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Revisiting discrete graphics switching (or do I get a 13" or 15" MBP)

post #1 of 3
Thread Starter 
Apple seems to have spread its MBP products perfectly across the price spectrum: you can't say no to a $1200 i5, but then you can't say no to a $1500 2.7Ghz i7 - but then you can't say no to $1800 quadcore, 15", screen and discreet graphics - but then maybe a speed bump to 2.2GHz and 1GD DDR5 is necessary for the (final?) extra $300-400? [at which time you're $200 away form the 17" King - ergh...)

Brutal.
Anyway,

Does anyone know middle of the line use cases where the discrete graphics kicks in?

I undersand for games/ autocad/ FCP etc., but what about making books in iPhoto or messing around w iMovie and other creative but not pro apps?

Open CL is supposedly capable of shuffing off to the GPU but to what extent does this actually happen in iApps and CS5? Anyone know? Changes implied for Lion?
it would really help a purchasing decision..

Follow up: same question for grand central:
are Apple's iApps using it? How about CS suite?
If you're not editing multiple streams of HD vid, but mess with adobe and ilife, should you hit 2.7 dual or 2.2 quad?

thoughts? thanks!
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post #2 of 3
Quote:
Originally Posted by waytogobuddy View Post

Does anyone know middle of the line use cases where the discrete graphics kicks in?

I undersand for games/ autocad/ FCP etc., but what about making books in iPhoto or messing around w iMovie and other creative but not pro apps?

It kicks in for iMovie, Photobooth and a few other cases but if you don't do anything demanding like gaming or use compositing apps, you won't see a benefit.

Quote:
Originally Posted by waytogobuddy View Post

Open CL is supposedly capable of shuffing off to the GPU but to what extent does this actually happen in iApps and CS5? Anyone know? Changes implied for Lion?
it would really help a purchasing decision..

OpenCL won't be used much at all for now but there are other compute languages which are like GLSL.

Quote:
Originally Posted by waytogobuddy View Post

Follow up: same question for grand central:
are Apple's iApps using it? How about CS suite?
If you're not editing multiple streams of HD vid, but mess with adobe and ilife, should you hit 2.7 dual or 2.2 quad?

The quad-core overclocks the used cores when the others aren't used so the quad would still be better but again if you don't do anything demanding, you don't need to spend the extra money.

There is a large gap between the 6490 in the entry MBP and the 6750 in the $2200 model though so if at any point you decide on gaming, the $2200 model is the better choice and better in the long term. People most certainly will be using GPUs for computation in future.

A more immediate benefit would be to get an SSD in the lower-end 15" though.
post #3 of 3
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Marvin View Post


A more immediate benefit would be to get an SSD in the lower-end 15" though.

Thanks, it's a tough one, but good know the quad core still sounds specialized...

And the discrete certainly wouldn't be fired up that much by the sounds of it (I probably wont be playing games again till playstation 4 comes out!)

I think I'd drop in a SSD in a few months anyways (sandforce or whatever) to save a few bucks and be (again!) amazed at how fast things are.....

Now if I can just get over the screen resolutions being unchanged from my 2007 MBP or my old white macbook.....
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