MacBook Video RAM confusion

Discussion in 'MacBook' started by bezerk3r86, Nov 3, 2008.

  1. bezerk3r86 macrumors member

    Nov 3, 2008
    From what I observed comparing the unibody MacBook to the white polycarbonate one, the video chipset RAM issue stood out.

    The Intel GMA X3100 may have claimed to use 144MB VRAM because it had a dedicated 64MB VRAM and used the remaining from the physical memory.

    The new unibody version claims to use upto 256MB shared VRAm for the GeForce 9400. How much of it is shared, and is there even a portion of the chipset that has some dedicated memory (maybe it has 128 MB ans shares the other half)?

    This has aroused some thought about this when benchmarks were released comparing video performance.
  2. izym macrumors newbie

    Aug 14, 2008
    Allerød, Denmark
    As far as I know neither of them has any VRAM.
  3. maccompaq macrumors 65816


    Mar 6, 2007
    You are correct, neither has video RAM.
  4. Philflow macrumors 65816

    May 7, 2008
    Everything is shared memory. Not a problem because the main memory is 1066MHz DDR3 RAM.

    The performance is quite good. Around 2100-2200 3DMarks 06 at 1280*800 for the 2.4Ghz. That's on par with Nvidia 9300 with 256MB dedicated memory.
  5. bezerk3r86 thread starter macrumors member

    Nov 3, 2008
    memory issues

    Even if it's fast, it still takes away from the main physical memory!
  6. NC MacGuy macrumors 603

    NC MacGuy

    Feb 9, 2005
    The good side of the grass.
    Precisely. Upgrade your RAM. 4GB is around $130-150.
  7. Novataglio macrumors newbie

    Apr 21, 2007
    I upgraded to 4Gb, is there any way to tell the 9400 to use more than 256Mb?
  8. Jollins macrumors regular


    Jun 9, 2006
    Perhaps its possible somehow, but if a game is requiring more than 256MB of vram, the other hardware requirements would be so high that the 9400 probably will struggle regardless of how much memory it has access to.
  9. bezerk3r86 thread starter macrumors member

    Nov 3, 2008
    I guess it's capped since that might be the maximum that the 9400 can handle. Apple may have chosen to keep it that way to keep the price low.
  10. Philflow macrumors 65816

    May 7, 2008
    Good point. There's no point in making it use more than 256MB.

    Most applications run just fine with 2GB or 1,74GB. This ain't Vista.

    Many people just upgrade their RAM without needing it. Applications that do benefit from it: imaging, design, video editing.

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