Will the launch of Pascal/Polaris cause a price drop for 970M/980M in laptops by summer?

Nikron

Commendable
Apr 27, 2016
10
0
1,560
0
Hey guys,
I was hoping I could gather some of your opinions based on previous experiences since im planning to buy a gaming laptop in 2-3 months.

My budget is around $1,500 so I was hoping for gtx 980M laptop as a best case scenario, otherwise I'll have to stick to a 970M, but I feel I'll be missing out in the future with the 970.

Just to avoid misunderstandings, I already have a great gaming PC so only interested in laptops due to traveling.

Do you think I should wait 2-3 months for the laptop prices to drop perhaps due to the future launch of Pascal or Polaris, or that won't affect laptops yet?

I checked several options at Xotic but honestly don't know whats the best gaming laptop (price included) besides the expensive Alienware.

Your opinions and suggestions are highly appreciated.

Thank you.
 

ledhead11

Estimable
Oct 10, 2014
19
0
4,570
1
I think Razer was the other one that I was thinking of. I'm pretty sure I read a review of it either here or pcmag of something similar. The overall review was good and if I remember correctly they were either making so it could be used with other laptops or coming out with another one that would. There's a chance I might be mixing it up w/ the MSI though. That review, whichever it was, stated the size/form factors and power restrictions(I think it was around 300-450 watts). I think I read that about a month or so ago(it actually had me rethinking what I'm doing w/ this laptop for the same reasons you mentioned. It's a shame the tablets OS's still have a ways to go because their battery lifespan blows laptops out the water.

I wasn't aware of the speed differences on these though. I can tell you that if you ever plan on putting something like a 980ti or faster, I recommend having x16 as I've personally seen differences when upgrading cpu/mobo's from pcie2.0 to pcie3.0. Ten years ago some people stated they didn't believe a single gpu could fully populate pci3.0x16 and I don't believe they could imagine the bandwidth that hi-res textures/shaders/high fps/or 1080p/4k would need.

One other detail to add into the mix. I knows there's a lot when you're trying to start with a budget and aim at future proofing, my current desktop build is a result of upgrades and builds I started 6 years ago with $1500(originally a 2600k and 2 560ti's). On going this path with a separate GPU you really need to also look into what kind of port it will connect with. Once that is done, research the laptop mobo/chipset for reviews/benchmarks because even though manufacturers always state that a port can support up-to x-speeds that can heavily depend on the chipset on the boards. The current bus architectures don't rely on CPU's as much as they do chipsets. RAM speeds can also come into play because of DMA.

I'll be busy with family so I won't be able to reply until next week. Good luck on your research.
 

ledhead11

Estimable
Oct 10, 2014
19
0
4,570
1


I would totally wait unless you have a great need in the near future. BTW I got a customized laptop from Xotic and the experience has been anything but pleasant but after completely replacing all the parts they put in and reinstalling my OS everything is fine now.

On to the real issue. A single 980m still works pretty hard with the most demanding games like Witcher3, Rise of Tomb Raider, GTA V and just about anything with hi-res textures/shading at 1080p. Mine has the 2x980m's in SLI and with both, things run at a pretty solid 60+fps@1080p. With one its usually 30-45. For reference a single 980m is like a cross between a GTX965 & 970. Even when OC'd they barely tap a reference GTX970 except for the 8gb of vram. DX12 could change all of this when fully implemented, but that could still be 1-2 years away for top tier games. If Pascal holds up to its promises, they should be a much better solution for a single gpu gaming laptop.
 

Nikron

Commendable
Apr 27, 2016
10
0
1,560
0
 

ledhead11

Estimable
Oct 10, 2014
19
0
4,570
1
Well, unfortunately, the desktop 1080's are only rumored to be coming out around June 1st. Usually the laptops take about 3-6 months later, but I could be wrong since occasionally a manufacturer will get some of the early chips and rush out something. The best advice I can give for your budge($1000-$1500) range is look for one of the newer laptops with the desktop version of the 980. They're marketed as an actual GTX980 and not the "M" version. For single card performance they blow the m's right out the water, however 2 m's in SLI still render faster. I think they also come with the 8gb vram and believe me even at 1080p I've seen some games hit the 3-5gb vram usage when everything is maxed. CPU wise anything with the GTX980 is likely to have a 5th or 6th gen quad intel chip with it. As long as it avg's 2.5 with a turbo upwards of 3.5 on a quad you should be fine. I'd even go so far to recommend looking for one with a 120-144hz refresh rate as the GTX could probably hit 80-130fps in some situations. The strange part of the GTX980 laptop version is that I've read it doesn't use the same MXM port as the m's do. I'm not sure how'll that'll play out in the future. . .As you already have a gaming desktop I won't go into too much detail but, fast memory always helps, ssd's definitely improves load times but only minorly helps renders. I believe that MSI, Acer, and Gigabyte all have something with the GTX980(btw they're just stock clocks but that's still pretty powerfull). One major note:unplugged gaming laptops usually throttle everything to a minimum when it comes to gaming and even when they don't battery life is pretty bad(an hour or less) for hardcore stuff. I know other companies are making them too but I'm pretty sure I read good reviews about those 3 at least.
 

Nikron

Commendable
Apr 27, 2016
10
0
1,560
0


Yeah I wish I could get a laptop with the actual GTX 980 but they cost around $3000, which is double my budget and I dont find it even worth it to buy a laptop for that price.

At the end of the day im just a Total War gamer and nothing else, so I believe even 970M will be enough for Total War: Attila and Rome 2.

If Pascal will be released in June for laptops, how much do prices usually drop? $100-$200 or thats too much? Any idea approximately how much should I expect if I wanna buy in July or August?

With regards to the GPU, is there a real big difference between 970M (3GB) and 970M (6GB) when it comes to Attila or Rome 2?

Furthermore, what Processor would suffice for Total War games? i7-4720HQ is enough for should I opt for i7-6700HQ?

Please consider that I dont expect higher than 25 FPS on Ultra in these 2 games and Im happy with that for the moment.

Thank you in advance for your continuous help and apologies if my questions r too general.
 

ledhead11

Estimable
Oct 10, 2014
19
0
4,570
1


I just looked at the 'egg and there's definitely some options in the 1300-1500 range and some models w/ the 970m/3b g/6700hq's also have 2133mhz ddr4. Overall they're pretty impressive and should be fine for what you want and then some. They might drop more in july/august but its hard to say. I would wait until at least the second week of June before making a decision unless you really need to get it now. It seems unlikely the new laptop gpu's are going to be out before you need to buy, but if they are I would get one over any of the 900m series because I do agree you could be missing out.. The biggest problem is that I haven't heard anything about the laptop gpu's yet, only the desktops.
 

ledhead11

Estimable
Oct 10, 2014
19
0
4,570
1
One thing to also consider is that these 970 laptops are probably going to drop drastically come black Friday. 3gb will suffice(you might get some occasional studders from buffering, but at 1080 or less it should be fine for most games running between med-ultra).
 

Nikron

Commendable
Apr 27, 2016
10
0
1,560
0


I live in Dubai so I dont know how much Black Friday will affect my choice, on top of being too long to wait. I just hope a gtx 970M will be able to play the future Total War (except Warhammer) smoothly at high settings at least, but who knows whats their next release or what it will be.

At the moment
 

ledhead11

Estimable
Oct 10, 2014
19
0
4,570
1
About the only other thing I would add is possibly looking for a laptop that uses the mxm style card. This could give a significant upgrade option in the future since these cpu and ram options are already pretty good. It's a shot in the dark, but it may pro-long that laptop's relevance for a long time.
 

Nikron

Commendable
Apr 27, 2016
10
0
1,560
0


I did some research since u mentioned upgradability and came across Alienwares graphics Amplifier. Since I'm only interested in Rome 2 or Attila Total War, I believe even a 960M will suffice and if need be I can get the Amplifier and use a PC graphic card in the future.

Basically I'm thinking to get a relatively good processor like i7-6700HQ and hope it should be fine for 2-3 years as long as I can boost the performance with a pic graphic card, unless the bottleneck will really make it useless (which I don't think so since the performance depends more on the gpu).
 

ledhead11

Estimable
Oct 10, 2014
19
0
4,570
1


On CPU's I agree, and I believe most others would too, that AMD and Intel have each reached some peak points with different models. At this point its really a nickel and dime game for all of the options available for CPU's. The 6700HQ should be good for awhile. I have a 5700HQ and they're very similar.

I admit, I had forgotten, that a number of different manufacturers are offering external port modules to incorporate desktop GPU's. Overall they're pretty cool and open a whole new approach. Double up on research before committing. The external modules can be pricey, and they often require specific card sizes and power ratings. I can't remember who else is doing it besides Alienware but I'm sure there's at least 1 or 2 others. I strongly recommend sifting through Newegg and Tom's.

I think your on the right track for a portable system with upgradability options. Just do the review/research before committing due to proprietary issues.

Side note:Today NVIDIA announced the next PASCAL desktop GPU's.
 

Nikron

Commendable
Apr 27, 2016
10
0
1,560
0


Will definitely do that, as spending $3k+ for a laptop its a joke for me, especially when u know ur getting a laptop whose battery will last roughly an hour while gaming. One of the reasons I want it its coz i get bored while traveling so a bit of gaming helps. But 1 hour its just ridiculous and I demand more efforts from tech nowadays lol They can put a 3kg heavy battery I dont care I can do biceps curls, but battery life is essential in respect to mobility.

Btw, I read that ur i7-5700HQ was actually faster than the newest Skylake models in multi-core scenarios according to a benchmark I recently checked.

Lets just hope that in the future games dont become more cpu intensive so that Intel can stop playing around and launching once in a while processors that are barely 5% faster than their predecessors.

As for the external graphic options, i believe the battle is between Alienware Amplifer and MSI Dock, but I cant find much info on MSI's option besides the fact that MSI uses PCIe 16x and Alienware only 4x, and all these comes from 2015 articles where it says that MSI needs an external desktop too.

Another recent launch was also Razer's Core compatible with Razer Blade Stealth (or smth like that), but the laptop itself did not have integrated graphics, therefore not a mobile gaming option. Although I believe Razer Core will be compatible with other laptops or even other brands, but still more pricey ($500) while the Alienware Amplifier is just $200.

Do u know anything about Razer as now my next research will be Razer vs Alienware.
 

ledhead11

Estimable
Oct 10, 2014
19
0
4,570
1
I think Razer was the other one that I was thinking of. I'm pretty sure I read a review of it either here or pcmag of something similar. The overall review was good and if I remember correctly they were either making so it could be used with other laptops or coming out with another one that would. There's a chance I might be mixing it up w/ the MSI though. That review, whichever it was, stated the size/form factors and power restrictions(I think it was around 300-450 watts). I think I read that about a month or so ago(it actually had me rethinking what I'm doing w/ this laptop for the same reasons you mentioned. It's a shame the tablets OS's still have a ways to go because their battery lifespan blows laptops out the water.

I wasn't aware of the speed differences on these though. I can tell you that if you ever plan on putting something like a 980ti or faster, I recommend having x16 as I've personally seen differences when upgrading cpu/mobo's from pcie2.0 to pcie3.0. Ten years ago some people stated they didn't believe a single gpu could fully populate pci3.0x16 and I don't believe they could imagine the bandwidth that hi-res textures/shaders/high fps/or 1080p/4k would need.

One other detail to add into the mix. I knows there's a lot when you're trying to start with a budget and aim at future proofing, my current desktop build is a result of upgrades and builds I started 6 years ago with $1500(originally a 2600k and 2 560ti's). On going this path with a separate GPU you really need to also look into what kind of port it will connect with. Once that is done, research the laptop mobo/chipset for reviews/benchmarks because even though manufacturers always state that a port can support up-to x-speeds that can heavily depend on the chipset on the boards. The current bus architectures don't rely on CPU's as much as they do chipsets. RAM speeds can also come into play because of DMA.

I'll be busy with family so I won't be able to reply until next week. Good luck on your research.
 

Nikron

Commendable
Apr 27, 2016
10
0
1,560
0


Thanks again for all the detailed information and help mate. Hope u will have a good time with ur family.
 
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