MacBook Pro (15") video seems slow

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by nateeanes, Jun 19, 2009.

  1. nateeanes macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 30, 2009
    #1
    Hi all,
    I just bought a MacBook Pro (15" unibody) refurbished (although I think it was just a clearance item, since I bought it right after the WWDC).

    It's a great computer, but I've noticed that the video seems to lag a bit. For instance, when I'm using a hungry program like Photoshop, the screen can get jerky, and when I scroll through large lists of fonts (and I have a lot of them, managed through FontXplorer), the list flashes on and off, as if the machine is having trouble rendering them.

    I also have an iMac that's 1 year old, and it has not experienced these problems, even though it is slower and has half the video RAM as compared to my new MPB (256 vs. 512mb of video RAM). Until last year, I had a white MacBook that also experienced video issues (not surprisingly). Of course, my new MBP is much faster than the white MB, but still it scares me a little because its video issues sometimes remind me of that machine.

    All 3 computers are (or were) used together with a large (24") external monitor.

    Given that the main difference between my iMac and the new MBP is that the iMac has a conventional ATI Radeon graphics card while the MBP has the dual graphics-- integrated graphics plus the Geforce 9600M-- I wonder whether there's a problem with this dual solution. Could it be that the extra graphics card is not doing its share? When I look in System Profiler and click on "Graphics/Displays", only the integrated Geforce 9400M is shown as being connected to a display; the 9600M GT says "No Display Connected".

    Thanks in advance!
    Nate
     
  2. Heb1228 macrumors 68020

    Heb1228

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2004
    Location:
    Virginia Beach, VA
    #2
    I apologize if this question seems pedantic, but have you gone into energy saved and turned on "Higher Performance" in the graphics setting? If not, you're just using the integrated graphics chipset.
     
  3. nateeanes thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 30, 2009
    #3
    Thanks! That was it, and it makes total sense, given that the sluggish graphics felt a lot like the old MacBook. As soon as I changed the energy settings, it's now using the more powerful video card.

    When I open up Photoshop and InDesign, the jerkiness and problems with scrolling through large font lists are gone-- it's behaving just like it should.
     
  4. Heb1228 macrumors 68020

    Heb1228

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2004
    Location:
    Virginia Beach, VA
    #4
    Glad we solved the problem. Don't forget to click it off again when you're unplugged and want to save battery life. :D
     
  5. dcdude macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 2008
    #5
    So is this the kind of performance(before you 'fixed' it) one can expect with the NEW base model Mbp?
     
  6. Heb1228 macrumors 68020

    Heb1228

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2004
    Location:
    Virginia Beach, VA
    #6
    One would expect so, but the OP seems to me to have been a little overzealous in his description of the lag using the 9400. I've used mine both ways and can tell a little difference but not as much as he described - but then again I've only had it two days now and haven't done much heavy lifting yet.
     

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