Maybe not, but anyone who's stuck with IGP-only equipment thus far will find themselves paying extra, if only for that second GPU.
Supported platforms: what Optimus will run on
Right now, Nvidia's focus is on Intel-made IGPs, specifically those in the 'Arrandale' Core i3, i5 and i7 processors; the 'Pine Trail' Atom N4xx netbook CPUs; and the integrated chipsets connected to old 'Penryn' Core 2 Duo chips.
On Nvidia's side, Optimus will be a part of special versions of the GeForce 200M and 300M series, along with the upcoming GeForce M parts and second-gen Ion platform.
Indeed, expect Nvidia to make a big play out of bringing better graphics to netbooks without losing the power-preservation benefits of the IGP.
But, says Haas, Optimus will be coming to all notebook categories this year. While only Asus is launching Optimus machines right away, Haas claims more than 50 Optimus-equipped notebooks will be shipping by the summer.
Keeping Optimus' profiles up to date
Optimus' GPU management utility will be kept up to date with new software releases through a push mechanism that pushed out the IGP/GPU requirements of new programs over the internet to each connected Optimus machine.
Reg Hardware will be reviewing Optimus shortly. ®
Nvidia launches dual-GPU tech for notebooks
Laptops with 2 GPUs
I'm typing this on such a laptop - a Vaio SZ1VP, which I bought 4 years ago. Run the higher end graphics card when plugged in to power/not on my lap (gets hot)/playing games/need to use DVI connection. Switch to onboard Intel graphics when away from power supply, for MUCH longer laptop life. Works very well, although my laptop require reboot.
So instead of running GPU A *or* GPU B, now you run GPU A alone, or GPU A *and* GPU B.
Extra 5% reduction in battery life on FarCry ... just what everybody wanted!
Whole frame buffers flying across the PCIe bus sounds like fun too. But it's OK, no-one was using that bus anyway.
Some mobile phone multimedia chips use run domains and only switch then on when needed. So there are decode/encode domains, camera ISP domains, 3D domains, mp3 domains, that are only turned on when required. One chip I have knowledge of runs at 500mA, doing all of the above....... I've always wondered why desktop graphics don't do much the same.
Want to make big bucks?
Just make a laptop with a gamer's desk-dock-call-it-whatever-you-like expansion chassis.
Keep the hot, demanding GPU in it, heck, put 2 in. Can even chuck in the big capacious hard disks there.
Here's a wild idea. Maybe even actually have 2 discrete CPUs, one ULV core on the laptop and a grunt heavy lifting one in the chassis, like an i7 or something.
in the mobile form, the actual laptop itself, just the frugal bits, SSD. 8 hour battery life would be good.
Make it cheap.
I'll buy one.
Laptops with hardware switches to switch GPU's?
Am I the only one here that's never seen or heard of these laptops that had multiple discrete GPU's that use a hardware switch to switch GPU's??? Can somone enlighten me please? Model/Manufacturer? Sounds to me like they are fixing a problem that never existed. Well done.