Laptop specs - would you pay extra?

Hi guys

Am considering these key specs in this new laptop
Will cost ~£1000 currently. It’s galling as I know I could get a desktop w a 780 card but I really need the mobility of a laptop atm.
i7 quad core 4710MQ 2.5Ghz 6MB
Nvidia GTX870M 6GB 1344 CUDA cores
(This Nvidia hasnt been benchmarked yet, understandably)

I can pay an extra £90 for an i7 4810MQ 2.8GHz 6MB
or an extra £190 for an i7 4910MQ 2.9GHz 8MB

I can also downgrade to a GTX860M 4GBVRAM w 1152 CUDA cores & save ~£130.

Any strong feelings either way?

Thanks in advance

Unless you plan on doing some serious work, you will not notice much of a difference between the processors. DO NOT downgrade your GPU. CUDA support in cycles is good and pretty stable, meaning that you will be using that to render whenever you can.

That said, if you do CPU rendering, based on what’s available about the CPU’s, the 4910 will probably be about 25% faster than the 4710. If you are rendering a single image, who cares? But if you are rendering an animation, that can make the difference between a render that’s doable and a render that isn’t.

If I was in your shoes, I would spend the extra 190 quid for the faster processor. If you decide not to, though, you won’t miss much.

Thanks Aaron.

I’ll definitely stick w the better GPU then.

By serious work what do you mean? I should have said that this setup is purely for work related purposes such as Blender, 3Dcoat & Slicer. I do no gaming whatsoever. I should also add that I end up rendering most of my long animations on a web-based render farm to ‘not wear out’ my laptop & keep it free for other tasks. I just need my.laptop to be able to keep up w the work I’m doing at the current time in terms of scene size & viewport render previews.

You mention the benefits of CPU rendering, - to clarify, why would you even consider rendering on the CPU when you have a decent GPU available?


By serious I mean very high poly counts and lighting scenarios. Other things, such as hair, volumes, and fluid, also count as serious because they take so much time and memory.

There are currently, as far as I know, no GPU-based renderers that are ideal for rendering volumes and complex geometry like hair. Most GPU renderers do not even support many features, and the ones that do frequently utilize “tricks” to get these features and these tricks are usually slower than rendering something that isn’t a “trick” on a plain, old CPU.

Long story short, for many scenes, it’s CPU or nothing.