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Ozi
May 2, 2004, 08:51 AM
Are there any comparisons yet of the 1.5Ghz 15" pBooks running each of these GPUs?

I have just ordered a 15" 1.5Ghz 1GB RAM (1 sodimm) 5400RPM 80GB hard disk pBook, with the 129MB graphics option. Im interested in how much of a performance gain double the video memory will give me in games like Halo and UT2004?

thanks.

~ozi

ZildjianKX
May 2, 2004, 03:35 PM
Are there any comparisons yet of the 1.5Ghz 15" pBooks running each of these GPUs?

I have just ordered a 15" 1.5Ghz 1GB RAM (1 sodimm) 5400RPM 80GB hard disk pBook, with the 129MB graphics option. Im interested in how much of a performance gain double the video memory will give me in games like Halo and UT2004?

thanks.

~ozi

Well, you can see the 64 meg version benchmarked here:
http://www.barefeats.com/pb11.html

You'll see some performance gain at higher resolutions in the order of possibly 10%, and probably no difference whatsoever in lower resolutions. The graphic chips are identical and run at the same speed (64 and 128 versions) and the only difference that will be seen is when it renders high resolutions.

JzzTrump22
May 2, 2004, 04:25 PM
So is it worth it to get the 128? I'm kinda in the same situation with deciding what video card. Will halo run well on a 64 with like 512-800 ram?

applekid
May 2, 2004, 07:35 PM
As more games demand or take advantage of the higher amounts of VRAM, the more VRAM will be to your advantage.

Here's what I recommend you to do as far as 15 inch PowerBook goes:
- Get the SuperDrive version BTO-ed.
- Get the 128 MB VRAM graphics card.
- Upgrade to one stick of 512 MB of RAM. (people say 512 MB and above doesn't make a huge difference in game performance)
- Upgrade to the 80GB 5400rpm HD.
- Downgrade to a Combo Drive optical drive (as long as you find DVD burning useless).

The price difference between this customized version and the normal 15-inch PB with SuperDrive is $0! With the above, you've got a decent enough mobile game machine. If you find it necessary, you can go ahead and upgrade to 1 GB of RAM with a spare stick or get a gig stick. There might be a little delay as far as shipping goes since this is a BTO, but it should be worth the wait! (as long as you don't have a nightmare shipment)

I'm not completely sure how well Halo will run, but I'm pretty confident you'll have a steady 30 FPS on default settings. In fact, a 64 MB card will probably do just fine if you can't spend the money for the above machine.

ZildjianKX
May 2, 2004, 08:48 PM
As more games demand or take advantage of the higher amounts of VRAM, the more VRAM will be to your advantage.

Here's what I recommend you to do as far as 15 inch PowerBook goes:
- Get the SuperDrive version BTO-ed.
- Get the 128 MB VRAM graphics card.
- Upgrade to one stick of 512 MB of RAM. (people say 512 MB and above doesn't make a huge difference in game performance)
- Upgrade to the 80GB 5400rpm HD.
- Downgrade to a Combo Drive optical drive (as long as you find DVD burning useless).

The price difference between this customized version and the normal 15-inch PB with SuperDrive is $0! With the above, you've got a decent enough mobile game machine. If you find it necessary, you can go ahead and upgrade to 1 GB of RAM with a spare stick or get a gig stick. There might be a little delay as far as shipping goes since this is a BTO, but it should be worth the wait! (as long as you don't have a nightmare shipment)

I'm not completely sure how well Halo will run, but I'm pretty confident you'll have a steady 30 FPS on default settings. In fact, a 64 MB card will probably do just fine if you can't spend the money for the above machine.

What you said is actually really good advise (I think it should be the stock PB option). If I was going to purchase a new PB, I would do exactly that. Plus, if you have a superdrive in a powermac, it's overkill to have it in a powerbook too I think. And upgrading to 1 dimm of 512 is a must too, I really think it's cheap of Apple not to do that by default.

JzzTrump22
May 2, 2004, 09:16 PM
I agree with you, only i wouldn't upgrade the HD speed because 5400 is not necessary. All it will do is end up eating more power when it's not really necessary, you could manage just fine with a 4200. I would like to upgrade to the 1 stick of 512 only because it will leave another slot for another 512-1G. I only wish apple didn't charge so much for ram.

BrianKonarsMac
May 2, 2004, 11:14 PM
I agree with you, only i wouldn't upgrade the HD speed because 5400 is not necessary. All it will do is end up eating more power when it's not really necessary, you could manage just fine with a 4200.

i may be wrong, but i believe the 5400 consumes less power, because it accessess data faster, therefore requiring less time drawing energy. this had been discussed in replacing the 4200 with a 7200, which supposedly runs cooler and draws less power.

on a $2500 laptop...why would you start cutting corners on things that are not upgradeable? $50 to max the video ram is nothing...you may see little to no performance gain, but it will give you peace of mind (why didnt i upgrade!?) and help resale value. save money on unneccessary extras that can be added down the road.

Apple of my eye
May 2, 2004, 11:34 PM
I don't want to burst any bubbles, but, I recently sold my dual 1Ghz MDD powermac with the Radeon 9000 pro (64meg vram) and 1.75 gigs ram and it blows away the performace I am getting out of my new powerbook 1.5 with 512 ram and 128 meg 9700 mob. UT 2004 is so choppy at 1024x768 with normal settings it is unplayable. Realizing the 7200rpm drive and dual processors in the powermac are also contributing factors, I still think ram is playing a key role in performance improvement.

ZildjianKX
May 3, 2004, 01:09 AM
I don't want to burst any bubbles, but, I recently sold my dual 1Ghz MDD powermac with the Radeon 9000 pro (64meg vram) and 1.75 gigs ram and it blows away the performace I am getting out of my new powerbook 1.5 with 512 ram and 128 meg 9700 mob. UT 2004 is so choppy at 1024x768 with normal settings it is unplayable. Realizing the 7200rpm drive and dual processors in the powermac are also contributing factors, I still think ram is playing a key role in performance improvement.

The dual processors shouldn't make a difference, since it's not multiprocessor aware besides Mac OS X using the second processor for the sound library... Are you running the retail version and not the demo? The demo has a sound flaw that runs at about 1/2 the speed on a SP system, while the retail version doesn't suffer from this.

Abstract
May 3, 2004, 02:56 AM
By paying $50 extra for the upgraded graphics card, you'll probably be able to sell your system for an additional $60 down the road. Seriously, 2 years down the line, people are going to be looking for the system with the 128MB video card if they're looking at a 15" PB from this generation, and since its not upgradeable, it's easily worth that much to a buyer, maybe more.

Apple of my eye
May 3, 2004, 03:17 AM
The dual processors shouldn't make a difference, since it's not multiprocessor aware besides Mac OS X using the second processor for the sound library... Are you running the retail version and not the demo? The demo has a sound flaw that runs at about 1/2 the speed on a SP system, while the retail version doesn't suffer from this.


I am comparing the demo on both machines. I was not going to buy it if the performance was lacking on my machine. I was unaware of the glitch so maybe there is hope.

JFreak
May 3, 2004, 03:49 AM
i may be wrong, but i believe the 5400 consumes less power, because it accessess data faster, therefore requiring less time drawing energy. this had been discussed in replacing the 4200 with a 7200, which supposedly runs cooler and draws less power.

you are not wrong - higher rpm hard drives run less working cycles and more idle cycles, so the power consumption actually decreases (to some point) when revving up the hd. i'd say 7200rpm drives for everyone, do you hear me apple? :)

pingin
May 3, 2004, 04:11 AM
By paying $50 extra for the upgraded graphics card, you'll probably be able to sell your system for an additional $60 down the road. Seriously, 2 years down the line, people are going to be looking for the system with the 128MB video card if they're looking at a 15" PB from this generation, and since its not upgradeable, it's easily worth that much to a buyer, maybe more.

I'd fully agree with this, except that the 128MB option is only available on the 1.5GHz PB. If adding an extra 64MB of VRAM doesn't make that much difference to performance, then I'll save myself a 500 euros and purchase the 1.33GHz model. I still think both PBs are excellent value for money :) - to think, I bought my wallstreet 5 years ago (233MHz, 64MB, 2GB), I paid the equivalent of 6,000 euros and it's now worth about 200 euro resale :eek: .

citizenchunk
May 3, 2004, 09:30 AM
i'm glad that someone else posted this question. i had a thread going a couple weeks ago to this effect.

i don't play games or do CAD, so i didn't even consider the 128MB VRAM upgrade. but a few days after i ordered i realized that it was only $50. i still feel kind of silly for not jumping on it, even though i know that i'll never ever have the need for the extra VRAM.

but 128 MB of VRAM ain't gonna mean **** to music programs (which is where i need the pbook horsepower), no matter how much eye candy they throw at you. even if there is a music app with a lot of graphics, i doubt that the developer put any thought into optimizing it for a specific graphics card, so it's mainly your CPU/RAM/HDD that counts.

that being said, it is only $50, and as someone else here has wisely pointed out, it will enhance resale value down the road. if you can spare the bread, just go for it. you're already dropping $2500!!!

Diatribe
May 3, 2004, 10:03 AM
Barefeats just posted a quicktake.
The 128mb is roughly 7% faster than the 64. The crazy thing is that the GeFX5200Go is compared to the 128mb 9700 only 50% as fast. That's pretty bad.
http://www.barefeats.com/quick.html

Dippo
May 3, 2004, 10:35 AM
Barefeats just posted a quicktake.
The 128mb is roughly 7% faster than the 64. The crazy thing is that the GeFX5200Go is compared to the 128mb 9700 only 50% as fast. That's pretty bad.
http://www.barefeats.com/quick.html


Where did you see the comparison to the Go5700? I can't find it anywhere.


Does the newest PowerBook with 128MB video memory option go faster than the 64MB version? That's a burning question for which we all want the answer. Bare Feats lab has ordered a PowerBook with 128MB option, but in the meantime, we were able to get one test result from a "remote mad scientist."

Unreal Tournament 2003 "Max" quality 1024x768 Flyby (Average of Antalus and Asbestos) on PowerBook G4/1.5GHz:
With 64MB Video Memory = 72fps
With 128MB Video Memory = 77 fps (or 7% faster)
You might see a more dramatic difference if you ran at 1600x1200 on an external 23" Cinema Display.

If any others of you have a new PowerBook with the 128MB video memory option and want to run more tests for us, please contact me.

tomf87
May 3, 2004, 11:27 AM
...
- Upgrade to one stick of 512 MB of RAM. (people say 512 MB and above doesn't make a huge difference in game performance)
...
If you find it necessary, you can go ahead and upgrade to 1 GB of RAM with a spare stick or get a gig stick....

I'm not so sure about this. The more RAM you have, the less chance of disk swapping is going to occur. I've found that, overall (not just in games), the 1GB RAM upgrade is well worth the money. I know X-Plane seems to like that extra memory.

pingin
May 3, 2004, 04:28 PM
Barefeats just posted a quicktake.
The 128mb is roughly 7% faster than the 64. The crazy thing is that the GeFX5200Go is compared to the 128mb 9700 only 50% as fast. That's pretty bad.
http://www.barefeats.com/quick.html

Careful here, guys! When examining the initial review (http://www.barefeats.com/quick.html) I noticed that the 1.5GHz Powerbook had a particularly low score (72) for the UT Flyby. In the same test, the 1.33GHz Powerbook scored 73 whereas in all the other tests, the PB 1.5GHz Powerbook was ahead. So, I'd say we should take this result with a good sized pinch of salt. I think the PB 1.5GHz 9700 64MB RAM should have scored higher than 72 and the actual performance boost between 64 and 128 MB may be less than 7%.

Diatribe
May 3, 2004, 05:02 PM
Where did you see the comparison to the Go5700? I can't find it anywhere.

They have the frame rates posted for the 12" GeFX5200Go in the overall test... now if you compare the results of the 12" which scored 45 on UT flyby and take the 77 of the 15" 128mb version it is 58% (ok it's not quite 50 I give you that, but it's still slow as hell compared to the Rad9200)

They should have put the lower 9200 in the 12" and I would have been happy, but this 5200 crap is just stealing my sleep.

Ozi
May 4, 2004, 12:06 AM
thanks for all the feedback guys! Today I ordered my new computer. Below are the specs:

1.5Ghz G4 15" pBook
1 GB Ram (1 SoDIMM)
5400 RPM 80GB hard disk
128 MB graphics
Combo drive (I downgraded the super... dont EVER burn DVDs, and dad has a TiBook with a dvd burner if I ever need to.)
Backlit keyboard *drools* :)

This should do graphics pretty sweet, and I still have 1 memory slot free if I ever want to upgrade to 2 GB Ram... ;)

As for Geforce ****, one of the big reasons I avoided 12" pBook is that I hate nVidia... Radeons are better, its as simple as that. The 9700 Mobility is a great graphics card for a laptop, and thats what really sold me on the 15".

Oh and the backlit keyboard is gimicky but cool. :)

~ozi

aswitcher
May 4, 2004, 02:33 AM
~ozi


Whats the expected arrival date?

porovaara
May 4, 2004, 07:28 AM
The unreal demo is still broken for single CPU machines is it not?

Ozi
May 4, 2004, 10:10 AM
The apple store says "9-11 days" for it to be BTO, which is ok. However, the apple guy I ordered it through says they are yet to ship them to Australia, which sucks major balls. :(

I hope it shows up soon, cos I want to get gaming, but who knows? might be a month before it arrives, knowing the wait times on other apple products in the past. :eek:

Sorry I cant be more specific, switcher. :(

~ozi

Imidazole
May 4, 2004, 11:39 AM
According to http://www.barefeats.com/quick.html




Unreal Tournament 2003 "Max" quality 1024x768 Flyby (Average of Antalus and Asbestos) on PowerBook G4/1.5GHz:
With 64MB Video Memory = 72fps
With 128MB Video Memory = 77 fps (or 7% faster)


-Jason
http://www.serversunderthesun.com

pingin
May 5, 2004, 02:49 PM
There's an update available:

http://www.barefeats.com/quick.html

This time the increase is closer to 3% :( .

According to http://www.barefeats.com/quick.html




Unreal Tournament 2003 "Max" quality 1024x768 Flyby (Average of Antalus and Asbestos) on PowerBook G4/1.5GHz:
With 64MB Video Memory = 72fps
With 128MB Video Memory = 77 fps (or 7% faster)


-Jason
http://www.serversunderthesun.com

Ozi
May 6, 2004, 12:33 AM
yeah that sucks... on the plus side, a lot of that is to do with RAM, not graphics card. Hopefully other tests show the 128MB option to be better at fps.

aswitcher
May 6, 2004, 12:45 AM
yeah that sucks... on the plus side, a lot of that is to do with RAM, not graphics card. Hopefully other tests show the 128MB option to be better at fps.


Yeah, I'll wait until Barefeats does their thing. I think its going to be much better than this marginal figure.

Krizoitz
May 6, 2004, 01:20 AM
Unreal Tournament 2003 "Max" quality 1024x768 Flyby (Average of Antalus and Asbestos) on PowerBook G4/1.5GHz:
With 64MB Video Memory = 72fps
With 128MB Video Memory = 77 fps (or 7% faster)


I'd be interested to see what the fps are at native resolution. Since 1024x768 isn't native it actually taxes the processor because it has to scale the image.

Ozi
May 6, 2004, 01:46 AM
aswitcher, here is the latest on my computer, and how long it will take:

The machine that you ordered is what is called "build-to-order so it will take a little longer.* Please bear with me while Apple build the computer in Singapore .* Should not take take mach longer hopefully

Regards.

hope this helps... Im guessing about 1 more week. I have already ordered Halo. LMAO

I can give more feedback on the 128meg VRAM when I get it and can do some benchtesting.

aswitcher
May 6, 2004, 03:04 AM
I can give more feedback on the 128meg VRAM when I get it and can do some benchtesting.


Yeah Halo and UT are on my buy list. Here's hoping that the 128 can handle it.

Grokgod
May 6, 2004, 03:27 AM
What about the issue of open windows and using an external monitor like a Cinema display, doesnt a 128 shine on these types of situations.

I would think that 128 would help speed up graphic redraws or the amount of windows and the resolutions that they can be displayed at.

A laptop with a home Cinema Display is almost the best of all worlds, till the new REV B G5 Powermac or powerbook comes on stage.

Ozi
May 11, 2004, 02:57 AM
I got "Halo" in the mail today... whilst it cost me a lot, it was worth it cos I can play a LEGAL version, and get the updates, and play online.

However, still waiting on my new pBook... :( Its apparently being built in Singapore at the moment, but I want it NOW! *throws tantrum*

I mean, there is only so many times I can read and re-read the Halo game guide....


and Grokgod, doesnt the "speeding up of graphic redraws" translate into a higher FPS in games like Halo and UT2004?

~ozi

aswitcher
May 11, 2004, 04:11 AM
I got "Halo" in the mail today... whilst it cost me a lot, it was worth it cos I can play a LEGAL version, and get the updates, and play online.

~ozi


I am going for UT2K4 first as I have Halo on the box.

When did you order your PB through Apple?

Ozi
May 11, 2004, 07:18 AM
:D see the other thread: (http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?p=837329#post837329)

But yeah, same day as yours, i think. Lets hope the Singaporeans speed it up, eh? :D

Ozi
May 14, 2004, 09:01 PM
heres an update....

http://www.barefeats.com/pb12.html

the 128MB GPU is only a little bit faster, but the 5400RPM is heaps quicker than just a 4200RPM 80GB hard disk!

Steven1621
May 14, 2004, 09:33 PM
the 128 MB ATI is a better bet for the future. it isn't that much more for the upgrade and will extend the life of your PB

Ozi
May 14, 2004, 09:46 PM
it will certainly hold its value...

owaters
May 21, 2004, 10:21 AM
Hi,

I have a 1.25 15" PowerBook with a 64MB Graphics Card, I am wondering if I could upgrade to a 128MB?

Is this possible?

pingin
May 22, 2004, 02:59 AM
Hi,

I have a 1.25 15" PowerBook with a 64MB Graphics Card, I am wondering if I could upgrade to a 128MB?

Is this possible?

the graphics card isn't a separate component but integrated onto the motherboard so you can't upgrade it. i wouldn't worry too much about it because from what the reviews are saying, having a 128MB graphics card doesn't really seem to make much difference.

johnnyjibbs
May 22, 2004, 05:24 PM
I would say go with the 128MB card just because it's a cheap upgrade, whether you need it or not. Look on the bright side: my rev B 12" PB only has 32MB graphics!

aswitcher
May 22, 2004, 06:41 PM
the graphics card isn't a separate component but integrated onto the motherboard so you can't upgrade it. i wouldn't worry too much about it because from what the reviews are saying, having a 128MB graphics card doesn't really seem to make much difference.


Perhaps not in the short term but I have read suspicions by others that more of the quartz stuff is going to be diverted to the graphics processor to free up the main cpu. Maybe Tiger will allow for this. If it does then it and other apps will run much quicker I imagine with a larger graphics card...

johnnyjibbs
May 22, 2004, 06:45 PM
Perhaps not in the short term but I have read suspicions by others that more of the quartz stuff is going to be diverted to the graphics processor to free up the main cpu. Maybe Tiger will allow for this. If it does then it and other apps will run much quicker I imagine with a larger graphics card...
Yes, Mac OS X and Quartz Extreme already place large demands on the graphics processor. A better graphics card with more VRAM will help make expose, cube transitions, etc, much smoother, especially at high resolutions and dual display set-ups. I'm not sure what changes were made to Quartz Extreme for Panther, if any, but I'm sure any new eye-candy in the future will need better graphics cards for smooth operation (and bloody smooth window resizing :D )

Grokgod
May 23, 2004, 11:40 AM
Yeah~ Lets hear it for better and faster dual display with the higher ram!

I mean whats a better combo than a powerbook with one of the upcoming cinema display!

The best of all worlds.....

bc-67
Jun 23, 2004, 09:04 AM
I am comparing the demo on both machines. I was not going to buy it if the performance was lacking on my machine. I was unaware of the glitch so maybe there is hope.
Just reading this forum as I'm thinking of upgrading to a PB 15" 1.5Ghz from a PB Ti 15" 1Ghz (Radeon 9000/64MB). UT2004 demo is still broke and on my PB Ti gives really crap FPS even with everything turned down.

However, I read reviews regarding the retail version of those with my system and everything is much better. Going on that, I bought a copy of it myself and it is one surpurb game. The reason the guy with the dual G5 had no problem is that the demo bug relates to sound which is handled by one processor while everything else goes on the other. It is one of my bug-bears that Apple don't put a cheap sound processing chip in the laptops instead of wasting valuable CPU cycles processing sound data. On my laptop, I alway turn sound quality down if my FPS rates are struggling.

In regard to the discussion about hard drive speeds, definitely go for 5400RPM in the BTO as this makes a big difference playing games. A lot of stuff is pulled off HD at the start of levels etc. (Also makes sense if using as desktop replacement due to memory paging etc.)

'nuff said.

heaven
Jun 23, 2004, 12:55 PM
I've ordered my 17" PB with the 128 MB Radeon, was just a difference of 48 for me, so I didn't care..

Cheers