP) as AMD offers with theirs Eyefinity support (up to 6 displays). DisplayPort 1.1 (max 2560x1600) and HDMI 1.4 (max 1920x1080 without hacks) are supported by the chip according to Intel.
Due to the 22nm 3D Tri-Gate production process, the power consumption should be relatively low (the development was focused on performance per Watt). The TDP of the whole package (including processor and memory controller) varies between 18 Watt (ULV) up to 45 Watt (mobile quad core) for the consumer laptop CPUs.
Average Benchmarks Intel HD Graphics (Cherry Trail) → 100%n=7
Average Benchmarks Intel HD Graphics (Sandy Bridge) → 94%n=7
Average Benchmarks Intel HD Graphics 4000 → 196%n=7
- 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.