Upgrading mobile graphics chips in powerbooks

Discussion in 'Games' started by mishi, Oct 10, 2004.

  1. mishi macrumors regular

    mishi

    Joined:
    May 22, 2004
    Location:
    Australia
    #1
    Is there any easy way to upgrade the graphics chips in powerbooks?
    my powerbook has a mobility radeon 9600 64Vram. is there an easy way to upgrade this to a 9700 128 Like the new powerbooks have?.

    I know to all of you people who know what they are talking about this may sound stupid but it can't hurt asking.

    any help would be great, cheers. :)
     
  2. jackieonasses macrumors 6502a

    jackieonasses

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    #2
    I can easily say it is next to impossible. You are stuck with what you buy unfortunately.
     
  3. stoid macrumors 601

    stoid

    Joined:
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    So long, and thanks for all the fish!
    #3
    Unfortunately, Apple portables have the graphics card hard-wired into the main logic board, and so it cannot be replaced. I'd imagine that doing this allows them to cut down on the thickness of the laptop.
     
  4. asphalt-proof macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2003
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    Magrathea
    #4
    Not just Apple laptops but pretty much all laptops have their graphic cards hardwired onto the motherboard. There may be one or tow high end companies that specialize in portable gaming rigs that have removable vid cards but I;m not aware of any and I wold be surpised if they could accomodate the small form factor. But hey, it never hurts to ask! :)
     
  5. TDM21 macrumors 6502a

    TDM21

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2004
    #5
    AlienWare started doing this in their laptops. It is still propriatary because you have to buy the video cards from AlienWare, but it is a start to being able to customize you laptop more and more.
     
  6. vraxtus macrumors 65816

    vraxtus

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    San Francisco, CA
    #6
    So has Dell.
     
  7. thatwendigo macrumors 6502a

    thatwendigo

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    #7
    Unfortunately, Apple uses actual graphics cards where most laptops use Intel Extreme integrated, shared-memmory graphics. Unfortunately, Apple hasn't signed on with the extremely proprietary and dueling mobile replacable graphics formats. Unfortunately, this is the only way you could even put a card into a laptop until this year.

    :rolleyes:
     
  8. warcraftmaster macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2003
    Location:
    here
    #8
    how about replace motherboard? not only you woll get a better gpu but a better cpu :eek: right? i think it would work but the only thing is stoping me is where to get the motherboard. and my 12 power book doesnt have a mini dvi port :(
     
  9. johnnyjibbs macrumors 68030

    johnnyjibbs

    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2003
    Location:
    London, UK
    #9
    Even if you could replace the graphics card, I wouldn't have thought a 9700 with 128MB VRAM would be worth it over the 9600 (64MB). Putting that in the 12" PB on the other hand... :cool:
     
  10. applekid macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Jul 3, 2003
    #10
    eBay?

    Not that I recommend such a ridiculous replacement of motherboards. (Open the PB, take out the old mobo, place the new one in, and don't forget all of the cables, not to mention the price is probably like the cost of one new PB)

    And, no, the PB's graphics chip cannot be replaced. It's soldered on and is an actual chip, not card. Alienware and Dell have moved towards replaceable cards, but will take time to catch on with other manufacturers. And it is a misconception to say most most PC laptops use half-assed integrated graphics chips. The decent ones use the same graphics chips Apple uses.
     
  11. jestershinra macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2004
    #11
    I'm sure you can buy a new MLB somewhere...I just forget where.

    However, I'm fairly certain it would void your Apple warranty. A logic board replacement in a PowerBook isn't a small repair. I wouldn't recommend it, as it can be expensive (~800?) and it's a lot of work, that, if done wrong, can render your entire system useless.
     
  12. applekid macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Jul 3, 2003
    #13
    I still standby my comment that the decent laptops still have a real graphics chipset.

    Apple doesn't have a true low-end laptop in my opinion. Apple doesn't have a laptop that goes below $1000, so I don't think it's a fair comparison when you compare the low-end 3 Dell Laptops to the cheapest iBook. It goes with the old PC rule of selling cheap machines and saving money by throwing in cheap parts. Apple doesn't do that, and anybody with a lick of sense will move up the line and get a decent machine.

    Sony Style's product is just to look pretty and be expensive. Sony lacks performance with those machines, so I find that useless to argue with. You do know they make those laptops in limited numbers for a gimmick? So I wouldn't call those real laptops.

    And Toshiba is still using real chipsets with those examples you pointed out. We still have the 5200 Go in the 12-inch PB line. Still a decent chipset in the sense it's better than Intel Integrated and real.
     
  13. thatwendigo macrumors 6502a

    thatwendigo

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    #14
    Name a decent laptop.

    I was comparing all Dell laptops to all Apple Laptops, and there is almost no circumstance where a Dell machine had a better graphics chipset than the mac, excpet with the expensive and heavy desktop replacement systems that have no battery life. Why don't you actually read what I link to before making accusations?

    Think about what you're saying, for Christ's sake. The low-end Apple PowerBook has a 5200 Go, but the high end Toshiba uses it, and the ones under that uses lesser chipsets and shared memory. Even the iBook doesn't resort to the cheapening tactic of eating system memory to save cost.
     
  14. vraxtus macrumors 65816

    vraxtus

    Joined:
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    Location:
    San Francisco, CA
    #15
    Children children...

    Both of you need to stop, and think for a second.

    There are obvious reasons why Mac laptops do have true 3D cards in their laptops, and PCs *typically* do not (with the exception of higher end models, and Alienware computers).

    First, consider that PC laptops have CPUs that are clocked nearly twice what Macs are (on average). Thus, the faster the processor, the MORE POWER IT WILL NEED.

    Mac laptops are clocked SIGNIFICANTLY slower, and the power differential is used by the GPU to offset what's lacking in CPU power consumption. So in that regard, we Mac users benefit from a lower clock because it allows engineering feats to stick a true GPU in a portable of an appropriate size. This ultimately is any answer to why the new iMac is significantly thicker than any laptop, because it's clocked HIGHER AND it has a GPU.

    PC laptops use integrated graphics because the power consumption of a high clocked CPU and a true GPU would be through the roof on a portable. That's why all the Dell's with true GPUs are gigantic laptops, and nowhere nearly as small as ours. Don't believe me? Go check the clock ratings on them, and see for yourself.

    So, kids, calm down and think before you both make blanket statements. Think about WHY each market is where it's at.

    Also, don't forget that Apple is appealing to a WIDE audience. They have TWO laptop models. Most other PC makers have between 4-6 models that range from office to gaming to ultraportibility.
     
  15. applekid macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Jul 3, 2003
    #16
    That's what I was sorta getting at when I said it's not fair to compare Dell's low-end to Apple's low-end since they do have different targets with each laptop. But, you explained it much better. :D

    thatwendigo, understand you're the one making accusations and making this thread heated. I said what I said in a calm-fashion. I read your links, I know what's going on. I stated my opinions. So chill. You're trying to make it bigger than it really needs to be.

    I'm done here.
     
  16. Jonathan Amend macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2003
    Location:
    Montreal, Canada
    #17
    I'll name a few (my criteria being that it has Centrino and a Mobility Radeon 9600/9700):

    - Asus M6 series (I own the M6Ne myself, weighs 0.1 pounds less than the 15" PB and it's much less expensive too)
    - IBM T42 (only has the Radeon 9600 and it's a bit pricey, but amazing design, and can now be configured with a FireGL T2)
    - Sager 3790
    - Compal CL56 (goes under many names)
    - A few Acer Aspire models, don't know any specific ones
    - Dell Inspiron 8600 (not really decent since it's a Dell, but it does have Centrino+Radeon9700 and a screen far superior to most laptops including PBs)

    Once again, check out the Dell Inspiron 8600. It's a bit thicker and heavier than the 15" PB but it is a Dell after all. There are other options.

    OK, that's great. The high-end Toshiba uses a 5200 Go. That's 1 out of a countless number of PC notebook sellers but I guess that's enough for you to base your opinion on all PC notebooks.
     
  17. thatwendigo macrumors 6502a

    thatwendigo

    Joined:
    Nov 17, 2003
    Location:
    Sum, Ergo Sum.
    #18
    Between the patronization (check my older posts, if you think I don't understand the basic issues of system design) and the PC trollery, I'm done with this tread after a few more comments. Here goes...

    1) I was pointing out major, name brand manufacturers that people actually buy from, not third-party no-names that average people will never have heard of. The market belongs to the likes of Dell, Toshiba, Compaq, IBM, and others that have recognition, not Acer and the other brands that geeks like us know about.

    2) I specifically was looking for Pentium M systems to compare to because they're lower power and a better comparison to the G4, at least when the market is still accepting the godawful P4 M Prescott as an option. What I found is that the vast majority of PC vendors that have recognition don't offer more than a low-end GPU. I never commented on reasons for that, but people were perfectly happy to assing them to me.

    3) My final comment that applekid latched onto was what we reasonable people like to call an "example." It doesn't prove that the whole market is this way, but the trend amongst the large OEMs is not to use a real GPU in their designs. If they do, you end up paying just as much as you would for a PowerBook of similar spec, and yes I do admit that the Pentium M is going to be a faster chip. Just wait until the MPC8461 shows up, and we'll talk about that point again.
     
  18. Jonathan Amend macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2003
    Location:
    Montreal, Canada
    #19
    Two of the "major name brand manufacturers" you mentioned (Dell and IBM) do have a Centrino + Radeon 9600/9700 laptop (the Dell Inspiron 8600 and the IBM T42). Also, people do buy the laptops I mentioned. Like I said, the Compal CL56 goes under many different names from many different resellers and your local Best Buy/Futureshop probably carries a model. The same goes for the Sager 3790 which is actually a Clevo M375EW. Even Acer and Asus are fairly popular and far from "third-party no-names" (and what the hell is "third-party" laptops anyways?). They probably sell more than PBs anyways.
     

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