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Which graphics card is better

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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August 3, 2010 6:16:45 PM

Hello,
How do you tell which is the better graphics card. I keep looking at specs that say things like:
* ATI Radeon 9200 and above
* OR NVIDIA GeForce 2, GeForce 4



* ATI: 4850, 4870
* OR NVIDIA: 9800
or better - but I cannot tell form the numbers what is better.

Trying to compare these 2 laptops; but want to be able to do Google Earth Ancient Rome for display:
HP Pavilion 6dv6t SE
Genuine Window s 7 Home Premium 64-bit
Intel(R) Core(TM) i5-540M Dual Core processor
(2.53GHz, 3MB L3 Cache) w ith Turbo Boost up to
3.06GHz
FREE Upgrade to 6GB DDR3 System Memory (2 Dimm)
FREE Upgrade to 500GB 7200RPM SATA Hard Drive w ith
HP ProtectSmart Hard Drive Protection
1GB ATI Mobility Radeon(TM) HD 5650 sw itchable
graphics [HDMI, VGA]
15.6" diagonal High Definition LED HP Brightview
Widescreen Display (1366x768)

or MacBook Pro
Intel Core 2 Duo
4GB memory
320GB hard drive1
SD card slot
Built-in battery (10 hours)2
NVIDIA GeForce 320M graphics

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a b U Graphics card
August 3, 2010 6:25:58 PM

As a side note (and maybe more important than the actual question presented).

You do realize there's a large Operating System difference between the MacBook Pro and the HP with Windows 7....? I want to make sure you realize what that means. If you've never used a Mac before, you're in for a massive learning curve compared to Windows. They're nothing alike.

Now, the HP has an advantage in that it sports the new Intel i5 CPU, which will be faster than the Core 2 Duo in the MacBook.
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August 3, 2010 6:29:54 PM

jerreece said:
As a side note (and maybe more important than the actual question presented).

You do realize there's a large Operating System difference between the MacBook Pro and the HP with Windows 7....? I want to make sure you realize what that means. If you've never used a Mac before, you're in for a massive learning curve compared to Windows. They're nothing alike.

Now, the HP has an advantage in that it sports the new Intel i5 CPU, which will be faster than the Core 2 Duo in the MacBook.


Excellent - thanks. I've used both before - seemed that the Mac had way FEWER repair issues. (but $$)
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August 3, 2010 6:34:56 PM

jerreece said:
Hmm. Let's try this again. My first post apparently got eaten by the 404 error monster.

Here's a couple links to Notebookcheck.com. They do benchmarking on notebook GPUs.

nVidia 320M
http://www.notebookcheck.net/NVIDIA-Quadro-NVS-320M.693...

ATI Mobility 5650
http://www.notebookcheck.net/ATI-Mobility-Radeon-HD-565...



So are both of these cards worse than the specs call for??
ATI Radeon 9200 and above
* OR NVIDIA GeForce2, GeForce 4
* ATI: 4850, 4870
* OR NVIDIA: 9800

Do the numbers go up for better?? Do I have to do the benchmark to tell? What is the difference between Class 1, class 2?? I just want to be able to do what I need to do.
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a c 376 U Graphics card
August 3, 2010 6:34:58 PM

hellmann said:
Excellent - thanks. I've used both before - seemed that the Mac had way FEWER repair issues. (but $$)

The bigger difference is in software. If you are interested in gaming forget about the mac as your choices will be severely limited.
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a b U Graphics card
August 3, 2010 6:37:15 PM

hellmann said:
Excellent - thanks. I've used both before - seemed that the Mac had way FEWER repair issues. (but $$)


I'm not a Mac fan by any means. However I know some folks who have MacBooks, and they are indeed fairly versatile platforms. They actually have Windows XP running on them using the Parallels program. The Macs seem pretty good on battery life, and are very stable from the feedback I've gotten from co-workers that use them.

However, it all depends on what you want to do. If you wanted to do any personal/pleasure stuff (like gaming) they can tend to be fairly limited simply due to OS compatibility issues.

But it sounds like you've used both, so you know what you're getting into then. :) 
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a b U Graphics card
August 3, 2010 6:39:52 PM

hellmann said:
So are both of these cards worse than the specs call for??
ATI Radeon 9200 and above
* OR NVIDIA GeForce2, GeForce 4
* ATI: 4850, 4870
* OR NVIDIA: 9800

Do the numbers go up for better?? Do I have to do the benchmark to tell? What is the difference between Class 1, class 2?? I just want to be able to do what I need to do.


Both options are considerably better than ATI 9200 or GeForce2/4. Those are pretty old!!

The ATi 4850 however, probably performs better than both options. And the nVidia 9800 is probably close, if not a little better.

Keep in mind, the 4850 and 9800 are DESKTOP GPUs, which are inherently more capable than the lesser Mobile versions. Laptops are certainly not the best gaming platforms. And if you are indeed wanting to play games at all, I'd stay away from the MacBook all together. As I said earlier, there's inherent OS related compatibility problems therein with the majority of games.

Google Earth programs though, I'd think would work on either OS.
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