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by wheelwinner / September 10, 2008 12:06 AM PDT

As you can tell from my subject line, I'm completely baffled by the above. What is it for and what does it do?

I have started to research laptops with 17" screen to one day replace this old desktop. All the ones I looked at mention NVIDIA with various numbers after ... 7150M ... 8600M GS

The only "game" I play is Freecell which runs just fine on this old thing. I just need a solid computer with lots of RAM and hard drive plus one that will be fast. Those are really my only requirements. So should I care about the NVIDIA specs?

Your answers (as simple as possible) will be greatly appreciated.


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It's your graphics adapter.
by Coryphaeus / September 10, 2008 12:30 AM PDT

Do a Google on nVidia.

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It refers to the video.
by Bob__B / September 10, 2008 5:50 AM PDT

Gamers and a select few others have to be concerned with this.

If freecell is the extent of your gaming I don't think you need to pay much attention to what vid card/adapter is installed in the machine.

You can goggle the different nvidia numbers.
Makes for some interesting reading.
For your use I doubt you will see any matter which one you pick.

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Re: It refers to the video
by wheelwinner / September 10, 2008 6:14 AM PDT

Dear Bob,

Thank you for that simple answer ... it's exactly what I needed to know. I had googled nVidia and what I read didn't make any sense to me ... YOU on the other hand, made clear what I should do. It's the reason I use these forums at CNET ... people like you helping people like me.

Thanks again, Ann

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It is the video as stated BUT ...
by Edward ODaniel / September 10, 2008 7:14 AM PDT

you SHOULD BE concerned about the video in the laptop as most likely you will have Vista installed and Vista's performance without a decent video card can lea ve much to be desired in a laptop. A desktop can usually just have a better graphics card installed if the OEM offering is not adequate but most laptops live and die with the graphics capability of the original purchase because most cannot be upgraded.

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Video is everything you see, not just games..........
by metalfan1982 / September 10, 2008 7:38 AM PDT

With at least a decent video card pictures display faster and better, same with movies and other video. So do graphical programs, including most newer software that has been made "prettier". Video cards take a good bit of the load off of your CPU for rendering everything from windows to icons. This leaves more room for multitasking in whatever applications you do run. They are most definitely not just for "gaming".

You do not need an expensive or even a mid range card however, just a simple bottom of the line graphics card will do you fine. Despite what other people have said, you should pay attention to your card. Video includes everything you see on your laptop's screen. Just make sure you do not have an integrated graphics card and you should be fine.

Anything other than a Pentium 3 or less runs a good bit better with a dedicated video card, regardless of what programs you run.

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