Do the new MacBook Pro have two graphics cards?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by crazycat, Jun 9, 2009.

  1. crazycat macrumors 65816


    Dec 5, 2005
    I was looking at the new 15 MacBook Pro and the higher end ones have this "NVIDIA GeForce 9400M + 9600M GT with 512MB". Does this mean they have two graphics card inside them? How does that work?

  2. komiothebeat macrumors 6502


    Jul 8, 2008
    Corona, CA
    they do have two graphics cards, the 9600 is for higher performance for graphic intensive programs or games, and the 9400 is great for light gaming and battery usage :)

    they require a log out inorder to change into the other one from the current one
  3. fpar macrumors regular

    Feb 11, 2008
    Not all of them have two graphics cards, only the 15" models with 2.66Ghz or higher.
  4. Ivan P macrumors 68030

    Ivan P

    Jan 17, 2008
    The MacBook Pros have had two graphics cards since the refresh last October, where have you been? :p

    All unibody MacBook Pros used to have both graphics cards but after this last change it's only the 17" and the higher end 15" models (the 13" and low-end 15" don't have it).

    Basically, by default, it's set to "better battery life" mode - where it uses the 9400M card. However, in System Preferences you have the option to change it to "better performance", which turns the integrated 9400M card off and uses the discrete 9600M card instead. It's handy when you want to go from simple web browsing, looking at photos, etc. to video editing, graphic design and the like. You cannot run both cards at the same time.

    As said above, it (for some reason) involves the system automatically logging out and back in to switch between the cards, which can be a bit of a pain. I may be wrong but I believe that when you run Boot Camp you can't change what card is being used, and that it'll automatically use the 9600M card.

    That's why I love my original 15" 2.4GHz unibody MacBook Pro - it used to be the low end model but still had both cards...unlike the new 15" low-end model :D
  5. rogersmj macrumors 68020


    Sep 10, 2006
    Indianapolis, IN
    But...the same $1999 you spent on the previous low-end model still today gets you a 15" MBP with dual video cards, it's just now the mid-range model.

    I'm trying to decide if I need the more powerful video card or not. I'm about to buy, and I'm mostly going to be using this laptop for documentation, email, and Photoshop design work (not crazy intensive stuff though, just web mockups for the most part). It's probably not worth it for me to spend the extra money on the more powerful card, is it?
  6. DoFoT9 macrumors P6


    Jun 11, 2007
    not two graphics cards per-say :p

    one is discrete (an ACTUAL graphics card for gaming and what not), the other is on-board and not really meant for anything other then normal use.
  7. fteoath64 macrumors regular


    Nov 16, 2008
    Actually, the 13 incher PROs now are just updated MacBooks before but now with more ports and non-replaceable battery.

    This move cheapens the PRO range because the 13 inchers are using the same crappy old display panels. And no twin graphics for Snow Leopard ... this is the dumbest move ever. And they say Jobs is still in control ?. Heck, he would never allow this as he knows the appeal of the PRO machines!.:confused:
  8. colmaclean macrumors 68000


    Jan 6, 2004
    Will be interesting to hear the difference between the 9400 and 9600 for tasks using Grand Central. Not seen any benchmarks on this as yet...
  9. DoFoT9 macrumors P6


    Jun 11, 2007
    maybe because GC hasnt officially been released ;)

    differences in the tasks wont be that amazing really.

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