What will I need the 2.2GHz MBP graphics card for?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by iMasterWeb, Mar 12, 2011.

  1. iMasterWeb macrumors regular

    Mar 15, 2009
    Basically I'm trying to decide if I really need the graphics card in the higher end 15" MBP or if the lower end GPU is sufficient. I'll be using an external monitor a lot of the time if that matters. Do I really only need the higher end GPU if I'm doing a lot of gaming? What about Photoshop? Thanks for any advice!
  2. alust2013 macrumors 601


    Feb 6, 2010
    On the fence
    Basically you only need it for gaming. I use an external monitor with photoshop with my 256MB integrated graphics, so you'll have no issue with the lower end unless you're gaming, doing a lot of 3D modeling, etc.
  3. skier777 macrumors 6502

    Jul 3, 2010
    Anything 3D, so rendering, gaming, and maybe high end video stuff. For photoshop, the lower end GPU will be plenty sufficient.
  4. Stiksi macrumors regular


    Dec 7, 2007
    Photoshop CS4 lets you open 16 images with OpenGL support on the discreet 256MB GPU and 10 images with the indescreet GPU. I don't know if this is changed for CS5 but that's basically what Photoshop uses the GPU for.

    So, if you need to have more than 16 images open at the same time, you need the higher end MBP.
  5. kowalabearhugs, Mar 12, 2011
    Last edited: Mar 12, 2011

    kowalabearhugs macrumors newbie


    Mar 9, 2011
    The size of the images(s) is much more of a factor than the sheer number of open files. If you're working with numerous layers or large formats you'll want to opt for a larger amount of video card memory.

    CS5 has the following gpu performance options:

    Basic Mode: Uses the least amount of GPU memory and the most basic OpenGL features.
    Normal Mode: Uses a large amount of GPU memory and advanced OpenGL features to perform color matching, tone mapping, and checkerboard blending.
    Advanced Mode: Provides all the benefits of Normal mode, but additionally employs newer OpenGL advances that often result in improved performance.
  6. toxic macrumors 68000

    Nov 9, 2008
    Photoshop does not demand much of the GPU. when all is said and done, it's just 2D drawings, which is nothing compared to 3D. RAM and IO are the limiting factors.

    if you don't do 3D, the higher-end GPU doesn't benefit you at all.
  7. Yebubbleman macrumors 68030


    May 20, 2010
    Los Angeles, CA
    The higher VRAM helps when hooking up to a large enough monitor. Otherwise, you only need the 6750M (in the higher-end 15" model) over the 6490M (in the lower-end 15" model) for gaming, high-end video editng, and anything else where video/graphical muscle is key. If you don't do any of that, then the 2.0GHz model with its 6490M will be plenty sufficient.

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