Nvidia removes overclocking from 900M mobile GPUs, a feature advertised on some notebooks

By Shawn Knight
Feb 18, 2015
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  1. Controversy surrounding the GTX 970 aside, the 900 series GPUs from Nvidia is among the most anticipated graphics chips in recent memory. The mobile variants are especially impressive as they narrow the performance gap between their desktop counterparts to 80...

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  2. CaptainTom

    CaptainTom TS Booster Posts: 154   +61

    LOL it is clearly a move by Nvidia to force people to upgrade more often. They will probably take the 980m and do the same thing they did with the 680MX -> keep re-releasing it with 10% higher clocks every year.

    Problem is that someone with a 680mx could just overclock it 30% and get an 880m. However this should be a problem for Nvidia, not us. If they want us to upgrade, give us something worth upgrading to!
    veLa likes this.
  3. amstech

    amstech TechSpot Enthusiast Posts: 1,436   +592

    I overclocked my cheeseburger last night with extra pepper. It's running hotter now but I countered that extra heat with high performance cooling lettuce.
  4. dividebyzero

    dividebyzero trainee n00b Posts: 4,891   +1,258

    You'd think that the performance laptop vendors who sell overclocking as a feature (Clevo, Eurocom, Asus etc) would offer their own driver and/or offer an OC utility (as Asus already do with GPU tweak). The vast majority of laptop vendors don't advocate overclocking- and in many cases aren't set up for it re: cooling and power limiters - which even the top-end laptops are saddled with.
    Given that a failed overclock or cooling issue on a laptop has a more systemic effect on overall stability compared to desktop, I'm actually surprised that some vendors hadn't pushed for overclock capping until now. Many already have locked down BIOS's and tight power limitations in place.
    Having said that, if the unit has adequate cooling and power supply, the end user should have the option to overclock even if means voiding a warranty.
    amstech likes this.
  5. Chris Just

    Chris Just TS Enthusiast Posts: 32

    I bought my MSI based on the fact it was able to overclock and was advertised as Overclockable, but yet not even a month has passed by and now I can't :S That's false advertising in some frackin way when my MSI GT80 Titan was $6746.36!
  6. noel24

    noel24 TS Maniac Posts: 299   +152

    Well, can't You reinstall older version? Anyway, from time to time I sweep my HDD with Duplicate Cleaner and I was surprised to see that one of my laptop drivers for ancient 580M was identical with desktop's GTX970 driver, so **** happens. Little miscomunication between departements. nVidia got some of those lately...
  7. veLa

    veLa TS Evangelist Posts: 699   +164

    Yep, just another brick in the wall, solidifying that my GTX 770 will be my last card from NVIDIA.
    SirChocula likes this.
  8. Somian

    Somian TS Rookie

    You can overclock it. Just don't use the latest drivers. It isn't false Advertisting. How can the manufacturer know what software you install on your machine? It works as advertised with the software it came with.
    Steve and cliffordcooley like this.
  9. Badelhas

    Badelhas TS Enthusiast Posts: 56   +10

    Lol. 6K?! You got ripped off.
  10. dividebyzero

    dividebyzero trainee n00b Posts: 4,891   +1,258

    Well that was a short-lived story. Seems as though overclocking will be restored in the next driver revision.
  11. yRaz

    yRaz TS Evangelist Posts: 1,828   +880

    EDIT: The formatting in this does not show up well in the comments section, jump to forum mode to read in proper format.

    Overclocking laptops have to be one of the dumbest things I've ever heard of, but before you rage and flame me hear me out.

    1. Forced overclocks usually do not work with low power settings, if you forget to turn it off you could quickly run out of battery
    2. The coolers on laptops are already being pushed to their limits, overclocking a laptop puts more stress on the components than overclocking a desktop
    3. Laptop coolers are dust magnets and hard to clean. A constant overclock left unchecked over time will shorten the life of the laptop making "increasing it's longevity by overclocking" complete BS.
    4. with the money you spent on a gaming laptop, you could have a desktop twice as powerful at stock, with tons more headroom for overclocking.
    5. Gaming(overclocking) laptops are rarely "portable", which is often a big argument for people buying them. If you want a small powerful rig, that's entirely possible
    6. To put overclocking a laptop in perspective lets say that in games you start dropping below 40fps. A 10% overclock is a fairly large overclock for a laptop so let's say that a 10% OC gives you a 10% increase in performance(it's probably closer to 6-7%). If you overclock your laptop 10% you'll only increase your frames by 4fps, a negligible amount.

    Overclocking is not something to be taken lightly and I would say that overclocking a laptop is more dangerous and risky than a desktop because
    • it voids your warranty
    • if one thing breaks you more than likely have to replace the whole laptop
    • lack of proper cooling increases the risk of damaging the components
    Last edited: Feb 20, 2015
    dividebyzero and cliffordcooley like this.
  12. Evernessince

    Evernessince TS Evangelist Posts: 1,102   +532

    Most vendors want to put as little support into the system as they have to. Laptops with customer GPU solutions don't get any updates for their lifetime.

    I've seen it plenty of times when fixing laptops. People can't play games because the laptop only works with OEM drivers from 2010.
  13. Evernessince

    Evernessince TS Evangelist Posts: 1,102   +532

    Your right, overclocking laptops is pretty dumb. You are drawing from a finite power source so the higher the overclock, the lower the battery life. It comes to a point where you might as well get a desktop because the battery doesn't last. People are going to do it anyways. I can understand it for very specific situations like frequent traveling where you can't lug around a desktop.
  14. Evernessince

    Evernessince TS Evangelist Posts: 1,102   +532

    Nvidia, boldly going where every scummy business has gone. If it wasn't for AMD, they'd charge you 2 grand for entry level graphics cards.
  15. dividebyzero

    dividebyzero trainee n00b Posts: 4,891   +1,258

    Hyperbolic in the extreme, and false.
    Even if Nvidia (or AMD for that matter) were the sole suppliers of discrete graphics, the company still has to ensure both units sold, and continuing sales - easily seen with Intel's position. The company has virtually no competition in HEDT or server (where it holds ~98% market share), yet prices have remained virtually unmoved since Intel achieved dominance. Checking the pricing of say, the QX9770 against the 5960X, or the Xeon lines shows that the company is still answerable to its shareholders even if it only pays lip service to customers.

    /BTW: can you edit your posts rather than multi-posting.
    Last edited: Feb 20, 2015
    cliffordcooley likes this.
  16. Adhmuz

    Adhmuz TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,617   +494

    Thankfully that was stopped years ago, but it was the norm for the early 2000's. Buy a laptop with some sort of graphics other than Intel integrated and you'd have to go to the manufacturers web site. This pretty much guaranteed you'd get zero updates for the life of your laptop, or you went the route of hacking updated drivers to work. Today people should be grateful they can download updated drivers, it's just too bad Nvidia used it as a way to remove features from customers for the sake of better battery life, heat output, life span of the laptop. But people will never be happy, it should just remain an option you can turn on or off, simple as that.
  17. Evernessince

    Evernessince TS Evangelist Posts: 1,102   +532

    So your saying that my assumption is wrong based on your assumption? That's rather conceited.
  18. dividebyzero

    dividebyzero trainee n00b Posts: 4,891   +1,258

    No. I'm saying your assumption is wrong based on fact.
    Using the example from above: QX9770 ($1399 at launch in 2008)- even the previous QX6800 was $1200 - and 7-8 years later...5960X ($1059 in 2015).
    By your reckoning, as Intel have steadily gained market share over AMD, the price should have skyrocketed, when that is patently not the case.
    nickc likes this.
  19. Evernessince

    Evernessince TS Evangelist Posts: 1,102   +532

    No, your assuming that the graphics card market would play out the same as intel's market position in HEDT or server. Tell me, how does one apply apply to oranges?
  20. dividebyzero

    dividebyzero trainee n00b Posts: 4,891   +1,258

    TBH, I can't really be bothered going over something that has been extensively covered by standard business models, and even if the monopoly situation that still requires a continuing product cycle didn't apply*, your basic premise makes no sense at all
    Who in their right mind would pay $2000 for a GT 705 when any Intel IGP from the last two generations outperforms it? The same can be said for the GT 605, 510, 430, 310, and 205 before it with either CPU or board based IGP. In fact if you'd care to check, even Intel's lowly Q45/Q43 shades Nvidia's lowest discrete card of the same era (the 8300 GS).

    * You'd still need to supply a reason why Nvidia owned upwards of 95% of the professional graphics markets yet still priced some Quadro cards at lower cost than their GeForce line - and still does to this day even with a ~80% market share.

    Anyhow, you're welcome to your point of view, but if historical precedent and virtually every tech monopoly market since IBM isn't a big enough indicator then I doubt we are going anywhere with this. Rather than derail the thread any further I'll leave you to it.
  21. cliffordcooley

    cliffordcooley TS Guardian Fighter Posts: 8,430   +2,822


    People are only willing to pay so much. Without competition, I don't believe prices would increase. I do believe there would be a lack of innovation. Competition is the driving force behind innovation. The nickle and dime charges across an entire price range making sure people do pay, ensures prices stay within that range.
    nickc and dividebyzero like this.
  22. dividebyzero

    dividebyzero trainee n00b Posts: 4,891   +1,258

    That indeed is the way it plays out. No competition means either a saving in R&D, or as what happened in the cases of IBM, RCA, Texas Instruments, Motorola, and Intel, sit on the advances in R&D and bring them to bear only when you've wrung out every last cent from the consumer. When the well is nearly dry, the company adds the IP and begins the process of separating the client from their money in a new cycle.

    Companies realize that there is a practical limit to how much people will pay for any given commodity item. You can charge a premium for exclusivity, but not for a product for general consumption. It then becomes a calculation of pricing, sales, and return on investment / amortization of product. If you charge for exclusivity on an entry level product like PC graphics you kill the PC gaming market it is intended for because you've effectively priced it out of reach of the gaming community.
  23. Samaelvonhell

    Samaelvonhell TS Rookie

    Wait what? Overclocking mobile weak bga's? That drop like flies from gaming anyway. Nice, means more customers for me. Replacing dead mobile GPU's is my daily bread nowadays, since ppl wont listen, do not play games on machines that are not meant for that...
    cliffordcooley likes this.
  24. Hi Shawn Knight,
    Just thought you should know that the last two drivers (350.12 and 352.86) have RE-ENABLED the block. I find it difficult to imagine that Nvidia would have gone through the trouble of paying off tech journalists so I was wondering why no one has written a piece about this thus far. I think the only chance we have of stopping this horseshit is through media attention. Please write a follow-up or update if you can!

  25. cliffordcooley

    cliffordcooley TS Guardian Fighter Posts: 8,430   +2,822

    It is a mobile device already pushing the extreme within a compact form factor and you want to further chance melt down by overclocking? And if you do burn up your device, you want to file suit against them because it was allowed? There is no BS in them wanting to protect themselves, especially when the device was never designed for over-clocking.

    P.S. Must rules are put in place because of a few id iots with no morals of conduct. That's something everyone must except.

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