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Laptop question

Starleash's Avatar

08.19.2012 , 06:46 AM | #1
Hi all, I was just wondering if I should buy this laptop now or wait a bit more for a better config. My current laptop runs the game fine but I wanna experience the graphics in this game too.

Lenovo IdeaPad Y480 Laptop 209388U
Dawn Grey
Intel Core i7-3610QM Processor ( 2.30GHz)
14.0" HD Glare Display
NVIDIA GeForce GT640M-LE 2GB Graphics
HDMI, 802.11 b/g/n
6 Cell Lithium-Ion
Windows 7 Home Premium
HD 720P Webcam

Comments, suggestions, tips and any other help is most appreciated.
Thanks in advance.

mathisk's Avatar

08.19.2012 , 10:34 AM | #2
That's kind of a tough question. It will probably run the game, but not up to it's full potential.

The 2.3 GHz processor is pretty slow and will limit the game's speed significantly. Getting a processor that's closer to 3.0 GHz will help.

The 640 graphics chip is a little on the low side. It's at the high-ish end of the General Computer or Media cards, but it's not really a High Performance or Gaming card. It will still do gaming graphics, just not at the same performance levels. The low-end gaming chips from nVidia start at the X50 level (X being the series of chipset, 400, 500, 600, etc).

Also note the "M" at the end of the CPU and GPU model numbers. That means it's a "Mobile" chip (obviously, since it's in a laptop). Mobile chips have lower performance than the same chip's desktop version. So simply by buying a laptop, you're sacrificing a bit of performance, right off the bat. But it gets worse. Laptops love to save power by automatically throttling chip speed to be more energy efficient. This kills games. So the first thing you have to do in order to get the best gaming performance you can, is to adjust the Windows Power settings to "High Performance." This should prevent the computer from trying to make your batteries last longer by running slower. And in a related note, you'll always want to have the laptop plugged into AC power (or in a docking station, etc) when playing games. If the computer detects that it's running off batteries, it will most likely throttle down the clock speeds regardless of the power settings.

The last bit of advice I have would be to Google that laptop and see what people say about its gaming capabilities. There's a website that usually does a good job of telling you the pros and cons of most laptops, in regards to their gaming abilities. I didn't find the site I was looking for, in a quick search, but I found one review that said they ran WoW on this laptop at 59 frams per second. I find that easy to believe because WoW is designed to run well on just about any hardware. SWTOR is much more demanding, and generally doesn't perform nearly as well as WoW on any given hardware. (ie my desktop is capable of running WoW at 250 FPS with VSync off. SWTOR only runs at 110 FPS with VSync off).