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I want to upgrade my computer to the new Sandy Bridge CPU's, which features integrated graphics.

However, you have to choose between two types of chipsets: H67 or P67.

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Now since I already own a GTX 460, so is there any added value to using the integrated graphics? Or are there any other good reasons for picking one model over the other?

Would it perhaps let me disable my GPU when I don't need it's additional power (like in notebooks) or would the integrated graphics simply allow me to add another screen?

Note: this will be for a desktop.

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While H67 allows for memory and graphics overclocking, it doesn’t support any amount of processor overclocking. If you want to overclock your Sandy Bridge, you need a P67 motherboard. –  Tom Wijsman Jan 3 '11 at 13:00
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I can't read the text on that image, perhaps I'm getting old. –  Nifle Jan 3 '11 at 13:06
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@Nifle, you can now click on it to enlarge it ;-) –  Ivo Flipse Jan 3 '11 at 14:01
    
Is this a laptop or a desktop? –  digitxp Jan 5 '11 at 3:00
    
If you have already have a dedicated GPU, then my question is this: Can you access the processing power of the IGP? If you write a program, can you use both GPU in parallel? My experience tells me that only one GPU is activated in any one boot, so IGP is dormant and useless. –  PhantomAct Mar 10 '11 at 9:30
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5 Answers

up vote 6 down vote accepted

No, just disable it. Integrated graphics will not compare to the external GPU you have, and it won't save power or allow you to add an extra screen. It's one or the other, not both at the same time.

Integrated graphics will be choppy and slow. Essentially a downgrade.

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That coupled with the lack of overclocking doesn't really make it worth the while then –  Ivo Flipse Jan 3 '11 at 13:06
    
Absolutely, I hadn't noticed that either. Definitely worth paying the extra money for an over clocking model. I have a 2.2Ghz Core 2 Duo Extreme that I'm pushing at 4.0Ghz in my machine. Speed is superb! –  hyperperforator Jan 3 '11 at 13:07
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"Integrated graphics will be choppy and slow." - I disagree with that. Sandy Bridge's integrated graphics have actually been shown in performance tests to outperform some mid/entry-level dedicated GPUs like the ATI Radeon HD 5450. –  nhinkle Jan 3 '11 at 17:21
    
Integrated graphics outperforms a $40 graphics card? Stop the presses! Anyway it doesn't apply in this particular user's case, since the GTX460 is roughly 7 times as powerful as the HD 5450 (Just based off a random benchmark list videocardbenchmark.net/gpu_list.php) –  davr Jan 3 '11 at 20:41
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@davr, My point is that saying "integrated graphics will be choppy and slow" is wrong. I agree that a GTX460 is a very powerful card and will be better than integrated graphics, but modern integrated graphics, particularly those in question, are far from "choppy and slow". –  nhinkle Jan 4 '11 at 0:27
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The integrated graphics will have its own connector, so if you wanted to save power by powering down the GPU (somehow?) you'd need to physically change the connectors. A KVM switch would also do the job.

The extra connector could be used to run another screen, but your GTX 460 can already power two. It can however be useful for diagnosing problems with your graphics card.

You should make the choice between the chipsets on another factor.

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Now since I already own a GTX 460, so is there any added value to using the integrated graphics?

Yes, if you ever have graphics problems with your dedicated card, you can use the integrated graphics to get you up and running so you can diagnose the problem and still use the PC until a you get it solved or the new card arrives.

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This is a good point.... but a $20 8400gs will provide the same capabilities if you start having issues. –  Kyle Apr 12 '11 at 13:57
    
You make a good point also Kyle. –  Moab Apr 12 '11 at 15:02
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That is like asking should I get a Hyundai Accent when I already own a Ferrari. The 460 is pretty good. Intel's Sandy Bridge is trying to compete with the lowly integrated GPU that comes with most motherboards.A serious gamer will still want a dedicated GPU on the new Sandy bridge systems.

Update:

if the question is h67 vs p67 chipset based boards:

1. P67 is the "better" chipset because it has overclocking support and native support for both Crossfire and SLI.

2. H67 chipsets allow you to use the processor's integrated graphics(P67 based chipsets do not!).

image from hardwarecanucks.com

image source

H67 based boards are cheaper, but similarly priced P67 based boards are available. See specifications for Gigabyte H67 based motherboard and P67 based motherboard

But, before deciding you will have to take into account the features of the actual motherboard in question.

Further Reading: http://www.hardwarecanucks.com/forum/hardware-canucks-reviews/39153-intel-sandy-bridge-core-i5-2500k-core-i7-2600k-processors-review-4.html

Sources: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Intel_chipsets

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I'm just wondering whether I want a motherboard or without the integrated graphics. The processor isn't going to change either way –  Ivo Flipse Jan 3 '11 at 14:52
    
@Ivo since you have a gtx 460, go for a P67 based motherboard, because you get overclocking. However if you do not want overclocking and want to have the comfort of a fall back incase your gtx 460 fails, go for the h67. Nothing much otherwise. –  abel Jan 3 '11 at 20:35
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At the moment it's pretty simple (sadly):

  • with H67 you’re able to use the CPU’s integrated GPU
  • with P67 you can’t. But only with this chipset you have the full overclocking potential
  • it seems you’ll need to buy an P67 in order to use SLI/CrossFire
  • There's a new chipset coming: Z68 which combines all positive effects of H67/P67.

So if you can wait, take the Z68 board.

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Thanks, but I fear the Z68 will be more expensive too in which case I'll just go for a P67. But thanks for the sharp remarks! –  Ivo Flipse Jan 13 '11 at 14:03
    
You're welcome and you might be right about the price. –  weeheavy Jan 13 '11 at 14:26
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