macbook pro 13" 2.53 integrated graphics running external monitor & creative suite

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by sab150, Sep 2, 2009.

  1. sab150 macrumors regular

    Jul 9, 2009
    hi quick question,

    i have a 13" macbook pro 2.53 and i will be running alot of photoshop and illustrator in the near future.. obviously i have an external screen for this (24" led cinema display) but will it run much slower using the external? ..would the dedicated graphics of the 15/17" benefit in this department?

    any experience of using photoshop and creative suite with the 13" 2.53

    and what does the gpu actually do? ..sorry i have read afew posts on what the gpu does but will it help in creative suite and garage band and office applications?
  2. Eddyisgreat macrumors 601

    Oct 24, 2007
    Your 13" will be capable of running that monitor at full speed (well, depends on what you are doing but for ps / is yea its good) but you won't benefit as much from the GPU enhancements made in Photoshop. It will only help speed up complex visualizations and I can't really tell what level you are at (I assume you aren't pro?) so you probably won't be working on 4 or 5 hundred layers at once. But up until CS3 Photoshop was and to an extent still is mathematical pixel bending and relied on the CPU and Ram more than the users GPU, and CS4 will be no different, just a little slower depending on what you are working on.

    All the other could probably work on a calculator. Garage band has little to do with graphical power. It all falls down to CPU and mem again.
  3. sab150 thread starter macrumors regular

    Jul 9, 2009
    thanks for the quick reply and great advice! no i am not pro.. abit of freelance work here and there though.

    great news as the 13" and 24 external are working out perfect for me! it literally goes everywhere with me.. was abit worries to see it had no dedicated GPU but the 9400 is holding its own, and doesnt do to bad in tests from what i have seen!

    what is it that runs the external monitor then is that gpu or processor based?
  4. Scottsdale macrumors 601


    Sep 19, 2008
    If my MBA can run full HD video on a 30" ACD with the 9400m throttled, a MBP can run 24" LED ACD very well. The 9400m has been an incredible GPU in nearly all the Mac lineup. It's used in everything except the Mac Pro. I wonder what Apple will do if Intel and Nvidia don't straighten out the licensing agreement to allow Nvidia GPU to work with Arrandale CPUs. In the meantime, the 9400m will continue to be Apple's solution to Intel's integrated POS graphics.

    I actually use my MBA daily with the 24" LED ACD. It's one stunning display. Good luck with your new Mac.
  5. Eddyisgreat macrumors 601

    Oct 24, 2007
    I'm hoping someone more technical than I will be able to answer that one. I only have a rough idea :D
  6. nitromullet macrumors member


    Aug 16, 2009
    The GPU is responsible for powering all displays, including built in and external.

    The GPU enhancements in Photoshop are referring to the Photoshop using OpenCL to offload calculations from the CPU to the GPU. This is useful because for some types of calculations the GPU is actually faster than the CPU. However, it stands to reason that the less powerful the GPU, the less helpful this will be.
  7. srexy macrumors 6502a

    Nov 19, 2006
    You'll be fine.

    I run a 20" monitor off my 2.53ghz 15" using the 9400m and illustrator/P'shop work well. It will eventually bog down if I've got enough going on (large Pages files compounded w/10 other apps) but this isn't a by-product of the graphics card rather than ram limitations.
  8. kasakka macrumors 68010

    Oct 25, 2008
    Afaik Photoshop doesn't use OpenCL. It uses OpenGL for things like rotating the canvas, smooth zooming etc but that's about it. Maybe CS5's PS will use OpenCL for rendering filter effects etc but not CS3 or 4. With OpenGL enabled you'll most likely run out of video memory (256 MB with the 9400M) when you have enough pictures open at once but if it's disabled this limitation is lifted.
  9. WilliamG macrumors G3

    Mar 29, 2008
    I use my 2.66Ghz MacBook Pro unibody with my 24" LED Cinema Display with the 9600GT. I tried the 9400M, and couldn't stand the chugging opening expose, or the scrolling down graphically intensive web pages. The 9400M simply isn't in the same league as the 9600GT. Now, whether YOU notice these things or are bothered by them is another question.

    I also have a 2009 Mac mini 2.0ghz with 4GB DDR3 and a 320GB 7200rpm drive connected to my 1080p TV, and I notice the same issues there too...

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