low 2011 15" - GPU-Power for High-Res?!

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by Antadil, Feb 26, 2011.

  1. Antadil, Feb 26, 2011
    Last edited: Feb 27, 2011

    Antadil macrumors newbie

    Feb 26, 2011
    Hey there.

    I'm in a bit of trouble right now. ANY help would really be appreciated!

    I want to buy the lower 15" MBP 2011 with the matte-screen/high-resolution option. My question is basically the following:

    Does it have enough gpu-power to get a smooth usage out of it?!

    What I'm doing:
    - writing, reading pdfs, surfing ... everyday/studying stuff
    - multitasking with the abovementioned things
    - cpu-intense statistical modelling...

    What I'm NOT doing:
    - gaming
    - photo/video editing

    So, normally I don't see the point of paying for a gpu I'll hardly ever use. On the other hand I'm a bit anxious that it might work out choppy when I'm multitasking with spaces/exposé or anything because of the 1680x1050 resolution :(

    I'd like everything to be absolutely smooth.. (and just as well with the Lion Interface..)

    Thanks a lot for any help!

    P.S.: I know that my knowledge about computers is as lousy as my english :rolleyes:
  2. simsaladimbamba

    Nov 28, 2010
    The low end GPU will do just fine with Mac OS X and its interface. Even my 2008 MB with an Intel GMA X3100 can run Lion smoothly.

    Btw, the resolution of the HR MBP is 1680 x 1050.
  3. Jaimi macrumors regular

    Jul 22, 2009
  4. Antadil thread starter macrumors newbie

    Feb 26, 2011
    Thanks for the answers!

    Normally I would say that I'm the last person to need a decent gpu, but then again, everybody seems to be talking about how the lower 15" 2011 isn't 'future proof' and for someone as ingenuous as me, that's really a bit unsettling as I plan to use it for a really long time without regretting it :(

    Maybe the reason for me being kind of doubtful is that I checked a 17" MBP out and just scrolled through a larger PDF-file with a lot of pictures: it was quite choppy! And similar unpleasent effects with spaces/exposé =/

    Maybe there's someone in this forum with a last generation 17" MBP who could tell me whether he also experienced those problems or maybe even when the dedicated gpu got activated?!

    That's why I thought it might well have something to do with the resolution (and the Intel graphics chip).
    Is there a linear relationship between the amount of pixel in a graphical application and the gpu-power that's needed?
  5. smetvid macrumors 6502

    Nov 1, 2009
    Look at it this way. I use a 21.5" imac with a 1920x1080 screen and i am using a external 1680x1050 screen all running off a sad nvidia 9400 IGP.

    All the 2011 gpus including the intel 3000 are better then my nvidia 9400 so you are good.
  6. Antadil thread starter macrumors newbie

    Feb 26, 2011
    That seems to be fine, thanks again.

    Just one naïve last question: As the Radeon HD 6490M seems to have only 256MB (512MB according to Wikipedia?!) - could this be a problem in any kind of non-gaming/graphic-applications like interface animations?! What could I need more gpu-memory for?

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