Intel GMA HD and OpenGL

Intel does support OpenGL 3 on 32-bit and 64-bit versions of Windows XP, VIsta, 7.

um no. Intel GPU’s do support some extensions that are core in GL3 (floating point textures and framebuffer objects), but GL3 (native integer support, texture buffer objects, uniform buffer objects and transform feedback), not a freaking chance, take a look at…ets-and-beyond/.

The new Sandy Bridge GPU’s are supposed to have GL3 support (I remember coming across that one day), but the laptops with Intel GPU’s out now are, more or less, like a epic low-level mobile GeForce6.

Intel has a historically long record of poor GPU’s: poor drivers and poor performance. I would love for Sandy Bridge to prove me wrong, but I am not holding my breath.

Hmmm, I’m pretty sure that someone else posted it as a reply to another thread, but I’m prepared to stand corrected.

If I go to Fry’s, almost every computer will have 4-6 CPU cores, at least 4 gb RAM, and an Intel integrated piece of [censored]. Any computer that has a midrange GPU is marketed as a “gaming machine” and costs an extra $500.

All they’d have to do is put a GEForce 8800, a card from four years ago that costs less than $100, in any of those machines and it would be a gaming monster.

None of the computers sold have a modern GPU, like a GEForce 480 or even anything as fast as a GEForce 9800.

What the hell is wrong with the manufacturers? Games are one of the biggest drivers of hardware improvement, yet consumers are being given no choice. No wonder PC sales are dropping and consoles are taking over.

What I really don’t understand is why do they load these machines up with CPU cores and RAM the user won’t need, an totally ignore the GPU? I don’t buy that the idea that the market doesn’t care about games.

Extra hardware costs extra money. It is a simple and clear fact.

You can’t put a desktop graphics cards into a notebook. They require too much power, dissipate to much heat and require too much space inside a case.

Once again you are trying to put desktop cards inside notebooks. :slight_smile:
There are many notebooks with powerful cards. For example: Dell Studio XPS 15 notebooks have Nvidia GeForce GT 435M with 2GB of dedicated memory. GT 435M is a Fermi based card (GL4.1 compatible) with 2GB of RAM. Most of us don’t have card with 2GB even in the desktop machines.

And there are also netbooks with powerful cards. Asus eeePC 1015PM has NV ION2 dedicated graphics (along with Intel GMA 3150). Its price is about $350, which is fantastic for an Atom N550 (dual core with hyper-threading) based netbook.

Says who? There are plenty of gaming notebooks. This is not the place where I should list all available offerings.

Because many of notebook users don’t need powerful graphics, but appreciate long battery life. New OSes (like Win7) require at least 2GB of RAM in order to function properly. And CPU power is newer enough. :slight_smile:

I just wanted to mention that I was able to return my sons Toshiba L635 laptop for refund. I then was able to buy another L635, one which is made exclusively for Staples by Toshiba. What caught my eye was not only that it was i5 (the old one was i3) but also that it had ATI Mobility Radeon HD 5470 Graphics, it was a brand new model and was on promotion with $100 off so I got it at the same price as the i3 one :slight_smile:

Anyway, I was happy to discover that Minecraft runs perfectly out of the box with no OpenGL issues so far.

I got a call from Toshiba support to say that they are still working on the original L635 and the OpenGl issue. They believe that it should work with the i3 which was installed in that particular laptop. They promised to let me know if they find a solution.

And I was talking about just Sandy Bridge, that fully supports 3.0

To be fair, it’s only the Windows drivers that are bad.


The situation seems to be changing with AMD’s Fusion, but for now:

I use a laptop I bought in January 2008, over three years ago. I have since upgraded CPU, RAM and HDD. It still has the original Intel® 965GM. It will run for 5 hours on the battery, when doing e.g. programming work (which includes occassional periods of full CPU utilization when compiling).
That GeForce 8800 you suggest would alone drain the battery in far less time than the whole system does now. I bought a laptop because I want mobility, which includes running on the battery for a long time.
The GPU gives me OpenGL 2.1, and quite some additional extensions; I have not encountered any driver bugs or stability problems in my current setup.


Bullshit. I can buy a GPU at retail prices for less than $100 that would give 10-20 times the performance and have working drivers. You don’t think Dell could get a better deal than that when buying in massive quantities, and that consumers would pay an extra $50 to have a computer that works as advertised?

You can’t put a desktop graphics cards into a notebook. They require too much power, dissipate to much heat and require too much space inside a case.

I’m talking about desktop machines.

Once again you are trying to put desktop cards inside notebooks. :slight_smile:

Remind me about the part where I mentioned notebooks?

OK, here’s the story. The likes of Dell, HP, etc primarily sell to business customers. For the most part, business customers do not need any graphics performance beyond that required to draw the Windows desktop and a few office apps.

A decent-ish GPU that outperforms Intel stuff may be had for only $20-$30 extra perhaps, but even that price can’t compete with the Intel stuff. If you’re buying 1000 PCs then it’s a cost of $20,000 to $30,000 extra. And when a seller is trying to undercut the competition that extra $20,000 to $30,000 is a risk that they just cannot afford to take. They’re probably already on a very tight profit margin and it may even be enough to push them into loss territory. Not gonna happen.

The other major customer base is casual users. These are people who just want to browse the internet, update their Facebook, read their email, maybe watch a few DVDs, keep their shopping lists, organise fixtures for their football club, download some MP3s, and so on. Stuff regular people do with their computer in other words (and I didn’t even mention porn!) They don’t actually need any graphics perf either - the most graphically intense thing they do with their computer is play solitaire.

Taken together these make up the vast majority of customers who buy PCs or laptops with Intel graphics in. These are the customer base.

So now we come to customers who do have a need for better graphics perf. Enthusiasts, some programmers, the game industry (be it hobbyist, indie or professional), gamers themselves, CAD users, etc. A specialist market (even moreso in the case of gamers now that consoles are dominating more and more).

Sometimes you get stung. You don’t do your research, you don’t check the spec, you underestimate what you’ll be using the machine for, you don’t ask the right questions, you let the sales person pull a smooth one on you, whatever. It hurts and you can be mad about it, but hopefully the damage done isn’t too great.

But you learn your lesson. And you say to yourself: “the next time I want a machine with decent graphics perf, I’ll freakin’ well buy a machine with decent graphics perf”.

Ok, mhagian, you wrote lots of obvious stuff but it’s not the topic of this thread. My problem is why Intel is lying to their customers that Intel GMA HD fully supports OpenGL while it clearly does not.

Well ATI did it - and got away with it - for a long time as well; a time during which they were consistently in the top 2 players on the market. Back in the early days of consumer-level 3D acceleration almost every manufacturer did it. Hell, it could even be argued that NVIDIA still do it owing to their fairly lax acceptance of non-compliant code (making NVIDIA more or less worthless for developing on too, IMO).

In other words it’s really nothing new.

To be honest - and I know it’s cold comfort - if an app vendor is targetting a customer base that it knows uses Intels, then the app vendor should ensure that their program runs at least tolerably on Intels. And the vendor should be banging on Intel’s door and yelling at them all the time too, because making the customer be the one who suffers in both the short term and the long term is never a good idea.

Hi…I see this post is old… I’m 16 and am interested in OpenGl…I just bought a new laptop- an Asus a52f…it’s nice, And It’s just about what I can afford…I know the Intel GMA HD graphics are crap…I wanted to get a Dell vostro with ATI 6540, but it’s alittle out of my price range…My soul purpose was to build indie OPenGL games on the machine, and now it looks like I have a £350 paper weight- my old laptop Is just as fast(HP NC4200)… There is NO excuse for intel to be shipping such [censored] drivers.and it makes me angry to see that there pure lazyness is making these laptops extremely low in performance…([censored] intel)

Intel have a track record of not supporting OpenGL properly on all of their previous products.

On the other hand, a little research would have shown you that - and saved you a lot of money :frowning:

If you are stuck with the laptop there are two things you could try:

  1. Sell the laptop to a friend and purchase one with nVidia or AMD graphics
  2. Attempt Direct3D development instead.

I know option 2 sounds bad, but Intel do support it properly and the newer generation of chips are capable.

  1. Use GNU/Linux.


Too bad Intel state everywhere that their products support OpenGL. It’s not so easy to find such information.

By the way, still no solution for my problems. :slight_smile:

How is that an option?

If the driver is crap and the hardware is incapable then surely OS will make absolutely no difference whatsoever? Even if the GNU/Linux driver is somehow anyway better, the hardware will still remain incapable. OpenGL is not software.

option 2. and 3. are the same (ie. bypassing crappy Windows GL drivers made by Intel).

How is that an option?

If the driver is crap and the hardware is incapable then surely OS will make absolutely no difference whatsoever? Even if the GNU/Linux driver is somehow anyway better, the hardware will still remain incapable. OpenGL is not software. [/QUOTE]

When the hardware doesn’t support feature X or is too slow to do Y at acceptable framerates then using DirectX won’t help either. The Intel GNU/Linux driver is one of the best OpenGL GNU/Linux drivers. Among the free ones it IMO is the best (even though AMD has been catching up).


I’m not saying that using D3D will help; options 2 and 3 are also equivalent because they don’t deal with the problem of poor performance (even though Intel’s D3D performance is actually quite good it still can’t match a real GPU) or features unsupported in hardware. Both just substitute one higher level technology for another but the underlying fault remains.