So a friend of mine just got a new laptop. Overall it's got decent specs, but unfortunately his dad was doing the ordering. He had heard the term 'HD' somewhere and as parents are wont to do, fixated on that term and apparently just kept saying IT NEEDS TO BE HD when they were selecting the parts. they ended up slapping in a mobility radeon HD 4570, which turns out is a rather low-end card, on a laptop that was intended for highend gaming. They intend to send the thing back and have a new card put in, but don't know what to get.
I'm trying to help, but I'm woefully inexperienced with laptop hardware. Basically what I'm looking for is:
A) a compatible card (I don't know what type of slot you get for a GPU in a laptop, but hopefully knowing that it's using a 4870 now someone can figure it out from that?) I got him to spit out a CPU-Z report if that helps figuring it out: here
B) a high-end card. the intent is to be able to play current games, for example battlefield bad company 2, on mid/high settings @ 1080p with reasonable framerates. what I've always done with desktop GPUs is find a higher-end card that's just shy of the current 'best of the best', and end up saving several hundred dollars for a card that's got about 80% the performance of the absolute-top-of-the-line, and I'm hoping that's applicable with laptop cards as well? I'd give a price range but really I don't know what laptop cards go for.
ATI vs Nvidia in mostly a non-issue. Nvidia might be preferable in that I've heard of ATI's drivers having issues with BFBC2 in particular, but overall I'm/we're open to either.
any help is appreciated, I'd give more specifics but I'm kind of in the dark on this subject. If this should go in the laptops forum rather than the graphics forum then feel free to lock/move it.
now are you saying that the card physically can't be replaced (it's just built into the system or something) or that vendors won't do this? if it's the latter, that's not an issue, it wasn't purchased from a regular vendor, but rather a connection of theirs that wholesales computers/components. as long as it's possible i'm sure they'd be willing do to it.
It really depends on the maker and how the laptop was built. Sometimes, the GPU is soldered into the motherboard and sometime's it's not. Also, you have to make sure you have the right voltage when you install the new GPU because you could fry the motherboard or overheat it.