Early Puma pressure ended with a penalty from Federico Todeschini after eight minutes and Ireland's had their first chance to open their account when Jeremy Staunton had a penalty attempt from near the half way but his effort drifted narrowly wide.
Ireland began to come more into the game and finished the half strongly with Alan Quinlan's block down of Todeschini's attempted clearance almost leading to their opening try before Bryan Young forced his way over the Puma line but was held up.
The half ended with the Irish pounding the Puma line and after a succession of Ireland scrums they opted to kick a penalty that Staunton blasted wide from right of the posts.
Three minutes into injury time after Ireland had turned over ball, Shane Jennings was pinged for blatantly coming in from the side and Todeschini's kick extended the home side's lead.
Half-time: Argentina 6-0 Ireland.
Staunton was wide from 27 metres seven minutes after the restart after Quinlan had been swatted by Esteban Lozada at a ruck and Todeschini also missed minutes later but atoned almost immediately with a more difficult effort from just inside the Irish half.
As the game wore on the Argentines took the upper hand and on the stroke of full time after a bout of pressure on the Irish line Manuel Contepomi scored a disappointing game's only try.
Ireland: G Murphy; B Carney (L Fitzgerald 80 mins), B Murphy (K Lewis 67 mins), G Duffy, R Kearney; J Staunton, E Reddan; B Young (T Buckley 77 mins), F Sheahan (B Jackman 78 mins), S Best capt; L Cullen, M O'Driscoll (M O'Kelly 53 mins); A Quinlan, S Jennings, S Ferris (N Best 48 mins).
Argentina: F Serra; T De Velda, H Senillosa, M Contepomi, F Leonelli; F Todeschini, N Fernandez Miranda; M Ayerza, P Gamborini (, S Gonzalez; E Lozada, R Alvarez; M Durand, J Fernandez Lobbe, J Manuel Leguizamon.