How To Disable Your Integrated Graphics (Turn Off iGPU)

CG Director Author Christopher Harperby Christopher Harper   /  Published 

Wondering how to disable your integrated graphics? You’ve come to the right place!

Besides just telling you the main two methods you can use to disable your iGPU, I’ll also be discussing the benefits and, yes, even drawbacks of doing so before wrapping up this article.

But first things first: let’s establish how you can disable that little iGPU chip that resides inside your CPU.

How Do You Disable Your Integrated Graphics?

Method 1: Disable In Device Manager

The first and easiest method to disable your integrated graphics is through Windows’ very own Device Manager.

To open up Device Manager, just…type “Device Manager” in your Start Menu, and hit Enter!

Device Manager

Once you’ve opened up Device Manager, locate the dropdown for Display adapters and open it up.

You should see two entries: one for your iGPU, and one for your discrete GPU. Right-click the entry for your iGPU and click “Disable device” in order to turn it off within Windows!

Disable Device Option

For the majority of scenarios, this should work perfectly fine. If you want to be extra thorough or aren’t using Windows, though, proceed to the next option.

Warning! It probably goes without saying, but:

You should only disable your iGPU if you actually have a discrete GPU and your Monitor(s) are hooked up to it and not your Motherboard; Disabling your iGPU while your active Monitor is hooked up to your Motherboard display connector (and is subsequently fed by the iGPU), will result in blackness 😉

Method 2: Disable In BIOS

BIOS settings

To disable your iGPU to the point where your OS doesn’t even detect it, just head into your BIOS or UEFI and locate the appropriate setting for toggling your integrated graphics on and off.

Provided you don’t plug your video cable into your motherboard I/O instead of your graphics card, this should wholly disable your iGPU without issue!

Note: In case you’ve made the mistake and disabled the iGPU in your BIOS, but your Monitor was hooked up to it and you don’t have a discrete GPU, you’ll need to reset your BIOS / clear CMOS to re-enable it.

The Benefits of Disabling Your iGPU

The main benefit of disabling your iGPU if you aren’t actively using it is that you’ll free up more resources for your CPU, especially RAM resources.

You see, iGPUs are reliant on some amount of your main PC’s RAM in order to function since they still need VRAM of some kind to work. Even though desktop RAM is comparatively slow for the purposes of VRAM, it works in this scenario since the CPU has such a close, high-speed connection to your RAM.

Besides that, there isn’t that much of a reason unless your iGPU is being forced on in applications where you don’t want it to be.

This is more likely to be a problem on laptops, where both an iGPU and discrete GPU are built-in and the iGPU is used to conserve battery life for desktop use, web browsing, and other lightweight applications.

Unfortunately, configurations like this can sometimes enable the iGPU in scenarios where you don’t want it, like games. They can even result in outright crashing with certain incompatible games and applications.

Chances are high one of the above issues is what brought you to this article to begin with. But are there any reasons for keeping your integrated graphics enabled, even if you do have a discrete GPU?

Why You Should Keep Integrated Graphics Enabled

Well, for laptop users, you can definitely save battery life with an iGPU enabled.

You’ll just want to dive into your GPU settings to make sure that your discrete GPU is set as the preferred device in the applications where it’s needed.

To do this in Windows, type Graphics settings into Start and locate “Graphics performance preference”.

Windows graphics settings

Click “Browse” to add an application of your choice, then manually select your preferred GPU for that given application.

In the above example screenshots, I’ve set OBS to always use my High-performance discrete GPU, my GTX 1070, instead of my weaker Intel UHD Graphics iGPU.

Graphics preference

Doing this should fix any actual problems that are being caused by your iGPU being enabled.

But what if you aren’t a laptop user? Are there any reasons to keep your iGPU enabled, even if you don’t have to worry about battery life?

Yes, actually! In fact, I especially recommend it if you happen to be a video editor using an Intel CPU.

As covered by Petar in his extended CPU For Video Editing Guide, Intel iGPUs are absolutely excellent at video encoding and decoding, arguably better than most discrete GPUs.

Intel Quick Sync Video

Source: Intel

At least in certain scenarios, mainly ones where you’re working with modern, high-resolution, high color gamut camera footage. They’re also good for timeline performance. More on this in his article.

Many editing and rendering applications will support putting your iGPU to work in the background, even if you’re primarily working on a discrete GPU. There’s no reason to let that extra graphics horsepower go to waste if you can make good use of it!

FAQ

How do integrated graphics perform compared to discrete graphics?

As one might expect, discrete graphics generally perform better than integrated graphics.

Having a whole graphics card set aside for graphics rather than a smaller chip on an existing CPU gives you much more headroom in terms of power, cooling, and physical space for GPU cores.

Type of GPUs (Graphics Processing Unit)

iGPUs aren’t really made with cutting-edge performance in mind: instead, they’re meant to be low-cost, low-power consumption graphics chips that get the job done for basic desktop use and productivity.

However, that doesn’t mean that iGPUs aren’t good in their own right, especially if you’re dealing with inflated GPU pricing or just want to get a PC and save up for a future discrete graphics upgrade.

As covered by Alex Glawion in his iGPU vs dGPU breakdown, iGPUs are starting to become surprisingly competitive with entry-level discrete graphics cards, especially on laptops.

What are the best CPUs with integrated graphics?

Curious about existing iGPU solutions? I’ve written an extended guide on the best CPUs with integrated graphics already, but I can give you some parting tips before we leave off.

Generally speaking, I would recommend Intel CPUs with integrated graphics for video editors and AMD CPUs with integrated graphics for everyone else, especially gamers.

As discussed prior, Intel iGPUs have great media encoders for video editing and timeline performance. However, Intel iGPU raw performance generally falls behind that of their AMD rivals, with AMD iGPUs regularly pushing much higher raw numbers in applications like gaming.

Over to You

And we’re good! I hope that this article helped you disable your integrated graphics if you needed to, or helped you fix whatever problems they were causing you without disabling them if you can still make use of them in some way.

Leave a comment below and let me know what you did with your iGPU, and feel free to head there or to the CGDirector Forums with any other graphics-related questions or concerns you might have.

Until then or until next time, have a good one! And if you’re going to disable your iGPU, I would recommend doing so in your BIOS to prevent any funny problems that may crop up with Windows.

CGDirector is Reader-supported. When you buy through our links, we may earn an affiliate commission.

Christopher Harper - post author

I have been a passionate devotee to technology since the age of 3, and to writing since before I even finished high school.

These passions have since combined into a living in my adulthood, and has made writing about myself very satisfying.

If you need any assistance, leave a comment below: it’s what I’m here for.

0 Comments

Also check out our Forum for feedback from our Expert Community.

Leave a Reply