Intel's integrated graphics processors have long had a poor reputation when it comes to gaming, and while the IGPs get a little closer to competitiveness with each iteration, that is still largely true. However, there's another area in which the chips are surprisingly competitive: workstation applications.

At least on paper, Intel's current IGPs are fully certified for high-end programs like Photoshop CS5, AutoCAD, and SolidWorks, and future Ivy Bridge and Haswell IGPs add a lot of other big names to the list. This slow build-up of certifications means that Intel solutions may begin to replace dedicated FireGL and Quadro cards from AMD and nVidia in low and mid-end workstations, another contribution to the seemingly inevitable erosion of the low-end and mainstream markets for dedicated graphics.

The roadmap also says that Haswell's IGP will support DirectX 11.1, a verson of the API that doesn't yet exist, while at the same time only supporting version 3.2 of OpenGL (the current version is 4.1, to say nothing of 2013). This is especially interesting in light of the fact that, of the workstation applications Intel lists on the above slide, the OpenGL apps outnumber the DirectX ones.

Haswell, a "tock" in Intel's "tick-tock" strategy, will succeed Ivy Bridge when it debuts in 2013.

Source: X-bit Labs

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  • iwod - Friday, August 5, 2011 - link

    If it support DX11.1 Hardware spec then there is nothing other then laziness not to support OpenGL 4.1 or higher.

    And didn't Intel promise us Double Gfx performance every 18 months?
  • talon0720 - Friday, August 5, 2011 - link

    I thought they promised performance equivalent to what Nvidia and AMD have now in 2-3 years.
  • Luke2.0 - Saturday, August 6, 2011 - link

    They promised (well, were looking to) improve iGPU performance by 12 times over today's performance. How do we translate that?
    See the very last sentence in this article

    Furthermore, Would it use DDR3 or DDR4?
    I mean, compared to current norm's DDR-1333 and 1600 (21.3 and 25.6 GB/s respectively), we would need at least, say, 51.2 GB/s?

    Llano's been there first by the way.
  • DanNeely - Saturday, August 6, 2011 - link

    DDDR3 VS DDR4 depends whose predictions you find most credible. Hynix is saying they'll start high volume DDR4 production beginning in 2012. iSupply doesn't expect it to take a significant share of the market until 2014, and not to overtake DDR3 until the next year. At this point I suspect intel is hedging its bets and doing parallel development of Haswell variants with both memory controllers.
  • ltcommanderdata - Saturday, August 6, 2011 - link

    That chart' is kind of outdated anyways since Sandy Bridge already supports OpenGL 3.1 in the latest drivers without waiting for Ivy Bridge. It's unclear when/whether they'll get full OpenGL 3.3 support though.
  • ET - Monday, August 8, 2011 - link

    I wouldn't call it laziness. It's a matter of priorities. If no important application is using OpenGL 4+, then resources are better put towards API's which applications do support.
  • CSMR - Sunday, August 7, 2011 - link

    Intel has been advertizing speed improvements. Now certifications.

    But for professional use correct operation comes first.

    Currently the drivers are incompatible with color management on Windows 7 without the user hacking his machine (disabling Intel services like igfxpers). Rules Intel graphics out for people who care about what is displayed on their screen, not just how fast it is displayed.

    Unfortunately review sites don't highlight things like this.
  • B3an - Sunday, August 7, 2011 - link

    You make a good point. I'd never use an iGPU if it cant even be calibrated to display correct colour.
  • ET - Monday, August 8, 2011 - link

    Certifications are meant for correctness, and they're definitely aiming at professional use. Since that's the case, hopefully colour management will get fixed.

    By the way, have you provided feedback to Intel about this?

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