Battery saving (Iris Pro 5200) VS. discrete graphics (nvidia 750m)

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by arian19, Jul 28, 2013.

  1. arian19 macrumors 6502


    Jul 9, 2008
    I wanted to start a thread about integrated graphics vs discrete graphics. It is well rumored that the new MBP will have integrated Intel graphics, Iris Pro 5200, with eDRAM. Since Iris Pro is almost as good as Nvidia 650m, but has better power consumption. However, that's old tech, the 750m probably won't get close to the integrated graphics.

    Which would you prefer?

    Less graphics and better battery life or better graphics and worse battery life?

    I honestly am willing to sacrifice GPU for dramatic increase in battery life. I want to know how everyone else feels about this?
  2. BlackbookGuy macrumors regular

    Feb 21, 2012
    I presume you refer to the 15 inch, and I could see me buying one without the dedicated graphics. I like the big, crisp screen, but only rarely game and only do family videos and pics, so don't really need the dGPU. I would love a lighter, longer lasting (i.e. battery charge), 15 inch computer. And if its cheaper without dGPU, sweet.

    I would also like the portability of the 13 inch, so not sure what I will buy in the fall.
  3. Laco macrumors 6502

    Apr 23, 2008
    The 750m is basically an overclocked version of the 650m, with only a modest 10 to 15% increase in performance. We will have to wait and see what Apple will choose to do.
  4. arian19 thread starter macrumors 6502


    Jul 9, 2008
    Do you think it's possible that apple puts both a 750 and Iris pro 5200. I doubt they would waste the space, especially when the theme of mavericks is battery saving.
  5. Phan0121 macrumors newbie

    Mar 26, 2013
    I've been slowly warming up to the idea. Now with that said, I need two things from apple.

    1. A price decrease on the base model, which would allow me to upgrade ram and SSD size without feeling like I'm being raped.

    2. Have the option to add a dGPU in a BTO if needed.
  6. cirus macrumors 6502a

    Mar 15, 2011
    Iris isn't going to save anything on battery life. You are already using the igp with the current rmbp for basically all tasks sans gaming. What iris may reduce is power use when gaming and thus heat.
  7. br3nt macrumors member

    Jul 1, 2012
    correct me if i'm wrong but the new iris igp will have lower power consumption at the same "form of activity", hence lowering the consumption.

    And no way will apple remove the dGPU on the 15".. Pro's need stuff for hardware rendering etc.
    Intel is far from having all those stuff.

    Use google for more info, don't take my word for it ;)
  8. leman macrumors G3

    Oct 14, 2008
    Well, the problem with all kind of integrated graphics is that its still has to draw lots of power to be fast. Intel is no exception. I doub't that increased performance of Iris Pro comes for 'free', after all, the increased amount of EU will need more watts to power them. Let us look at a comparison. An 4850HQ with Iris Pro and 4800MQ with HD4600 both have the TDP of 45W, while 4850HQ has slightly slower clocks. Still, if you want to boost the GPU performance, you will have to tone down the CPU clocks to realistically maintain the TDP. For stuff which does not require much performance (video decoding, desktop composition etc.), a slower HD4600 is more then enough, and for demanding use, a fast CPU (not constrained by power requirements of the on-die GPU) + a dedicated GPU should provide better performance with a tolerable impact on battery life. Not to mention that prices for Iris Pro equipped CPUs are ridiculous.

    What kind of stuff are you talking about? :D
  9. jredubr macrumors newbie

    Jun 23, 2013
    Personally, I still prefer GPU power over battery life.
    For battery life we already got the MBA.

    While I think that a 5100 or 5200 makes total sense for the rMBP 13", which lacks GPU power, I think the consumer (including myself) won't be happy with lower performance in comparison to last year's model, as many MBP users that I know also bought it because of its gaming capabilities.
  10. pgiguere1, Jul 28, 2013
    Last edited: Jul 28, 2013

    pgiguere1 macrumors 68020


    May 28, 2009
    Montreal, Canada
    My personnal guess is that Apple will drop the dGPU only on the base model in order to lower the base price, similar to what they did in 2009 with the 15" cMBP.

    It used to cost $1999 in 2008, but they could reduce the base price to $1799 in 2009 because of this, while also offering dGPUs on two other pre-built configs.

    See the configurations here:
    Late-2008 15-inch MacBook Pro
    Mid-2009 15-inch MacBook Pro

    Intel offers their 47W TDP Haswell CPUs with either Iris Pro 5200 or HD 4600 graphics. The HD 4600 models are cheaper and allow for higher CPU clock/TurboBoost speeds so I think that's what Apple will go with for models with a dGPU.

    Assuming Apple stays with NVIDIA for discrete graphics, I'd expect something like this:

    Base model:
    2.0GHz quad-core Intel Core i7
    Turbo Boost up to 3.2GHz
    8GB 1600MHz memory
    256GB flash storage
    Intel Iris Pro 5200 graphics

    Second model:
    2.4GHz quad-core Intel Core i7
    Turbo Boost up to 3.4GHz
    8GB 1600MHz memory
    256GB flash storage
    Intel HD 4600 graphics
    NVIDIA GeForce GT 750M with 2GB of GDDR5 memory

    Third model:
    2.7GHz quad-core Intel Core i7
    Turbo Boost up to 3.5GHz
    16GB 1600MHz memory
    512GB flash storage
    Intel HD 4600 graphics
    NVIDIA GeForce GT 750M with 2GB of GDDR5 memory

    If someone wanted to maximize his battery life and often used applications which force the use of discrete graphics on hybrid models, without using them to their full potential (Photoshop for example), he would most likely be more satisfied with the base model.
    Although I suspect this would not be something common, the main benefit of this move would more be the lower price.
  11. leman macrumors G3

    Oct 14, 2008
    But thats exactly the thing - I don't see how this is possible, as the Iris Pro carries a cost premium comparable to that of an dGPU. CPU models with 5200 are $100 more expensive then those with 4600, mostly because Iris Pro uses expensive embedded RAM.
  12. puma1552 macrumors 603

    Nov 20, 2008
    Maybe this is comical, but how does Iris Pro compare to an NVIDIA GT 330M (mid-2010 MBP)?
  13. SilverOath macrumors member

    Apr 25, 2013
    You know we should be comparing it to a Monster 3DFX.... because it doesn't matter how it compares to contemporary dedicated graphics!
  14. Serban Suspended

    Jan 8, 2013
    the chip of 760M is 1.2mm smaller overall than 650M
    with 760M in lab with wifi ac connected to server that refresh the page every 5 seconds the 15" last 11h and 34 min
  15. dusk007 macrumors 68040


    Dec 5, 2009
    A few months ago I assumed the same but there was this geekbench leak of the 4950hq MBP. Only a 4750HQ basemodel makes any sense but with a 4950HQ it has to be a high end model and it wouldn't make any sense to add a dedicated GPU in one such.
    It is most likely HD 5200 only all the way. People can probably choose between the three cpus and the whole price will probably drop somewhat.
    The 4750HQ isn't all that expensive but with the 4850 it gets expensive and the 4950 is more expensive than a dedicated solution with a more reasonable CPU.
    Even a 4750HQ blows a 330M out of the water. A 330M is barely any faster than a HD 4000. These two as far apart in performance as Ivy bridge iGPUs from the HD 5200. 330M is really old and wasn't great at any time, around that time AMD actually had the better solution but apple waited for the 2011 to switch to AMD.
    Here are benchmark numbres of both summarized.
    Obviously the CPU is also a lot faster. Faster for each clock cycle because of small improvements and the truly integrated memory controller, more cores and more clock. Battery life on all but full load is also much different. Our 2010 MBP are just really old crap compared to that. A MacBook Air 13" today is almost as fast as our MacBook Pro 2010.
  16. thundersteele macrumors 68030

    Oct 19, 2011
    Concerning the 750M:

    Since NVidia doesn't have a new product ready, the 750M is based on the same architecture (GK107) as the 650M, with a slightly higher clock speed. Since the 650M in the rMBP is already overclocked, the performance improvement with a 750M might be marginal to non-existent.

    Qualitatively, it is like the early 2013 upgrade of the MBPs... just a higher clock speed, but the same processor type.

    An underclocked 760M might be a better choice, or maybe some ATI card. But neither is going to happen, most likely we will see an optimized HD5200+, or whatever that special Apple version of Iris Pro will be called.
  17. pgiguere1 macrumors 68020


    May 28, 2009
    Montreal, Canada
    I see, although I have no idea what the price of something like the overclocked GT 650M cost to Apple.

    CPU models with the Iris Pro 5200 actually cost a bit less than 100$ more than their HD 4600 equivalent. Wikipedia states a 4850HQ is $88 more than a 4800MQ, and the difference would probably be lower for a cheaper model like the 4750HQ, not to mention Apple probably negociate better prices with the kind of volume they must order.

    Do you think a discrete GPU like they currently use cost less than that? I'd be surprised, considering a desktop GT 650 Ti is around $200, but like I said I have no idea.

    If using HQ (Iris Pro) Haswell CPUs was more expensive than using their MQ equivalent + dGPU, why would Apple go that route (like leaked benchmarks suggest), just to increase battery life when using apps that force the use of discrete graphics on hybrid models? Because if I'm understanding correctly, a hybrid-GPU laptop has the same battery life as one with no dGPU at all when automatic switching is on with applications that don't force the use of the dGPU.
  18. Count Blah macrumors 68040

    Count Blah

    Jan 6, 2004
    US of A
    I prefer the choice to be left to me, not forced upon me.
  19. john123 macrumors 68020


    Jul 20, 2001
    The available evidence disagrees with you. Source: Google.


    No, even more than the space, this would be prohibitively expensive. You'd be much more likely to see Intel HD 4600 alongside a dedicated dGPU.


    Edited your configurations for space. Several weeks ago, I posted something almost exactly like this in the "Waiting for Haswell" thread. I no longer believe it to be likely. One, it requires separate fabrication processes. While there is some history of that (2009), it's less likely. Second, and more important, it's a small marketing nightmare. Third, the number of users for whom the lack of a 750M is a deal breaker is rather small. Fourth, that leaked benchmark was the high-end 2.4Ghz chip with the Iris 5200, which costs a whopping $657. Granted, the fact that 2.0s came late to the party may mean that this prototype was never intended to see the light of day, but still..

    As a business weighing competing tradeoffs, I really think it's going to be the Iris 5200 across the entire 15" rMBP line.


    For all the reasons stated above, I think this is even less likely. Keep in mind--this is the same company that is awfully fond of removing options for users in the name of simplicity or looking toward the future. A dGPU BTO option is almost antithetical to that business approach.


    Haha, you must be new to Apple products! Just teasing, but seriously, forced choices has been the Apple way for an awfully long time.
  20. cirus macrumors 6502a

    Mar 15, 2011

    Prohibitively expensive? Not a chance. You can buy a desktop 650 for ~$100. That includes newegg's markup and the 3rd party manufacturer profit. That also includes the massive PCB and cooling system (as compared to a laptop). For apple to add a 750m to the rmbp would cost them something like $60 for BOM and manufacturing (given the quantities apple buys it could be lower: if lenovo can sell a 15.6" laptop for $900 with SLI 650m, i7 quad, and 1080p display apple can easily fit it in its budget).

    760m is based on GK 106 and is 2.5 billion transistors on 214 mm^2.
    750m/650m is based on GK 107 and is 1.3 billion transistors on 118 mm^2.

    Highly doubt that iris pro will have lower power consumption than HD 4600 (because the dgpu is deactivated for > 99% of all tasks the average consumer does on battery sans gaming). Edram + additional EUs is going to push the power budget.
  21. Count Blah macrumors 68040

    Count Blah

    Jan 6, 2004
    US of A
    Yeah, I know. 2009's MBP gives me hope that a choice will be available. Well that and Apple can't force it's customers to move up the chain to get something better, like they do with all their other non-top of the line hardware. Can Apple out a dGPU in the mini? Sure, thus have in the past, but No No, you have to pay more for it. Same with the 13" MBP, you gotta pay more.
  22. br3nt, Jul 29, 2013
    Last edited: Jul 29, 2013

    br3nt macrumors member

    Jul 1, 2012

    Then i must've missed them. Care to point me in the right directions?

    First and foremost, the amount of (bus)bandwidth available and/or shared resources (RAM).
    Second of all is the streamed processing, such as CUDA vs OpenCL.
    As far as i know (i'm not that into it at all) there's (still) a huge difference with compatibility for the software in use by the big media houses today.

    Just to be clear, I believe apple will shoot themselves in the foot if they drop the dGPU just for the reason of software. The software isn't there yet code wise to handle different vendors.
    Unless it's a strategic move to make everyone with rendering/grid computing needs buy a new Mac Pro...

    why do you think the new MacPro doesnt come with integrated? other than these two reasons:
    a) you plug it in to the wall so it can be somewatt power hungry, pun intended
    b) able to (in some way) switch out the hardware in the future.
  23. Count Blah macrumors 68040

    Count Blah

    Jan 6, 2004
    US of A
    One would hope that the consumer would be a given a choice.

    Option 1) Batter life to the max. You still get retina on the 15" and a iGPU that is nearly to the 650M in performance, but look at that LONG battery life.

    Option 2) 4600, 5000, 5100, whichever. Still a step up from the 4000 for the times you are not conquering the universe or pushing image manipulation to the extreme, but with a XXXmobile dGPU available when you are.

    Gee, imagine that, giving a consumer a choice. I know it' a radical idea for Apple, but I hope it's one that they will offer.
  24. Freyqq macrumors 601

    Dec 13, 2004
    no battery savings at all. In the current rmbp, the 650m is switched off unless you need it.
  25. willcapellaro macrumors 6502

    Oct 20, 2011
    Both please!...

    ...even on the 13".

    I need a iGPU that can cut the mustard when the laptop is on the move and I need battery longevity. I need a dGPU that can throw the heat when I am plugged into power and I am running three monitors, designing, rendering, and compositing.

    Apple needs to remember that the amount of monitor ports are writing checks for pixel pushing, these are checks that their GPU array needs to be able to cash.

    Taking away GPU power literally guts the workstation power from the MBP. Many people use their MBPs plugged in 95% of the time.

    So I'm very much hoping that they at least give us the option, and let power users vote with their wallets.

    If Apple has plans for an external GPU thunderbolt display hub, I think it will calm some of us who are leery of Apple's plans. It seems stopgap (and there are technical hurdles), but it could be an elegant solution that could make every TB mac into a powerhouse. However, it won't solve anything who those working in coffee shops. Apple, please note that those people are totally able to plug into power if they need full speed.

    Give us two levels of GPU, and make the default arbiter whether the device is plugged in to power. This will seamlessly give the device maximum power when it is manageable, and the invisible appearance of huge battery longevity.

    For those who don't need that, don't include the dGPU, but don't complicate life for those who do have such needs. Make the dual GPU option available for 13" and 15" Pro users. I personally think a powerhouse 13" with both GPU options makes the most sense for those who want the external monitor capabilities, and may never open the clamshell.

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