Mobility Radeon X700: The Graphics of the Travelmate 8100by Derek Wilson on March 1, 2005 12:05 AM EST
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IntroductionWe recently looked at NVIDIA’s new high end graphics solution, and this week, we will take a peek under the hood of the new Travelmate 8100 notebook from Acer with the Mobility Radeon X700. The mid-range ATI solution is a translation of the desktop X700 to the mobile space with its eight pixel and six vertex pipelines. The MRX700 is also combined with its familiar 128-bit memory bus. The core and memory clock speeds are set by the manufacturer based on TDP, and the clock speeds of this particular MRX700 are 350/300 core/mem. ATI’s maximum rated core and memory clock speeds are 350/350.
We are continuing to try to get our hands on an Alviso chipset test platform in order to do some real analysis of notebook performance and to test graphics cards in equivalent systems. This review, like our last review in Intel’s latest mobile platform, will compare the mobile part to its desktop counterpart in a high end desktop system. Comparing a graphics solution running on a 2.0GHz Dothan to one powered by a higher performance chip is not ideal, but it does give us a clear picture of how far notebook designers are able to push performance when compared to a situation with no major thermal or spatial design restrictions.
The Acer Travelmate 8100 is a mainstream notebook aimed at getting the most performance possible without sacrificing mobility. Unlike the DTR space, the goal of this platform is not to pack all the power of the desktop into a smaller, all-in-one package. The Acer Travelmate 8100 is aimed towards the high end in mobile performance for the business or home user (offering the 1.83 and 2.0 GHz Dothan options) while offering enough graphics power to satisfy the average gamer. In mid-range mobile graphics, the MRX700 is certainly a step up from what we are used to seeing, but for the hardcore gamers who want nothing but the latest and greatest in graphics power and mobility (while sacrificing battery life and one’s back muscles), the DTR segment offers much more graphics power at this point.