Discrete graphics REQUIRED?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by dlb253, Apr 16, 2010.

  1. dlb253 macrumors member

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    #1
    A guy at the apple store told me that SC2 wont even RUN unless your system has discrete graphics? That didn't sound right to me...i dont care about playing in highest details. I just want to know that SC2 will be playable on the 320m (which is intetgrated). Will my computer need discrete graphics card to even install SC2???
     
  2. iLog.Genius macrumors 601

    iLog.Genius

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    Toronto, Ontario
    #2
    He's lying. There are some games that will state which GPU's won't work but this is not one of them. You will be fine with the 320M.
     
  3. FnuGk macrumors regular

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    #3
    using common sense you would know that he is either lying or you miss understood him
     
  4. Wehrwolf macrumors 6502

    Wehrwolf

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    #4
    Seems like that's a question you should be asking Blizzard, not some guy in an Apple Store.
     
  5. dlb253 thread starter macrumors member

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    #5
    Thanks for the sarcasm. I'm asking YOU because I don't know, Blizzard hasn't said, and I don't think the guy in the apple store knows either.

    All I know is the Beta requirements:
    • Windows XP SP3/Vista SP1/Windows 7
    • 2.2 Ghz Pentium IV or equivalent AMD Athlon processor
    • 1 GB system RAM/1.5 GB for Vista and Windows 7
    • 128 MB NVidia GeForce 6600 GT/ATI Radeon 9800 PRO video card
    • 1024x768 minimum display resolution
    • 4 GB free hard space

    The GPUs listed here sound discrete to me. I'm not very computer savvy and don't want to spend $1000 on something that wont run it.
     
  6. Zadillo macrumors 65832

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    #6
    Beta requirements are almost always higher than the final game, because the code isn't finalized yet, there is usually debug code included, etc.

    Given the fact that Blizzard is one of the best companies in the business when it comes to making games playable across a pretty wide variety of hardware, I'd be frankly shocked if integrated graphics weren't supported, at least better integrated graphics like the 9400M or GT320M.

    The 6600GT and Radeon 9800 are discreet graphics cards, but also very old - I'm not sure exactly of the benchmarks, but pretty sure it is safe to say the GT320M is probably better than them.

    -Zadillo
     
  7. Wehrwolf macrumors 6502

    Wehrwolf

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    #7
    You're welcome :rolleyes: If Blizz hasn't released the final requirements why would you believe anything from any other source, including MR?
     
  8. goMac macrumors 603

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    Apr 15, 2004
    #8
    Integrated graphics means Intel Integrated Graphics, not the GeForce 320M (which is still discrete graphics.) It's the same as the 9400m, which was also a discrete graphics chipset (even though it was part of the chipset.)

    You'll be fine.
     
  9. dlb253 thread starter macrumors member

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    #9
    Because I'm sure there are people on MR who know much more about GPU's than I do. And because it's logical that if the beta runs on integrated graphics, then the final product would too, wouldn't you think?

    If there are people out there playing on the old 9400m, I'd feel fairly confident that I could play it on the new 320M. But point taken, I can't be SURE about it unless Blizz says. I only ask this b/c the reply I got at the apple store seemed to contradict everything I've read on MR so far.
     
  10. hypermog macrumors regular

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    Nov 17, 2009
    #10
    Wrong, the 320M is in fact integrated because Apple is using an NVidia chipset for the Core 2 Duo processors. Since it's NVidia, though, it has the performance of a discreet GPU relative to a normal Intel integrated graphics chip.

    Intel blocked NVidia from making i5/i7 chipsets so Apple / NVidia are forced to go true discreet.
     
  11. vant macrumors 65816

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    #11
    Yup. The 320M should handle SC2.
     
  12. dlb253 thread starter macrumors member

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    #12
    I'm confused:
    Its integrated b/c it's NVidia with intel processors.

    But it has performance of discrete b/c its NVidia, relative to intel integrated chip?

    Didn't quite follow that...
     
  13. Stetrain macrumors 68040

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    #14
    It's an integrated GPU because it shares the system RAM instead of having its own dedicated memory, but it is much closer to the performance of a discrete GPU than Intel's integrated graphics.
     
  14. Zadillo macrumors 65832

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    #15
    Exactly, people think "integrated = bad" because it is often true, especially with Intel integrated graphics. But integrated doesn't have to be bad, and it's one of the best things about NVidia's integrated graphics options like the 9400M or GT320M (and why people are excited about ION-based netbooks).
     
  15. dlb253 thread starter macrumors member

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    #16
    So if I understand it right, even though the 9400m/320M are technically "integrated" they peform more like discrete GPU's. So are NVidia integrated chips just plain better than Intel integrated?

    I imagine the more RAM you have, the better your integrated GPU performs then? And back to my original question, if they perform like discrete GPU's, would Blizz be likely to support them then? Even though they're not technically "dedicated"?
     
  16. Zadillo macrumors 65832

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    #17
    Exactly - although I think at some point the amount of memory you have doesn't make too much of a difference (especially if you have 4GB).

    But yes, it's very likely Blizzard will support them and they should run fine (note that WoW, for example, runs on a very wide range of hardware, and even runs ok on integrated graphics like Intel GMA950, which is pretty low-end).

    With a game like SC2 that is going to be so popular, Blizzard is certainly going to want to make sure it runs on a wide variety of hardware - again, note that the GeForce 6600 (and the Radeon 9800) which they list as the minimum requirement for the beta is a very old card....... again, I don't know what the direct benchmarks are, but I'm pretty sure the GT320M will beat them pretty handily).

    -Zadillo
     
  17. dlb253 thread starter macrumors member

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    Arizona
    #18
    Thanks for the replies.

    So why is it that NVidia is so much better than Intel integrated graphics? How do the Intel ingetrated graphics work?
     
  18. dusk007 macrumors 68040

    dusk007

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    Dec 5, 2009
    #19
    The more RAM doesn't benefit an integrated GPU at all, because you have enough almost always. What helps is faster RAM.
    Since the CPU and the GPU are fed by the two 64bit RAM Controllers on the Chipset and the CPU is connected over the FSB which limits max bandwidth quite a bit, DDR3 1333 or 1600 help to increase bandwidth for the GPU. Without a the GPU the FSB limits and all the aditional bandwidth goes unused which makes it pointless to go anywhere beyond DDR3 1066.
    Some IGPs (don't know about the nvidia) improve by 10-30% in performance with faster RAM. It is always a tradeoff as the faster RAM also decreases battery life. If it would support DDR3L I would put DDR3L 1600 into these new notebooks as the 320M with 48 shader cores is very likely to be limited by memory bandwidth so the number chrunching chip wants to be fed with as much data as possible. Even though it technically has a 128bit bus it shares it with the CPU and CPU probably is prioritized.
     
  19. therealseebs macrumors 65816

    therealseebs

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    Apr 14, 2010
    #20
    Keep in mind, that's a Radeon 9800 (Pro), not a GeForce 9800.

    Here's a comparison:

    http://www.gpureview.com/show_cards.php?card1=534&card2=31

    I'm comparing the Radeon 9800 Pro to the GeForce 8600M GT, because the 8600M is what was in the three year old MacBook Pro. The one that came out after the ones that had the Radeon X1600. Which was a generation newer than the Radeon 9800.

    By most accounts, the 320M should be around the performance of the 8600M GT. Which is to say, a factor of several faster than the Radeon 9800 listed as a minimum requirement.

    You should be fine. Of course, that's the "requirements", meaning that you'll want something faster to play at medium or high settings -- but you'll have something a lot faster.
     
  20. cathyy macrumors 6502a

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    Apr 12, 2008
    #21
    Just because it's an integrated graphics card doesn't mean it sucks. It's only guaranteed to suck if it's an Intel integrated graphics card.

    If it's an Nvidia or ATI integrated graphic card, then it'll probably be decent. Nvidia and ATI both have had integrated cards for years that could at least game decently. I'm sure they have both produced integrated cards that were even better than discrete cards. (The 9400M was better than the 9300M GS which is a discrete card)

    PS: That guy could possibly just be trying to get you to buy the better model so he might get a higher commission. I've once seen this guy at the Apple store trying to convince a mum that an aluminium casing, a backlit keyboard, Firewire and an infrared remote port would greatly help her daughter in her schoolwork.

    The Nvidia 320M (GT 320M is a completely different card) is at least 2x faster than the ATI 9800. The 9800 is a very old card. Almost 8 years old already.
     

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