Laptops forum

General discussion

Technical question

by susceptor / November 15, 2004 11:15 AM PST

I would like to know something about GPU's.

now there are two kids of GPUs. There are the ATI and Nvidia graphics cards, with thier own dedicated ram, and then then there are ones like Extreme graphics from Intel that share RAM with the machine, and have no dedicated ram of their own. Now many people here and elsewhere point out that the grahics chips with their own dedicated ram are superior because they do not use up system ram.
But does it really matter?
How much of a dent would an intergrated graphics card like the Pentium Exteme grahics make on a systems ram when the system has 1000MB ram? So say you take 64MB out for the grahics, that still leaves 936MB for the system, so is that really that much of a dent?
Would it be fair to say that you can counter the disadvantage of not having a dedicated graphics card by simply adding more ram to the system?

Discussion is locked
You are posting a reply to: Technical question
The posting of advertisements, profanity, or personal attacks is prohibited. Please refer to our CNET Forums policies for details. All submitted content is subject to our Terms of Use.
Track this discussion and email me when there are updates

If you're asking for technical help, please be sure to include all your system info, including operating system, model number, and any other specifics related to the problem. Also please exercise your best judgment when posting in the forums--revealing personal information such as your e-mail address, telephone number, and address is not recommended.

You are reporting the following post: Technical question
This post has been flagged and will be reviewed by our staff. Thank you for helping us maintain CNET's great community.
Sorry, there was a problem flagging this post. Please try again now or at a later time.
If you believe this post is offensive or violates the CNET Forums' Usage policies, you can report it below (this will not automatically remove the post). Once reported, our moderators will be notified and the post will be reviewed.
Collapse -
Re: Technical question
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / November 15, 2004 11:31 AM PST
In reply to: Technical question

Yes. Not only will a shared video RAM eat some main memory, but while the video chip is reading RAM for the display, the CPU can't read such space. An "hit" on CPU performance as well.

Bob

Collapse -
Re: Technical question
by susceptor / November 15, 2004 12:22 PM PST
In reply to: Re: Technical question

I already knew that proffitt, the question is, how much does it really hurt performance?
Like I said, if you have 1000MB system RAM, then does it really matter a wit that you have 64MB of it being used for graphics display? This is a very technical question I think because you have to take into account the differences in RAM type (system ram type, anf GPU type).
Does anyone know how the system performance is impacted if system ram is at full capacity and being used by a shared GPU?

Collapse -
Re: Technical question
by KenSanramon / November 15, 2004 12:35 PM PST
In reply to: Re: Technical question

Regardless of your attempted analysis of how much the system slows down with shared video RAM versus separate dedicated video RAM one thing is clear and needs no discussion:

You cannot play any robust game like Half-Life 2, Doom 3 or many others the newest Warcraft, etc without dedicated video RAM -- look on the game box and it requires a video card which is dedicated video RAM.

So, get your shared video and find out later you can't even run something at all without the dedicated video and then your point will have been made.

You can go ahead and get shared/integrated video if you want a lighter notebook (under 5 pounds) as nearly none of those have dedicated RAM anyway.

Just remember that you can't just go out and buy a video card at any time (even on an inexpensive E-machines desktop with an open expansion slot) on a notebook later. You are stuck.

I had a Compaq 2000 series with shared video (Pentium 4M) and I returned it and got the HPZT3000 /Compaq ZT3000 series (I have 32mb dedicated video but 64mb dedicated video is now required as a minumum for most newer games and even that can force reduced settings --128mb is ideal but more pricey and limited on certain models only) and I can tell you unequivocally that my new Notebook runs Yahoo videos more smoothly (via DSL 1.5mps) on the dedicated RAM notebook.

The shared video RAM (up to 64mb shared) was choppy and the audio cutted out and this was with a Pentium 4M cpu -- and 512mb RAM.

With the same 512mb RAM and the Pentium M Centrino processor I get completely smooth Yahoo videos ........

Collapse -
Re: Technical question
by susceptor / November 15, 2004 1:10 PM PST
In reply to: Re: Technical question

im using a P3 995mhz 256mb 16mb shared GPU laptop right now, and yahoo works fine for me too Happy

But I think i agree with you for the most part.
In my last post here I was talking about deciding between an HP 1040 and a sony s, I decided to go with the HP even though it does not have dedicated memory because i realised one simple truth. If you want a laptop with good graphics capability, chances are it will be over 6lbs, and have fast battery drain. The sont came with a dedicated ATI 9200, but the extra $500 you pay for the laptop is just not worth that. Even with the ATI 9200, at 32MB it is far too feeble to play any of the new batch of games. I guess I will have to stick to my x-box. On the bright side Halo 2 is console exclusive for now Happy

Collapse -
Re: Technical question
by KenSanramon / November 16, 2004 5:16 AM PST
In reply to: Re: Technical question

I think there are a few notebooks in the 5.5 range (like the IBM T42, etc) that have dedicated RAM but yes most of the PC 15.4" or 15" widescreen notebooks are in the 6.2-6.9 pound range (the Toshiba M35 is 6.3 and the HPZT3000 is 6.5 and the Dell 8600 is 6.9 -- that has the 128mb dedicated video option and the ATI 9600/9700 video card).

Yes, the HP DV1000 series is great and only 5.3 pounds if you don't need the dedicated video.

Keep in mind that difference between 5.5 pounds and 6.2 pounds (if you got a Toshiba M35) is not much at all but the notebooks are bulkier as the HP DV1000 has only a 14" widescreen versus the 15.4" widescreen.

Anything up to a 15.4" widescreen can easily be carried in a notebook backpack though like Targus, etc.. I have not seen anything like that for a 17" LCD.

Collapse -
Read it again.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / November 15, 2004 8:50 PM PST
In reply to: Re: Technical question

I wrote the CPU can't access RAM while the Video GPU is reading from RAM. That's TIME that the CPU could be running a ZERO instructions per second or halted.

Forget the memory it eats. The overall CPU speed takes a hit.

Bob

Collapse -
Re: Read it again.
by susceptor / November 18, 2004 6:08 AM PST
In reply to: Read it again.

okay, thats what I was wondering. Now we are at the heart of the matter. its not that bad that the GPU takes ram from the system, the real problem is that the proccessor has to work harder.

Collapse -
Not that the CPU works harder, no work during that time.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / November 18, 2004 7:10 AM PST
In reply to: Re: Read it again.

If the CPU internal cache runs dry, then the CPU halts.

Bob

Popular Forums
icon
Computer Newbies 10,686 discussions
icon
Computer Help 54,365 discussions
icon
Laptops 21,181 discussions
icon
Networking & Wireless 16,313 discussions
icon
Phones 17,137 discussions
icon
Security 31,287 discussions
icon
TVs & Home Theaters 22,101 discussions
icon
Windows 7 8,164 discussions
icon
Windows 10 2,657 discussions

FALL TV PREMIERES

Your favorite shows are back!

Don’t miss your dramas, sitcoms and reality shows. Find out when and where they’re airing!