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Another laptop thread /. .\ SowwyFollow

#1 Jul 19 2011 at 7:16 PM Rating: Decent
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I know everyone is probably tired of the "can this laptop run ff" threads, but I have to ask some opinions regardless. See, my wife is a flight attendant and needs a new machine for work. Our 70lb lab/ fat face decided to use her old one as a pillow and a chew toy =/ She's hoping I can find her one that will run 14 that is within our budget ($700 and under). She has to have one that's 15" or smaller so it fit's in her current case and suitcase. I was thinking that an i7 would be best, and I know a dedicated card is a must, along with 4gb or more of ram. I cam across this today, and thought I would throw it out there.

MSI 15.4" Model MS-1656
# Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit
# Intel Core i7-720QM (1.6GHz/2.8GHz Turbo Mode, 6MB L3 cache) processor
# Nvidia GeForce GTS 250M 1GB graphics card
# 4GB DDR3-1333 RAM (2x 2GB)

# 320GB 7200RPM hard drive (Seagate Momentus 7200.4/ST9320423AS)
# Intel Wireless WiFi Link 5300AGN
# Built-in Bluetooth 2.0+EDR
# 8X DVD burner
# 6-cell 4800mAh battery

She by no means expects it to run the game on high settings. She currently plays on an old desktop with the following specs:
AMD X64 2.4ghz dual core (no L3 and minimal L2)
2 gb Gskill 800mhz DDR2
ATI 4850

With these specs she considers it playable, so long as she doesn't have to try and walk through Ul'dah lol

Thanks in advance for your thoughts all /bow
#2 Jul 19 2011 at 8:55 PM Rating: Decent
Edited by bsphil
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There's a huge difference between desktop and mobile GPUs. The 4850 is more than 2x as powerful as the 250m. You might be able to bare bones run it, but that's pushing it.
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#3 Jul 23 2011 at 7:41 AM Rating: Good
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Final question about a laptop, I promise. Think this will run at low with fps above 25 in town? That would be completely acceptable for her.

Intel Core i5-2410M Processor 2.3GHz
with Turbo Boost Technology up to 2.9GHz 2 Engaging Entertainment
15.6" HD Widescreen CineCrystal LED-backlit Display
Mobile Intel HM65 Express Chipset
4096MB DDR3 Dual-Channel 1066MHz Memory
NVIDIA GeForce GT 540M with 1GB DDR3 VRAM
500GB 5400RPM SATA Hard Drive
8X DVD-Super Multi Double-Layer Drive
1.3 Megapixel HD Webcam
Multi-in-1 Digital Media Card Reader
802.11b/g/n Wi-Fi CERTIFIED
10/100/1000 Gigabit Ethernet
Dolby Advanced Audio v2
3 - USB 2.0 Ports
1 - HDMI Port with HDCP Support
Multi-Gesture Touchpad
6-cell Li-ion Battery(4400 mAh)
Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit
5.74lbs. | 2.6 kg. (system unit only)
#4 Jul 23 2011 at 7:58 AM Rating: Good
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oh, and Bsphill. Thanks for the input. It's greatly appreciated! I know that mobile GPU's aren't nearly as good as their desktop counterparts, but I'm really not sure as to how far they scale down. I'm still doing research, though.

Thanks again /bow
#5 Jul 23 2011 at 8:13 AM Rating: Decent
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jhariya wrote:
oh, and Bsphill. Thanks for the input. It's greatly appreciated! I know that mobile GPU's aren't nearly as good as their desktop counterparts, but I'm really not sure as to how far they scale down. I'm still doing research, though.

Thanks again /bow

Mobile GPUs are years behind desktop versions. As for that Geforce GT 540M, it's roughly half as powerful as the Radeon 4850. I don't know how well the laptop would run XIV but personally I probably wouldn't bother trying.

Edited, Jul 23rd 2011 10:14am by Omena
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#6 Jul 23 2011 at 8:22 AM Rating: Decent
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Quote:
As for that Geforce GT 540M, it's roughly half as powerful as the Radeon 4850


Omena, do you know where I can find a table showing scales of mobile GPU vs desktop? I'm not having any luck... She has to have a laptop, as carrying a desktop with her on 2 week trips would be very awkward lol

#7 Jul 23 2011 at 8:29 AM Rating: Good
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Try this: http://www.videocardbenchmark.net/video_lookup.php

It doesn't exactly compare desktop vs mobile but it's a general GPU ranking with both mobile and desktops included.
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#8 Jul 23 2011 at 10:29 AM Rating: Good
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Here is what i have, and I can play just above minimum (at one point i was overheating but got one of those nifty cooling mats and its been wonderful and got to raise graphix settings up, currently waiting on a custom built one to get in so my wife can play also. Granted this one was just over $1000, but that was almost 3 yrs ago and prices compared to what you get have gotten better.

Specifications
Intel® Core™2 Duo Processor P8700: 2.53 GHz,
Has overclocking program but I dont mess with that.

Operating System Genuine Windows® 7 Home Premium
Genuine Windows® 7 Ultimate
Chipset Mobile Intel® P43 Express Chipset +ICH10
Main Memory 6 gb ram

Display 17.3" Full HD (1920x1080)/HD+ (1600x900) Color-Shine (Glare-type),Asus Splendid Video Intelligent Technology
Video Graphics & Memory NVIDIA® GeForce® GTX 260M with 1024MB GDDR3 VRAM
Hard Drive 500GB,5400rpm

Game Settings
Window: 1360x768
MS: None
Draw Quality 4
Background: 2
Shadow: Lowest
Texture Q/F: Low

I don't have fraps or anything, get a small hickup in towns but not really horrible or continous, when temps of gpu get up there can lag till temps drop, hence the cooling pad=no more temp issues for me anyways.

Your first laptop suggestion: that graphix card might not be great and more limited than mine.
Your second laptop suggestion seems good but i would look for something with the 7200 rpm drive, and an I7.

If shes ok with a cooling pad make sure the intakes are on the bottom and exhausts on side or back.

http://www.systemrequirementslab.com is a site than can scan your system and tell you if you can run it, i don't know how correct it is but its something to look at once you get your laptop, i get a pass setting which is just above the minimum so

Moral of the story
I would not get anything lower than mine.

Sorry for the long post, hope its a little helpful if at all
#9 Jul 23 2011 at 11:05 AM Rating: Good
Edited by bsphil
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clued wrote:
I don't have fraps or anything
You should probably get it, it's free for the fps counter/screenshots. Or better yet, MSI Afterburner.

By the way, keep in mind how GPUs are numbered. The first digit always refers to the generation/family/series (eg: GTX 5xx series, HD 6xxx series). The remaining digits refer to the model number, and the higher the model number, the stronger that GPU is within that series. For example, the GTX 480 is much more powerful than the GTX 560, despite the 560 being a higher overall "number". The GTX 560 actually just a mid-high range card in the 5xx series whereas the 480 is the flagship card of the 4xx series.

The same applies to mobile GPUs, but that's even a bit less reliable. That's why the 540M isn't much of an improvement over the 250M. They're both just designed for low-end graphics processing (which is usually more than what people need from a laptop). Finding a good GPU for FFXIV is bad enough, and even worse if you're trying to be mobile too. That being said, I still think you could bare bones it and get by at a low resolution and low settings.



Edited, Jul 23rd 2011 12:26pm by bsphil
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His Excellency Aethien wrote:
Almalieque wrote:
If no one debated with me, then I wouldn't post here anymore.
Take the hint guys, please take the hint.
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#10 Jul 23 2011 at 5:42 PM Rating: Good
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jhariya wrote:

Omena, do you know where I can find a table showing scales of mobile GPU vs desktop?



I like the wikipedia table. Its a very very general comparison but it works. Just look at the Processing power (GFLOPS) column and you can get at least a feel for the difference between chips....

So a mobile 250M is 360, a 540M is 258, and a pretty low end GTX 460 (what I use in my desktop and run) is 907 - a desktop Radeon 4850 is 1000 ... you get the picture.

Its worth noting the desktop version of the Nvidia 250 chip rates a 700 which tells you how crappy the mobile versions are.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Comparison_of_Nvidia_graphics_processing_units

Edited, Jul 23rd 2011 7:59pm by rikkuotaku
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#11 Jul 23 2011 at 9:46 PM Rating: Decent
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Thank you so much everyone for the tips and chart links. I can't express how much I appreciate all of the info! You have essentially saved me a lot of money and a lot of frustration.

After looking over all of the comparisons and info, it's now clear that I'll have to spend roughly $1200+ to be happy with the performance of the laptop.

Guess I'll just keep on saving :) When I finally do get her a machine, I'll post results for those that are considering buying a laptop for FFXIV. Maybe it will help them out as well.

Thanks again!
#12 Jul 24 2011 at 12:43 PM Rating: Decent
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FWIW, I have a Lenovo Y560, with the core i7 option. I got it directly from Lenovo for $850 (sale price, but it looks like they have a similar sale every few weeks). I run my alt on it or my main when I travel. I'm happy with its performance, no lag, good frame rate. I play on the "standard" settings for all options, high texture quality, low shadow.

I did buy 4 more gigs of RAM for it eventually. It ran FFXIV fine with 4 as long as you didn't have much else open. I tended to have the game, mumble, plus a million firefox tabs at once, that did slow it down. With 8 I can have my usual sloppy web browsing habits and game at the same time. :)

Edited, Jul 24th 2011 2:47pm by hiddenciti
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#13 Jul 24 2011 at 12:54 PM Rating: Decent
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see i dont understand this. because i got my friend some 100$ laptop off craiglist. has a 250mb graphics card dual core processor and only 2 gigs of ram and runs the game on 7/10 quality with nearly no slowdown. idk if its just some freak of a laptop but if it can run it like that i dont see how tht laptop wouldnt run it acceptably at decent quality.
#14 Jul 24 2011 at 1:52 PM Rating: Good
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Well, my wife's Acer Aspire netbook officially went out this morning. After tearing it down I can see a blown cap on the mb.... It's mandatory for her to have a laptop or PDA on her at all times while working, so I had to act now. This is what I just ordered, with the important spec's, IMO, in bold:

GX640 Turbo Enhanced Special Edition Specs:
# Intel Core™ i5 Mobile Processor Technology-Core™ i5 430 M 2.26 ghz - 2.53 ghz (Latest Intel Calpella Platform)
# 15.4" WSXGA+ (1680 x 1050) Widescreen Super Glare TFT Display
# Mobile Intel PM55 Chipset Family
# ATI RADEON HD 5850 - 1 GIG GDDR 5 (Dedicated Video Memory) + Direct X 11 support
# (Tier 1 graphics card, one of the most powerful single GPU chips available)
# ATI Overdrive and Hypertransport Technology
# BROADWAY PRO
# Windows 7 Home Premium 64- bit
# DVD+-RW/ CD+-RW
# 4 Gigs of DDR 3 memory 1066 mhz
# 500 Gb SATA HDD (7200rpm HDD)
# Built In 2.0 Megapixel Webcam
# Integrated Wireless A/B/G and draft- N (Condor Peak 1000)
# Bluetooth/ Gigabyte Ethernet (Included)
# 56k modem
# 4-in-1 Card Reader (SD/MMC/MS/MS Pro)
# E-SATA connector / IEEE1394
# HDMI connector (1080P supported)
# Dolby Theater Class 4.1 SRS Premium Sound™
# Certified High-Fidelity Speakers And Subwoofer
# SRS Premium Sound™-3D audio- Premium Audio experience for music, video, and games
# Built-In Digital/Analog 7.1-Channel S/PDIF Output
# 9- CELL EXTENDED BATTERY

Its a factory refurb so it came to 699.99+20 for shipping. I'll post benchmarks in about 2 weeks. /crosses fingers!
#15 Jul 24 2011 at 5:54 PM Rating: Good
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That looks like a great machine, I think you'll be very happy with it.
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#16 Aug 02 2011 at 2:11 AM Rating: Good
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Sorry, just needed to post this because of how uninformed some of you guys are.

I have a similar spec'd laptop (Core i5 2410m, 4GB RAM, GT 540M) and I play this game with everything on Standard except for Textures which are on High and I get no lag whatsoever. Usually around 30-40FPS in Towns and up to 60FPS out in the open.

The GT 540M is basically the DX 11 equivilent of a GTX 260M, so it's a pretty decent mobile card.
#17 Aug 02 2011 at 2:12 PM Rating: Decent
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Ferrety

Do you use fraps to track your fps? Just wondering. Thanks for your post. I appreciate the info! I'm trying to help a few friends pick out new laptops and a few of them have very limited funds (not all will be playing FFXIV).

I should have my MSI laptop today (I hope) and after a few days of torture I will post my results. Hopefully I can help others in the future like others have helped me in this thread!
#18 Sep 10 2011 at 6:41 AM Rating: Decent
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So, I got the MSI GX640 with the previously mentioned spec's back around the first week of August. Turned out to have a bad gpu installed, so I had to send it back. I bought it on Ebay as a refurb/ open box, and after talking to MSI's customer service, I decided to send it in for repair rather than just return it. They gave me a 2 year warranty vs. the Ebay store's 90 day, so naturally I went with that. After 31 days, MSI finally sent it back to me. Apparently they were out of the GPU and were waiting on ATI shipments for a replacement. MSI's RMA service is ridiculous.....

Anyhow, I got all of the drivers updated and what not and ran to Walmart to pick up a laptop cooler until I can get a quality one, and ran the benchmark. I took a screeny of the score, which I'll post a little later, and it got about 2830. I know the bench mark isn't very good at deciding what will run FFXIV but I was still curious to see the score.

Got the game installed and updated and all my wife did was character creation and the opening cs sequences. I think I have all of the settings set 1 below standard and have it running full screen @ 1280x800. I also have fraps running in the back ground so I can track fps. During the cs's the laptop ran 45-60 fps and looked pretty **** good. After the initial cs's, when she traveled into the bar to talk to Mimodi ( I think is her name...the Lalifel in Ul'dah) she was getting 29-36 fps.

I will post some screen shots and maybe a short youtube clip tomorrow, so I have a full day and evening of testing. It looks like this might work out :)


Sorry to necro this thread, but I wanted to share my findings. Especially after all of the help I received in choosing a laptop that would work.

Thanks again :)
Necro Warning: This post occurred more than thirty days after the prior, and may be a necropost.
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