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New Laptop - Graphic Card advice wanted

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I've been using SL on a laptop for a few years now. It has got to the stage where the performance is far too inadequate and I have to upgrade. I need a laptop rather than a desktop for the mobility. I don't have a set price in mind but my budget is limited and the higher end machines will certainly be out of range.

I've been looking at a few notebooks and have a general idea of what I want. I'm thinking of going for something with an Intel Core i5 processor, 8GB of RAM, 1TB of hard disk space and Windows 10.

All fine so far, but when it comes to graphic cards I start to get lost. For a desktop machine I'm told something like a Nvidia GeForce GTX970 is standard, but in a laptop that would probably be way out of my price range.

So I'm looking for something less powerful, and this is where my eyes start to glaze over. Much of the information I've come across is out of date. I've tried looking at comparison charts but the figures mean very little to me (Nvidia's numbering system is particularly confusing), and I don't know how to relate them to the SL system requirements.

Taking into account the processor and RAM I've selected, how much difference does having a good graphic card make? What should I be looking for? Are the standard cards on notebooks good enough to handle SL, or is it possible I could end up with a notebook that has enough processing power and enough RAM, but can't handle SL because the graphic card isn't powerful enough? And how much flexibility should I allow for to accommodate future SL upgrades?

I'm sorry there's rather a lot there but I'm anxious to avoid making a mistake.



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Not a computer geek here but i've had the same issue recently .. After some reasearch i've purchased MacBook Pro (retina,15- inch) Processor 2.5 GHz Intel Core 7i

I'm extremely happy with it... I do graphics and photography on SL, Able to take pictures higher then 6000px now with graphics turned up through the roof.. no lag no problems, easy peasy..

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What's your budget?

I recently got a new Windows 10 laptop with dual graphics.

CPU: Intel® Core i7-6700HQ CPU @ 2.60GHz (2591.98 MHz) with Intel® HD Graphics 530

Discrete graphics card: Nvidia GeForce GTX 960M/PCIe/SSE2

SL viewers run really well when using both the onboard Intel graphics and the Nvidia graphics, both handle Ultra graphics setting without any problems.

I'm actually really suprised how well the Intel 530 graphics perform on SL - quite shocked even. I was expecting a huge difference in viewer performance when running with the Nvidia card and there really isn't that much of a difference.

This is the system I got: http://www.pcspecialist.co.uk/notebooks/optimusVII-17/

Exact specs: http://www.pcspecialist.co.uk/computers-for-next-day-delivery/241/

I got it through Ebuyer though & it was quite a bit cheaper then it would have been buying directly from PC Specialist.

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Edit: didnt mean to direct the reply @Whirly Fizzle.



When purchasing a laptop I usually refer to  a site like this http://www.notebookcheck.net/Computer-Games-on-Laptop-Graphics-Cards.13849.0.html

 You really only need to know the model number of the perspective laptops graphics cards. Something in the 960m to 970m range will do well when it comes to models. anything lower will probably not do so well.  Be leary of any graphics card that is much higher in performance, While a high graphics cards will help in many other games, They typically do not help in sl. People tpyically quote the use of ultra settings in sl but they never quote what fps they are getting.  They also do not note in Fps in busy locations.


With my Gtx 980ti(desktop card)  I can typically can run about 60fps  at my home in the sky.. At some points I can also hit over 100 fps. If I go to some where like Muddy's where its busy I can still drop down into the 24 to 29 fps.  Shadows impact things heavily  so beaware of this. High settings for taking is great and all  but not practical for every day use.


Overall buy your laptop based on the graphics card first.. That really has to last.

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I recently got a new laptop with dual graphics and like Whirly have been impressed with the Intel Graphics (Graphics Card: Intel® HD Graphics 5500)  Default graphics setting is mid/high but at a crowded Sim, Japan Tempura Island, pushed up to Ultra I was still getting as high as 14 FPS. At mid/high I was getting better than 30FPS.

Running with the discrete GTX950m (default is high/ultra) I was getting around 24 FPS.  Not sure why but when I pushed that up to Ultra my FPS was slightly lower than with the Intel graphics.

System specs:

CPU: Intel® Core i7-5500U CPU @ 2.40GHz (2396.52 MHz)
Memory: 8063 MB
OS Version: Microsoft Windows 10 64-bit (Build 10240)
Graphics Card Vendor: NVIDIA Corporation
Graphics Card: GeForce GTX 950M/PCIe/SSE2


(Japan Tempura is somewhere I go when I want to stress test things).

Hope this gives you some bench marks to judge by.


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