MB MBP Graphics Help

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by lowercaseperson, Oct 5, 2006.

  1. lowercaseperson macrumors 6502

    Oct 5, 2006
    My girlfriend is wanting to get a MB or MBP, she really has no idea what she needs, and well I thought I did. She does a lot of Photography, though nothing professional right now...she wants to run Photoshop and maybe a little movies editing mainly iMovie maybe FCP.
    So here is my question. The GMA 950 says it has 64mb of DDR2 SDRAM *SHARED* with main memory. The MBP has the X1600 w/ up 256mb GDDR3, but it doesn't say, "shared with main memory." So, if we got a MB with 2 gb of RAM and some app. needed say 128mb of memory for the video, would the GMA 950 pull the extra 64mb from the main memory to get the total 128mb? Because if that is the case then what is the difference between at MB w/ the GMA 950 and 2gb RAM and a MBP w/ the X1600 and 256mb GDDR3? The baseline question here is if I got a MB with enough RAM would the graphics run as good as a MBP with X1600 @ 256mb? And if not (sorry it's so long) would it (the MB w/ GMA 950 and 2gb RAM) be sufficient to run Photoshop, FCP, iMovie, etc.?
    Thanks for the help, I hope this makes sense...it's late and I have an Organic Chem. test at 8:30 :(
  2. Scarlet Fever macrumors 68040

    Scarlet Fever

    Jul 22, 2005
    Dedicated Graphics Proccessing Units (GPU), such as those found in the iMac Mac Pro and MacBook Pro have dedicated Video RAM (VRAM), which is seperate from the system RAM. Integrated GPUs such as those found in the Mac Mini and MacBook don't have dedicated VRAM, so they suck RAM from the system's supply. When it says it has 64MB shared with system, it means that up to 64MB of your computer's RAM will be used for the GPU, and the remainder will be used for the system.

    I believe the apps mentioned are more RAM and CPU intensive than GPU intensive, so if you had a MacBook and a MacBook Pro with the same CPU speed and ammount of RAM, the difference in performance won't be very high.

    Hope this helps! :)
  3. JDN macrumors 6502a

    Sep 7, 2006
    Lund Sweden {London England}
    I have an Ecosystems Dynamics and Climate Change test in 40 mins. :eek: :eek:

    Id get the MBP because if you want to run photoshop and do some movies editing the larger high resolution screen wil be much appreciated in the long run.

    As for the graphics cards, i think (and i could be very wrong) the MB's graphics card is on the motherboard, but the MBP has a dedicated and more powerfull one.

    Go for a 15" MBP with 1Gb RAM, tis what i have and it hasnt stumbled (to much) at anything ive thrown at it. But then i have been taking it to the limit lately just to see how far i can push it.
  4. lowercaseperson thread starter macrumors 6502

    Oct 5, 2006
    Ahh, so the 64mb shared is the most it will use...good to know! Thanks for your help, definitely makes the decision a little easier, I think we'll stick with the MBP since you really can't upgrade the graphics on the MB-appreciate it!

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