Gaming in 1440p

Discussion in 'iMac' started by A Macbook Pro, May 6, 2011.

  1. A Macbook Pro macrumors 6502

    Aug 22, 2009
    Does the 2GB DDR5 help with this at all? Or is there no difference when running games at 1440p with the regular 1GB RAM added on to the GPU?
  2. leman macrumors G3

    Oct 14, 2008
    I don't think that there are many games that would actually benefit from 2GB VRAM. At least, a properly coded modern game should not require more then 1GB of VRAM. Of course, there are games which must stream data fast - additional VRAM helps here. Still, good coding practice (using LOD and related techniques) will always result in a reasonable VRAM consumption. Of course, 1GB VRAM will quickly become a limit if your games use super-hi-res textures or hi-def models (which the card probably won't be able to render in real-time) — or if you want to run multiple games simultaneously :)

    And about the 1440p - it is true that the framebuffer "eats" lots of memory. However, even on such a high resolution, the framebuffer is unlikely to surpass 100-150MB (and that is with a full floating-point framebuffer, depth buffer, shadow maps and a number of additional buffers for post-processing effects). And remaining 600MB-700MB of VRAM are actually enough for any modern game.
  3. nilka macrumors member

    Jun 5, 2008
    Well to be honest the way the gaming industry are working on mac 2 gb might actually be usefull. Blizzard says wow and Starcraft 2 use double the amount of video memory as in windows. This means both WoW and Starcraft 2 use 1 gb memory if you have all textures on max.

    If this is any indication I would recommend 2gb if you plan to have the computer for a couple of years.

    When all this is said what you will get without enough memory isn't permanently reduced frame rates, it will be short hangups when you for example go from one zone to another because you have to load new textures.
  4. titatom macrumors regular

    Feb 25, 2011
    Montréal, QC
    I would say 2GB halp especially with Hi-res textures and models as it has been said...
    Newer games (ones to be released such as Battlefield 3, Diablo 3...) will definitely benifit from the 2GB though they should run great with the 1GB card.

    The upgrade is a cheap one (90$ with student prices) and can give a longer practical life to your iMac...

    I would go for it !
  5. Zen0Jin macrumors member

    Feb 1, 2011
    Diablo 3? Do you know anything about Diablo series? That game will run 30 FPS + on an Intel integrated graphics.

    A much faster card only benefits from 2GB with the highest Anti-aliasing settings - which were unplayable frame rates anyway.

    Short answer is that when you benefit from 2GB, you are in the unplayable frame-rate zone.

    Future games will require you to drop settings because the GPU won't keep up, where even 1GB of VRAM will go unused.

    This question becomes far easier to answer if the iMac had a DESKTOP 6970, the answer would be hell yes, 2GB is the easy answer. It would be fast enough to turn all the advanced AA and AF settings to the highest and still maintain playable framerates. In this case, a 1GB card would hamper the system to 30-45 FPS while the 2GB card could have run the same ultra settings at 60+ FPS.

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