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Thread: Looking at purchasing a new laptop

  1. #1
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    Default Looking at purchasing a new laptop

    My wife is getting tired of watching me try to keep my old HP laptop working, and has offered to get me a new machine.

    After searching through the forum posts concerning Windows 10 and graphics cards/chipsets... I understand that Nvidia seems to be the way to go, although I can't seem to find any recent posts concerning anyone using Intel integrated graphics. I found some old posts stating that folks weren't having any luck with Intel graphics.

    I'm wondering whether anyone has any recent experience getting MSTS to work on a Windows 10 laptop with Intel graphics, or are we bound to something with an Nvidia chipset? Nothing against Nvidia, just looking at the price difference.

    Thanks,
    Jeff

    Nothing is foolproof to a sufficiently-talented fool.

  2. #2
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    MSTS should definitely run with an Intel integrated graphics. On my laptop, which has both a Nvidia and an Intel chip, I even HAVE to use Intel, otherwise MSTS crashes immediately on start.
    But MSTS is kinda random in what it supports, though, and the situation could change with the next driver update, so I'm not using MSTS anymore, and instead use OpenRails and TSRE5.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by jefffarq View Post
    My wife is getting tired of watching me try to keep my old HP laptop working, and has offered to get me a new machine.

    After searching through the forum posts concerning Windows 10 and graphics cards/chipsets... I understand that Nvidia seems to be the way to go, although I can't seem to find any recent posts concerning anyone using Intel integrated graphics. I found some old posts stating that folks weren't having any luck with Intel graphics.

    I'm wondering whether anyone has any recent experience getting MSTS to work on a Windows 10 laptop with Intel graphics, or are we bound to something with an Nvidia chipset? Nothing against Nvidia, just looking at the price difference.

    Thanks,
    If you still use MSTS and want to run under any version newer than Windows 7 with "legacy" drivers, you need nVidia graphics to have any reasonable expectation of it all working right. It's a driver issue - AMD no longer supports DirectX 8 or 9 in a way that MSTS can handle. Intel *might* work, or might not - hard to tell, and if it does work the frame rates will stink.

    If you switch to Open Rails, it's a more open. Current nVidia and AMD both work, and even Intel will work (poorly).

    Edit: my old laptop only has Intel graphics, and I haven't used MSTS since about Windows 10 1607. The best I could get at that time was about 15 fps, and with Open Rails now I still get 12-15 fps. In a desktop even older than the laptop, but with nVidia 750ti graphics, Open Rails consistently runs at more than 50 fps; if not locked to the monitor's frame rate, it often goes up close to 100. I've seen some newer machines work OK with Intel, but it's not going to be blazing speed - figure "good enough" if you're lucky.
    Last edited by mikeebb; 10-21-2019 at 01:40 AM. Reason: personal experience

  4. #4
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    The main problem with Intel graphics is that the performance of their chipsets and drivers is so... random. Some families of their graphics chips run MSTS fine, just with texture anomalies. Others don't work at all and crash the game. Some more recent ones either behave fine, or work but at poor frame rates. It's kind of like playing the lottery.


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  5. #5
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    Then again, gaming on a laptop when mobility is not essential is a lot like off-road railfanning in a new ride like this


  6. #6
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    Hi Folks,

    Just my humble opinion - unless you're truly mobile all the time - a desktop (which can be pretty small today especially if you build your own) - would probably serve you better - with greater performance - for less money...

    Regards,
    Scott

  7. #7
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    I guess I should have been a little more specific; I'm not interested in a computer that runs Open Rails. I have it installed, it works fine, but I prefer MSTS. I am familiar with the MSTS RE, and don't really want to deal with learning TSRE5.

    I already have a perfectly good W7 PC that runs MSTS just fine. I also use a laptop to work on projects for MSTS.
    Jeff

    Nothing is foolproof to a sufficiently-talented fool.

  8. #8

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    If you can find a second-hand gaming laptop with a separate GPU, you might be better off than a new unit with the Intel.

    I'm still using my almost six year old Alienware for my MSTS projects... it has a separate Nvidia GPU plus the Intel 4600 integrated video.

    Using the MSTS editor with the Intel is atrocious as far as textures and speed. The Nvidia is flawless.

  9. #9
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    It sounds like you are fishing for some kind of configuration assurances in an age when assurances can no longer be offered due to the age spread between the OS and the app.

    Never before have we seen OS upgrades that have produced a total crapshoot from one user of old software to the next. The lucky ones will confirm all works well, the unlucky ones naturally have a different story to tell. Which will you be?

  10. #10
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    True.

    While I have known for a long time about the problems with AMD video cards and W10 (I had just bought an AMD card when W10 came out and all this came to light), and I haven't been closely following the details of Nvidia vs. other stuff, I was kind of hoping someone had some more definitive info. It seems, as you say, it's going to be a crapshoot if I buy a machine with Intel graphics.

    Which one will I be? The unlucky one, of course.

    Thanks to all for the info and advice.
    Jeff

    Nothing is foolproof to a sufficiently-talented fool.

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