Boot Camp gaming - XP vs. Vista

Discussion in 'Mac and PC Games' started by benmrii, Jan 9, 2009.

  1. benmrii macrumors 65816

    benmrii

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2007
    Location:
    NC
    #1
    I haven't found any general comparisons between the two and am new to gaming via Boot Camp. The two concerns that come to mind that I'm curious for your opinions on:

    Drivers: I've read, and had a little experience with the annoyance of not being able to update the drivers to the most recent versions, most notably video card drivers from ATI/NVIDIA. Is this issue overcome or worsened by either XP or Vista?

    Resource usage: I've heard complaints about Vista being a resource hog with respect to general OS use and have seen suggested specs for games list two different numbers, the greater of the two linked to Vista. Has anyone noticed/tested Boot Camp gaming in both XP and Vista and noticed a resource difference?
     
  2. smacky! macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2008
    #2
    it kinda depends

    from what i've read all over...depends on the game, what drivers you load (and what versions), etc - really pickley, if u ask me, and i game more than most o fth emacc'ers I know...sh*t, i load mods! i've tried to wine/cider my own pc games!

    anyway, seems to me, if u really research it, u CAN load/install 3rd party drivers or newer verisons...it's just not super easy, and it may cause issues here an dthere, depending on what game is being run...

    i found that x3:reunion ran like semi-frozen molasses when i first installed it in XP, but never bothered to try and figger out the whole driver issue - i mean - do i wanna waste my time or do i wanna play, after all?

    problem is, there are very few mac-oriented sites that deal w/gaming issues like this - insanelymac guys are great, but, it can be tough finding the answer every now and then...teh good thing is, there are more and more mac-mods for pc games happening (check moddb - the new CnC:G - ZH rise of the reds mod is a perfect example).

    and then, of course, if u have a NEW NEW mac...
     
  3. benmrii thread starter macrumors 65816

    benmrii

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2007
    Location:
    NC
    #3
    I have a "new new mac" (MBPro 2.53, 4GBRAM, 512VRAM) that is still only mildly powerful, though powerful enough to throw at most games. Just looking for the most efficient means of running Windows, especially since the main reason I will do so is for games.
     
  4. smacky! macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2008
    #4
    ah!

    then i would say that u should check on which games u wnat to load, and the best way to do that is to check out the insanely mac forums - don't get me wrong, i love macrumors, but the IM folks are *hard-frickin'-core* dual platform folks - a lot of the answers i've found have been on there.

    personally, i'm staying away from Vista, mostly becasue the games i play aren't vista dependent, since I can't play FPS's - gives me vertigo - :( , i play mostly RTS's and a TBS every now and then - no MMPORGS (although Eve Online almost snagged me until i checked out zero punctuation's review of it - hilarious! and spot on), but i do dig space-sims, so i tried (and burned out) on Spaceforce:Rogue Universe (kinda like a Freelancer/Homeworld/Freespace sim)

    from what i've read, once you get past some (minor) vista issues, u shoudl be having a LOT of fun in comparison to XP, but again - depends on what games...
     
  5. cathyy macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Apr 12, 2008
    #5
    With regards to drivers, it's not Windows that is slow in updating them for you. It's Nvidia/ATI that are slow in producing the drivers. Generally when drivers are written, they write them for XP & Vista at the same time, so you shouldn't worry about this. :)

    Vista isn't really a resource hog. It simply uses more RAM because it knows how to allocate the RAM to proper use, and it frees up that RAM if you need it for a game or something. I think pretty much the only difference in requirements for both OSs would be in the RAM though. I've used both XP & Vista and the only difference in resources used I've seen is in the RAM. Even then, I have never 'ran out of RAM' simply by playing games. :)

    There's barely any difference in fps either. I've tested games like CS:S, TF2, COD4, Mass Effect, Portal and the difference in fps is simply too marginal (< 3 fps difference at max) to care. The only time I've seen any major fps slowdown is when I play in Vista, in windowed mode and with Aero on, as your graphics card has to render both your game, and the aero interface. Turn Aero off and it's fine. :)
     
  6. benmrii thread starter macrumors 65816

    benmrii

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2007
    Location:
    NC
    #6
    Thank you for the response.

    I'm aware that drivers are crafted for Windows by other companies, but it's also my undestanding that they do not work in Boot Camp which is a Boot Camp problem, not Windows or NVidia/ATI. I experienced this when trying to install the most recent drivers in XP (via Boot Camp); I was told that no hardware matched which I'm fairly certain was not the case. The only drivers I was ever able to install were those downloaded from Apple's support site.

    I guess I should be asking: is that a Boot Camp problem? Is it any less a problem in XP or Vista via Boot Camp? Was I just doing something wrong?
     
  7. cathyy macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Apr 12, 2008
    #7
    Let me guess. You tried to download drivers from Nvidia for your 9600M GT and it told you it didn't work? If you did, that's because they are searching for the desktop 9600 GT. You don't have the desktop 9600 GT so it gives you an error. Try downloading the notebook drivers instead.

    Anyway, it's got nothing to do with Boot Camp. It's basically because...no suitable hardware could be found. Notebooks are kinda bitchy and you have to get most of the drivers from the manufacturers themselves. You'll find that it's like that for most notebooks and not just Apple's.
     
  8. Dagless macrumors Core

    Dagless

    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2005
    Location:
    Fighting to stay in the EU
    #8
    Back when I only used the default Bootcamp drivers I found XP to be much better for games, and using laptopdrivers2go (or whatever they're called) I still find XP to have an edge of Vista. The gap is shrinking but it's still there.

    Heh, back on them default drivers I had to turn off HDR on HL2 Episode 2 just to get the same performance as XP. But that was over a year ago.
     
  9. benmrii thread starter macrumors 65816

    benmrii

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2007
    Location:
    NC
    #9
    Likely that is exactly the problem. I'll give it another go and see if that is all it was. If there isn't an issue in general with Boot Camp'd XP and installing drivers then most likely we're looking at user error. :)
     
  10. Huntn macrumors G5

    Huntn

    Joined:
    May 5, 2008
    Location:
    The Misty Mountains
    #10
    By all accounts Vista is more of a system hog than XP but if you have 2GB or more of RAM it's supposed to equal out (according to reports I've read).

    On my MBP, I've experienced no problems with 32 bit Vista. I wonder if 64 bit Vista would have better, worse, or the same performance?

    Regarding drivers, if you have a Nvidia card and if you are not aware, see the Mac Rumors Windows Gaming on a Mac FAQ, Part 1, specifically the Misc Links Section- Laptops to Go links. It's been a while, but when I played Crysis, I downloaded and installed some beta drivers there and they improved my ingame performance substantially.
     
  11. cathyy macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Apr 12, 2008
    #11
    It ought be updated to link to Nvidia's drivers too. Previously Nvidia only wrote new drivers for their desktop GPUs whilst the notebook drivers were all old and outdated. Recently they decided to support their notebook line too. While some people may find that LV2G drivers offer better performance, generally Nvidia's drivers will be more stable for the average person. :)

    http://www.nvidia.com/object/notebook_drivers.html
     

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