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PICTURED: Gigabyte's M1405 with External GPU

By - Source: Tom's Hardware US | B 42 comments

The Taipei Game Show is well underway way in Taiwan and something on the show floor has caught our eye: Gigabyte's latest invention, the notebook with external GPU docking station.

A few months back, Gigabyte announced the M1405 that came complete with a docking station that gave you more USB ports and HDMI and DVI, but also tacked on an Nvidia GeForce GT220 with 1GB of discrete to your machine.

CNet's Nicholas Aaron Khoo has spotted the M1405 in Taiwan and managed to get a few sneaky pictures and a video.

Specs for the device go a little something like this:

  • 14-inch, 1366 x 768 resolution TFT LED
  • Intel Core 2 Duo SU7300
  • Up to 4GB memory and 500GB storage
  • DVD
  • Windows 7
  • Intel GMA 4500MHD in addition to the external GeForce GT220

Check out the pictures and video below.

Gigabyte M1405 Spotted

Display 42 Comments.
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Top Comments
  • 25 Hide
    Regulas , February 8, 2010 12:18 PM
    This actually makes some sense. Example, college student can take it on the go but come back to his dorm room and link up for some gaming.
  • 19 Hide
    israil , February 8, 2010 12:48 PM
    Why has it taken this long for a manufacturer to come out with a docking station with an external GPU?
  • 17 Hide
    andman22 , February 8, 2010 12:50 PM
    why not a 5870... $$$ that's why. A 5870 costs about as much as the laptop by itself.
Other Comments
  • 25 Hide
    Regulas , February 8, 2010 12:18 PM
    This actually makes some sense. Example, college student can take it on the go but come back to his dorm room and link up for some gaming.
  • 10 Hide
    nforce4max , February 8, 2010 12:20 PM
    Cool but how about something with a bit more punch.
  • -7 Hide
    agawtrip , February 8, 2010 12:24 PM
    is that the external graphics?
  • 0 Hide
    mlopinto2k1 , February 8, 2010 12:47 PM
    I betcha it'll play Mass Effect 2 and right now.. that is the only on this planet that actually matters. ;) 
  • 7 Hide
    h0llow , February 8, 2010 12:48 PM
    Quote:
    Where is the message 'can it play crysis'?

    Just stop. Please just stop.

    I'm down to getting one of these when it hits the market, if the price tags seems right. I love the brush metal finish on it.
  • 19 Hide
    israil , February 8, 2010 12:48 PM
    Why has it taken this long for a manufacturer to come out with a docking station with an external GPU?
  • 17 Hide
    andman22 , February 8, 2010 12:50 PM
    why not a 5870... $$$ that's why. A 5870 costs about as much as the laptop by itself.
  • 8 Hide
    omfgnoogies , February 8, 2010 12:54 PM
    this seems like the first generation of a platform that i hope becomes extremely popular. I'm sure the gt220 is just a trial run and if they sell well, there will be much more powerful upgrades in the future.
  • 3 Hide
    warmon6 , February 8, 2010 12:59 PM
    hmmm.... i wonder if there's a way to change/mod the gpu for a different one like the gtx 260 or the HD 5770.

    Well at least from the sounds of it, the gpu works on the laptop screen and not just an extranal screen like most other external gpus for laptops.
  • 3 Hide
    STravis , February 8, 2010 1:04 PM
    israilWhy has it taken this long for a manufacturer to come out with a docking station with an external GPU?


    That's not entirely true - a looooong time ago, my Dell C600's docking station provided you with a PCI card so that you can add an external graphics card.
  • 5 Hide
    insider3 , February 8, 2010 1:04 PM
    Asus actually came up with the idea first on a project called the XG Station. Gigabyte just turned their version into a docking station and also into a project that didn't fail. Good Job.
  • 5 Hide
    anamaniac , February 8, 2010 1:14 PM
    Cool.

    Dual ATi 5890's on a Acer Aspire One anyone?
  • 12 Hide
    gwolfman , February 8, 2010 1:21 PM
    zipzoomflyhighWhy a GT220? I mean if it's external and has it's own power supply out side of the laptop, why not a 5870 or better?

    The GPU might only have a PCIe x1 connection to the graphics. If it does, then anything faster than the GT220 will be bandwidth limited. Now, if they used the new intel CPUs with integrated graphics when undocked and then used the available PCIe x16 lanes for the external GPU (if such a mobile chipset allows this and exists), then that would be nice!
  • 3 Hide
    Anonymous , February 8, 2010 1:25 PM
    That's a really, really good idea. I never comment on news here but this is great - I am a college student, and I would like to take a small laptop with good battery life to school. If I could simply add an external GPU when I got home, it would safe having a desktop. That's the only reason I have a desktop and laptop - gaming laptops are prohibitively expensive compared to gaming desktops.
  • 2 Hide
    eyemaster , February 8, 2010 1:36 PM
    For now, they developped the 220. Who says they won't do it for the ATI line in the future? This is more like a proof of concept for now.
  • 0 Hide
    yahyah , February 8, 2010 1:44 PM
    I'm liking this, hope to see more like it in the future.
  • 0 Hide
    douglaskuntz , February 8, 2010 1:49 PM
    Hm.. I remember the old Apple Powerbook Duo's docking station that had it's own videocard seperate from what the PB Duo had onboard. It also allowed up to 2 NUBUS videocards to be added, for a total of 3 monitors. Plus space for another SCSI harddrive. So I'd say they were closer to the first than Asus, etc.
  • -4 Hide
    douglaskuntz , February 8, 2010 1:49 PM
    Hm.. I remember the old Apple Powerbook Duo's docking station that had it's own videocard seperate from what the PB Duo had onboard. It also allowed up to 2 NUBUS videocards to be added, for a total of 3 monitors. Plus space for another SCSI harddrive. So I'd say they were closer to the first than Asus, etc.
  • 1 Hide
    Yuka , February 8, 2010 1:59 PM
    I like the concept, but it will be expensive (maybe too much) to attach a powerful GPU with a Notebook (power reqs. and special case). Also, we need more details of how they're making it work IMO.

    Cheers!
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