Intel HD 5500 (Review) – Integrated Graphics of 5th Gen Core U-Series CPUs


Intel HD 5500 Graphics

Intel HD 5500 GPU ZThe Intel HD 5500 is the most important graphics processing unit for laptops in 2015. Although it isn’t a high-performance one, the Intel HD 5500 is probably the widest adopted GPU for mobile PCs on the current market, since it is integrated in the popular Intel Core series processors. Precisely, the 5th Generation Intel Core Broadwell CPUs, such as the i3-5005U / i3-5010U, i5-5200U / 5300U, and i7-5500U / 5600U. These chips are used in numerous mainstream, thin-and-light, and business-class laptops, which are primarily designed with everyday home and office computing in mind, rather than high-performance for demanding games and other intensive tasks. Laptops with Broadwell processors currently start at around $500.

Intel HD 5500 3D Mark 11 Benchmark

Intel HD 5500 Graphics Benchmark 3D Mark 11

Intel HD “Bay Trail” 300
Intel HD 4400 750
Intel HD 5300 750
Intel HD 5500 950
Nvidia GeForce GT 820M 1250
AMD Radeon R5 M230 1600
AMD Radeon R7 M260 1750
Nvidia GeForce GT 840M 2450
Nvidia GeForce GTX 850M 4400
Nvidia GeForce GTX 860M 5000
Nvidia GeForce GTX 965M 7500
Nvidia GeForce GTX 970M 10200
Nvidia GeForce GTX 980M 12400

Game Benchmarks

For this test, we used an Acer Aspire E5 laptop with the mid-range Intel Core i5-5200U chip which contains the reviewed graphics processor, 4GB of RAM (for Call of Duty Advanced Warfare test we had to upgrade to 8GB), Windows 8.1 operating system, and the latest Intel HD graphics drivers installed. For gameplay recording we used a dedicated video capture card, so there are no slowdowns in games due to software-based capturing. It’s worth noting gameplays are slightly slower and faster on the i3 and i7 Broadwell chips with the HD 5500, due to differences in raw CPU power. Another important factor is whether you have single-channel or dual-channel system memory setup, where dual-channel (i.e. 2x4GB instead of 1x8GB) setups can give noticeably better benchmark results and gaming experience. Also, different notebook designs and their cooling systems, as well as BIOS settings, can influence graphics performance. The laptop we tested appears to deliver somewhat lower results than other systems with the same core specs.

 

League of Legends, the most played online PC game, runs without a glitch on “Medium High” settings at 1080p 1920×1080 resolution, with character, effect, and environment graphics quality set on High, shadows set to Medium, and anti-aliasing turned off. In-game performance is between 35 and 40 frames per second most of the time. The final result is a very smooth gameplay.

 

Another important MMORPG title with large players’ base is DOTA 2. It is more demanding in terms of hardware for smooth gameplay than League of Legends, so you have to dial down settings quite a bit. The best DOTA 2 experience on Intel’s HD 5500 appears to be with resolution set to 720p (1280×720), shadow and texture quality on “Medium”, and advanced graphics features turned off. The settings result in frame rates of around 40 fps. Default DOTA 2 settings for the GPU at 720p include anti-aliasing and other features turned on and shadows and textures set to “High”. But, the frame rates drop to 25-30 fps in that case.

 

Minecraft is among the top titles on popular PC games charts for years. On the reviewed GPU, it runs very smooth on “Fancy” (high) settings, with fps values gravitating toward 35 fps. If you set Minecraft graphics to “Fast” (low), frame rates will reach above 40 fps.

 

World’s most popular first person shooter – Counter Strike: Global Offensive – can be played decently smooth on the GPU. For instance, one of the optimal graphics detail setups includes resolution set to 720p, “Medium” details, and anti-aliasing turned off. Frame rates are around 35-45 fps with the setup.

 

Battlefield 4 first person shooter requires a good video card and processor in order to run decently. On the HD 5500, you’ll have to put the in-game graphics settings to minimum and set the resolution to 720p. The result is a merely playable experience, with fps varying between 20 and 25 fps.

 

The recently released Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare from the same genre needs a beefy computer to enable smooth gameplay. Unfortunately, the game felt choppy on the reviewed GPU, with fps oftentimes hitting below 20 mark, although all details and resolution were set to low. For this game we had to upgrade RAM to 8GB (other games were tested with 4GB). The game itself consumes nearly 4GB, plus you need memory for operating system and integrated graphics.

 

In Skyrim, the Intel HD 5500 performs better. You can run it reasonably well only on the lowest settings and 720p, but gameplay is pretty much smooth on these settings. FPS values are close to 30.

 

For FIFA fans, it’s worth noting the latest release – FIFA 15 – can be played on Intel’s integrated GPU, but only at minimal settings. At 720p, graphics quality set to low, and anti-aliasing turned off.

Video Playback

Full HD and Ultra HD (4K) video playback was a piece of cake for the tested system. CPU utilization increased only around 2 percent during playbacks of a YouTube video in Internet Explorer in 1080p (FHD) and 2160p (4K), while GPU utilization was ~10% and 15%, respectively. Of course, the playbacks were completely fluid.

Conclusion

Although it isn’t designed nor advertised to be a gaming graphics processor, the Intel HD 5500 is able to satisfy the casual gamer. It supports high-resolution video playbacks, including 4K, without a glitch. Gameplays are much better than on the Intel HD series found on the budget Celeron and Atom “Bay Trail” processors. The GPU is also faster than its precursor – the Intel HD 4400 of the 4th Gen Intel Core “Haswell”. But, the HD 5500 isn’t even nearly as fast as the available lower-mid-range dedicated video cards for laptops, such as the Nvidia GeForce GT 840M. 3D Mark 11 benchmark results confirm that. On the positive side, if you go for a notebook with the HD 5500 only you will avoid extra costs, greater power consumption, and higher temperatures associated with laptop models with dedicated GPUs.

For a list of laptops with the Intel HD 5500 click here.

You can click on the "Reviews" tab above to submit your opinion and ask questions regarding the graphics processor.

GPU Name

Intel HD 5500 Graphics

GPU Type

Integrated graphics

Shaders

24 unified

ROPs / TMUs

4 / 8

Core Clock Speed

300 – 900 MHz

Memory Bus Width

64-bit

Video Memory Size

Shared main memory, depends on system

Memory Type

DDR3 shared

Video Memory Clock Speed

Depends on system

Production Technology

14-nanometer

3D Mark 11 (Performance Mode) Score

950

9 reviews for Intel HD 5500 (Review) – Integrated Graphics of 5th Gen Core U-Series CPUs

  1. 1 out of 5

    – October 8, 2017:

    it’s more like a snail than a graphics card


  2. 2 out of 5

    amir – September 6, 2017:

    This computer is very bad for gaming, i prefer you don’t play a game on steam as your computer will heat up so much only after a couple of minutes, i do not recommend you buying it.


  3. Heather – December 10, 2016:

    Lies, i have this exact model, will NOT RUN and cannot run even fallout 3 or for. Skyrim crashes. This happened when the NEW fresh out of factory computer. HP, steam, and fallout tech services all said no way it cannot. Basically got lied to by beat buy before i knew what i know now. Still not sure if external gpu will work, but i was told no because the mother board cannot support it


    • 5 out of 5

      Mark – February 19, 2017:

      I agree.


  4. 4 out of 5

    random citizen – September 29, 2016:

    I just brought a hp pavilion ab223cl
    with 8gb ram
    intel 5500
    core i5 5200U

    You think it will be able to play star wars battlefront 2016.


  5. Mahrshi – May 16, 2016:

    I am taking dell inspiration i5554787red with 1tb hard drive core i5 8 gm ram and Intel 5500hd graphics it is good for gaming !??


    • Danijel Z – May 16, 2016:

      The HD 5500 is not a gaming-class graphics solution, but still you can play many games on it. We tested some of the games, you can check them out under the description tab on this page. The test was done on an Acer laptop, but performance shouldn’t differ much on the Dell 5000-series, since they have the same core components. If you have dual-channel RAM instead of single channel (ie two 4GB RAM sticks instead of a single 8GB) you’ll have somewhat better performance than described in our review.


    • Ashish Bhadana – December 29, 2016:

      Bro i’ll suggest you to not to buy it, I mean intel graphics are just not good for hardcore gaming.


  6. 5 out of 5

    Ibrahim – April 28, 2016:

    Small question –

    I currently have a Dell Inspiron 15 5000 series with Intel i7-5500U CPU, 16 GB RAM, Intel HD Graphics 5500 (display) + NVIDIA GeForce 920M (render).

    I have troubles playing a few games with high FPS (example; RuneScape with the new NXT client).

    Is it possible for my laptop to be upgraded from an Intel 5500 display to like NVIDIA GTX 860M?

    Is it possible to be upgraded at all?


    • Danijel Z – May 16, 2016:

      Unfortunately, no. Graphics isn’t upgradeable on the Dell Inspiron 5000 laptops.


  7. lucky – January 9, 2016:

    Where is easier to play videos for a cpu or gpu- on youtube or on a media player like gom player etc?

    If it plays 1080p videos on youtube smoothly, does it mean that it will play same video on gom player with same performance too?


  8. santanu – November 15, 2015:

    Hy I have bought a laptop HP 15 ac 101tu has core i3 5th generation having intel HD 5500 GPU, should I change it to HP 15ab028 tx having Intel core i3 and GPU and redeon r7 360 as I have to work on AutoCAD and 3 d studio max , in 3d rendering then the is 15 ac 101tu is sufficient ? Experts tell that Intel CPU, GPU combining will be best for cooling. Is it true…? Plse suggest , ,,,, Santanu , Kolkata, India


    • Danijel Z – November 18, 2015:

      Yeah, the Radeon dedicated graphics will speed up AutoCAD and Studio Max. The i3 Broadwell CPU can be used for the mentioned apps, but the i5 and i7 chips, especially quad-core i7, are recommended for these intensive apps. The truth is that laptops with dedicated video cards do run generally hotter, unless they have a good cooling solution.


  9. 4 out of 5

    atif – October 12, 2015:

    heyy there I am new to this whole graphics game but I had a budget of 500 dollars where I have planed to buy a toshiba satellite c55-c5421 ish it’s specs were quiet eye catching with a Broadwell intel i5 thingy a 8gb ram powered by windows 10 now my question is that will all this be enough for a good gaming experience?
    Thanks in advance.


    • Danijel Z – October 12, 2015:

      You can check out the videos under the Description tab on this page to see what gaming looks like on the i5-5200U Broadwell with the HD 5500 graphics.

      Gaming experience on the c55-c5421 will be very similar, since it has the same CPU.

      Generally, the HD 5500 isn’t intended for gaming, but it can run many popular titles quite smoothly. Even some demanding titles can be played on it if you dial down graphics settings in these games. But generally, for any serious gaming it’s best to pick a laptop with a dedicated video card – like Nvidia 840M/940M or better.

      8GB of RAM is large enough for most games on the market.


  10. Fulvio – September 3, 2015:

    Good morning,
    I am thinking about buying a laptop with the following specs:
    model: Acer aspire v3-572g-57vu
    cpu: intel core i5-5200u (dual core, 2.2 to 2.7 ghz)
    gpu: intel graphics 5500 + nvidia geforce 820m 2gb
    ram: 4gb single channel
    display: 1366×768
    os: windows 8.1
    I would like to know if it is good for watching FHD and UHD video (streaming or from support), obviously on an external display being the onboard one just HD.
    Is it a system that can assure me good performance in the coming years (at least for the next 5 years) or should I buy something else?
    As an alternative, there is also another acer of the some series but having cpu i7-5500u and gpu nvidia 840m.
    Thank you for your attention.
    Regards,
    Fulvio (Italy)


  11. 3 out of 5

    Dancho – August 10, 2015:

    Toshiba satellite s50-b-150 (i7 5500u) win 8.1
    Lol 1080p low/med settings out of combat 60 in combat 40-30 fps.
    Cs:s 1080p low(textures maxed) out of combat 60-80 in combat 50-40-03 fps (depends on maps and players)
    Portal 2 ran well at 1080p, but it was buggy. Maybe a OS thing….
    uts2 1080p fps about 30-20-15 with 100%scale…..
    cs:go is a no no(45 fps 720p all low….)


  12. Fred – July 2, 2015:

    Thanks for your quick follow up Dani!

    To answer your question it’s a GETAC V110 second generation…. it’s not a gaming laptop in first place as it is mostly used for military applications requiring rugged equipment and enough power to run complex maps, video’s & pictures. I am not an expert but I am guessing It’s a small rugged laptop with the power of a very good office desktop.

    I am going to read your links but earlier I also came across this funny speaking guy on Youtube who pretty much nailed it. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lklIhZJBaJM

    I might just have to buy one of those gaming laptop otherwise if you know a good reliable source of information online to build my own gaming desktop please share because I always wanted that however was never able to click with the right crowds to get the best information’s avoiding in the process to mess with my fun, time & money….

    Cheers!
    Fred


  13. 4 out of 5

    Fred – July 1, 2015:

    Hi there!
    & thanks for your review

    Is there on the market some external video cards that I could hookup on my system to overwrite the HD 5500 or complete it? Something that could upgrade my graphic power to the level of for example AMD Radeon HD 7870 / NVIDIA Geforce GTX 660? Similarly as I do to extend my data’s storage with a Seagate but in this case it would be about Graphic performance improvement.

    I explain below

    I am not an expert in PC gaming system configuration but I acquired a new laptop that is usually designed for military personal and the CPU indeed come with the integrated HD 5500 Graphic Card

    My hardware config is: (Platform: Intel Core i7-5600U, 2.6 GHz with VPRO & 4M Cache, up to 3.20 GHz in Turbo mode) + (OS / RAM: Microsoft Windows 8 Professional x64 with 16GB DDR3 RAM) + (Storage: 256GB SSD)

    In addition to this set up a friend of mine gave me a BenQ monitor XL2420G so I thought I would have fun playing games such as Battlefield 4 with this military laptop but by your review it seem that I might be disappointed. I’ll be glad if I could find an external support or replacement to overwrite or boost the integrated HD 5500 when at times I want to play games or need extreme graphic power.

    Otherwise I am afraid to be pretty stuck where I am right now… am I?

    Thanks for reading & eventually sharing your thoughts…
    Cheers!
    Fred


    • Danijel Z – July 1, 2015:

      If your laptop doesn’t have an MXM slot in which you can put a dedicated video card, you’re very likely stuck with the Intel HD integrated graphics. What is your laptop model? Only a few notebooks on the market can be paired with external video cards. Examples are MSI Shadow http://laptoping.com/specs/product/msi-gs30-shadow-001/ and Alienware laptops for 2015 http://laptoping.com/specs/product/alienware-13-gaming-ultraportable/. They use proprietary external GPUs, which can’t work with other laptops.


  14. oldjackbob – June 9, 2015:

    Your review is rendered meaningless by the fact that you only have 4GB of memory in your test machine.

    Per the link below, Call of Duty takes up 3.70 GB all by itself, which doesn’t even leave enough memory for the OS, let alone any graphics – no wonder you got such horrible results!

    http://laptoping.com/laptop-pc-ram-size-and-performance-explained.html

    Put another 4GB of memory in your machine, run your tests again and report the results, please.


    • Danijel Z – June 10, 2015:

      Sorry, I didn’t mention in the article that we upgraded RAM to 8GB for the CoD test. The article is updated now. So, the CoD video in the review was recorded with 8GB of RAM. We previously tested the game with 4GB and it was completely unplayable.


      • oldjackbob – June 11, 2015:

        Thanks for the clarification. I didn’t mean for my comment to sound so harsh.


        • Danijel Z – June 11, 2015:

          Not at all, thanks for heads up.


  15. Winston – May 20, 2015:

    What software you used for recording? Will I have higher fps in real life?


    • Danijel Z – May 21, 2015:

      We used an external capture card for recording, which doesn’t affect performance of the tested laptop in any way. So, frame rates are real in the videos of this review.


  16. 4 out of 5

    Danijel Z – April 18, 2015:

    We give the Intel HD 5500 four stars. For details and real-world use test, read the Description of this page.


Add a review or ask question / give answer:


Rating:

3.56 out of 5
(9 customer reviews)

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