Poll: How often do you switch graphics cards on your MBP?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by cosmokanga2, Feb 24, 2009.


How often do you switch between the 9600M and the 9400M on the unibody Macbook Pro?

  1. I only use the 9400M.

    25 vote(s)
  2. I only use the 9600M.

    22 vote(s)
  3. Multiple times a day.

    7 vote(s)
  4. Once a day.

    2 vote(s)
  5. Multiple times a week.

    12 vote(s)
  6. Once a week.

    10 vote(s)
  7. Few times a month.

    26 vote(s)
  1. cosmokanga2 macrumors 6502a


    Jan 7, 2008
    Canada, where we live in igloos.
    I'm interested in seeing how many of the people that own a unibody Macbook Pro switch graphic cards on a regular basis. I know when the unibody Macbook Pros came out people were complaining that switching graphics cards required logging out. Is this still an issue or do most people stick with one? I just switched to the 9600M after being on the 9400M for about two months as I needed the extra power and battery life wasn't an issue. Thanks!
  2. kastenbrust macrumors 68030


    Dec 26, 2008
    North Korea
    Sometimes when im doing two or more things like running itunes, Programming using Coconut, Debugging and other things, all in different spaces then I have to change to the 9600 graphics card or my typing (even on this forum) seems to become laggy, almost like im writing two words ahead of whats on screen, i cant explain it well, but since it doesnt happen when im using the 9600 chip i know its something to do with graphics.
  3. be300test macrumors member

    Nov 7, 2008
    there is 2 graphics cards in the unibody !

    lol jk

    i usually do it 2 times a week
  4. kastenbrust macrumors 68030


    Dec 26, 2008
    North Korea
    When i first read "there is 2 graphics cards in the unibody !"

    I actually did this:


  5. REBELinBLUE macrumors regular

    Oct 2, 2007
    London, UK
    I switch to the 9400M when mobile and will switch back to the 9600M when I need the extra power (i.e. when playing a game). I don't just bother to switch back simply because I am no longer mobile.
  6. ayeying macrumors 601


    Dec 5, 2007
    Yay Area, CA
    I don't switch out of the 9400M unless I'm tempted to play CoD4. Even then, I still have to log out and log back in which is a pain. Feels like rebooting but faster.
  7. kastenbrust macrumors 68030


    Dec 26, 2008
    North Korea
    I dont actually see any real reason for this log in/log out rubbish, i think in Snow Leopard you wont have to, you'll just press power saver and that will be it, i bet you have to log out and in, in Leopard just to make people upgrade to Snow Leopard. It makes sense because Apple can be sure Snow Leopard will run well on any Unibody Macbook Pro.
  8. pavenger macrumors regular

    Oct 13, 2008
    Spokane, WA USA
    as Ayeying said, I only use the 9600 for playing call of duty, other than thank im in the 9400 whenever im mobile and until i need a boost, be it for CoD or PS or Ai.
  9. Quu macrumors 68030


    Apr 2, 2007
    9400m unless I'm playing a game. The notebook runs cooler by about 8c with the 9400m and the battery lasts longer so unless I have to use the 9600GT for its extra performance I just keep the 9400m active.
  10. mickbab macrumors 65816


    Sep 13, 2008
    Sydney, Australia
    Well after voting with what I would predict of myself, it is interesting to see what people do. This does put a little doubt in my MBP over MB thoughts (besides screen size, firewire etc.)

  11. SoybeanStasher macrumors regular

    Oct 27, 2008
    This describes me well. It's totally based on use. Usually it's on the 9600M for video editing and whatnot, and if I'm going mobile for less than a couple hours I'll just leave it on that. But for extended mobile use I'll take the effort to switch to the 9400M.
  12. NorCal-Cyclist macrumors newbie

    Jan 18, 2009
    Redding, CA
    My MBP gets noticeably hotter (quite warm to the touch) on the left side of the KB/Speakers - right above the mag-safe port - when I have the 9600 active. I tend to keep the 9400 active, unless I'm playing a game or messing with BIG photoshop files.
  13. RKpro macrumors 6502

    Oct 27, 2008
    The logging out is a pain, so I use the 9400 in OSX all the time. And the 9600 for the rare chance at gaming in windows.
  14. Junkie2 macrumors member

    Nov 10, 2008
  15. Warranty Voider macrumors 6502

    Aug 27, 2008
    Maine, US
    I know that this has been said in other threads before, but I don't get why people buy a "pro" laptop but don't even use the pro features. I know that some people just want the bigger screen, but would you still have bought it if apple just included the 9400?
  16. eldivino macrumors member

    Jan 5, 2009
    Never.. I switched it once to 9600gt. Never went back.
  17. Patriks7 macrumors 65816


    Oct 26, 2008
    So far I only use the 9400, but I just tried the 9600 yesterday on my display cause it seemed to lag a bit with the 9400. But the logging out is such a pain, that I don't think I'll use it until it's fixed. I haven't had the chance to game with it yet, as my MacBook Pro doesn't accept ANY of my Windows install disks :confused:
  18. LinMac macrumors 65816

    Oct 28, 2007
    Nope. I bought a maxed out version that topped out at about $3300 (without tax) and I wouldn't have purchased it without dedicated video memory.

    I use the 9400M in most cases because that is generally all I need, but there have been some cases where the 9600 was necessary to run the software I wanted to run. I think I would use the 9600 more if I didn't need to log out to switch because it is just such a pain to do that.
  19. blooz4u macrumors newbie

    Feb 14, 2009
    Stupid question -

    How do I switch from one card to the other ?

  20. ayasin macrumors 6502

    Jun 26, 2008
    This is probably the biggest barrier for me as well. If they remove the logout requirement I'd use it much more often.
  21. Abstract macrumors Penryn


    Dec 27, 2002
    Location Location Location

    If you use Windows using Bootcamp, Windows will only recognise the 9600M discrete graphics card and not the integrated 9400M, so you don't even need to switch cards when using Windows, as you have no choice. :eek:
  22. hamis92 macrumors 6502

    Apr 4, 2007
    I read somewhere that you need to log out because OS X has to restart its window manager, it just wasn't designed to do quick graphics switching on the fly. I hope Snow Leopard has the ability to do this, or even use both at the same time.

    I usually switch to 9600M GT when I'm about to start working in Lightroom, otherwise 9400M is just fine, it's better for lap use (this thing can get pretty hot with the 9600M GT).
  23. ayeying macrumors 601


    Dec 5, 2007
    Yay Area, CA
    I'm not surprised that it needs to reset the window manager. I'm guessing that later on for Snow Leopard, the window manager will still have to restart but it won't require us to save everything and log out to do it.
  24. alphaod macrumors Core


    Feb 9, 2008
    I'm 100% sure there was already a thread with a poll on this less than a month ago.
  25. blooz4u macrumors newbie

    Feb 14, 2009
    Thanks! I thought there might have been something I needed to do.

Share This Page