Haswell’s Intel HD 4400 Gaming and Benchmarks Round-Up

Intel Haswell Laptops - Some of Them with HD 4400 GraphicsThe Intel HD 4400 is a graphics processor integrated in select 4th Generation Intel Core CPUs, codenamed Haswell. The HD 4400 is the first tested GPU from the Haswell family, since its benchmarks and 3D gameplays have been published as parts of reviews of the first known 4th Gen-based laptops, or more precisely ultrabooks.

The first Haswell-based ultrabooks come either with the Intel Core i5-4200U or i7-4500U processor, both with the HD 4400 series and dual cores. These chips are rather designed to bring a good energy efficiency than high performance and the HD 4400 is in line with that goal. True, Intel has announced that Haswell graphics can be up to two times faster than the previous HD 4000 on the “Ivy Bridge” 3rd Gen CPUs, but that statement is related to higher-end Haswell chips which have the 5000 series IGPs and the Iris Pro 5200 as the top-of-the-line part. For comparison, the HD 4400 has 20 execution units, whereas the HD 5000 (used in the new MacBook Air), Iris 5100, and Iris Pro 5200 have 40. The HD 4400 brings mostly modest but still noticeable improvements over the “Ivy Bridge” HD 4000 with 16 EUs, according to the first reviews. As a side note, there are also HD 4600 and 4200 GPU models, similar to the 4400, in the new lineup.

Anand Tech has tested a Haswell-based ultrabook (Acer’s S7) with the Core i7-4500U. Its graphics processor registers 5,691 Futuremark 3DMark06 points versus a score of 5,120 of the comparable 3rd Gen i7-3517U. When it comes to real 3D games, let’s mention achieved 24.6 frames per second in Tomb Raider (at 1366×768, no motion blur, no screen effects settings) versus 20.1 achieved with the i7-3517U, as well as 17.4fps versus 16.4fps in Bioshock Infinite at Medium settings and the same resolution.

In Engadget’s review of the Sony VAIO Duo 13 slider convertible, the included i5-4200U and its IGP yielded 975 3DMark11 points in Performance benchmark mode, leaving a i7-3317U-powered Sony VAIO DUO 11 far behind with its 621 points.

It’s interesting that according to multiple reviews the VAIO Pro 13 and 11 ultrabooks have significantly lower CPU and GPU scores than the VAIO Duo models. There’s no explanation so far for that gap, but you should keep in mind that different laptops sometimes deliver largely different test results although they use the same or very similar components.

Finally, you can take a look at GadgetJM’s video, showing Need for Speed: Most Wanted, FIFA 13, Dirt 3, Startcraft 2, and Skyrim gameplay on the VAIO DUO 13 with the i5-4200/HD 4400.

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