Unleashing the Power of AMD Onboard Graphics: A Comprehensive Guide

The world of PC gaming and graphics processing is constantly evolving, and for many users, AMD’s integrated graphics solutions offer a compelling entry point. These onboard graphics processors, often referred to as APUs (Accelerated Processing Units), are integrated directly onto the CPU, eliminating the need for a dedicated graphics card. This can significantly lower system cost while still providing decent performance for everyday tasks and even some casual gaming.

But the real potential of these integrated GPUs can only be unlocked if they are correctly enabled. This guide will walk you through the steps of enabling AMD onboard graphics, explaining the process in detail and highlighting common troubleshooting tips along the way.

Understanding AMD Onboard Graphics

Before we delve into the enabling process, let’s understand what AMD onboard graphics are and how they work. Essentially, these are integrated GPUs built directly onto the AMD CPU. Unlike dedicated graphics cards, they don’t require a separate slot on your motherboard or additional power connectors. Instead, they share resources with the CPU, drawing power directly from the motherboard.

While AMD’s integrated graphics may not deliver the same raw power as dedicated cards, they still offer excellent capabilities for many users. Here’s a breakdown of their advantages:

  • Cost-Effective: Integrated graphics eliminate the need for a separate graphics card, making your PC build more budget-friendly.
  • Energy Efficient: Sharing resources with the CPU minimizes power consumption compared to dedicated graphics cards.
  • Space-Saving: With no separate card, your system remains compact and clutter-free.
  • Versatile: These onboard graphics can handle everyday tasks like browsing, video streaming, and light gaming with ease.

Enabling AMD Onboard Graphics: Step-by-Step

Now, let’s get into the core of this guide: enabling AMD onboard graphics on your system. The process might vary slightly depending on your specific motherboard and BIOS version. However, the general steps remain consistent.

1. Accessing the BIOS Settings

The first step is to access your BIOS settings. This is usually done by pressing a specific key during the system boot-up process. Common keys include F2, F10, Delete, or Esc. The exact key may vary depending on your motherboard manufacturer.

Look for instructions on your motherboard manual or the manufacturer’s website if you’re unsure. Once the BIOS screen appears, you’ll need to navigate to the settings related to integrated graphics.

2. Finding the Integrated Graphics Settings

Within the BIOS menu, locate the settings related to graphics. This might be called “Integrated Peripherals, “Onboard Devices, “Advanced, or “Graphics“. Look for an option related to “Primary Display Adapter, “Initial Display Output, “IGPU, or similar terms.

3. Enabling the Onboard Graphics

Once you’ve found the relevant section, you need to enable the AMD integrated graphics. This might involve selecting “Integrated Graphics, “Onboard Graphics, “Auto, or “Enabled“. The specific wording can differ across different BIOS versions.

Remember to save the changes you make by pressing the designated key, which is often F10. The system will then reboot, applying the new settings.

4. Verifying the Onboard Graphics

After your system restarts, check if the AMD onboard graphics are successfully enabled. Connect your monitor to the motherboard’s integrated graphics output, which is typically a DVI, HDMI, or VGA port. If your display is being driven by the onboard graphics, your system should start up normally, and you’ll be able to see the desktop.

Troubleshooting Common Issues

Enabling AMD onboard graphics is usually straightforward, but you might encounter some hiccups along the way. Here are some common issues and how to resolve them:

1. No Display After Enabling Onboard Graphics

If your screen remains blank after enabling onboard graphics, it might be an issue with your monitor connection. Ensure that the monitor cable is securely connected to the correct port on the motherboard, the one dedicated to integrated graphics.

Additionally, try restarting your system a couple of times, as sometimes it might need a fresh boot to recognize the new settings.

2. Display Still Uses Dedicated Graphics Card

If your display continues to use your dedicated graphics card even after enabling onboard graphics, it’s possible that your BIOS settings haven’t been correctly applied. Go back into your BIOS settings, check the integrated graphics options again, and ensure they are correctly enabled.

Furthermore, check if your motherboard has a dedicated switch for selecting the primary display adapter. Some motherboards have a physical switch or jumper that lets you choose between onboard and dedicated graphics.

3. Onboard Graphics Performance is Low

If the onboard graphics performance is subpar, it might be due to a driver issue. Make sure you’re using the latest AMD graphics drivers compatible with your specific CPU model. You can download the latest drivers from AMD’s official website.

It’s also important to note that AMD integrated graphics performance varies depending on the CPU model. Higher-end APUs generally offer better graphics performance compared to entry-level options.


Enabling AMD onboard graphics can unlock a world of possibilities for users who need affordable, energy-efficient, and space-saving solutions. While the process is relatively straightforward, it’s crucial to navigate the BIOS settings carefully and understand the potential troubleshooting steps. With this guide, you can confidently enable AMD onboard graphics and take advantage of the benefits they offer.

Remember to explore the capabilities of your specific APU and stay up-to-date with the latest AMD drivers to ensure optimal performance. By following these steps and troubleshooting tips, you can unleash the power of AMD onboard graphics and maximize your system’s potential.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are AMD onboard graphics?

AMD onboard graphics, also known as integrated graphics, are graphics processing units (GPUs) built directly into the CPU. Unlike dedicated graphics cards, which require a separate PCIe slot, integrated graphics share the same resources as the CPU. This makes them a cost-effective option for users who don’t need high-performance gaming or graphics-intensive applications.

While integrated graphics don’t offer the same level of power as dedicated GPUs, they are more than capable for everyday tasks such as web browsing, video playback, and light gaming. They also offer significant power savings compared to dedicated GPUs.

What are the advantages of using AMD onboard graphics?

AMD onboard graphics offer several advantages, primarily due to their integrated nature. The most notable benefit is their cost-effectiveness, as they come bundled with the CPU and eliminate the need for a separate graphics card. This makes them ideal for budget-conscious users or those building PCs with limited space.

Additionally, integrated graphics are known for their power efficiency, consuming less energy than dedicated GPUs. This translates to lower energy bills and quieter operation. Furthermore, they typically run cooler, reducing the need for dedicated cooling solutions.

Can AMD onboard graphics be used for gaming?

While AMD onboard graphics are not designed for high-end gaming, they can handle casual games and older titles at moderate settings. Many modern integrated GPUs can provide playable frame rates for games like League of Legends, Dota 2, and even some recent titles at lower resolutions and settings.

It’s important to note that performance will vary depending on the specific integrated GPU model and the game being played. For demanding games, a dedicated graphics card will still be necessary for optimal performance.

How do I enable AMD onboard graphics?

Enabling AMD onboard graphics typically involves changing the BIOS settings. Once you access the BIOS, navigate to the “Advanced” or “Chipset” settings. Look for options related to “Integrated Graphics,” “iGPU,” or similar terms.

Enable the option to use the onboard graphics and save the changes. Depending on your motherboard and BIOS version, the exact steps might differ slightly. Refer to your motherboard manual for detailed instructions.

Can I upgrade AMD onboard graphics?

Unlike dedicated graphics cards, you cannot upgrade AMD onboard graphics independently. They are integrated into the CPU, so upgrading requires replacing the entire CPU. However, newer CPUs typically come with more powerful integrated graphics, offering a performance boost over older models.

When choosing a new CPU, consider the integrated graphics capabilities if you intend to use them for gaming or other graphics-intensive tasks.

How do I check which AMD onboard graphics I have?

There are several ways to check your AMD onboard graphics. You can use the Device Manager in Windows, which will list all connected devices including your integrated GPU.

Alternatively, you can download the AMD Adrenalin software, which provides detailed information about your graphics drivers and hardware, including the specific AMD onboard graphics model.

Are there any limitations to AMD onboard graphics?

While AMD onboard graphics are a valuable option for many users, they do have some limitations. Their performance is inherently limited compared to dedicated GPUs, particularly in demanding tasks like high-end gaming or video editing.

Furthermore, the amount of video memory (VRAM) available for integrated graphics is typically much lower than dedicated GPUs, which can affect performance and limit the quality of visual settings in games.

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