Nvidia supercharges core counts with new MX350 and MX330 laptop GPUs

mongeese

TS Maniac
Staff member

The GeForce MX series typically makes its way into affordable gaming laptops and ultrathin premium notebooks. They sit in between integrated graphics and entry-level Turing hardware like the GTX 1650 in terms of both performance and power consumption. With 2 GB to 4 GB of GDDR5 memory, and clock speeds and core counts comparable to entry-level discrete desktop hardware from a couple of years back, they just slide into the minimum requirements for most games.

Almost a year ago exactly, Nvidia announced the MX250 and MX230 as successors to the Maxwell-based MX100-series. We reported that their performance figures -- presented in multiples of what Intel’s integrated graphics could achieve -- were in fact worse than the MX100-series'. After a funny email exchange, Nvidia discovered that the error had occurred because they were using different Intel processors in their comparisons. Predictably, they learned nothing and have done the exact same thing this year, but at least they won’t fool us twice.

While we don’t have a way to compare the performance between MX200 and MX300-series yet, we can make comparisons to the Intel Core i7-1065G7. Nvidia asserts that the MX350 is 2.5x more powerful than Intel’s part, and the MX330 is 2.0x better.

That would imply that MX300-series should do alright in today’s most popular games. Typical laptop titles like CS:GO, Rocket League, Fortnite, or Rainbow 6 Siege should run comfortably with acceptable levels of visual fidelity. More challenging titles like Apex Legends or the Division 2 should run okay, but won’t be particularly impressive.

Model Architecture CUDA Core Count Memory Bandwidth
Nvidia GTX 1650 Max-Q Turing TU117 1024 112 GB/s
Nvidia MX350 Pascal GP107 640 56 GB/s
Nvidia MX330 Pascal GP108 384 48 GB/s
Nvidia MX250 Pascal GP108 384 48 GB/s
Nvidia MX230 Pascal GP108 256 48 GB/s

But (and why does there always have to be a ‘but’ with these things?) Nvidia’s shady marketing practices could get in the way of your dreams of super-portable gaming notebooks.

As they’ve done with previous generations, Nvidia is letting OEMs configure MX300 GPUs with different TDPs between 10W and 25W, which can tank clock speeds by as much as 50% -- which is why we’ve refrained from highlighting them. The performance delta between the various implementations of these cards could easily surpass 30%, and in some cases, manufacturers won’t tell you what you’re getting.

The GPUs are still awesome, just make sure you check the clock speeds of anything you’re considering purchasing. According to NotebookCheck, 25W models can have base clocks of 1.3+ GHz and boost clocks of 1.5-1.6 GHz, so don’t settle for anything less.

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Shadowboxer

TS Maniac
yeah...I would rather pay 5usd/month for geforce now to play game on an ultrabook. Nvidia kinda competes with itself now.
So would I! Unfortunately whenever I seem to need to game on my ultrabook I’m usually on some stupendously remote Pacific island or a cheap hotel with very poor WiFi in Thailand etc. It’s a hard life but I need offline solutions. I’d love one of these parts in my laptop, even the 10w config would probably be better than the integrated Vega 8 that I’m currently using. Although have recently discovered that Skyrim runs excellently on it so that’s going to be my game of choice for the next couple of months until I’m firmly back in the U.K.!

But that’s the problem I’ve got with GeForce now, it needs you to be somewhere with a very decent internet connection and that’s basically just my house where I have an overclocked gaming tower. What I need is for GeForce now, or any other streaming service to start working on an iPad on weaker connections. Also I’d quite like a decent video colour grading app for the iPad too (lumetri). With both of those I could ditch my laptop for good!
 

QuantumPhysics

TS Evangelist
What I need is for GeForce now, or any other streaming service to start working on an iPad on weaker connections. Also I’d quite like a decent video colour grading app for the iPad too (lumetri). With both of those I could ditch my laptop for good!

5G promises to change all that... so I guess you'll need an iPad 5G
 

Theinsanegamer

TS Evangelist
yeah...I would rather pay 5usd/month for geforce now to play game on an ultrabook. Nvidia kinda competes with itself now.
Sorry, but even the MX330 will offer better latency then online streaming will. Internet latency is the elephant int he room that always does in these services.

Oh sure, nvidia claims they have fixed that problem. So did stadia, so did onlive. Both were totally wrong, and nvidia's service is no different.
 

Shadowboxer

TS Maniac
5G promises to change all that... so I guess you'll need an iPad 5G
Yes 5G does look promising for this. I’d be more than happy to buy an iPad 5G. They should be out either this year or next and my current iPad is the budget 2018 version So would be perfect time to upgrade to a pro when the 5G versions drop.

The only problem is I travel to remote locations to scuba dive. I can’t see Raja Ampat (Indonesia), Sharm El Sheikh (Egypt), Palau, Fiji getting 5G anytime soon. But Thailand and Malta of which I also frequent should get it. I think 5G might even be in these places already. All this being said, I live on the south coast of the U.K. and there is no 5G even here yet. It’s early days for 5G still It seems.
 
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Uncle Al

TS Evangelist
And yet, they still won't lock-in clock speeds

Kind of hard to believe ... wonder what they are holding out for?
 

Evernessince

地獄らしい人間動物園
yeah...I would rather pay 5usd/month for geforce now to play game on an ultrabook. Nvidia kinda competes with itself now.
Interesting. Is GeForce now that good? I had assumed that cloud gaming wasn't up to par yet but I honestly have not read anything about GeForce now.
 

hahahanoobs

TS Evangelist
Cost, size and cooling dictates clocks. That's why there is leeway from Nvidia. Anyone spending $700 on something should do their research. Is Nvidia shady here? Maybe. But I haven't read any articles in the last 5 days that went at Nvidia like you have.

On a side note, Nvidia has dropped the M from their mobile GPU's to put the performance closer to their desktop counterparts. And you want to go after them for MX GPU's that have no reason to be used for daily gaming?
 
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Evernessince

地獄らしい人間動物園
Cost, size and cooling dictates clocks. That's why there is leeway from Nvidia. Anyone spending $700 on something should do their research. Is Nvidia shady here? Maybe. But I haven't read any articles in the last 5 days that went at Nvidia like you have.

On a side note, Nvidia has dropped the M from their mobile GPU's to put the performance closer to their desktop counterparts. And you want to go after them for MX GPU's that have no reason to be used for daily gaming?
For laptops this is definitely true. I think the problem is over the range of performance you see under the same model name. Ideally if the performance varies too much under the same model name, you'd want to denote the performance difference is some manner. Whether that be with a slight addition / change to the model (like adding an A to the end) or making a new model name altogether, anything can help.

I do wish they would bring back the M on their mobile parts.
 

Nobina

RTX 2080 Ti and iPhone XS MAX 512GB
Laptops are what the majority uses as their PC. Nvidia, AMD and Intel should focus on improving mobile GPUs so that we can game on laptops without having to spend €2000 for a gaming laptop that is still an overheating mess.
 
Interesting. Is GeForce now that good? I had assumed that cloud gaming wasn't up to par yet but I honestly have not read anything about GeForce now.
From the reviews I watch, geforce now is better than Stadia, 10-15mbs bandwidth can provide okay experience.
Reasons why I would use geforce now on an Ultrabook:
_45W adaptor are easy to carry around or you dont even need to, those ultrabook last a long time.
_You can play game everywhere (cafe, hotel, campus, etc...)
_Turn based games like XCOM, CIV 6, Total Wars dont need good response time.

Reasons I would not play games on gaming laptop:
_Those laptops are cumbersome AF
_Dont expect to be able to play competitive games like CSGO or MOBA anywhere else outside your house anyways, your teammates are just gonna chew you out (even wifi in your own home are not good enough).
_Hot and loud
I pretty much gave up gaming on laptop a long time ago.
 
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Evernessince

地獄らしい人間動物園
From the reviews I watch, geforce now is better than Stadia, 10-15mbs bandwidth can provide okay experience.
Reasons why I would use geforce now on an Ultrabook:
_45W adaptor are easy to carry around or you dont even need to, those ultrabook last a long time.
_You can play game everywhere (cafe, hotel, campus, etc...)
_Turn based games like XCOM, CIV 6, Total Wars dont need good response time.

Reasons I would not play games on gaming laptop:
_Those laptops are cumbersome AF
_Dont expect to be able to play competitive games like CSGO or MOBA anywhere else outside your house anyways, your teammates are just gonna chew you out (even wifi in your own home are not good enough).
_Hot and loud
I pretty much gave up gaming on laptop a long time ago.
Thanks for the reply, I'll have to check it out. I was thinking of getting a bulkier laptop with a higher end GPU but might just end up using my current ultrabook with GeForce now.
 
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I've played a few games on GeForce now and you can get used to the lag even in Esports (I tried Rocket League) but only if you play casually. Obviously if you play competitively then you need a real PC. Playing Ark:SE PVE mode was quite doable though there are occasional multiple frame drops so you might want to avoid possible death situations. It worked quite well at 60fps with my preferred Hi-FPS settings in this horribly optimized game and delivered a far better experience than anything I own other than my gaming PC. IMO that's a big win.

I actually haven't tried on a PC yet so it could be better, I've only used it on a Gigabit LAN connected 2018 Mac Mini and a 5GHz WiFi-connected 11 year old MacBook Pro and the experience was similar. My preferred PC laptop (Haswell Ultrabook) is only 2.4 GHz WiFi which is below the recommendation, though I also have a heavier 5GHz WiFi Haswell laptop PC. Maybe I can try that one tomorrow, and with a newer game like SotTR.
 
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Aries Lyon

TS Rookie
From the reviews I watch, geforce now is better than Stadia, 10-15mbs bandwidth can provide okay experience.
Reasons why I would use geforce now on an Ultrabook:
_45W adaptor are easy to carry around or you dont even need to, those ultrabook last a long time.
_You can play game everywhere (cafe, hotel, campus, etc...)
_Turn based games like XCOM, CIV 6, Total Wars dont need good response time.

Reasons I would not play games on gaming laptop:
_Those laptops are cumbersome AF
_Dont expect to be able to play competitive games like CSGO or MOBA anywhere else outside your house anyways, your teammates are just gonna chew you out (even wifi in your own home are not good enough).
_Hot and loud
I pretty much gave up gaming on laptop a long time ago.
Gaming laptops now are trending towards ultrabooks (I.e. thin, portable and good battery life). The MSI GS65, Gigabyte Aero etc are around 2kg (4.4pounds) or less, feature up to RTX2080MQ and actually have 7-8hr battery life. Some of them have USB-C charging as well so you could just bring a small 65W USB adapter on the days that you don't intent to game.

Of course they still run hot and kind of noisy but overall they're massively better over gaming laptops a few years back and are actually viable as a daily driver
 
Gaming laptops now are trending towards ultrabooks (I.e. thin, portable and good battery life). The MSI GS65, Gigabyte Aero etc are around 2kg (4.4pounds) or less, feature up to RTX2080MQ and actually have 7-8hr battery life. Some of them have USB-C charging as well so you could just bring a small 65W USB adapter on the days that you don't intent to game.

Of course they still run hot and kind of noisy but overall they're massively better over gaming laptops a few years back and are actually viable as a daily driver
7-8h when surfing the web, if you play games unplugged it gonna be like 2h max with those gaming laptop and the fps is just terrible. Why not just go with Geforce Now + Ultrabook with nice OLED screens, save you ton of money and those Ultrabooks are gonna stay with you for a lot longer than those gaming laptops (Usually you get tired of them after 2 years).
The HP Spectre X360 with 4K OLED are looking fantastic
 

Aries Lyon

TS Rookie
7-8h when surfing the web, if you play games unplugged it gonna be like 2h max with those gaming laptop and the fps is just terrible. Why not just go with Geforce Now + Ultrabook with nice OLED screens, save you ton of money and those Ultrabooks are gonna stay with you for a lot longer than those gaming laptops (Usually you get tired of them after 2 years).
The HP Spectre X360 with 4K OLED are looking fantastic
You can get gaming laptops with 4K OLED screens as well (I know the Razer Blade and the Gigabyte does, not sure about the rest), and the 2hr battery life while gaming is definitely a fair point, but unless you're in a car or coach, it's hard to imagine a place where you want to game for more than 2 hours and there is no power socket. Most trains/planes have power sockets.

Also, most of them come with 144Hz displays (non-OLED of course) which is already a huge advantage over Geforce Now or Stadia. Even an RTX2060MQ is enough to drive 1080p@144Hz for most games, let alone an RTX2080MQ (highest config)