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Integrated graphics vs dedicated graphics card

New Here ,
Aug 15, 2017 Aug 15, 2017

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I use Photoshop, Lightroom, Illustrator & InDesign and want to buy a new PC (windows based). Looking at the Adobe system specs, it specifies that the system should have a graphics card with at least 1GB (2G recommended) of VRAM.

I don't use features that require a GPU for acceleration or features that won't work without a GPU, so I'm wondering if a PC with an integrated graphics adapter, e.g. AMD Radeon R7 Graphics. and more RAM, e.g. 12 or 16 GB, would be OK, or do I need a dedicated graphics card?

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LEGEND ,
Aug 15, 2017 Aug 15, 2017

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You need to power integrated graphics somehow and the only alternative to the missing GPU is the computers CPU. Integrated graphics will do a reasonable job for web graphics, but start working with anything of multi-megabyte size and you'll quickly regret your choice. Photoshop uses GPU acceleration far more than you might think as it permits multiple threads of code to execute in parallel and that trend is bound to continue into the future. For example all the new blur functions use GPU acceleration as does Select and Mask. Given that graphics cards are not very expensive these days I would suggest going with a dedicated hardware solution.

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Community Expert ,
Aug 15, 2017 Aug 15, 2017

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I think that should be fine, to begin with at least. I think most of the GPU-related features in Photoshop will still work. If you need to cut initial cost this is a good place to do it, since it's so easily upgradeable later if needed.

Spend the money on more RAM, which is good for Photoshop, and a faster CPU, which is good for Lightroom. You should also make sure you have a decent capacity SSD for system drive - 500GB and up. A lot of the applications' working files (caches and so on) sit under your user account on the system drive, so everything will benefit from that.

EDIT: cross-post, and my, cross-opinions there as well

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New Here ,
Aug 15, 2017 Aug 15, 2017

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thanks. I will take this approach, with the understanding that I will most

likely be buying a dedicated card at some point.

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New Here ,
Oct 31, 2022 Oct 31, 2022

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It would always be better to use a dedicated GPU instead of an integrated one if you want to use these power-hungry apps. Here is a quick comparison between dedicated & integrated GPU: https://www.techyray.com/integrated-vs-dedicated-gpu/ 

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Community Expert ,
Oct 31, 2022 Oct 31, 2022

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My experience says that you can start with Ryzen 5 5600G for example, without dedicated GPU. I do have RTX 2060 but it does not make any noticable difference (at the moment) so I took it away just to check one more time. So far I can say no noticable difference when using Neural Filters or any other filter in Photoshop.

Illustrator, InDesign, Lightroom also works fine.

 

My suggestion is to start with Ryzen 5 5600G / 7 5700G (or Intel i5 12600 for example) or newest models 5 7600X / 7 7700X (later can be expensive because DDR5, new AM5 motherboards...) if you are buying Desktop. If you are looking at Laptop then look for one with dedicated GPU. Note: 5 5600G is PCIe 3 while 7 5700G PCIe 4 which promises faster communication https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/PCI_Express

 

When it comes to RAM 32GB - Corsair Vengeance LPX 32GB (2 x 16GB) DDR4 3600MHz C18 works just fine, you can go with 2 x8GB but keep in mind that OS Win 11 will ocupy 4-5GB I believe without investigation. If you have two open files in Photoshop with lots of layers, Smart Object layers... then you will fill RAM space quickly. I cought myself having filled 25+GB of RAM without using any fancy thing. It also fills RAM when you run multiple apps like, Photoshop, Illustrator and InDesign at the same time.

 

WD Blue SN 570 - 500GB seems enough for me. I do have one more SSD which serves as scratch disc. From 0 (power off) to internet hero in Google Chrome adress bar it goes for 25 seconds or less.

 

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Community Expert ,
Oct 31, 2022 Oct 31, 2022

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I would never get an integrated graphics card! I had one once, and the issue was that the computer company had to supply an update to the drivers, even though the card was some other manufacturer. So what happened was that the manufacturer updated drivers, but the computer company never did. Huge mistake!

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Community Expert ,
Oct 31, 2022 Oct 31, 2022

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That was once I guess. At the moment AMD and Intel are manufacturing their integrated GPU's. Intel even started producing dedicated GPU's.

 

I also didn't noticed date and time.

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Community Expert ,
Nov 01, 2022 Nov 01, 2022

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And Apple. Integrated graphics is the only choice now.

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Community Expert ,
Nov 01, 2022 Nov 01, 2022

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quote

And Apple. Integrated graphics is the only choice now.


By @D Fosse

Well if that's the case, they should keep on top of updating the drivers then, but knowing Apple, they'll just make the computer obsolete, so you need to buy a new one.

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Community Expert ,
Nov 01, 2022 Nov 01, 2022

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LATEST
quoteknowing Apple, they'll just make the computer obsolete, so you need to buy a new one.

By @Chuck Uebele

 

Yep, that's exactly how they do it 🙂 This is still the most profitable company in the world.

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Community Expert ,
Nov 01, 2022 Nov 01, 2022

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Thats where things are going from now and on, I believe, because all that mess with dedicated GPU's last few years. AMD has published couple of 7000 processors with X in the name and integrated graphics what wasn't the practice in the past. 

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Community Expert ,
Oct 31, 2022 Oct 31, 2022

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Oh, just noticed that this is a very old post. The OP has most likely moved on.

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