Graphics performance Imac vs. Macbook pro

Discussion in 'iMac' started by AKfreeRider, May 2, 2012.

  1. AKfreeRider macrumors newbie

    Jun 29, 2010
    Hi everyone,

    I have been eagerly awaiting the release of the new imacs. Been struggling along on my Core due Imac. I've obsessed over the specs and have had the 27 inch high end Imac picked out for about a year (just waiting for the update). But, I just realized that my next year in grad school will take me to 4 different states and I might actually need something more mobile. I have since been looking at the high end macbook pros (also due for an update). I know it's impossible to compare the upcoming models. But judging from previous models, how do the graphics performances compare between the high end imac and the high end macbook pro. Is the mobile GPU pretty limiting in the MBP? I will be using the computer for Diablo 3 and would like it to run smoothly and look nice.

    Any thoughts? Should i stick with my original Imac plan?

    thanks. Appreciate any thoughts/advice.
  2. InlawBiker macrumors 6502

    Apr 6, 2007
    Man, another lost soul looking to play Diablo 3 on a big screen. I'm with ya. I've had that sucker in my shopping cart more than once recently only to abort the mission.

    So, luckily Diablo 3 should be playable on mid-grade hardware. It will depend on your GPU. I wouldn't try it with the Intel 4000 MBP's but who knows, maybe it'll run. Blizzard has a good page with supported and recommended hardware.

    Apparently it will run pretty well on the lower-end 2011 iMac's. There's even a YouTube video, it looks totally playable. I have not researched the MBP's so you might Google it.

    As for which to get, I think you should get what you really want. I'm getting an iMac 27" and I have a small cheap laptop I run Linux on for when I want to be mobile. It cost me $110 and it's fast (Thinkpad X60).

    That's just one creative option. Maybe you buy the most basic iMac that will play Diablo 3 smoothly, and find an older model Macbook used to write documents on too. Then sell it when you graduate, or whatever.

    Are you sure you want to play Diablo 3 in grad school? Will you have time for such things? :D
  3. Bonut macrumors member

    Mar 22, 2012
    The iMac also uses a mobile GPU, same ones the MBP uses. As long as you don't get a MBP with a intel HD Graphics 3000 then I would think you should be fine playing diablo 3.

    I have the base model 2011 iMac, 2.5ghz i5 with the 6750m. It ran the diablo 3 beta on high just fine, only thing I toned down was the shadows to medium.
  4. spedanden macrumors newbie

    Apr 14, 2012
    I owned the 2011 Macbook pro 17" with the 6750M and now own the 27" iMac with 6970M. The Macbook at 1920x1200 with high setting except shadows off got 30fps with VSYNC on. The iMac at 2560x1440 with high settings with shadows off gets 60fps with VSYNC on.

    Major difference in fluidity of the game.
  5. Fynd macrumors 6502

    Aug 11, 2010
    If the rumors are true, The 2012 iMac will have a 7970m. This will decimate whatever GPU goes into the MBP this year. The 7970m is a monster.
  6. AKfreeRider thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jun 29, 2010
    So the 7970 is a monster huh? Too bad, I'm starting to lean more towards the MBP. I'm glad to hear that the macbook pro should be able to handle the game. 30 FPS on high doesn't sound too bad. And hopefully the MBP gets a hefty graphics boost in the next update. Although, I think the longevity of the MBP for gaming will be less than that of imac. What I meant to ask earlier was whether the mobile CPU compared to the desktop CPU in the Imac has a significant impact.

    Although, the most accurate statement/advice so far has been the "don't play games in grad school". Probably solid advice.

    Thanks again.
  7. EricT43 macrumors regular

    Oct 5, 2011
    I don't think you'd notice any difference between CPU's. I have an i7 iMac and a base 13" MBP, and I don't notice any difference in processor speed for most tasks. If I need to encode an MKV to MP4 to add to my iTunes library, then I definitely just do that on the iMac ;) Graphics, yes, there's a definite difference.

    I did try the D3 beta on my MBP, and with medium-ish settings it was just fine. Honestly, once you're in the game, you don't notice any of those settings anyway :D I'd just go with whatever machine you like the most, and D3 will work just fine on whichever machine you choose.

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