Confirmed: Apple Can Enable Dual GPU and On-the-Fly Switching in MacBook Pro

via Gizmodo by matt buchanan on 10/22/08

Nvidia dropped by today to demo some of the awesome things that the GeForce 9400M in the new MacBooks can do that Intel’s integrated graphics just can’t touch, and to discuss a few technical points. Besides confirming that you’ll see it in other notebooks soon, they definitively answered some lingering questions about the chip’s capabilities: It can support up to 8GB of RAM. It can do on-the-fly GPU switching. And it can work together with the MacBook Pro’s discrete 9600M GT. But it doesn’t do any of those things. Yet.

Since the hardware is capable of all of these things, it means that they can all be enabled by a software/firmware/driver update. Whether or not that happens is entirely up to Apple. While you can argue that Hybrid SLI—using both GPUs at once—has a limited, balls-to-the-wall utility, being able to switch between the integrated 9400M and discrete 9600M GT on the fly without logging out would obviously be enormously easier than the current setup, and allow for some more creative automatic energy preferences—discrete when plugged in, integrated on battery. Hell, you can do it in Windows on some machines.

But since it’s Apple it’s also entirely possible we’ll never see any of this to come to pass—GPU-accelerated video decoding has totally been possible with the 8600M GT in the previous-gen MacBook Pros, and well, you know where that stands. [Apple & Nvidia Coverage@Giz]

GeForce 9400M to hit notebooks from five major vendors, mock Intel

via Engadget by Samuel Axon on 10/22/08

Now that NVIDIA’s GeForce 9400M has made its debut in Apple’s new MacBooks, Technical Marketing Director Nick Stam says that five major notebook vendors are planning to ship systems with the chipset — though we don’t know if that includes Apple or not. Stam expects NVIDIA will carve out 30 percent of the integrated graphics market for itself, partly by improving other experiences besides games — Google Earth, photo editing, day-to-day video encoding, and other activities performed by people who use keys besides W, A, S, and D. Frankly, we’re just thankful we’ve evolved past the days when we needed a 19-inch monster to perform high-impact 3D tasks without sacrificing to the sinister gods of screen tearing.

Axiontron beats Apple to the Mac tablet punch

modbook-mac-tablet-axiotron.jpgAre you tired of waiting for Apple to release a MacBook tablet for you to fawn over? Sure, there have been rumors about them for months now, but there’s nothing coming out of Cupertino currently that looks anything like the tablet so many Apple fans want so badly. What are you to do?

Just get the next best thing, the ModBook Mac Tablet. Sure, it’s not an official Apple computer, but if they aren’t gonna release what you want you need to take matters into your own hands. This tablet is a modified Apple MacBook that has a touchscreen and no keyboard, but it does have an iSight camera, a DVD burner, ForceGlass on the screen to protect it from scratches and the like, and WiFi. It looks pretty slick, although with no price announced as of yet you can assume this one will be very, very expensive. But hey, if Apple released one officially it’d be very expensive too, so what’s the difference?

Product Page, via UberGizmo

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