256 vs 128 mb of video ram on the macbook pro- does it matter?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by iansilv, Oct 16, 2007.

  1. iansilv macrumors 65816

    Jun 2, 2007
    I am about to buy my first mac and I am going to buy the macbook pro. I really wanted to go for the slightly cheaper $1999 version, because I did not think the .2 mhz bump in speed would make a difference. But- will the extra 128 mb of video ram make a difference? I intend to use Adobe indesign, photoshop, and a lot of screwing around on the internet :) Thoughts are very welcome right now :D
  2. obibobi macrumors member

    Aug 13, 2007
  3. Sun Baked macrumors G5

    Sun Baked

    May 19, 2002
    With indesign, photoshop, playing around on the internet -- likely NO.

    However, historically -- when given a choice between an old interface or given a choice on VRAM -- it has always paid to select the newest interface, or largest VRAM choice.

    Apps move forward, and if you plan on keeping the machine through the AppleCare period, Apple and other will likely create cutoffs for FUTURE features and applications using VRAM or interfaces.

    Especially since right now at the high end of some HD video, 128MB of VRAM is the minimum spec.

    The only snag will likely be video for some people, while the Pros who run GPU intesive apps will likely run into the 128MB wall much faster.
  4. Zedsdead185 macrumors 6502

    Sep 14, 2006
    I wouldn't worry about it. You will probably find that the graphic cards speed will hinder its performance before the VRAM will in future apps.
    another thing to note is that the barefeats comparison charts show roughly an increase of 3fps. This isn't only influenced by the 256mb of vram, but the extra 0.2Ghz of cpu speed as well.
    Yet another thing to bare in mind is that the 8600M in the Macbook Pro is suited better for video and programs such photoshop more so than games anyway.
    In my opinion, its not worth the extra buck just to increase performance by 3fps in games.
  5. BeefUK macrumors member

    Jun 9, 2006
    Thats interesting to know as i'm in a similar situation to the OP. I'll be buying a Mac laptop soon, maybe a macbook if they update to SR and change the intergrated graphics to X3100. Otherwise I'm lookin at the low end macbook pro.

    From a bit of research i've done don't think the nvidia cards are that great when compared to current ATI cards. iMacs currently have ATI cards wondering if they might put them in the macbook pros in january??
  6. Sun Baked macrumors G5

    Sun Baked

    May 19, 2002
    Seems Apple wants to keep both GPU options open ... so we will likely keep offering both brands at the same time.

    Got sort of ugly for awhile when Steve was mad at one GPU company for a long time.
  7. WildPalms macrumors 6502a


    Jan 4, 2006
    Honolulu, HI
    I have to agree with you. It doesnt look like Photoshop is vid ram dependant, more system ram, however I dont use Photoshop all that often.

    With respect to gaming, then you will definitely see an improvement, and based on that, I'd have to say that it really depends on the application.

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