Is there a need for the second graphics card?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by theimacdude, Apr 11, 2009.

  1. theimacdude macrumors member

    theimacdude

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    Aug 2, 2008
    #1
    Hi there. On my MacBook Pro 15", is there a need to use my second graphics card? When I switch to it, I never notice better quality, that is not just during general use, I notice nothing during HQ Games, Movies, Video/Graphics editing and more. Can someone explain the use of this second graphics card?

    Does it render the video faster or something?
     
  2. RKpro macrumors 6502

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    Oct 27, 2008
    #2
    It would only make a difference when using GPU acceleated software such as games, adobe cs4, and some video editing software. And the upcoming Snow Leopard (the whole OS) is supposed to be gpu accelerated as well. You probably find it hard to see the difference between the two because the 9400 is a pretty good GPU already, and the 9600m doesn't have very good mac drivers right now...
     
  3. kolax macrumors G3

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    #3
    9400M is really just to extend battery life as much as possible, where using the 9600GT will drain more battery but offer higher performance.
     
  4. ViciousShadow21 macrumors 68020

    ViciousShadow21

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    #4
    like they said it doesnt make a difference when doing anything non-graphic intensive. but for me i noticed that after the login the computer starts about 1-2 seconds faster. i have tested this many times and it is true.
     
  5. kolax macrumors G3

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    #5
    ...

    Not true. Things won't load faster just because you are using a dedicated GPU. Maybe in Snow Leopard, we'll see slight improvements..
     
  6. bbadalucco macrumors 6502

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    #6
    how do you argue that...he said he tested it. maybe it does make sense, but if he has tested it multiple times posting about it why would he lie?
     
  7. kolax macrumors G3

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    #7
    Because the GPU won't do anything for loading programs in Leopard. Snow Leopard will enable this with OpenCL, but it won't really affect loading programs.

    Currently, the GPU will do nothing when it comes to opening say: Safari, Mail, iCal etc.
     
  8. Goettel macrumors member

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    Oct 1, 2008
    #8
    In fact it makes sense that it loads up 1-2 seconds faster as the integrated 9400m uses system RAM insted of dedicated VRAM. That could explain the difference.
     
  9. michael.lauden macrumors 68020

    michael.lauden

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    #9
    yep, that's why when you goto energy saver - you can select switch graphics card to save some battery life :)
     
  10. kolax macrumors G3

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    #10
    Not really.. unless you are using all 2GB (for stock lowend MBP) worth of RAM, then no. And the 9400M won't steal that much from RAM either. Especially if you are only loading programs.
     
  11. ViciousShadow21 macrumors 68020

    ViciousShadow21

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    #11
    ok you got me. i lied about it for no reason just to make myself feel better.:rolleyes:

    test it yourself with a stop watch. we are not talking a major difference here so it doesnt really matter. but it is still having to load a GUI interface. i use custom icons from candy bar so maybe that is why it makes a difference for me.
     
  12. kolax macrumors G3

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    #12
    Loads the same time for me.. though I did it a few times on each, as sometimes loaded quicker, longer etc depending what my Mac was doing in the background (MobileMe sync etc).

    And can't see how having a more powerful GPU will load custom GUI's any quicker that you'd actually notice a difference. The GPU won't be operating at full clock anyway..
     
  13. ViciousShadow21 macrumors 68020

    ViciousShadow21

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    #13
    i dont know dude and to be honest i dont care. like i said it is a 1-2 second difference. i see a difference and you dont. our systems are not exactly the same. so there is obviously something that i run that causes a slow down (again not enough to care about).
     
  14. kolax macrumors G3

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    #14
    Saying using the dedicated GPU gives a 2 second increase in performance for the likes of loading applications is misleading..
     
  15. ViciousShadow21 macrumors 68020

    ViciousShadow21

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    #15
    wow dude who do you think is going to care about 2 seconds. so that is hardly misleading. and also i never said that it gives you speed increase when loading applications. so try again.
     
  16. kolax macrumors G3

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    #16
    Oh, so you said after login, it loads 2 seconds quicker? Reason for that is because of RAM ;) It'll be the same when you switch from the 9600GT to the 9400M.
     
  17. James Cole macrumors 6502

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    #17
    I cant even see a difference when playing 1080p video.
     
  18. kolax macrumors G3

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    #18
    Why would you expect to see a difference..?!
     
  19. adamjackson macrumors 6502a

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    #19
    Dude. you gotta stop busting people's balls. This whole thread is just a bitch-fest between you and other people.

    Maybe he expected smoother playback with the other card. We don't know that but you gotta chill out and make people not feel like complete jackasses just for posting their opinion. Not all of us know everything like you do and we're all here to share, collaborate and learn.

    Calling people out for saying something stupid just makes us feel like crap and not want to come back to the site in the future.
     
  20. ViciousShadow21 macrumors 68020

    ViciousShadow21

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    #20
    well said!! thanks dude.:)

    but regardless of what he says my computer still loads faster with the 9600 than it does with the 9400.
     
  21. J&JPolangin macrumors 68030

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    #21
    ...then what is the "true" use for the "higher" powered GPU card in the MBP (other than to waste battery life when portable)?
     
  22. kolax macrumors G3

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    #22
    Much higher performance. Best example is gaming performance; you'll be able to up the graphics (most games, almost max out the graphics) and still get decent fps. 9400M is still a capable chip though.

    I just wish Apple would enable the OS to switch between both GPU's on the fly. I hate having to logout to switch between them, so I always keep with the 9600GT.
     
  23. J&JPolangin macrumors 68030

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    #23

    ...what kind of battery life do you see using the 9600GT all the time?
     
  24. kolax macrumors G3

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    #24
    I get 2:30 hours average, but I have a 7200RPM hard drive too..

    There is a significant difference between using the 9400M and 9600GT in terms of battery life.
     
  25. J&JPolangin macrumors 68030

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    #25
    ...what would you see for battery life using the 9400M?

    How much does the 7200 RPM HDD affect the battery life?

    I have a laptop with a 5400 RPM drive that I was considering switching out to a 7200 RPM drive.
     

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