256 vs 512 vram

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by jsgrabo, May 5, 2008.

  1. jsgrabo macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2007
    #1
    i'm lookin to buy a new macbook pro. i do plan on playing games like city of heroes/villains, rainbow 6, battlefield, swat 4, counter strike, and crysis if it can handle it. also things like photoshop and final cut express, etc.. all of the games i have a pc to play them on but it would be nice to be able to play them on my mbp. is the 512 worth the extra money? i really appreciate any input/criticisms. thanks.
     
  2. CWallace macrumors 603

    CWallace

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2007
    Location:
    Seattle, WA
    #2
    Games benefit most from the extra VRAM, so since you like to game, it's probably a sound purchase decision to get 512MB.
     
  3. Eidorian macrumors Penryn

    Eidorian

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2005
    Location:
    Indianapolis
  4. ntrigue macrumors 68040

    ntrigue

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2007
    #4
    General consensus would be 512MB VRAM as you do 'game' for what its worth they can all be played medium quality on 256MB VRAM but to get close to MAX resolution the 512MB VRAM will be necessary.
     
  5. akm3 macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2007
    #5
    Even with games, with the 8600gt the extra vram is a non issue.

    Don't base your decision on that. A more valuable 'gain' comes from the larger cache size with the mid-tier book. That a far better, although still minor, reason to go for the bigger book.
     
  6. alphaod macrumors Core

    alphaod

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    Feb 9, 2008
    Location:
    NYC
  7. jsgrabo thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2007
    #7
    thanks for all the replies. although i would like the most performance, im looking at the prices and i think im just gonna go with the 256. i mean, i could pick up a refurbed mbp with 256 for $1650 and the 512 currently is only offered on the new ones for $2500. hmm. im not so sure the extra $850 is worth it. thanks again for the replies. if anyone else has anything to add feel free. im still open to suggestion.
     
  8. akm3 macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2007
    #8
    Those refurbs for $1649 actually have 4meg of Cache instead of 3meg so they are 'better', although they run hotter cause they don't have penryn. And no multitouch. But otherwise identical.

    That said, I LOVED the multitouch feature on my wife's macbook air (which tragically died at 4 days old, because of a coffee spill)

    Now that I've had it, I would want the 'old' one. Multitouch is really that handy.
     
  9. burningrave101 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2008
    #9
    I haven't seen many solid benchmarks comparing the 8600M GT 256MB to the 512MB version to see what difference there might be in certain games but I can tell you is that the 8600M GT is not that fast of a graphics card to begin with compared to something like an 8800M GT and it's also limited to a 128-bit memory bus so effectively it cannot use 512MB of VRAM because it can't push that much bandwidth. Gaming wise though the upgrade to me is not worth no $500 because you're not getting a faster video card, only more VRAM which the video card can't even really use.
     
  10. burningrave101 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2008
    #10
    It will depend a lot on the application run which will be faster but overall the newer Penryn based models are faster than the same clocked models from last gen which have more L2 cache on specific models such as the 2.4Ghz. Penryn also offers quite a bit better battery life due to the die shrink. How much you want to pay for the upgrade though should depend on your budget.
     
  11. stainlessliquid macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2006
    #11
    There would be pretty much no difference. The 8600 is not fast enough to use 512mbs, its nothing but a gimmick which theyve been pulling for years now on low budget cards (in many cases the 512mb version performs worse since they use slower ram to offset the cost). The 8800 GT does benefit from 512mbs though, it was designed to use 512 unlike the 8600.
     
  12. alphaod macrumors Core

    alphaod

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2008
    Location:
    NYC
    #12
    Like I said. No reason to get the extra 512MB unless you have no choice (because the configuration you want requires it)
     
  13. jsgrabo thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2007
    #13
    i am now thoroughly convinced to just get the 256. thanks again for everyones input. its all much appreciated! :D
     

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