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Intel's Iris Xe DG1 GPU Is Seemingly Slower Than The Radeon RX 550

Asus DG1-4G
Asus DG1-4G (Image credit: Intel)

The first benchmark (via Tum_Apisak) of Intel's Iris Xe DG1 is out. The graphics card's performance is in the same ballpark as AMD's four-year-old Radeon RX 550 - at least in the Basemark GPU benchmark.

If we compare manufacturing processes, the DG1 is obviously the more advanced offering. The DG1 is based on Intel's latest 10nm SuperFin process node, and the Radeon RX 550 utilizes the Lexa die, which was built with GlobalFoundries' 14nm process. Both the DG1 and Radeon RX 550 hail from Asus' camp. The Asus DG1-4G features a passive heatsink, while the Asus Radeon RX 550 4G does require active cooling in the form of a single fan. The Radeon RX 550 is rated for 50W and the DG1 for 30W, which is why the latter can get away with a passive cooler.

The Asus DG1-4G features a cut-down variant of the Iris Xe Max GPU, meaning the graphics cards only has 80 execution units (EUs) at its disposal. This configuration amounts to 640 shading units with a peak clock of 1,500 MHz. On the memory side, the Asus DG1-4G features 4GB of LPDDR4X-4266 memory across a 128-bit memory interface.

On the other side of the ring, the Asus Radeon RX 550 4G comes equipped with 512 shading units with a 1,100 MHz base clock and 1,183 MHz boost clock. The graphics card's 4GB of 7 Gbps GDDR5 memory that communicates through a 128-bit memory bus to pump out a memory bandwidth up to 112 GBps.

Intel DG1 vs. Radeon RX 550 (Image credit: Tum_Apisak/Twitter)

In terms of FP32 performance, the DG1 delivers up to 2.11 TFLOPs whereas the Radeon RX 550 offers up to 1.21 TFLOPs. On paper, the DG1 should be superior, but we know that FP32 performance isn't the most important metric.

Both systems from the Basemark GPU submissions were based on the same processor, the Intel Core i3-10100F. Therefore, the DG1 and Radeon RX 550 were on equal grounds as far as the processor is concerned. Let's not forget that the DG1 is picky when it comes to platforms. The graphics card is only compatible with the 9th and 10th Generation Core processors and B460, H410, B365 and H310C motherboards. Even then, a special firmware is necessary to get the DG1 working.

The DG1 puts up a Vulkan score of 17,289 points, while the Radeon RX 550 scored 17,619 points. Therefore, the Radeon RX 550 was up to 1.9% faster than the DG1. Of course, this is just one benchmark so it's too soon to declare a definite winner without more thorough tests.

Intel never intended for the DG1 to be a strong performer, but rather an entry-level graphics card that can hang with the competition. Thus far, the DG1 seems to trade blows with the Radeon RX 550.