How do you discover if your graphics card is functioning optimally?


I got a new laptop a couple of weeks ago. It was a mid-range multimedia rig: Intel i7 2.2Ghz (2670QM allegedly), 16GB RAM and a GT 635M 2GB graphics card.

I do a fair amount of gaming as well as multimedia work and I figured that would be sufficient to cope with modern titles at moderate detail settings. However from what I've tried so far I've been disappointed. Indie game Legend of Grimrock, which is hardly a graphical extravaganza, ran at a paltry 15fps with all the effects enabled and a reasonable resolution. What really got my goat though was the Flash-based game The Binding of Isaac running into lag issues as soon as anything started moving on the screen. That really didn't seem right.

I upgraded my graphics cards drivers and checked the settings but couldn't find anything amiss and it didn't improve performance. I've also tried playing with the power plugged in which also didn't help.

So I have no idea what to do next - I'm not even sure I've actually got a problem or whether my mid-range graphics card just isn't capable of handling this stuff at all. I reckon overheating could be a culprit. But how do I find out if there *is* an issue? And if there is, how do I find out what's causing the problem?

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  1. First thing to do would be to check some on line reviews and benchmarks for your hardware and see if you match or near enough match those.

    Such as this :

    Once you know if you have an issue or not, You will probably need to download and run something like 3dMark to get a comparison as I doubt you will get results for the games you mentioned in a review.

    Mactronix :)
  2. Download GPU-Z, it has a GPU temp monitor included, check your temps there. I am not familiar with those games you mentioned, but you have to keep in mind that laptop GPU's are generally stripped versions of desktop GPU's. They are not going to be as powerful. Here is a link discussing your GPU:

    Laptops are generally not meant for gaming, at least not for less than 2k.
  3. Thanks. I'll take a look at those suggestions when I get the chance. Silly of me not to think of looking at some hardware review benchmarks and comparing against those.
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