External Graphics Card for Laptop
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Join Date: Dec 2007
01-03-2011, 11:23 PM
I just got rid of my 4 year old gaming laptop. It was able to play STO fairly well, so long as I turned off dynamic lighting and either kept AA and AF off or on their lowest settings. The biggest problem was the amount of heat running STO caused. It wasn't uncommon to see CPU core temps (on an Intel Core2 Duo) in the mid to high 80's, and the GPU ran hotter than that.
I built the new machine around a GTS250, and STO runs with maxed out settings at 1680x1050 with good FPS.
If I didn't have the option of getting the GTS250 for $65 after rebates, I probably would've gone with a better card. But, the point is you can build a computer that can handle most MMOs at relatively high settings for well under $1000. If you don't mind a trade-off here and there, you can do it for around $500 if you're patient enough to wait for sales.
I've seen the Vi Dock; it works well enough. There is some latency when compared to an onboard or discrete (on the mobo) card, but it's not as noticable as if you were using USB or Firewire. It's something I would only use if I didn't have the option of having a desktop PC.