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High-end laptop SLI framerate disappointment....

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Anonymous
a b U Graphics card
June 29, 2008 6:07:26 PM

I just bought an SLI notebook computer I thought would blow my current self-built desktop out of the water in terms of playing Call of Duty 4, since most of the major hardware is substantially improved. But so far the framerate has been extremely disappointing: much less than that of the desktop. I'll list the computer specs than ask some questions....

Desktop
Windows XP
Native resolution = 1024 x 768
CPU = AMD Athlon64 3700+ (2.2 Ghz)
RAM = 2GB
Graphics = GeForce 8800 GTS (640 MB)

Notebook
Windows Vista (Home Premium)
Native resolution = 1920 x 1200
CPU = Intel Core 2 Duo (2.5 Ghz, 6MB Cache, 800Mhz FSB)
RAM = 4GB
Graphics = SLI - 2 x GeForce 8700m GT (each card 512 MB)

I have the current display and sound drivers.

Aside from the resolution, I ran each machine with the same graphical settings.

Why in the world am I getting much lower FPS on my laptop?

Since I play my desktop on 1024x768, should I be lowering my laptop's display resolution/game resolution/both?

Does my laptop being Windows Vista have anything to do with the performance drop? I've heard lots of bad things. Maybe I should run XP instead.

Thank you in advance for any insight into this. Pretty frustrated at the moment. >_<
June 29, 2008 6:20:56 PM

sli with an 8600 gpu = crap.

its a notebook, what did you expect.
June 29, 2008 6:24:41 PM

I have to go with macer1 here; Notebooks are just not made for gaming. Now I know some companies want us to believe something else, but it's just a fact that you cannot put the latest high end, power hungry and heat dripping equipment into a laptop case...
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a c 169 U Graphics card
June 29, 2008 6:32:51 PM

The 8700MGT is equal to a desktop 8600MGT and its alot weaker than a 8800GTS 640MB and even 2 of them can't beat a 8800GTS 640
If u wanted a Laptop to replace your Desktop, u should have gone with a laptop which has a 8800MGTX or 2 of them (Because a 8800MGTX is basically a desktop 8800GTS) and XPS M1730,SAGER NP9262 have 2 8800MGTX configuration (the sager model can be selected with single too) and ALIEWNARE M15x and SAGER NP5793 have a single 8800MGTX
June 29, 2008 6:57:06 PM

Yeah I often wonder why they even bother selling "gaming" notebook PC's.... You NEED a desktop to game, Notebooks just have too many other considerations built in to make them useful for games. (Battery life, heat, space...)

I have a notebook, but I use it for web surfing and burning of custom CD's to fix other PC's. Also a Guinea pig for Linux OS's but thats just for fun.

Edit: On a side note MAME with a USB controller is fun on a notebook and since its portable.... but just remember those arcade roms add up fast and can be near 20 GB's lol
I use a PS2 controller with a USB adapter for mine :p  lol
June 29, 2008 7:42:52 PM

To compare the 2 systems you have to use the same 1024 resolution,any game at 1920 resolution will crush that sli setup unless you count solitaire.
Not to be insulting but you sound like you have little computer know how,if you would have posted about your planned purchase we could have saved you alot of frustration,but hindsight is 20/20.
a c 169 U Graphics card
June 29, 2008 7:50:51 PM

To JonathanDeane:
Well i have to disagree with some u about gaming on a notebook because we have some notebooks than even can run Crysis @ 1920x1200 with 0xAA
like DELL XPS M1730 and SAGER NP9262

Dell XPS M1730 uses Intel Mobile CPU up to X9000 CPU which runs @ 2.8 and can be OC'd to 3.2 or 3.4 max, it has up to 4GB RAM support + 2x NVIDIA GEFORCE 8800MGTX which are equal to a desktop 8800MGTS 640(With the exception that they are 512MB and 256bit)

And the SAGER one which is currently the best notebook in the world has Intel DESKTOP CPUs (E8400,Q6600,Q6700,Q9450 and Q9550) and has up to 4GB RAM support + 2x8800MGTX and also it has the capacity for 3 HDDs (the XPS one has the capacity for 2 HDDs)

Both have a 17" display with 1920x1200 resolution.
With a good config they cost about 3500$ which is pretty much and u can buy a better desktop PC with a 24" monitor BUT in some countries for example in IRAN, a 24" monitor costs about 1380US$ and the other components are more expensive compared to UK, so this laptops look appealing :D 

here are 2 reviews of both:

Anandtech DELL XPS M1730 review:
http://www.anandtech.com/mobile/showdoc.aspx?i=3242

PCmag XPS M1730 review:
http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,1759,2319843,00.asp

Notebookreview NP9262 review:
http://www.notebookreview.com/default.asp?newsID=4391

Notebookforums NP9262 review:
http://www.notebookforums.com/showthread.php?t=215207

Both have very good cooling too
June 29, 2008 8:25:47 PM

lol 3 k for a laptop to play crysis


for that 3 k i could build 2 desktops that would crush those laptops.




laptops are NOT ment for serious gamer, its own setup is its downfall.
June 29, 2008 8:50:54 PM

Three things:

-A single 8700m GT should perform slighly better than a 8600 GT (see link below). Nevertheless, even in SLI, your graphics set up will most likely not be able to out gun your 8800 GTS. Could always be worse though, you have gotten a 8600m, 8400m or integrated graphics.

http://www.gpureview.com/show_cards.php?card1=513&card2...

-Kind of reiterating what Ogdin said, playing at a higher resolution will tax your system more. Futhermore, you should lower your laptop's gaming resolution to 1024 x 768 in order to truly compare the two systems. By doing this your notebook will definitely see a performance increase.

-In the end, while it seems that you are disappointed by your notebook's performance, consider what you did gain: a dual core processor, increased mobility and the ability to work and play at a higher and more attractive resolution.
June 29, 2008 8:52:36 PM

macer1 said:

laptops are NOT ment for serious gamer, its own setup is its downfall.


That's kind of an ignorant statement. If you pick the right components, then a laptop will be an easily portable gaming solution. It's all about picking the right setup though.
June 29, 2008 9:09:28 PM

I'd say laptops can be good for gaming, especially if you travel a lot for work etc. but they are not made for high res hardcore gaming.
June 29, 2008 9:29:00 PM

Should of went with a 8800 class for mobile SLi. Your frame buffer is still 512MB, the 1024x768 is hella low res. While 1920x1200 is very very high res. My system can run Crysis at very high @ 1024x768, at 1650x1050, i have to use DX9 on all high. I can also compromise, and use 1360x768 with 2x AA. Laptops are weak performers, I would only get a laptop to play old RTS games like Warcraft 3 Frozen Throne on Bnet.
June 29, 2008 9:30:36 PM

Using 1024x768 on a 1920x1200 monitor will make it look like crap. Honestly, why do laptops get high resolutions? why? My friend has a 8600GT 256mb and a 1280x800 resolution on his laptop, he maxes out WoW. Though that isn't saying much.
Anonymous
a b U Graphics card
June 29, 2008 11:26:25 PM

Ack. Thanks for the input, guys.... Perhaps a return is in order.
In response to Ogdin, I do have decent computer know-how -- just not when it comes to notebooks or the intricacies of video card specs. I built my desktop and have fixed my friends', and have been upgrading what I could when I could in terms of money. The graphics card market is somewhat of a cutthroat blur to me, so I only keep up with general reviews and buy a single exemplary card every year or so. I decided to buy a notebook because I just generally got tired being tethered to a bulky, deafening tower (which can be fixed, but still), and of paying $200+ each way to send it to and from my college in Wisconsin.

So, assuming I can return it safely, I'm guessing you guys recommend I look at the Sager or the Dell? (I thought Dell had a really bad reputation?)
Anonymous
a b U Graphics card
June 30, 2008 12:19:29 AM

pc gamer they have high resolutions so that when you work (thats usually what they are for) you can have lots of stuff on screen... thats the point
a b U Graphics card
June 30, 2008 2:11:40 AM

The Dell XPS M1730 is good if you need a slightly more portable desktop. It is huge, heavy, and has next to no battery life (similar deal with the Sager). It will absolutely fly in games and such though. I have an XPS M1710, and I love it. If you want a little more portability though, the Alienware 15" M15x can be configured with the X9000 CPU and a single 8800M GTX, and would still be quite fast. If you want the best though, the XPS M1730 or the Sager would be the best options (Alienware has one too, but it's pretty similar to the Dell, and more expensive).
June 30, 2008 3:21:30 AM

There is too much of a difference between 1920x1200 and 1024x768. . .
You can try these options (not sure if they're available to your game though):
-Play in a lower resolution.
-Play in windowed mode.

Even a nice desktop will have trouble running games at that high resolution.
June 30, 2008 5:05:03 AM

macer1 said:
lol 3 k for a laptop to play crysis


for that 3 k i could build 2 desktops that would crush those laptops.




laptops are NOT ment for serious gamer, its own setup is its downfall.



Hello mr series gamer :) 


Aka Mr.Serious gamer that cannot afford his hardware in a laptop and instead uses a desktop :) 


Id love a gaming laptop if I could afford it id dump my desktop like.. that!



Of coarse there are good gaming laptops... and cards like the 8800M GTX
can easily compete with desktop graphics parts. Plus the have very high quality screens on laptops and best of all they are portable :D 

Who WOULDNT want a laptop :p  :p 
June 30, 2008 5:51:25 AM

Gaming laptops also have very bad battery life.
I mean, if someone gives me an über-awesome gaming laptop I'll obviously take it, but it's a pretty bad move unless you are constantly getting a lot of money. You can't upgrade most laptops and if I were a serious gamer I would see spending around 1000 a year as a much better choice then 3000 every year.
a c 355 U Graphics card
June 30, 2008 5:51:29 AM

Quote:

Desktop
Windows XP
Native resolution = 1024 x 768
CPU = AMD Athlon64 3700+ (2.2 Ghz)
RAM = 2GB
Graphics = GeForce 8800 GTS (640 MB)

Notebook
Windows Vista (Home Premium)
Native resolution = 1920 x 1200
CPU = Intel Core 2 Duo (2.5 Ghz, 6MB Cache, 800Mhz FSB)
RAM = 4GB
Graphics = SLI - 2 x GeForce 8700m GT (each card 512 MB)



You do realize that if you are playing at native resolution, the notebook display is pushing almost 3x as many pixels as your desktop.

To reiterate what others have said:

1. Desktop video cards are always faster than their notebook counter part.
2. To do a more realistic comparison, you need to play games at 1024 x 768 on your laptop.
3. Notebooks are not for hardcore gaming.
4. SLI or XFire is a joke if you are not dealing with the fastest available cards. For example, a single 8800GTS 320/640 can beat a pair 0f 8600GTS in SLI.

a c 169 U Graphics card
June 30, 2008 6:29:56 AM

macer1 said:
lol 3 k for a laptop to play crysis


for that 3 k i could build 2 desktops that would crush those laptops.




laptops are NOT ment for serious gamer, its own setup is its downfall.


If u read my post i have said that in most countries u can buy a better desktop with that price but in some countries like here, components are very expensive and its better to buy a laptop

also who has said that that laptops are NOT MEANT for serious gamer, this config beats many current desktops:

Intel Q9550
2x8800MGTX(Desktop 8800GTS 640)
4GB DDR2 800 RAM
3x HDD capacity up to 960GB
17" with 1920x1200 resolution

a gaming beast in a portable package
June 30, 2008 8:31:06 AM

Quote:

So, assuming I can return it safely, I'm guessing you guys recommend I look at the Sager or the Dell? (I thought Dell had a really bad reputation?)



Dell has a really bad rep for Desktops. However there laptops, especially the high range, are very good.

ill put a +1 for a Dell XPS, here in the UK ive never really heard of Sager apart from on cheap stuff but the market is different in different places.

everything else i was gonna say about the gfx card in your laptop, and laptops not being for gaming has already been said. although i understand the advantages and disadvantages of both...

if i was in your situation i would of bought a 30" Dell Monitor instead of the laptop.

EDIT

my grammar sucks.
June 30, 2008 9:00:12 AM

Quote:
Intel Q9550
2x8800MGTX(Desktop 8800GTS 640)
4GB DDR2 800 RAM
3x HDD capacity up to 960GB
17" with 1920x1200 resolution


you are right it does beat most systems, but in 90% of countries its much more expensive than building a Desktop with this spec:

Intel Q9550
2x8800GTX
4GB DDR2 800 RAM
3x HDD capacity up to 960GB
17" with 1920x1200 resolution

a like to like machine, and the desktop would get better results. i know that the laptop cards are equal to a 8800GTS 640, but its not marketed that way ;) 

a c 169 U Graphics card
June 30, 2008 10:05:37 AM

Yes i know i just wanted to tell the difference between 8800MGTX and 8800GTX
a b U Graphics card
June 30, 2008 3:58:05 PM

The 8800M GTX is closer to an 8800 GT than an 8800 GTX - the desktop GTX has more memory, a larger bus, and a larger process, while the 8800GT is actually pretty close to the 8800M GTX in most ways.
a b U Graphics card
June 30, 2008 4:31:58 PM

Yes, but the 8800 GTS 640 has many more differences. Specifically, the memory interface and process are completely different. It's much more accurate to think of it as an 8800GT with fewer SP's than it is to think of it as an 8800GTS640 with a different memory interface. It also has fewer ROP's than the GTS (the same number as the GT though), and fewer TMU's than either. It's also on a 65nm process, which is the same as the GT, while the GTS is on a 90nm process.
June 30, 2008 4:41:50 PM

If i had to pick between those 2 highend lappy's i'd prob go with the Dell,but either one is gonna be damn hot and sound like a hairdryer when you fire up a game.My crusty Toshiba has a 7600go in it and it does the same thing,with 2 8800's i imagine the noise will not be pleasant. I'd still build a desktop,you'd have more options to cool it(i assume it gets pretty warm over there)and keep the noise levels low/near silent.And like Flakes suggested you could get a monitor through Dell cheap no?
a c 169 U Graphics card
June 30, 2008 5:53:05 PM

To cjl,yeah i agree with that :)  thanx for the info:) 

to Ogdin:well it maybe noisy but i think it still will be quieter than a desktop with same config
!