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New mobile NVIDIA GPUs support Hybrid Power

While the common computer and business user has started migrating largely to notebook computers from desktops, the PC gamer is still holding mainly to the desktop PC because of its upgradability and more powerful graphics and CPUs. However, NVIDIA is working on its mobile graphics offerings for gamers looking for notebooks that can play the latest video games.

NVIDIA’s latest line of graphics processors for notebooks not only promises improved gaming performance, but also promises to help save power and increase battery life with better efficiency. The GeForce Mobile line has expanded to include cards in the 9800M and 9700M families.

The NVIDIA GeForce 9800M GTX uses the G92 core and is the top-of-the-line mobile GPU from NVIDIA. The card has a core frequency of 500MHz and uses 112 shaders each running at 1250MHz. The card is capable of 420 gigaflops and uses a 256-bit memory interface. The 9800M GTX is capable of operating in SLI mode as well.

The 9800M GT is the next step down and runs on the G94 core. The core frequency is 500MHz with 96 shaders running at 1250MHz. The GPU is capable of 360 gigaflops.  The NVIDIA 9800M GTS also uses the G94 core with a frequency of 500MHz. The card has 64 shaders running at 600MHz and is capable of 288 gigaflops.

The 9700M series includes the GeForce 9700M GTS and 9700M GT. The 9700M GTS uses the G94 core running at 530MHz and features 48 shaders running at 1325MHz. The GPU is capable of 190.8 gigaflops. The lowest end 9700M GT uses the G96 core at 625Mhz and features 32 shaders running at 1550Mhz. Performance from the 9700M GT is 148.8 gigaflops. All of these mobile GPUs are capable of utilizing NVIDIA’s Hybrid Power to save battery life.

Defective notebook GPUs in older NVIDIA lines have caused NVIDIA to report lower earnings than expected recently.

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i dunno
By jay401 on 7/21/2008 12:51:51 PM , Rating: 2
I think the main reason many gamers hang onto desktop cases is not just because the parts are better performing but also because you can upgrade parts much more easily than you can on a notebook.

RE: i dunno
By Inkjammer on 7/21/2008 1:06:51 PM , Rating: 3
Yep. And companies have been touting the "upgradability" of mobile graphics cards that utilize Nvidia's MXM PCI-E mobile standard for a while. Clevo based rigs such as Sager, Alienware, Widow, the Asus C90S and many others have advertised it, but it's only partly true.

While you CAN "upgrade" the graphics cards, you are limited to a selection of about... three cards, and even then, only within the same graphics generation. There is no one standard for power or hardware allowing you to swap them out, leading companies to develop specific requirements on a per model basis (usually for the sake of cost and/or battery life).

That, and some companies (like Toshiba) still make proprietary MXM for their hardware which prevent you from adopting a better card. If you had an 8700M from an Satellite X205 you couldn't swap it with an Alienware M9750... despite the fact they both run the same basic graphics card. Compounding that fact is that there are many variations on MXM (MXM III, MXM IV, etc) and they're not forwards or backwards compatible.

It's sort of like Alienware selling 4GB of RAM on a chipset that can only detect up to 2.5GB of RAM. What they advertise is still true, but the limitations negate any benefit.

RE: i dunno
By SlyNine on 7/21/2008 7:30:17 PM , Rating: 2
I really hope they come out with external PCI E and W/ a adapter ( like the USB harddrive bays that plug in SATA harddrives) that is compatible with any PCI E Videocard and has its own PSU.

With that you could plug it in when you have an outlet, and have great battery life when you don't.

I thought they were working on this, but haven't heard much lately.

RE: i dunno
By flydian on 7/21/2008 10:11:11 PM , Rating: 2
Agreed. I've owned exactly three laptops so far, along with numerous variations of desktops (the last 4 of which were in the same case).

The first two laptops were both "gaming laptops", aka big, heavy, low battery life machines that I bought as portable game machines. The problem with each one was that, once the graphics chip died, what was left? On one, I was left with a black screen and parts. On another, I was lucky enough to be able to use basic graphics (login and use Windows, etc), but could not even play anything as simple as Civ 4.

Either way, if it were a desktop, I'd just buy a new graphics card, and likely a much better one since it was now 2-3 years since they were new. But for these, I'd have to buy a whole new motherboard, if a replacement is even available, just to fix one part, and only get the same 2-3 year old tech in the process.

Now I have a "netbook", which does the same things my second failed "portable gaming machine" does, only better, more portable, and with longer battery life. Oh, and I leave my gaming to the desktop that was built for it.

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