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Some 13-inch Ultrabooks shipping with downclocked MX150s

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Posted · Original PosterOP

Notebook check has noticed that there are some 13-inch Ultrabooks that ship with a newer, lower clocked version of the MX150 which appears to be in order to bring it down to a 10W TDP GPU as opposed to a 25W GPU. The only issue with this is that you really don't know which one may be in the box until you look at the device ID...   

 

https://www.notebookcheck.net/Nvidia-has-been-sneaking-in-slower-GeForce-MX150-1D12-variant-onto-some-Ultrabooks.289358.0.html

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When the GeForce MX150 was announced early last year, our initial tests and sources pointed to a 25 W TDP to be in line with the outgoing GeForce 940MX that the new Pascal GPU directly replaces. Nvidia never explicitly mentioned, however, that there would be two distinct versions of the MX150 beyond the simple VRAM differences that we've become accustomed to in the past.

 

Our first laptop with the MX150 was the MSI PL62 and it was there where we recorded core clock, Boost clock, and VRAM speeds of 1469 MHz, 1532 MHz, and 1502 MHz, respectively. Curiously, a select few notebooks have also been shipping with underclocked MX150 GPUs rated for significantly slower clock rates across the board. Our two GPU-Z screenshots below compare the Asus Zenbook UX430UN and Lenovo IdeaPad 320S each equipped with the same MX150 GPU by name but with very different clock rates.

...

Raw graphics performance is unsurprisingly faster on notebooks with the '1D10' variant of the MX150. Our 3DMark 11 chart below compares 13 notebooks all equipped with either the '1D10' or '1D12' variant of the MX150 and all 5 notebooks with the slower GeForce MX150 are conveniently at the very bottom of the list. The ZenBook UX430UN sits comfortably in the center of the chart since its '1D10' GPU regularly throttles as detailed in our review, but users can generally expect a significant performance drop of about 20 to 25 percent between the two versions of the MX150. 

It is kind of interesting to see two separate version of the MX150 floating in the wild and I can kind of understand the want to make an even lower power & TDP part by underclocking so that you can put it in the newer ultrabooks.  Unfortunately, this may also make accurate comparisons of Ryzen Mobile APUs and Vega Mobile parts to the MX150 a bit more tricky since whoever is making the comparison will now have to specify which MX150 clock it is...  

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I don't see the point. If you're trying to save tons of battery, just use a U series procesor.

If you're trying to do anything graphically demanding, I doubt this will be up to the task.


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Unfortunately, I haven't known many computer retailers (such as Best Buy) to actually publish detailed system specs in any easily accessible form, let alone posting clock speeds of gpu and vram.

3 minutes ago, dizmo said:

I don't see the point. If you're trying to save tons of battery, just use a U series procesor.

If you're trying to do anything graphically demanding, I doubt this will be up to the task.

If the cost to implement this dGPU was actually cheaper than opting for a cpu with a higher performing iGPU (those Iris parts aren't cheap btw), then I could see why this exists. Ryzen APUs in ultrabook form fsctor don't exist yet either.


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Posted · Original PosterOP
2 hours ago, Zodiark1593 said:

Unfortunately, I haven't known many computer retailers (such as Best Buy) to actually publish detailed system specs in any easily accessible form, let alone posting clock speeds of gpu and vram.

If the cost to implement this dGPU was actually cheaper than opting for a cpu with a higher performing iGPU (those Iris parts aren't cheap btw), then I could see why this exists. Ryzen APUs in ultrabook form fsctor don't exist yet either.

I think the interesting aspect may come in what the total power usage and performance for a 10W TDP MX150 with a i7 8550u combo vs an AMD 2700u as those would theoretically have the same TDP on the components.  Of course, I would also really appreciate a nice thin and light laptop to take into the field that could run mapping software easily and also have a decent battery life.

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10w MX150 = fucking use intel HD

25w MX150 = understandable

 

t480s has 10w MX150.

t480 has 25w MX150 :) (hoping; other people have this)


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7 hours ago, dizmo said:

I don't see the point. If you're trying to save tons of battery, just use a U series procesor.

If you're trying to do anything graphically demanding, I doubt this will be up to the task.

Cooling it isn't as demanding so it's easier to implement in thin form factors. Most MX devices are using U series chips already. It's all about extra GPU oomph with little thermal impact. It does outclass integrated graphics with the exception of Vega 11 or 8.

 

7 hours ago, Zodiark1593 said:

Unfortunately, I haven't known many computer retailers (such as Best Buy) to actually publish detailed system specs in any easily accessible form, let alone posting clock speeds of gpu and vram.

If the cost to implement this dGPU was actually cheaper than opting for a cpu with a higher performing iGPU (those Iris parts aren't cheap btw), then I could see why this exists. Ryzen APUs in ultrabook form fsctor don't exist yet either.

They do. It's just no OEM wants to spend too much effort on doing anything with AMD products. So you get laptops that are not quite Ultrabooks (which is actually an Intel trademark). But if they actually bothered? It would be a trivial problem to solve and it's cheaper than Kaby Lake-R + MX150 and lower TDP if you want it (configurable TDP of 12-25W).

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Posted · Original PosterOP
On 3/21/2018 at 8:16 PM, themctipers said:

10w MX150 = fucking use intel HD

25w MX150 = understandable

 

t480s has 10w MX150.

t480 has 25w MX150 :) (hoping; other people have this)

According to some digging that Anandtech did, I guess the official Ubuntu Certified hardware database has them differentiated into GP108 for the full speed 25W MX150 and GP108M for the slowed down 10W MX150...

 

https://www.anandtech.com/show/12565/nvidia-silently-rolls-out-slower-mx150-for-ultrabooks

Quote

Further investigation on our part does reveal that there is a documented understanding that they are different parts, at least from an OEM perspective. By way of the official Ubuntu Certified hardware database, PCI ID ‘1D10’ is documented as the ‘GP108’ MX150 variant of the ThinkPad T480, while ‘1D12’ is recorded as the ‘GP108M’ variant of the ThinkPad T480s. In this case, although ‘GP108’ and ‘GP108M’ may not be NVIDIA’s own terminology, the Ubuntu Certified process involves OEMs directly working with Canonical to test their hardware. Canonical’s differentiation strongly implies that the OEMs are aware of MX150 variant

 

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This is so annoying! As a consumer you don't know what you're buying anymore. You buy an MX150 laptop and you get something noticeably worse. Could you please call it something different if you slow it down!? 

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On 3/22/2018 at 4:16 AM, themctipers said:

10w MX150 = fucking use intel HD

25w MX150 = understandable

Uh...you do know the 10W MX150 is still a lot faster than the bog standard UHD620 you find? Even when comparing it to a the iris 650 (fastest current "standard" intel iGPU), its around 10-20% faster. The only thing from intel that comes close is the iris 580 (which is found in the Skull canyon NUC) but as you probably know, intel hasn't done anything similar for a gen or two now meaning the 650 is the best you can get (which is considerably slower). 

 

Granted, once we chuck AMD iGPUs in (both their APUs and Intel+RTG), I can see omitting the 10W MX150. 


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1 minute ago, kokakolia said:

This is so annoying! As a consumer you don't know what you're buying anymore. You buy an MX150 laptop and you get something noticeably worse. Could you please call it something different if you slow it down!? 

This isn't the first time something like this has happened tho...

Some lower end mobile dGPUs use both DDR3 and GDDR5 memory however as they use the exact same names, you had no clue which one you were getting until you physically had it. 


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Posted · Original PosterOP
3 minutes ago, Mr.Meerkat said:

This isn't the first time something like this has happened tho...

Some lower end mobile dGPUs use both DDR3 and GDDR5 memory however as they use the exact same names, you had no clue which one you were getting until you physically had it. 

 

8 minutes ago, kokakolia said:

Could you please call it something different if you slow it down!? 

I can see some point to nVidia wanting to keep these listed as MX150 parts since it doesn't sound like they changed any of the hardware , more along the lines of forced underclocking, but it would be nice if they had just tagged something like an 'E' after it for 'Energy Efficient'.  Does end up creating some confusion in the market though when you're looking for a nice light and portable laptop that has decent graphics capabilities for work tasks and some light gaming.

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On 3/21/2018 at 8:48 PM, dizmo said:

I don't see the point. If you're trying to save tons of battery, just use a U series procesor.

If you're trying to do anything graphically demanding, I doubt this will be up to the task.

yeah 1050 is about as low as you would want to go. MX150 is really only good if you just want to play rocket league type games and older games.

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I don't know what the big deal is. I for one welcome the MX150 Max-Q ™

 

Nvidia is totally gonna steal this idea from me


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40 minutes ago, Mr.Meerkat said:

Uh...you do know the 10W MX150 is still a lot faster than the bog standard UHD620 you find? Even when comparing it to a the iris 650 (fastest current "standard" intel iGPU), its around 10-20% faster. The only thing from intel that comes close is the iris 580 (which is found in the Skull canyon NUC) but as you probably know, intel hasn't done anything similar for a gen or two now meaning the 650 is the best you can get (which is considerably slower). 

 

Granted, once we chuck AMD iGPUs in (both their APUs and Intel+RTG), I can see omitting the 10W MX150. 

its not powerful enough to be worth the 10w TDP + other things that are needed to power a dGPU 


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