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External Graphics card for laptopsFollow

#1 Jul 08 2010 at 11:35 AM Rating: Good
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ViDock 2

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With ViDock 2 you can turn any laptop with an ExpressCard slot into a hard core graphics and gaming machine, regardless of what video solution the laptop itself might have. ViDock 2 fixes the top three problems of mobile gaming machines: lack of upgradability, falling short of desktop graphics performance, and short battery life. Enjoy the highest level of graphics performance at your workstation while you continue to enjoy the mobility of your laptop while away - all with one computer! Just eject the ExpressCard connector cable from your laptop and you are ready to take your small, light mobile PC to the classroom, the internet café, or anywhere else that you need to work or socialize. All this while maintaining your laptop PC’s long battery life.


ViDock 2 Link

This is great solution for guys like me who has a decent spec laptop but a crummy graphics card that you cant upgrade. Hope this helps someone.


On a side note, I'm a total graphics card noob! for $230 you get the viDock and an ATI 4670 card, but for $350 you get the ATI 5670, are any of these capable of playing this game?
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#2 Jul 08 2010 at 11:49 AM Rating: Good
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Sounds like an interesting option, but I would imagine that the expresscard slot would create a bottleneck. You wouldn't see the same kind of performance boost as putting the same card in a PCI-E x16 slot in a desktop, since Expresscard is only x1 lane.
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#3 Jul 08 2010 at 11:58 AM Rating: Good
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Harri wrote:
Sounds like an interesting option, but I would imagine that the expresscard slot would create a bottleneck. You wouldn't see the same kind of performance boost as putting the same card in a PCI-E x16 slot in a desktop, since Expresscard is only x1 lane.


It's been tried before (by ASUS?), and the 1x PCI-E connection really limited the potential.

You're better served saving the money towards a new PC.
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#4 Jul 08 2010 at 12:00 PM Rating: Decent
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Veagan wrote:

On a side note, I'm a total graphics card noob! for $230 you get the viDock and an ATI 4670 card, but for $350 you get the ATI 5670, are any of these capable of playing this game?



The 4670 is out of the question, while the 5670 would -barely- be able to run the game at minimal settings.
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#5 Jul 08 2010 at 12:52 PM Rating: Good
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Threx wrote:
Veagan wrote:

On a side note, I'm a total graphics card noob! for $230 you get the viDock and an ATI 4670 card, but for $350 you get the ATI 5670, are any of these capable of playing this game?



The 4670 is out of the question, while the 5670 would -barely- be able to run the game at minimal settings.


They do say it's upgradeable though; if you got a 5770 to replace either of those cards (since this is basically just an external enclosure for a standard desktop video card), it could work well.

I'm also somewhat concerned about the bus speed, but I think that this could be a great product.
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#6 Jul 08 2010 at 12:58 PM Rating: Good
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Careful. Many of the newer cards are a tad longer than older ones. If the clearances are tight in the ViDock, the 57-5800s may not actually fit.
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#7 Jul 08 2010 at 1:16 PM Rating: Good
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You are being limited by the speed of the expresscard. Its speed is only around 300MB/s while the PCI-E 2.0 slot meant for graphics cards is 8GB/s.

I just don't think it would be worth the money.
#8 Jul 08 2010 at 1:45 PM Rating: Decent
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Thnx for the info Threx. :)

Also about the express card, it says this

Quote:
ExpressCard 2.0 / PCIe 2.0

ViDock 2 is the the first shipping products to make use of the double bandwidth ExpressCard 2 provides; ideal to enjoy performance hungry modern games.


Wiki says about expresscard 2.0

Quote:
It is expected to have a raw bandwidth of 5 Gbit/s (transfer speed 500 MB/s or 0.5 GB/s)


is 500mb transfer speed still not suitable enough? and it says double bandwidth? does that mean it will be a gig transfer speed?
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#9 Jul 08 2010 at 2:02 PM Rating: Decent
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Sorry for the double post.

Here's the ViDock with Radeon HD 5770 running Mass Effect 2:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MnW4o3yklTA&feature=related
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#10 Jul 08 2010 at 2:10 PM Rating: Good
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Some info on PCIe scaling:

http://www.techpowerup.com/reviews/AMD/HD_5870_PCI-Express_Scaling/1.html

I'm pretty surprised how well the card runs on a single lane. I was expecting worse than 25% average drop in frame rate.
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#11 Jul 08 2010 at 2:14 PM Rating: Good
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Veagan wrote:
Sorry for the double post.

Here's the ViDock with Radeon HD 5770 running Mass Effect 2:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MnW4o3yklTA&feature=related


Looks pretty nice to me.
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#12 Jul 08 2010 at 2:27 PM Rating: Excellent
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Actually that video was from a guy who made one himself, the build is in the description of the vid. he claims his setup actually ran better than the ViDock and for a much cheaper price.
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#13 Jul 08 2010 at 3:46 PM Rating: Good
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What they need to make is an MXM slot adapter so you could somehow connect directly to the PCI-E 16x slot on the motherboard. Of course this would require a little more tech savy owner as you'd probably have to open up the entire laptop to get at it in most cases.
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#14 Jul 08 2010 at 8:37 PM Rating: Decent
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Quote:
Thnx for the info Threx. :)

Also about the express card, it says this

Quote:
ExpressCard 2.0 / PCIe 2.0
ViDock 2 is the the first shipping products to make use of the double bandwidth ExpressCard 2 provides; ideal to enjoy performance hungry modern games.

Wiki says about expresscard 2.0
Quote:
It is expected to have a raw bandwidth of 5 Gbit/s (transfer speed 500 MB/s or 0.5 GB/s)
is 500mb transfer speed still not suitable enough? and it says double bandwidth? does that mean it will be a gig transfer speed?


You would need a laptop with Expresscard 2.0 hardware, or is it a software/driver upgrade? My guess is it's hardware. I'll admit I didn't read the article.

Edited, Jul 8th 2010 10:40pm by Lefein
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#15 Jul 08 2010 at 8:43 PM Rating: Good
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Veagan wrote:
Thnx for the info Threx. :)

Also about the express card, it says this

Quote:
ExpressCard 2.0 / PCIe 2.0

ViDock 2 is the the first shipping products to make use of the double bandwidth ExpressCard 2 provides; ideal to enjoy performance hungry modern games.


Wiki says about expresscard 2.0

Quote:
It is expected to have a raw bandwidth of 5 Gbit/s (transfer speed 500 MB/s or 0.5 GB/s)


is 500mb transfer speed still not suitable enough? and it says double bandwidth? does that mean it will be a gig transfer speed?


When it says double bandwidth it's saying the expresscard 2.0 is twice the bandwidth of the current expresscard. But that doesn't much matter since you need a laptop that has an expresscard 2.0 slot...which just came out last year so I doubt there are many, if any, new laptops out there yet that have it.
#16 Jul 10 2010 at 8:10 AM Rating: Good
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I would put the money towards a desktop solution instead of this gimmick. Laptops are a deadend.
#17 Jul 10 2010 at 8:25 AM Rating: Decent
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rubina wrote:
I would put the money towards a desktop solution instead of this gimmick. Laptops are a deadend.


Best post in thread.
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