Question Can I somehow disable my APU graphics and only use the dGPU in my laptop?

Jan 29, 2023
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I have a Dell Inspiron 15 5576. The specs are as follows:

FX 9830P
R7 (Bristol Ridge) iGPU
RX 560 Mobile dGPU
12GB DDR4 2400Mhz (8+4) CL17
500GB SSD

I've had a lot of trouble with this laptop and cannot return it at this point. Here is a list of the problems (and fixes if I fixed them):

- GPU driver installs bricking the OS
[Fixed by installing very specifically the Dell drivers from 2017, or the latest legacy drivers from 2022]

- Task Manager showing the RX 560 as having 1GB of dedicated VRAM despite GPU-Z showing the RX 560 has 4GB of VRAM
[Not fixed, although it does look like it is still able to use all 4GB as the graph looks like it goes above 1GB during use]

- No regular software or even AMD Radeon software shows the RX 560. When using Windows graphics settings to set which GPU to use in certain apps, both "Power Saving" and "High Performance" list the R7 iGPU. MSI Afterburner shows the RX 560, but no changes to it will apply no matter what I try. HW Monitor does not show the RX 560. [Not fixed]

- Task Manager claims that the RX 560 is being used when playing games or high performance video tasks, but the performance I get is not indicative of that. In Valorant for example, I get just slightly better performance than a GT 710, which would be normal only if it was using the R7 iGPU. Turning up the settings should not have a major impact on performance since if it was using the RX 560, then there would be a CPU bottleneck, however the gameplay gets smoother if I turn it down and unplayable at higher settings.

- The issues with the RX 560 not seeming being utilized looked like they were fixed if I used the Dell provided drivers. However, those are 5 years old and crash Valorant if I change the graphics settings mid match. But I know that the Dell drivers actually use the RX 560 because I can change the settings to max before entering a match and will have about the same FPS as when it was at low settings. Also, after installing the Dell drivers, Fortnite went from unplayable without the performance mode, to 30-50fps in DX 11 mode. Which again, is indicative of these drivers somehow properly switching to the RX 560.

- When using the latest drivers from AMD that are compatible, again it seems to only use the iGPU. This would cause major stuttering due to the lower performance, even at lower settings. However, the laptop was originally included with 16GB of 2400Mhz DDR4 (8+8) CL17 RAM. I downgraded one of the sticks down to a 4GB Stick of the same speed and CL17 as well, and this fixed the stuttering issues entirely. The fps was still undesirable, but the stuttering was not an issue with 8+4GB Ram config.

- EDIT: I only just realized this but I reinstalled the latest legacy driver again after testing out the Dell drivers and realizing the Dell drivers used the correct GPU but was just too old and crashed Valorant. After reinstalling the latest legacy drivers, it turns out that Task Manager no longer sees the RX 560. Device manager still sees the RX 560 and so does GPUZ. Will test real quick and see the performance and see if it still uses the R7 iGPU in Valorant. EDIT: Just tested Valorant and just like before even when Task Manager recognized the RX 560, I am getting R7 iGPU performance. On the Dell Drivers I would max out at 150ish FPS on lowest settings at native 1080p since it used the RX560 properly, even if it did crash a bunch due to it being an old driver. On the latest legacy drivers, even at 1024x768 (lowest resolution Valorant supports) at lowest settings, I max out at 80fps. Which sounds playable but the R7 is more stuttery than the RX560, even if it's not as bad after the RAM downgrade.

I've probably forgotten a few other issues tbh. With the issues themselves listed, I have some questions as to the kinds of fixes and such you guys might know:

1. Is there anyway to install newer or separate drivers for the RX 560? Right now I have to install Legacy drivers that are compatible with both of them. As far as I know, Nimez drivers are working on a feature to allow you to do this, but is there anyway to do it with the default AMD drivers?

2. Can I just disable the iGPU? I don't really care if I go from 6-7ish hours down to 3 or even 2 hours of battery life when not gaming if I can get the performance I'm meant to get. I know that the RX560 output is sent using the iGPU as a bridge, but is there a way so that the iGPU is just that, a bridge? This would save a lot of headache of having to check which GPU is being used.

3. What's up with the RAM config and the stuttering? The 4GB stick was the same speed as the 8GB sticks, same CL17 latency, but got rid of all the stutters? Would upgrading to CL14 RAM possibly help with this too? I know latency of the RAM is important for the iGPU so it's possible that's what this is?

I'm just so frustrated that it's this difficult to get the proper performance all because the RX 560 has to go through the iGPU. If only the laptop just had a mux switch 😭

Please and thank you for any help!
 
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1. Is there anyway to install newer or separate drivers for the RX 560? Right now I have to install Legacy drivers that are compatible with both of them. As far as I know, Nimez drivers are working on a feature to allow you to do this, but is there anyway to do it with the default AMD drivers?
AMD offers reference drivers with broad compatibility for most OEM products, with limited support for vendor specific features. Due to vendor specific features in certain OEM products, custom drivers for these products are only available from the manufacturer.

If amd generic drivers doesnt work, then use drivers from dell, latest are from 2018
https://www.dell.com/support/home/en-us/product-support/product/inspiron-15-5576-gaming-laptop/drivers

2. Can I just disable the iGPU? I don't really care if I go from 6-7ish hours down to 3 or even 2 hours of battery life when not gaming if I can get the performance I'm meant to get. I know that the RX560 output is sent using the iGPU as a bridge, but is there a way so that the iGPU is just that, a bridge? This would save a lot of headache of having to check which GPU is being used.
in laptop? i dont think you can disable it
 
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