Early 2013 Macbook Pro Graphics Card Update

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by jlwho, Aug 12, 2017.

  1. jlwho macrumors newbie

    Aug 12, 2017
    Hi all - Forgive me if this has already been discussed, I'm new to the forum and can't seem to find previous posts on this subject.

    I recently got a 4k monitor (Dell P2715Q) that works well, but my mbp is a 1/2 a generation away from being able to support 4k at 60hz...apparently the late 2013 ones support 4k with the 700-series NVIDIA graphics card. Mine has the NVIDIA GeForce GT 650M. I can view 4k at 30hz, but that is awful... I can also do 2k at 60hz, though it shows up pixellated. But I'm dealing with it for now.

    Is there any way at all I could swap out my graphics card, despite the unibody? Has anyone done this? Suggestions? I'm desperate to keep my mbp going another year or two. Thank you!
  2. satinsilverem2 macrumors 6502a


    Nov 12, 2013
    Richmond, VA
    No you can't change it out as the graphics card is integrated onto the main logic board.
  3. jlwho thread starter macrumors newbie

    Aug 12, 2017
    Yeah, I know my chances are extremely slim. But, last week I found a video of a specialized repairperson in the Netherlands or Denmark that successfully switched out the graphics card in a mbp - I can't remember if it was unibody or before, or if this was before they started putting them in the logic board (or has apple always done this). Of course I can't find this video now, ha. Maybe there is someone out there that actually busted out a soldering iron and went at it..
  4. benguild macrumors 6502a

    Jul 29, 2003
    Even if it's possible, the question is why? You could "upgrade" to any model from the past 3 years or so and sell your current machine for probably nearly the same amount.

    It's probably cheaper and you don't risk the resale or repairability of your current machine, nor destroying it. Even if the hardware is a direct swap it's an unsupported configuration that could encountered subtle stability or performance issues down the road.
  5. ZapNZs macrumors 68020


    Jan 23, 2017
    As far as I am personally aware, there is no economical, reliable, or practical way to upgrade the dGPU on your model, and an eGPU would be both pricy and limited by your revision of Thunderbolt. A logic board swap, if it is even possible and if you could manage to find a newer logic board, would necessitate a SSD replacement as well given the shift from SATA to PCI - this would probably get expensive quite fast.

    Unless your current machine has sentimental value, the most economical alternative that I personally know of is selling your current machine and upgrading it to a newer revision, or managing with 2k until your next upgrade cycle.
  6. _Kiki_ macrumors 6502a

    Aug 13, 2017
    in this laptop GPU is soldered and VRAM too, also this model probably accept only one model GPU and it's factory GF 650M

    possible GPU upgrade was available on MBP 15 2011 using special soldering machine but it's uneconomical and risky

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