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Cheapest Mac Laptop that can still play Windows Games...

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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March 25, 2007 5:08:59 PM

I am going off to college next year, and I want to bring a laptop to school. Lets please not start a flame war, but I want to bring a mac with me. The only thing Windows I personally will miss are my games, specifically CS:S and Battlefield and Civ IV. I was wondering if anyone knew/could link to info about what of the current Macbooks and MacBook Pros out there can handle the games with the hardware they come with (not necessarily at best settings, but at a playable fps). (Basically, its a 128mb grqphics card vs. an ati 256mb gpu)

Here's a link to the page with all the mac laptop info:
http://store.apple.com/1-800-MY-APPLE/WebObjects/AppleS...
http://store.apple.com/1-800-MY-APPLE/WebObjects/AppleS...
[apple.com, store, they're right there]

I was thinking for anything decent I would have to go for the $2500 Macbook Pro, but that's a lot of money to shell out, and I don't want to be responsible for such a pricey piece of merchandise. Can the iBooks, booted up into Windows play CS:S with its hardware at all? At at least 30 fps?

Any info would be amazing. So basically cheapest laptop I can buy that can play these games. thanks!
March 25, 2007 5:42:49 PM

Quote:
I am going off to college next year, and I want to bring a laptop to school. Lets please not start a flame war, but I want to bring a mac with me. The only thing Windows I personally will miss are my games, specifically CS:S and Battlefield and Civ IV. I was wondering if anyone knew/could link to info about what of the current Macbooks and MacBook Pros out there can handle the games with the hardware they come with (not necessarily at best settings, but at a playable fps). (Basically, its a 128mb grqphics card vs. an ati 256mb gpu)

Here's a link to the page with all the mac laptop info:
http://store.apple.com/1-800-MY-APPLE/WebObjects/AppleS...
http://store.apple.com/1-800-MY-APPLE/WebObjects/AppleS...
[apple.com, store, they're right there]

I was thinking for anything decent I would have to go for the $2500 Macbook Pro, but that's a lot of money to shell out, and I don't want to be responsible for such a pricey piece of merchandise. Can the iBooks, booted up into Windows play CS:S with its hardware at all? At at least 30 fps?

Any info would be amazing. So basically cheapest laptop I can buy that can play these games. thanks!


That laptop is all set in terms of CPU and RAM, but it uses the Intel GMA950 integrated graphics core. (Sorry thats the Macbook, the Ibook uses a low end ATI integrated chip thats even worse)

You will be able to run BF2 at limited settings and World of Warcraft.
You will also be able to play non 3d games such as Civilization 3 just fine.

You will not be able to play games such as Halflife 2 though.
I did find a alternative though: The ASUS A8 series.

Its comes with a 14" widescreen 1280x800 or 1400x900 LCD. Its got the same Core 2 Duo CPU with 1gig of ram (one DIMM!), Nvidia 7600 512mb (turbocache) or 7700, or ATI X1600 or X1700.
Should play anything you can throw at it in Native Res.


http://www.newegg.com/Product/ProductList.aspx?Submit=E...

I was wondering a couple mos ago if there was a good alternative to the macbook but with a dedicated GPU. This is pretty much all you can find for a dedicated GPU in a 14" screen.


Good luck
March 25, 2007 5:56:59 PM

I don't know about CS:S, but I get about 30FPS at 1680x1050 with everything at medium on BF2, on my old version Core Duo MBP. Lower resolutions go a lot faster, but high res suits my playing style.

If you're thinking of gaming the Pro version is the only real option, as the others only have integrated graphics, so no hardware texture and lighting support (see the articles in the graphics section on how poor these are for gaming, or do a search for "gma 950" games). You'll be lucky to run anything newer than Unreal Tournament or Warcraft III on them at decent settings.

Don't forget, you get a generous discount on Mac products as a student, so it may be worth waiting.
Related resources
March 25, 2007 6:02:28 PM

Or to just answer the thread subject, I've got a 12" G3 iBook that I got for £150, that'll play UT99 and Baldurs Gate II at 800x600 with it's 8mb ATI rage 128 :D 
March 25, 2007 6:04:39 PM

Is this polarity of the now defunct #neterz?
March 25, 2007 6:24:57 PM

Quote:
Is this polarity of the now defunct #neterz?



What happenned to the Purple Dinosaur?????????????????????????? :cry:  :cry:  :cry:  :cry:  :cry: 
March 25, 2007 6:42:20 PM

I'm not sure which of these points has been covered above but I'll make a short list.

- No PowerPC Macintosh will run Windows, so any PowerBook or iBooks will not suffice. Besides, the GPU in my PowerBook is a GeForce 5200. Score.

- The current MacBook (which is the cheapest model) has an Intel GMA950, which isn't fantastic for gaming.

- The MacBook Pro has an ATi graphics board inside with 256mb dedicated memory. It's not as portable as the MacBook due to the lack of a 12" model (Apple are seriously missing a trick with that) however if you aren't taking it anywhere that won't matter. It's also based on the PowerBook design, which as everyone knows is the best designed computer ever (a mon avis).

- The MacBook only comes with a 13.3" screen, whereas a MacBook Pro comes with 15.4 or 17" options. Whatever model you get, you're guaranteed a simply superb screen though, miles better than the PowerBook and iBook that preceded the current lineup.

Some things to think about.

And those are basically all PCs, so benchies from PC websites will apply directly (± a few FPS, nothing's an exact science).
March 25, 2007 9:42:25 PM

I was getting tired of it. I have my old unit mascott up now.
April 13, 2009 7:29:12 PM

You can Install hardware to allow you to use Windows Software.
a b U Graphics card
April 13, 2009 9:18:22 PM

Cheap + Mac = cannot compute
a c 358 U Graphics card
a c 434 D Laptop
April 14, 2009 12:17:38 AM

Not as bad as some other posts that were resurrected from 2003 and 2004 recently in other parts of the forum.
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