What is max q design: GeForce Gaming Laptops with Max-Q Design

What Is Nvidia Max-Q Graphics? A Basic Definition

Skip to main content

Tom’s Hardware is supported by its audience. When you purchase through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission. Here’s why you can trust us.

(Image credit: Nvidia)

If you’re looking for a gaming laptop that’s able to handle demanding titles or high-resolution gaming but don’t want the thickness, weight and loud fans that often come with gaming laptops, a PC running an Nvidia Max-Q graphics card may be the answer.

When shopping for a gaming laptop , you’ll probably run into models featuring some sort of Max-Q graphics card, such as an “RTX 2080 Max-Q.” Max-Q is a graphics card technology Nvidia first launched in 2017 that allows the rendering horsepower of the company’s higher-end graphics cards — previously reserved for gaming PCs or very bulky gaming laptops —to fit in a slimmer form factor that’s more like mainstream laptops. There are Max-Q versions of Nvidia’s GTX and RTX graphics cards, but there is no AMD equivalent to Nvidia’s Max-Q.

If you’re wondering about the unique name, the term Max-Q is one that Nvidia borrowed from the aerospace world. As Nvidia detailed in a blog post , Max-Q is when a spacecraft has its maximum dynamic pressure. Go figure.

But for PCs, Max-Q is about allowing laptops to run Nvidia graphics technology while still being thinner, quieter and more energy-efficient than other gaming laptops. In general, graphics cards require substantial heat management, which leads to bulky, loud cooling systems and the thick and heavy shape of typical gaming laptops.

Max-Q graphics cards are meant to to optimize efficiency and cooling systems so you can run heavy graphics workloads, such as 4K gaming, on a laptop that doesn’t look like a heavily ventilated, noisy, chunky PC from the ‘90s. Max-Q laptops aim to have a peak noise level of 40dBA from a 25cdm (cubic decimeter) distance and when facing “average” gaming workloads and room temperatures.

Again, Max-Q graphics cards are only found in laptops. You wouldn’t buy one to equip your gaming desktop or custom PC build. Laptop vendors currently making laptops with Max-Q graphics cards include Acer, Alienware, Asus, Dell, Gigabyte, HP, Lenovo, MSI and Razer. Sadly, vendors don’t always clearly state whether their system is using a Max-Q or non-Max-Q (sometimes called Max-P) mobile GPU, but we’ll always tell you in our laptop reviews.

Are Max-Q Graphics as Powerful as Regular Mobile Graphics?

Max-Q graphics cards are generally slightly less powerful than their native counterpart (i.e. you can expect slightly lower frame rates from a laptop running an RTX 2080 Max-Q than one running a regular mobile RTX 2080, for example).  In testing, we’ve found an RTX 2070 Max-Q laptop to about tie with an RTX 2060 non-Max-Q laptop. Ultimately, Max-Q imposes a power limit that feeds into lower clocks, so very different GPUs end up performing at a similar level.

But when comparing a Max-Q to a non-Max-Q laptop, the former should still be thinner, lighter and quieter than the other, as well as less expensive (assuming all else is equal).

How Do Max-Q Graphics Cards Work?

(Image credit: Nvidia)

Max-Q graphics cards are able to fit in thin laptops due to Nvidia optimizing them for “peak efficiency.” So rather than ramping up the clock speed, voltages and memory bus to deliver the best performance, they are tuned to deliver the best performance possible in a given thermal envelope or at a given level of sound output. According to the company, chips, drivers, the control system and thermal and electrical components are carefully engineered for Max-Q graphics cards.

Max-Q laptops still have cooling systems, but their makers have to carefully construct things like thermal and electrical designs, heatpipes, heatsinks , efficiency energy regulators, quality—yet quieter—fans and other components.

RTX 20-Series Max-Q

As Nvidia has moved onto its RTX 20-series and, soon, RTX 30-series mobile GPUs, its Max-Q tech has also evolved. 

The second generation of Max-Q, found in relevant mobile RTX 20-series cards, features efficiency-focused improvements, specifically:

  • Dynamic Boost
  • Low voltage GDDR6
  • Advanced Optimus
  • Next-gen regulator efficiency
  • DLSS

Dynamic Boost introduces a more flexible way for a laptop to share its thermal capabilities between the graphics silicon and the CPU. With Dynamic Boost, the Max-Q graphics card will use up to 15W more power—for up to 10% better performance and higher frame rates—when the CPU’s workload is lightened. One example of when a laptop often won’t need a CPU’s full power is during gaming — especially if that chip has a lot of CPU cores and threads.

RTX 20-series Max-Q tech (Image credit: Nvidia)

RTX 20-series Max-Q cards can also support Nvidia’s Advanced Optimus Technology, which helps laptop battery life by switching over to the CPU’s integrated graphics for less intense workloads, such as web surfing or watching videos. Advanced Optimus Technology also works with Nvidia G-Sync . Laptop vendors have to choose to implement the feature. Examples include the Lenovo Legion 7i and 5i so far. 

RTX 30-Series Max-Q

Starting January 26, laptops with mobile RTX 30-series cards will be available. This also introduces the third-generation of Max-Q.

Updates this time around are focused on gaming speed, specifically:

  • Dynamic Boost 2.0
  • WhisperMode 2.0
  • Resizeable Base Address Register (BAR)

Dynamic Boost 2.0 claims a «larger performance boost» than its predecessor and works on a per-frame basis. Meanwhile, WhisPerMode 2.0 uses AI algorithims to control CPU, graphics card, PC temperatures and fan speeds for quieter performance. And Resizable BAR is Nvidia’s answer to AMD Smart Access Memory (SAM). It looks to improve performance letting your CPU «access the entire GPU frame buffer at once» via PCIe

Notably, Nvidia isn’t being very specific here, so we’ll have to wait until the next generation of Max-Q laptops ends up in our lab before knowing if these improvements are impactful. 

Does My Laptop Use Max-Q? 

With the release of RTX 30-series laptops, some laptop manufacturers stopped including whether or not a laptop uses Max-Q technology in its specs sheets.  

For detailed instructions on confirming whether or not you’re using a Max-Q graphics card, check out our tutorial, How to Tell if an RTX 30-Series Laptop Uses a Max-Q GPU. 

This article is part of the Tom’s Hardware Glossary .

Further reading:

  • Best Gaming Laptops
  • Gaming Laptop Buying Guide

Scharon Harding has a special affinity for gaming peripherals (especially monitors), laptops and virtual reality. Previously, she covered business technology, including hardware, software, cyber security, cloud and other IT happenings, at Channelnomics, with bylines at CRN UK.

Tom’s Hardware is part of Future US Inc, an international media group and leading digital publisher. Visit our corporate site .

©
Future US, Inc. Full 7th Floor, 130 West 42nd Street,
New York,
NY 10036.

What Is NVIDIA Max-Q? | HP® Tech Takes

When you think of a gaming computer, images of clunky, noisy, and thick machines immediately come to mind. Gaming laptops have a reputation for being loud and large because they’re designed to accommodate all of the high-end hardware and computer components necessary to load up the latest gaming titles on the market. However, things are rapidly changing in the gamer sphere.

Gaming technology and hardware continues to impress consumers with every passing year. Developers, engineers, and manufacturers take the demands of gamers and high-end PC users and transform them into tangible computing magic, reaching ultra-high performance speeds within thinner and stronger chassis. NVIDIA, an HP Partner, has been at the forefront of innovation and production efforts toward making gaming tech smaller, faster, and more efficient.

At the 2017 Computex trade show in Taipei, Taiwan, NVIDIA announced their brand new technology; NVIDIA Max-Q. Inspired by the same term used within the aerospace industry to describe the extreme stress on a rocket during launch and liftoff, Max-Q’s name alone suggests great promise.

Modern gaming laptops are thinning, shedding inches in build with every new release and remodel. Thanks to NVIDIA Max-Q, gaming laptop physiques will look much slimmer and will perform processing more powerfully than ever. But what exactly is Max-Q, how does it work, and where can you find it? Read on for our take on this new tech.

What is NVIDIA Max-Q?

Max-Q is a unique design approach developed by NVIDIA that aims to construct the fastest, thinnest, and quietest gaming laptops that are also supremely energy-efficient. Developed as an innovative concept working toward engineering laptops for maximum performance at the most compact design architectures, everything about NVIDIA Max-Q is optimized for peak efficiency.

Max-Q designs takes plenty into consideration. From processor chips and program drivers to thermal and electrical components, Max-Q aims to streamline the collective functionality of a PC’s inner workings. The results are sleek, near soundless laptops that pack impressive performance specs without any of the traditional bulk, heat, or noise.

At its core, NVIDIA Max-Q is designed to seamlessly load and play modern PC games with high-frame rates and top-end graphic demands while accommodating power and heat generation in a non-affective way. Rather than aiming to cram immense power and heat management software into a thin chassis, Max-Q intends to find the fine balance between impressive and efficient work capacity.

How does Max-Q work?

During the earliest days of Max-Q innovation, NVIDIA worked closely with some of the world’s top laptop manufacturers to generate a set of system parameters that completely revamps the face of the modern gaming laptop. Together these tech giants worked toward making impressive laptops that boasted efficient cooling, powerful processing, and slim builds.

Max-Q’s primary goal is to keep your laptop operating at the optimal settings between energy consumption and processing performance. To best understand the average gamer’s computing needs, NVIDIA mined information from 400 popular games, selecting the settings that deliver the best balance between smooth frame rates, sharp details, and low GPU power usage.

In order to achieve this golden trifecta, Max-Q, the GPU consumes less power, effectively lowering the subsequent heat generation. Operating at a cooler internal temperature means the fans don’t need to spin as much to keep a sustainable working environment, and the fewer times the fans need to spin, the quieter the system.

When you think of reduced power and low heat generation, you think of your PC in its most inanimate mode. However, Max-Q powered PCs allow your laptop to run your most demanding programs without causing any internal hardware turmoil. Even with a mighty graphics card, be it an RTX 2080 or a GTX 1070, you can rest assured knowing things are kept sweetly tempered inside of your chassis.

How does Max-Q improve gaming laptops?

Traditional gaming laptops are sizable, hulking machines with monster screens and minimal battery lives. Though they’re built with a portable clamshell form factor, their extra weight makes them difficult to casually tote around. The challenge lies in reducing the physical bulk while still accommodating the size and weight of the high-end hardware required for such a workhorse machine.

The invention of Max-Q offers a total revisitation of what a gaming laptop can look like and how it can process information. Not only does Max-Q redefine the architectural possibilities associated with gaming laptops, but it proves that there’s no need for compromise in the modern tech world.

Max-Q hardware shines with an astounding 40% to 50% increase in efficiency over the gaming laptops currently available on the market. This productivity boost reduces the need for bulky heatsinks, overworked fans, and noisy computing.

What is WhisperMode?

WhisperMode is a proprietary NVIDIA technology that quiets the sounds of any whirring fans living within your Max-Q enabled gaming laptop. Using Intelligent Frame Pacing, WhisperMode effectively optimizes your game settings by automatically reducing your game’s frame rate to reduce the burden on your GPU. Because your GPU is under less stress, less heat will be generated, ruling out the need for loud and noisy fan-cooling.

By examining gamer habits, NVIDIA has created custom Whisper Mode based on the hardware configurations used to play over 400 popular titles. This custom mode auto-adjusts gameplay settings to deliver the optimal in-game experience per each individual title.

What HP systems feature Max-Q?

HP® is one of the world’s most innovative leaders in the gaming laptop community. Our line of HP OMEN laptops is home to impressive, customizable models that are groundbreaking market additions in their own respect.

Unleash your full potential with an HP OMEN Max-Q powered PC that will take you to the top of the leaderboards. Currently there are three potential contenders; the HP OMEN 15 gaming laptop, the HP OMEN 17 gaming laptop, and our newest gaming laptop, the HP OMEN X 2S gaming laptop.

Let’s take a deep dive into the specs and standout features of each of these HP Max-Q gaming laptops.

1. HP OMEN 15 gaming laptop

The HP OMEN 15 gaming laptop is a compact force to be reckoned with. As one of the most popular models within the HP OMEN line, the HP OMEN 15 lives up to its sparkling reputation. Featuring a 15.6-inch diagonal Full High Definition (FHD) IPS anti-glare WLED-backlit screen, the HP OMEN 15 delivers immersive graphics with every power-on.

Anti-glare technology allows you to take your gaming on-the-go without worrying about any reflective haze, while the WLED-backlighting ensures you can play on into the wee-hours of the nights without straining your eyes.

Built with an NVIDIA® GeForce® RTX 2070 with Max-Q design, the HP OMEN 15 takes you from the sidelines of your favorite game to the frontlines of gameplay. Max-Q optimizes your system to handle your program input and deliver a sustainable, powerful processing output. You can be a part of the action without any of the noise.

The HP OMEN 15 gaming laptop has a sleek and edgy shell, but you can hand-pick the hardware that goes inside. Customizable from the processor and memory to the storage and frame rate frequency, we put the freedom to choose in your hands.

Designed to be upgrade-friendly, the HP OMEN 15 gaming laptop comes with single-panel access to the hard disk drive (HDD), solid state drive (SSD), and random access memory (RAM). Stay ahead of the technological curve by upgrading whenever and however you please.

Processor (CPU): Intel Core™ i7 9750H (2.6 GHz, up to 4.5 GHz, 12MB cache, 6 cores)

Graphics card: NVIDIA GeForce RTX™ 2080 Max-Q graphics

Memory (RAM): 16GB DDR4-2666 SDRAM (2 x 8GB)

Storage: 256GB PCIe NVMe™ M.2 SSD

Customizable: Yes

External I/O Ports:

  • 1 HDMI 2.0
  • 1 Mini DisplayPort
  • 1 RJ-45; 1 Thunderbolt™ 3 (data transfer up to 40 Gb/s, DP1.2, HP Sleep and Charge)
  • 3 USB 3.1 Gen 1 (1 HP Sleep and Charge)
  • 1 Headphone/microphone combo

2.

HP OMEN 17 gaming laptop

Take the imposing power of a desktop computer and transform it into a laptop that measures only 1 inch tall — that’s exactly what we’ve done with the HP OMEN 17 gaming laptop. Weighing only 6.43 pounds while packing some impressive specs, this industry-leading laptop is a true gaming workhorse machine.

With 17.3 inches of screen real estate, you’ll be mistaking your favorite game scapes for alternate realities. This FHD WLED-backlit display boasts a valuable 144 Hz frame rate, allowing you to load-up and play your favorite titles without worrying about screen-tearing or frustrating input lag. The ultra-detailed 1920 x 1080 resolution specs will surprise and satisfy gamers looking to get lost in a whole new world.

Upgrade your PC to a Max-Q design by choosing between an NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2070 or an NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 graphics card. Say goodbye to the noisy whirring of an overworked PC and say hello to a soundless, seamless gaming experience. Whether it’s work or play, this gaming laptop understands demanding work capacity and delivers every time.

Processor (CPU): AMD Pro A10-9700 APU (3.5 GHz base frequency, up to 3.8 GHz burst frequency, 2MB cache, 4 cores)

Graphics card: NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2070 Max-Q graphics

Memory (RAM): 8GB DDR4-2666 SDRAM (1 x 8GB)

Storage: 256GB PCIe® NVMe™ SSD

Customizable: Yes

External I/O Ports:

  • 1 USB 3.1 Gen 2 Type-C™ (DisplayPort™ 1.4, HP Sleep and Charge)
  • 1 USB 3.1 Gen 1 (HP Sleep and Charge)
  • 2 USB 3.1 Gen 1 (data transfer only)
  • 1 headphone/microphone combo

3. HP OMEN X 2S gaming laptop

First in its class to feature two interactive display screens, the HP OMEN X 2S gaming laptop brings something more than revolutionary to the gaming sphere. Take in the primary 15.6 inches of 144 Hz FHD might. Enjoy edge-to-edge immersion with the sprawling 1920 x 1080 display resolution as you dive into a vibrant world of fantasy and adventure.

The secondary touch screen measures 6 inches diagonal, lighting up your scope with a mesmerizing 1080p visual experience. Perfect for gamers who run Twitch or YouTube as they play, the second screen promotes seamless multi-tasking. And with an onboard NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 graphics with Max-Q design, you’ll be able to focus on strategy rather than worrying about your PC’s performance.

Customize your specs by choosing your ideal RAM, CPU, GPU, and storage. You can even upgrade your storage to Intel Optane memory to accelerate storage speeds and cache your PC’s most frequented processes for the hard drive.

Enjoy endless hours of gameplay each and every time you power-on the HP OMEN X 2S. With a long and impressive list of onboard ports, you can attach all of your essential peripherals. Be it your Bluetooth headset, a wireless mouse, or an external monitor, the HP OMEN X 2S gaming laptop is ultra-compatible for both novice and expert gamers.

Processor (CPU): Intel Core i9 9880H (2. 3 GHz, up to 4.8 GHz, 16MB cache, 8 cores)

Graphics card: NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q

Memory (RAM): 16GB DDR4-2666 SDRAM (2 x 8GB)

Storage: 256GB PCIe NVMe M.2 SSD

Customizable: Yes

External I/O Ports:

  • 1 USB 3.1 Gen 2 Type-C™ with Thunderbolt™
  • 3 (Power Delivery 3.0, DisplayPort™ 1.4, HP Sleep and Charge)
  • 3 USB 3.1 Gen 1 Type-A (HP Sleep and Charge)
  • 1 HDMI 2.0
  • 1 headphone/microphone combo

Is NVIDIA Max-Q worth it?

We’ve come to the golden question: is NVIDIA Max-Q really worth it? Considering the extra cash you’ll fork over to afford this new and ever-evolving tech, interested gamers should weigh their options if they’re on the fence.

When to say yes

For the hardcore gamer who is looking for fluid gameplay, powerful processing, and optimized performance quality, Max-Q is a total must-have. Max-Q will come in handy for CPU and GPU intensive games like Assassin’s Creed Odyssey, DOOM, and all other demanding games that blur the line between fact and fiction.

When to say “not yet”

For the entry-level gamer, Max-Q may be an intense investment for casual gameplay. However for those who foresee long-term commitment to a single hardware-heavy game, Max-Q may be worth the wallet damage. It all depends on your budget and gameplay needs at the end of the day.

NVIDIA continues to deliver on the demands of gamers, and Max-Q is the shining tip of the iceberg. As developers and manufacturers engineer increasingly impressive products and technologies, you can count on the gaming world to be the first to adapt and adopt.

About the Author

Tulie Finley-Moise is a contributing writer for HP® Tech Takes. Tulie is a digital content creation specialist based in San Diego, California with a passion for the latest tech and digital media news.

Nvidia Max-Q: Everything You Need to Know

Skip to main content

Laptop Mag is supported by its audience. When you purchase through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission. Here’s why you can trust us.

Your gaming laptop is about to get a lot slimmer and a heck of a lot more powerful, thanks to Nvidia’s Max-Q design standard. But what is Max-Q exactly, and how does it work its magic? The following guide will help you learn the ins and outs of this new innovation and how it could affect your next notebook purchase.

Credit: Shaun Lucas/ Laptop Mag

What is it?

In a nutshell, Nvidia Max-Q is a combination of design, thermal and electrical solutions and software that allows for a slim gaming rig that can support a GPU as powerful as a GeForce GTX 1080 GPU. The term  comes from aerospace engineering and refers to rockets designed for space launch.

What systems currently feature Max-Q?

Right now, there are only a handful of gaming notebooks that feature the new technology, including the Asus ROG Zephyrus, the Acer Predator Triton 700, the MSI GS63 Stealth Pro, the Aorus X5 MD and the Clevo P950HR. However, we expect to see more laptops with this technology by the end of the year. Keep in mind that Max-Q GPUs are  available in only three variants: GTX 1080, 1070 and 1060.   

Credit: Tom’s Hardware

How does it work?

By working closely with laptop manufacturers, Nvidia has come up with a set of system parameters that allow gaming laptops to hit the golden trifecta: slimness, performance and cooling.

Credit: Shaun Lucas/ Laptop Mag

When a Max-Q laptop is operating within that power/performance sweet spot, the GPU is consuming less power, which in turn produces less heat. A lower temperature means  the fans won’t have to spin as much, which means you get a much quieter system. And if all those gains weren’t enough, you get to slap a graphics card as powerful as a GTX 1080 into a chassis that you can easily stow in a midsize messenger bag. In short, where other gaming laptops are going for power, Max-Q systems are aiming for efficiency.

Will Max-Q make my laptop quieter?

That’s the plan. Thanks to all that efficiency, the graphics card will actually consume less power, which translates to less heat, so the fans won’t have to spin as fast and make as much noise. But if you’re looking for pin-drop quiet, you’ll want to try  the new WhisperMode tech.

Credit: Tom’s Hardware

Available in Nvidia GeForce Experience, WhisperMode is supposed to further dampen the din of any whirring fans using Intelligent Frame Pacing and game settings optimized for efficiency. So let’s chat about intelligent Frame Pacing (IFP), which puts a frame cap on games so they consume an optimal amount of power to cut down on noise. (Less heat means less fan noise, remember?)

The intelligent part of the moniker comes from Nvidia’s research into how people configure their game settings. To date, the company has profiled over 400 games and created separate levels of frame pacing for each. That means every game will have a different frame cap based on the type of game versus detail settings and performance trade-offs.

How does Max-Q keep things so efficient?

Max-Q’s main purpose is to keep your laptop in the optimal spot between performance and power usage. But depending on how you configure your game settings, power consumption will be different, especially if you’re like me and  play your games on maximum settings.

Credit: Shaun Lucas/ Laptop Mag

That’s where Power Efficient Game Settings come into play. In order to keep everything at optimal performance, Nvidia is using the information it mined from 400 popular games and has chosen the settings that offer the best balance between smooth frame rates, sharp details and low GPU power usage.

Do the Intelligent Frame Pacing and Efficient Game Settings work with Nvidia G-Sync?

Absolutely. G-Sync comes in handy when you’re trying to choose a targeted frame rate. So if you wanted to play Rise of the Tomb Raider or Overwatch at 40 fps on a 60Hz panel, you’d just go to your in-game settings and adjust the frame rates, and G-Sync would kick in and make sure your game is tear- and stutter-free.

  • The Best Laptops for Every Need
  • The Best Gaming Laptops
  • The Best PC Games to Play Right Now

Sherri L. Smith has been cranking out product reviews for Laptopmag.com since 2011. In that time, she’s reviewed more than her share of laptops, tablets, smartphones and everything in between. The resident gamer and audio junkie, Sherri was previously a managing editor for Black Web 2.0 and contributed to BET.Com and Popgadget.

Laptop Mag is part of Future plc, an international media group and leading digital publisher. Visit our corporate site .

©
Future Publishing Limited Quay House, The Ambury,
Bath
BA1 1UA. All rights reserved. England and Wales company registration number 2008885.

The difference between Max-Q and Max-P Nvidia GeForce laptop graphics

Skip to main content

PC Gamer is supported by its audience. When you purchase through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission. Here’s why you can trust us.

(Image credit: Future)

Shopping for a gaming laptop can be a pain in the ass. One make and model of laptop can have many configurations, and even official manufacturer websites sometimes provide confusing or incomplete specifications. One increasingly common distinction is what kind of mobile Nvidia graphics subsystem you’re getting: regular or Max-Q. Retail listings don’t always specify, but it’s something you need to know before pulling the trigger on a new laptop, because it affects how the system is going to perform.

Here’s what it means when a laptop’s Nvidia graphics chip is designated as Max-Q, what it means when you see Max-P instead, and what to expect if there’s no specification.

What is Max-Q?

Introduced in 2017, Max-Q is a term Nvidia uses to describe design methodologies and technologies that allow GeForce graphics chips to be stuffed into thin, light gaming laptops without melting them. When it comes to performance, laptops with GeForce Max-Q graphics are almost always less powerful than equivalent laptops without the Max-Q label. That’s because they literally use less power.

Each mobile Nvidia graphics subsystem is rated for a range of power configs: 80 to 115W for the mobile GeForce RTX 2070 Super, for example. A laptop which features an RTX 2070 Super that runs at 80 or 90W and meets certain thermal standards will get the Max-Q designation, whereas a full-power 115W mobile RTX 2070 Super will have no designation, or sometimes a «Max-P» designation.

Because it uses less power, the Max-Q version of a GeForce graphics system will have lower clock speeds. It’s a trade-off. You won’t get the best possible performance out of your mobile GPU with a Max-Q system, but you’ll get good performance in a device that meets Nvidia’s Max-Q size, thermal, and noise standards. The lightest, sleekest, best-looking Nvidia-powered gaming laptops tend to be Max-Q builds.

The Razer Blade 15 puts a lot of power into a small chassis.  (Image credit: Razer)

The Razer Blade 15 is a good example of a laptop that uses a Max-Q design. The latest high-end version with an RTX 2080 Super Max-Q can deliver good results: GamingTrend recorded a 57 fps average in Assassin’s Creed Odyssey at max settings with the laptop on ‘balanced’ power settings. That’s a demanding game when maxed out, and with some tweaks you could expect to hit 90 fps at 1080p. And the Razer Blade 15 can do that while weighing under 5 lbs.

When you get a Max-Q laptop, you’re buying a high-end machine that sacrifices a bit of graphics performance—generally 10-15% at most—for the sake of portability, style, reduced fan noise (Nvidia says the target is 40dBA or lower, which is pretty quiet), and increased battery life. 

Bigger laptops that use full-powered mobile GPUs may be available at similar prices, and may offer better gaming performance while being louder and clunkier, because they need more cooling and space. Full-power mobile GPUs will often be found in 17″ laptops, whereas 15″ laptops are more likely to go the Max-Q route.

What is Max-P?

Desktop vs mobile vs Max-Q

I use «full power» to describe non-Max-Q graphics, but keep in mind that I mean full power for a mobile GPU, which is not the same as a desktop GPU. A desktop RTX 2070 Super graphics card uses 215W, and will easily beat its 115W mobile variant, which in turn beats the 80-90W Max-Q setup. So there are three tiers: desktop, mobile (aka Max-P), and mobile Max-Q.

Max-P is not an official Nvidia term like Max-Q, but laptop manufacturers sometimes use it anyway. It stands for “max performance,” and was made up to identify non-Max-Q laptops. A laptop with a GeForce RTX 2070 Super mobile chip that uses the full 115W would be a “Max-P” laptop.

The term isn’t used much because it’s technically the same as not specifying anything, but it’s starting to appear more to avoid ambiguity—and as a marketing tool to suggest that you’re getting the highest possible level of performance, even though that isn’t necessarily true.

To get the Max-Q label, laptop makers have to meet a set of standards, whereas no designation or the Max-P designation indicates a lack of standards. Typically, that’s going to mean that you’re getting a full-wattage, full speed mobile graphics system, but know that it doesn’t have to mean that. You’ll want to look for laptop reviews and benchmarks to see what the heat, sound, and performance situation is.

For the most part, though, you can assume that a Max-Q laptop will be quieter and thinner than a Max-P laptop at the expense of lower framerates. In some cases, the Max-Q graphics in a thin laptop can restrict temps so much that you can get better performance from Max-P GPUs that are a tier or more down. For example, an RTX 2080 Super Max-Q laptop isn’t necessarily faster than an RTX 2070 Max-P laptop. But because there is no true «Max-P standard,» and even Max-Q describes multiple possible power levels, it’s going to vary between laptops.

MSI’s bigger 17″ laptops feature non-Max-Q designs with the full mobile graphics power.

What if it isn’t specified?

In theory, an Nvidia mobile GPU with no special designation runs at the highest mobile power specification. In practice, it’s a good idea to look for reviews or a spec sheet on the manufacturer’s website to verify what you’re getting. If you’re looking at a 15″ laptop and the specs advertise a high-powered GPU (eg, a 2070 or 2080 Super) without the Max-Q designation, it’s possible the label is just missing.

Take the slick 15.6″ MSI GE66 Raider. The title of this configuration says it contains an «RTX2080 Super 8GB,» but that’s not the whole truth. Max-Q is designated further down in the product description—you’ve got to look carefully sometimes.

Note that different configurations of the same laptop model may be designated differently. One config might include a full power RTX 2070 Super, while another features an RTX 2080 Super Max-Q, because while the design can handle the 115W RTX 2070 Super mobile, it can’t handle the 150-200W RTX 2080 Super mobile.

Are Max-Q gaming laptops worth it?

If you’re buying a Max-Q laptop, you’re probably buying a pricey, thin, 15.6″ device with a top-of-the-line mobile GPU. Consider carefully whether that’s really your best option, because alternatively, you could get an equally powerful desktop PC and a nice monitor, and you might have money left over.  

For instance, instead of a $3,000 laptop with RTX 2080 Super Max-Q graphics (like the MSI GE66 Raider I brought up earlier), you could build a very good $1000-$1500 PC with a more powerful desktop RTX 2070 Super or better, buy a fantastic 1440p 144Hz IPS monitor, and then buy a cheaper laptop to use for work or school. Not only will you have a better gaming experience, you won’t have to fret about carrying around a super-expensive item.

If you want 144 fps in a thin package and money’s no object, high-end Max-Q laptops can deliver.

Another option: Pick up a more modest gaming laptop with something like a GTX 1660 Ti, which will perform great at 1080p and will run you $1,000-$1,500 instead of $2,300 or more. Then you can use the money you saved to buy a nice mouse, keyboard, and monitor for when you’re using it at home. You won’t get to turn RTX on, but even on my desktop RTX 2070 Super, ray tracing at 1440p is taxing, and an RTX laptop will struggle more. If you can live without the top-of-the-line tech, a mid-range gaming laptop will serve you well for now, and in a few years you can 

Of course, if you want to splurge on a luxury, high-end laptop, it’s not really about being practical, is it? It is pretty cool that, if you’ve got the money, you can hit 60-plus fps at 1080p in graphically demanding games with just a few compromises, a capability that was previously reserved only for laptops that look like alien briefcases.  

Tyler grew up in Silicon Valley alongside Apple and Microsoft, playing games like Zork and Arkanoid on the early personal computers his parents brought home. He was later captivated by Myst, SimCity, Civilization, Command & Conquer, Bushido Blade (yeah, he had Bleem!), and all the shooters they call «boomer shooters» now. In 2006, Tyler wrote his first professional review of a videogame: Super Dragon Ball Z for the PS2. He thought it was OK. In 2011, he joined PC Gamer, and today he’s focused on the site’s news coverage. After work, he practices boxing and adds to his 1,200 hours in Rocket League.

PC Gamer is part of Future plc, an international media group and leading digital publisher. Visit our corporate site .

©
Future Publishing Limited Quay House, The Ambury,
Bath
BA1 1UA. All rights reserved. England and Wales company registration number 2008885.

What You Need to Know About Max-Q, Nvidia’s Plan to Make Gaming Laptops That Aren’t Monstrosities

By

Andrew Liszewski

Comments (94)

When you think gaming and laptops, images of massive, dictionary-thick machines come to mind. Notebook computers purpose-built for PC gaming are only barely portable, but Nvidia wants to change that with a new approach to hardware and software design for laptops called Max-Q that lets mobile gamers have their cake, and easily carry it too.

What is Max-Q Design?

Revealed at the Computex 2017 tradeshow currently underway in Taipei, Taiwan, Nvidia is calling its new approach to gaming laptops Max-Q Design; a term borrowed from the aerospace industry used to describe the extreme stresses on a rocket during launch. And that seems very appropriate, because designing computers to play modern PC games with high-frame rates and detailed graphics is all about dealing with power and heat.

But the crux of the new Max-Q Design philosophy is all about maximizing efficiency in a laptop to balance its size and gaming performance, instead of just trying to cram as much power and heat management hardware into a barely portable piece of hardware that sounds like a jet engine revving up. The Max-Q design approach encourages hardware manufacturers to improve everything from a laptop’s thermal management, to its electrical design, to even its software and drivers, so that the graphics and performance of PC games doesn’t have to be sacrificed for portability.

Thinner, lighter gaming laptops are already starting to slowly appear, and it’s inevitably the direction that machines like this were headed. So to a certain degree, Max-Q is a clever way for Nvidia to brand and market the progress that’s been made in shrinking gaming laptops. But by promoting just how thin and light these machines can be, Nvidia is also making it more acceptable for gamers to accept minor performance compromises in exchange for a laptop they’re actually able to carry around.

How will Max-Q Design improve gaming laptops?

Think thin. Many high-end gaming laptops on the market today that rely on Nvidia’s GeForce GTX 880M graphics card measure in at somewhere around 50-millimeters thick. For comparison, Apple eventually squeezed the MacBook Air down to just 13-millimeters in size. All of that extra bulk in the current crop of gaming laptops is needed to handle and dissipate the heat generated by the GPU, CPU, and other internal components running at full capacity.

But following the Max-Q Design guidelines, a gaming laptop packing a mobile version of the GeForce 1080 graphics card, with a 70 percent performance increase and 50 percent less power consumption, will measure in at around 18-millimeters thick, and weigh somewhere in the neighborhood of just five pounds. By comparison, the 15-inch MacBook Pro, Apple’s top-of-the-line portable, is 15.5-millimeters thick and weighs around four pounds, but with just a Radeon Pro 455 graphics card on board.

The new Max-Q hardware boasts a 40 to 50 percent increase in efficiency over the gaming laptops currently available, which reduces the need for heavy heatsinks and bulky fans for cooling. Fewer fans means they’ll be quieter too.

An optional Whisper Mode can be activated which will automatically reduce a game’s frame rate, or graphics quality, to further reduce the load on the graphics card and its cooling needs. By studying gamer habits, Nvidia has created custom Whisper Mode settings for over 400 popular titles, balancing frame rates versus graphics quality to ensure an optimal gaming experiences as each title requires, with less stress on the hardware.

What laptops will feature Nvidia’s Max-Q Design?

Asus ROG Zephyrus

The flagship laptop that Nvidia is using to show off what is capable with the Max-Q approach, the Asus ROG Zephyrus, powered by a quad-core Intel Core i7-7700HQ, 8GB GTX 1080, and up to 24GB of DDR4 RAM, measures in at 17.9-millimeters thick when closed. But that expands by an additional six-millimeters when opened to create a vent on the underside for extra airflow. And that’s a great example of how Max-Q is using clever design tricks to increase performance, not just raw power.

Clevo P950HR

At 19-millimeters the Clevo P950HR is a little thicker than Asus’ first Max-Q laptop, but it weighs just 4.18 pounds with a GeForce GTX 1070 inside. It will also come with an optional 3840×2160 display upgrade over the default 1920×1080 HD screen, for gamers who want to go to 4K without the need for an external display.

MSI GS63

The lightest of the Max-Q laptops announced at Computex is MSI’s GS63 which comes in at 3.96 pounds and 17.7-millimeters thick. Inside is a GeForce GTX 1070 cooled by MSI’s “Cooler Boost Trinity” technology that relies on five different heat pipes in addition to a custom-designed cooling fan.

What does this MEAN anyway?

Laptops are supposed to prioritize portability over everything else, but to date that has always included a hefty sacrifice when it comes to graphics and gaming capabilities. No one playing Overwatch on a regular basis is going to buy a MacBook Air, but that could soon change. By encouraging hardware makers to design their machines as efficiently as possible, Nvidia has finally found a way to incorporate the same chips used in its clunky desktop graphics cards in a laptop that’s sleek enough to be carried to and from work every day. Serious gamers no longer need to lug around a 20-pound beast, or have a separate machine dedicated to just gaming.

Nvidia’s Max-Q Design approach could also be what modern virtual reality hardware like the Oculus Rift or HTC Vive need to finally take off. Those VR headsets require a powerful computer to create their 3D virtual worlds, limiting where they can be used. But with a powerful Max-Q laptop tucked away in your backpack, suddenly your morning subway commute becomes less of an ordeal when you can spend the time exploring a whole different world between stops.

[Nvidia]

NVIDIA Announces GeForce GTX Max-Q Design Initiative: High-End Gaming Meets Ultrabooks

by Ryan Smithon May 30, 2017 9:01 AM EST

  • Posted in
  • GPUs
  • GeForce
  • Laptops
  • NVIDIA
  • Computex 2017
  • Max-Q

13 Comments
|

13 Comments

This morning as part of their Computex keynote, NVIDIA CEO announced a new initiative for high-end gaming laptop design. Called GeForce GTX Max-Q, NVIDIA is undertaking their own Ultrabook project of sorts, encouraging partners to develop thinner and lighter high performance gaming laptops, giving them better tools to do so, and then bundling it under a catchy name. The end result is that, not unlike Intel’s efforts in this space, NVIDIA wants to sell consumers on the idea that they can have their cake and eat it too with a light laptop that is still substantially more powerful than their old laptop.

As a bit of historical context to this, last year NVIDIA shook up their high-end laptop branding a bit by doing away with “Mobile” video card designations. Rather than having a GeForce GTX 1080M for example, the company simply offered a laptop version of the desktop GTX 1080. Or rather, that was the basic idea behind the policy. In practice these mobile-but-not SKUs had their own specs (e.g. a GTX 1070 with an additional SM enabled), not to mention the greater thermal constraints of a laptop, and of course the use of laptop-appropriate MXM boards.

Consequently from a product designation standpoint, this is a bit of a return to form for NVIDIA. They never stopped making mobile parts – and I haven’t seen any evidence that partners couldn’t try for a thin laptop before now – but now at least some of their mobile parts have a mobile designation, just that the ‘M’ stands for Max-Q instead of Mobile. Which admittedly may be a bit of a cynical read on the situation, but as there’s only a very limited amount of new tech involved – and no new GPUs – Max-Q seems to be more about branding and setting performance expectations for high efficiency (as opposed to high performance) parts. On which note, this isn’t the first place we’ve seen the name Max-Q show up, either. So I wouldn’t be too surprised if we see NVIDIA use it in more places.

In any case, as part of the Max-Q initiative, NVIDIA is releasing Max-Q designs for the GTX 1080, GTX 1070, and the GTX 1060. Not explicitly stated by NVIDIA, but something I suspect, is that these designs are using new MXM cards and aren’t just a different clockspeed profile for the original cards. But at any rate, these are still the same SM and memory configurations as the original mobile parts, but now with lower TDPs and lower clockspeeds to match.













NVIDIA GeForce 10 Series Laptop Max-Q Specifications
  GTX 1080 GTX 1070 GTX 1060
CUDA Cores 2560 2048 1280
Core Clock 1101 — 1290MHz 1101 — 1215MHz 1063 — 1265MHz
Boost Clock 1278 — 1468MHz 1265 — 1379MHz 1341 — 1480MHz
Memory Clock 10Gbps GDDR5X 8Gbps GDDR5 8Gbps GDDR5
Memory Bus Width 256-bit 256-bit 192-bit
VRAM 8GB 8GB 3GB/6GB
Max-Q TDP 90 — 110W 80 — 90W 60 — 70W
Full Perf TDP 150W 115W 80W
GPU GP104 GP104 GP106
Manufacturing Process TSMC 16nm TSMC 16nm TSMC 16nm

In a specification document NVIDIA released to the press, they listed both the normal and Max-Q TDPs and clockspeeds of their mobile products. I do feel this is a bit disingenuous, as mobile parts are commonly subject to thermal throttling – and few laptops could sustain the 115W+ TDPs of the original GTX 1070 and GTX 1080 – so comparing Max-Q to the desktop-like TDPs of the original parts doesn’t tell the whole story.

But in any case, the point NVIDIA was looking to drive how is that while official clockspeeds have dropped by a few hundred MHz compared to the original parts (a not insignificant drop), TDPs have dropped by even more. A GTX 1080 Max-Q that tops out at 110W may only have a boost clock of 1468MHz (a drop of about 15%), but the TDP has dropped by 40W. Which ultimately is the principle purpose of the Max-Q branding from the NVIDIA side of matters: these are slower parts at the more energy-optimal point in the curve, instead of going further up the curve in the name of performance.

Clockspeeds aside, there are some hardware changes to mention. In discussing the Max-Q design, NVIDIA noted that they have implemented some changes over the years to reach this point. A big part of this is of course Pascal, which gives them a solid starting point for high efficiency performance. But the company has also cited improvements in voltage regulators as part of the Max-Q formula, apparently using very low loss regulators optimized for around 1 Volt(a). And this is where things get a bit fuzzy, since NVIDIA was similarly promoting power delivery improvements for their desktop GTX 1080 reference boards last year; so I’m not sure if there’s anything new here specifically for Max-Q, or if it’s just about how NVIDIA has put the pieces together for boards going into Max-Q laptops. The final piece of the puzzle then is what NVIDIA is calling “advanced thermal solutions”, which the company doesn’t go into much detail on, but notes that it’s responsible for allowing their partners to cool such powerful cards effectively, and to do so without blowing out any eardrums while blowing out hot air.

Taken altogether, I’m not sure what here is new. NVIDIA always talks up their latest wares – they’re trying to sell GPUs, after all – but there’s an implication that NVIDIA and their partners weren’t already using high efficiency regulators and good coolers on past products, which of course isn’t the case. The company has been making high-efficiency laptop GPUs for the 100W mark for a while now, and these designs have been powerful in their own right thanks to a combination of solid design and chip binning. So there’s a very fuzzy line here in terms of what’s actually new in terms of video card design, and how much of this is NVIDIA talking up what’s essentially the successor to the GTX 980M (i.e. low voltage parts).

WhisperMode

Meanwhile, buried in NVIDIA’s announcement is a new feature for GeForce Experience, which they are calling WhisperMode. As noted in NVIDIA’s press release “WhisperMode intelligently paces the game’s frame rate while simultaneously configuring the graphics settings for optimal power efficiency.”

This description sounds almost identical to AMD’s Radeon Chill, in which case we should have a good idea of what to expect: framerate throttling combined with GeForce Experience/Battery Boost settings adjustment to turn down the image quality, lowering the overall rendering needs. What isn’t clear is whether NVIDIA is also duplicating AMD’s efforts to time frame rendering such that frames are submitted as late as possible to minimize input lag.

In any case, while WhisperMode is being announced as part of Max-Q, it’s actually part of GeForce Experience. So once released, it will be available to all Pascal laptops – including existing laptops – and not just Max-Q laptops.

Max-Q Design Laptops Coming June 27

th

Last, but certainly not least of course is the end product of all of this: the Max-Q laptops. The goal of NVIDIA’s initiative is to get their partners out promoting thin laptops with high performance GeForce video cards, and their partners have quickly jumped into action.

NVIDIA has not publicly announced a definition for what a Max-Q laptop should be, but there is a very common thread among all of the laptops they’ve detailed so far: under 5lbs and under 20mm thick. The marquee laptop for the program appears to be Asus’s new UX501 “Zephyrus” laptop, which NVIDIA showed off at their press conference. This is a 15.6” laptop with an Intel Core i7 quad and NVIDIA’s GeForce GTX 1080. NVIDIA has also named laptops from Clevo and MSI, which come with the GTX 1070 and have a similar build. In which case at least among the laptops NVIDIA has shown off so far, 15-inches seems like the sweet spot for this program.

Graphs Corrected To Use 0.0 Origin

NVIDIA is promoting these laptops as having significantly better performance than existing thin laptops – in this case comparing it to an 18mm thick GTX 1060 laptop – though this seems to be more about the GPU used than the thickness of the laptop. The big question of course is just what performance such a thin laptop can sustain; even at the lower-bounds of the GTX 1080 Max-Q configuration, that’s still 90W for the GPU, along with another 35W for an Intel quad-core CPU in a cTDP down state. To NVIDIA’s credit, they definitely know a thing or two about cooling (see: reference blower), so applying that knowledge to laptops could be a boon. But sub-20mm still leaves limited room for heatsinks and fans.

Anyhow, expect to see Max-Q design laptops show up later next month, on June 27th. Along with the partner designs NVIDIA is explicitly showing off at Computex this week, they have lined up many of the major OEMs for this initiative. And particularly with Clevo participating, this means their reference designs will be able to filter down to a number of smaller vendors who sell Clevo’s designs.

Gallery: NVIDIA Announces GeForce GTX Max-Q Design Initiative: High-End Gaming Meets Ultrabooks

Source:
NVIDIA

Tweet

PRINT THIS ARTICLE

NVIDIA Max-Q Design Makes Laptops Thinner and Faster (Update)

Back in April, Acer introduced laptops, including the Predator Triton 700, which feature GeForce GTX 1080 and 1070 graphics cards. During the presentation, Acer also mentioned the term Max-Q, which caused a lot of misunderstanding at the time.

At the current Computex show, this question was answered as NVIDIA introduced the Max-Q Design concept. Behind this name is a set of specifications that allows you to make laptops thinner and faster.

NVIDIA says it’s 18mm thick and weighs 2.5kg. If we compare such a laptop, for example, with a gaming model on the GeForce GTX 880M, the performance of the Max-Q Design laptop will be three times higher.

Max-Q Design is based on three factors. The Pascal architecture turned out to be a fairly energy-efficient solution that allows the use of high-performance GPUs in both powerful desktop video cards and laptops, where power consumption plays an important role. Like any other graphics chip, GP104 chips have optimal performance, that is, a combination of frequency and voltage at which maximum efficiency is achieved. It is in this range that chips work when it comes to Max-Q Design.

At the same time, the manufacturer has improved the power system of the chips, which was described in more detail in the context of the GeForce GTX 1080 Ti Founders Edition. NVIDIA apparently uses the same tactics in mobile GPUs. The last factor is the cooling system, which allows you to lower the temperature of the chips more and at the same time is quieter.

At Computex 2017, many laptop manufacturers will present their models based on Max-Q Design. On stage, NVIDIA demonstrated such a laptop from ASUS and showed a demonstration using the ProjectCARS 2 game as an example.

Update:

On the second day of the show, we were able to talk about Max-Q with NVIDIA representatives. The name of the concept was not chosen by chance — it takes its roots from the aerospace field. This is the point of maximum mechanical stress from the aerodynamic load on the rocket in the atmosphere. NVIDIA has taken a similar approach to gaming laptops, allowing OEMs to make new models 3x thinner and 3x faster than the previous generation.

Max-Q sets some limits for laptop manufacturers. For example, if a laptop participates in the Max-Q program, its noise under load should not exceed 40 dB(A). NVIDIA works closely with manufacturers to help resolve issues that arise.

If even 40 dB(A) is too loud, GeForce Experience activates WhisperMode, which limits the frame rate. Depending on the requirements of the game, it can be 40 or 60 FPS. In addition, NVIDIA is reducing detail to keep frame rates from dropping below the minimum level when power is limited. In WhisperMode, laptops should emit 8 dB(A) less noise.

GPUs themselves must work under certain parameters. The voltage and clock frequencies are reduced, which naturally reduces performance somewhat. However, a 10% reduction in performance can increase efficiency by 50%. NVIDIA showed several graphs that reflect this pattern.

NVIDIA has also published some technical specifications regarding the frequencies of graphics cards participating in the Max-Q program.

Compare GPU
Model TDP Base frequency Frequency Boost Efficiency increase
GeForce GTX 1080 150 W 1.556 MHz 1.733 MHz
GeForce GTX 1080 Max-Q 90 — 110 W 1.101 — 1.290 MHz 1.278 — 1.468 MHz x1.5
GeForce GTX 1070 115 W 1.442 MHz 1.645 MHz
GeForce GTX 1070 Max-Q 80 — 90 W 1.101 — 1.215 MHz 1.265 — 1.379 MHz x1.33
GeForce GTX 1060 80 W 1.404 MHz 1.670 MHz
GeForce GTX 1060 Max-Q 60 — 70 W 1. 063 — 1.265 MHz 1.341 — 1.480 MHz x1.25

Other models have not received Max-Q support yet. But they will also support WhisperMode to some extent, although NVIDIA does not disclose noise reduction data.

By the end of June, manufacturers will introduce ten laptops certified under the Max-Q program. Some models could already be seen on Computex.

What is Max-Q and how has it affected modern laptops?

    Contents:

  1. What is Max-Q and how has it affected modern laptops?
  2. High performance and quiet operation in a slim package
  3. Max-Q graphics cards
  4. Output

What is Max-Q and how has it affected modern laptops?

Not so long ago, when someone asked me for advice on buying a good gaming laptop, I usually reacted with laughter and recommended the purchase of a desktop computer and a laptop for everyday work, but the situation improved significantly last year when NVIDIA announced their new initiative called Max-Q. In the past, gaming laptops were usually associated with too many trade-offs in terms of performance, functionality and battery life, thus losing their main advantages such as portability, becoming the caricature of laptops with big sizes, loud performance and high temperatures. No kidding, these were just buggy versions of desktop computers because we usually didn’t unplug them from the power supply, and the moving hardware, which often weighed over 5kg and was 5cm thick, wasn’t pleasant or light. So what exactly is Max-Q and how has this decision affected modern laptops? You will find answers to these questions in our article.

But before we get into the discussion of the Max-Q initiative itself, you should first understand that the demand for mobile gaming hardware right now seems to be greater than ever before. I’m not just talking about laptops, but also consoles and increasingly common gaming smartphones, and even from brands like ASUS and Razer, which were known primarily from the computer market. So if the PC segment does not want to be left behind, it must adapt to the conditions.

The very concept of Max-Q used in aeronautics is the point of maximum dynamic pressure, that is, the point at which the stresses in the spacecraft, caused by aerodynamic factors in atmospheric flight, reach their maximum value. Nvidia’s reference to the term makes sense because, as with space rockets where engineers design everything around Max-Q, because those are the toughest conditions ships can face, laptops. Marked with this brand, they are designed with an angle to get the maximum performance in difficult environments, such as thin laptops. Thus, thanks to this initiative, we no longer have to choose between a business ultrabook and a gaming platform, because here we get two in one, and there are practically no significant compromises in terms of performance.

High performance and quiet operation in a thin package

To start with, the Max-Q initiative is not limited to special versions of NVIDIA graphics cards prepared for thin but efficient laptops. Rather, we should talk about an integrated approach, which involves close cooperation with partners that produce laptops for players, the fruits of which are the Max-Q models, which are distinguished by their special design. When designing new laptops under this label, the developers had to develop completely new cases with thicknesses that can even reach less than 16mm (for example, in the MSI PS42 model with the GTX 1050 Max-Q), which will ensure the maximum efficiency of the components used in terms of efficiency and cooling systems. It wasn’t an easy task, because the biggest challenge for gaming laptops is simply keeping temperatures low, which will allow you to maintain high performance for a long time. Standard versions of NVIDIA GPUs usually use massive cooling systems that often make gaming laptops take on monstrous dimensions.

Manufacturers were also forced to develop completely new advanced thermal and electronic solutions or more efficient cooling systems with heat pipes and heatsinks, not to mention the highest quality fans boasting the quietest operation, high efficiency voltage regulators and other secondary components . Max-Q laptops need to be optimized virtually from A to Z to provide performance that allows you to play even VR or 4K in a thin and light form that allows you to compete with ultrabooks in this aspect. NVIDIA rightly boasts about a 70% improvement in gaming performance over previous generation products of similar sizes.

Max-Qs are also quieter laptops because probably anyone who has dealt with a typical gaming laptop knows how much noise can be caused by this issue. Sometimes you may even get the impression that you have a vacuum cleaner at home, and not a mobile computer, which, of course, is the result of the cooling system (or rather, fans) running at maximum speed. In this case, NVIDIA has set an upper limit that Max-Q laptops cannot exceed, which is 40 dBA. This may not be a value at which we would say that the equipment is silent, but it cannot be hidden that it is lower than most models under load, where volume levels often exceed 50 dBA.

But that’s not all, because Pascal mobile GPUs (GTX 1060 and up) also offer a special mode called WhisperMode. This technology has been developed to minimize the noise generated by the laptop fan while maintaining game quality at a satisfactory level. Simply put, it’s based on top-down stacking of units/s (the manufacturer calls it Intelligent Frame Pacing) and effective game settings to keep laptop noise low. This provides more comfort when playing with the player and everyone «within earshot» (we will not interfere with a partner, even playing in bed). However, this is not a universal feature, and almost every game is analyzed separately by NVIDIA to determine which settings to go for in order to get the appropriate noise level.

NVIDIA has designed profiles for 400 popular games, and in each case they have chosen a configuration that strikes the perfect balance between game quality and system GPU power consumption. They analyze the graphics options in games and the associated costs (system load), rendering technologies, anti-aliasing or text filtering on huge hardware farms (including Russia) to determine the optimal settings (Power Efficient Game Settings). Frame rate adjustment happens automatically when WhisperMode is enabled from GeForce Experience, but in each game we can set more or less frames / s by changing the default settings. It’s worth noting that the Smart Frame Settings and Power Saving Game Settings are fully compatible with G-Sync technology, so even if we want to play The Witcher 3 at 40fps, we can still enjoy a smoother image without tearing.

Max-Q graphics cards

The most important element of this program, of course, are the specially prepared Pascal family graphics processors, which operate in an area of ​​much more restrictive energy limits. At the moment, Max-Q options offer models on the GeForce 1050 GTX and 1050 Ti, GTX 1060, GTX 1070 and GTX 1080. In addition to lowering the TDP parameter, it was also necessary to lower the GPU clock speed, but otherwise we get a full-fledged GPU with the same number of CUDA cores or memory configuration as standard. The following table compares all Max-Q graphics cards with their prototypes:

Of course, reducing clock speed comes at a cost in terms of performance degradation, but you must remember that Max-Q is not aimed at maximum efficiency, only the required efficiency, which is not the same. Here the greens just want to hit the sweet spot between power consumption and performance to make them as high as possible with the lowest TDP. As is widely known, the last few percent are usually the most difficult and difficult to achieve, and for example Pascali’s standard mobile models require 150 watts, and a maximum performance of 10-15% efficiency is achieved in this limit. Whereas in the case of most Max-Q TDP has been reduced to 90 watts (in budget models GTX 1050 and 1050 Ti this is a lower value), the indicated 10-15% costs as much as 60 watts. It is these 90 watts in this case that NVIDIA calls peak performance. The Greens acknowledge that Max-Q cards offer 10-20% lower performance than standard options (often closer to a lower model level than the one they share the name with), but the benefits of this solution seem to make up for it with a double by force.

No wonder the manufacturer has devoted a lot of engineering to electrical solutions. In particular, the company was forced to optimize the efficiency of voltage regulators. Typical energy efficiency at 90 W for existing solutions would be 80%, which would mean a loss of 20% for waste heat. Here it is reduced to a single result, which is a truly impressive achievement, which in real terms leads to increased efficiency. For this purpose, NVIDIA had to share with its partners the exact electrical characteristics of the graphics subsystem, including the FETs used and component placement, so that notebook manufacturers could meet the thermal and acoustic requirements for Max-Q devices.

As we have already mentioned, Max-Q is a complete solution, which also means, of course, optimization at the software level. Aside from WhisperMode and drivers tailored for these GPU versions, there’s a lot going on behind the scenes. NVIDIA is working with OEMs on a BIOS where clock controllers and CPU and GPU load levels are adjusted based on fan speed. The greens don’t reveal all the details here, but show that there are hundreds, if not thousands, of parameters that need to be optimized for Max-Q.

Conclusion

As you can see, Max-Q isn’t just another token of endorsement idea for NVIDIA to earn extra money, but it brings real benefits. What’s more, this initiative is not limited to «thin and efficient laptops» but also brings other benefits such as lower power consumption, quieter operation, intelligent frame framing, and energy-saving gaming settings or the highest quality components. As a result, we finally have laptops that retain their mobile nature, but at the same time they are suitable for playing the most demanding games, with maximum graphics settings and high resolution (sometimes even 4K) — without being huge, heavy or very loud work. So if you’re looking for a thin mobile computer for gaming and everyday work or business, then you should aim for the Max-Q.

Of course, Max-Q comes with some trade-offs, and basically it’s one or slightly lower performance than the standard variants of the same graphics cards. This, of course, is due to the decrease in TDP and therefore clock speeds, because, as we already mentioned, NVIDIA was not aiming for maximum performance, but for maximum efficiency, which means the average value between the number of watts used and the number of frames per second. So if you are looking for a thin mobile computer for gaming and everyday work or business, then you should aim for Max-Q. This technology brings the breakthrough we’ve been waiting for in the laptop market, and it seems that only the first and subsequent generations of Max-Q laptops, including those based on the Turing architecture, can further confuse the mobile gaming segment (especially if it gets RTX support). ).

What is NVIDIA Max-Q and what does it bring?


NVIDIA recently announced a new high-end gaming laptop initiative as part of its Computex keynote. Called NVIDIA Max-Q, the company is developing an ultrabook concept and pairing it with gaming-grade laptops. The goal is to work with partners to deliver high performance systems that deliver desktop-level performance with the look and feel of ultrabooks. In other words, you can enjoy lag-free gaming on your thin profile laptop. But how is this actually achieved? If you’re puzzled by the same question, keep reading as we discuss what NVIDIA Max-Q is and what it brings:

What is NVIDIA Max-Q?

NVIDIA Max-Q is NVIDIA’s technological advancement in gaming laptops that allows you to create a slim gaming rig with support for powerful NVIDIA GPUs. Max-Q takes an innovative design approach that helps build laptops up to 18mm thick while powered by GeForce GTX 1060, 1070 or 1080 desktop GPUs. Compared to laptops of similar size, the Max-Q delivers up to 70% more gaming performance. It also allows you to play at 4K 60fps on a thin and light laptop that many have considered a dream for ages.

The name Max-Q comes from the aerospace industry. In the aerospace world, Max-Q is referred to as the point where the aerodynamic stress on a spacecraft is highest. Therefore, everything is designed around Max-Q, since this is the most difficult condition that spacecraft face. In the world of thin laptops, the main challenge comes when building a laptop with limited space and weight while still trying to maintain peak performance. Not to mention, thermal and electrical limitations further complicate the task, often resulting in reduced performance. On the other hand, NVIDIA’s Max-Q design allows thin gaming laptops to run up to maximum efficiency for maximum performance. Max-Q technology allows OEMs to design gaming laptops up to 18mm thick with the power efficiency and performance of GeForce GTX 1080.

How does Max-Q work?

Thin laptops experience power consumption issues when operating in space and weight-constrained environments. As a result, these laptops cannot reach their full potential. You may have even noticed that most thin laptops or ultrabooks don’t even have a dedicated fan. Instead, they just design the laptop to make cooling easier. In addition, in all GPUs performance increases significantly with power, but the improvement starts to wane as you hit the GPU’s upper limits. In the same state, increased power consumption also calls for larger cooling solutions and faster, louder fans. Consequently, the need for large, bulky chassis and sonic cooling solutions is prominent in the current generation of high performance laptops.

Understanding the design concept, NVIDIA worked with OEMs to develop innovative new chassis and cooling systems, with new thinking and development. Max-Q laptops, on the other hand, aim for the moment of maximum efficiency and are therefore able to avoid all such problems. The NVIDIA Max-Q design allows laptops to maintain the optimal power to performance ratio, allowing the GPU to consume less power. As a result, less heat is generated, allowing the system to run at a lower system, thereby reducing the need for the fans to spin frequently, resulting in a much quieter system.

Therefore, these new Max-Q notebooks strike the perfect balance between performance, power consumption and noise, running 70% faster than similar sized notebooks. They’ll fit in most bags, won’t break your back, and provide a much better experience than previous generation laptops.

WhisperMode Technology

WhisperMode Technology is part of the NVIDIA GeForce Experience, which aims to reduction of sound pressure level up to 50% . Technically, WhisperMode dampens the noise of the fans in the system using Intelligent Frame Sync (IFP). This is achieved through the use of energy-saving graphics settings and a reasonable frame rate. The end result is an excellent balance between acoustics, graphical detail and performance, resulting in a better overall gaming experience for the user.

Where do you compromise

All good things come at a cost, and you can’t just reduce GPU power consumption. As mentioned above, Max-Q technology is geared towards peak GPU performance. Thus, in order to reduce power consumption, the company decided to limit the maximum performance limits of GPUs. For example, a typical GeForce GTX 1080 laptop has a base clock of 1556MHz with a boost clock of 1733MHz. In comparison, the GeForce GTX 1080 laptop with Max-Q technology provides a base clock speed of 1101 to 1290 MHz, and boost clocks are limited to 1287 to 1468 MHz, depending on the design of the laptop. In a nutshell, you see a clock speed difference of 15-28%.

Except for limited clock speeds, everything else on the GPU is the same. The architecture remains the same , and you have the same number of CUDA cores, the same amount of VRAM as a regular desktop 10-series NVIDIA GeForce GPU.

GTX 1080 GTX 1070

NVIDIA Max-Q 3DMark: Higher is Better

In 3DMark FireStrike Benchmark, the GTX 1080 Max-Q performs better than the GTX 1070 on the Alienware 15 R4, but the far outperforms the MSI GTX 1080 . While the difference in numbers is quite high, it’s worth noting that the benchmarks are pushing the GPU to its peak clock speeds, where Max-Q technology is already limited.

  • Game tests

NVIDIA Max-Q Gaming FPS: Higher is Better

In terms of gaming performance, the GTX 1080 with Max-Q is more like the GTX 1075 (if there was one), sitting comfortably between the GTX 1080 and GTX 1070.

  • Cinebench R15

NVIDIA Max-Q CineBench: Higher is Better

Cinebench R15 is CPU-first and uses the GPU for acceleration. So ROG is next to Alienware 15 R4 thanks to 7th generation Kaby Lake architecture, superior to MSI’s 6th generation architecture.

Which laptops currently support Max-Q?

Because NVIDIA Max-Q requires carefully designed designs in partnership with NVIDIA, only a small number of gaming laptops currently support this technology. Some of them are Asus ROG Zephyrus, Acer Predator Triton 700, MSI GS63 Stealth Pro, Aorus X5 MD and Clevo P950HR.

However, we can expect a move to more expensive laptops with NVIDIA Max-Q technology as they allow laptops to function like a laptop rather than a desktop replacement. Please note that NVIDIA Max-Q technology supports only GeForce GTX 1060, 1070 and 1080.

Power up your gaming laptop with NVIDIA Max-Q

Gaming laptops are preferred by many people who like to play on the go. Unfortunately, the current crop of laptops falls into the category of heavyweights, acting more like desktop replacements. Thankfully, NVIDIA Max-Q technology is being used to finally make gaming laptops portable again. Tell us what you think of the NVIDIA Max-Q and what kind of laptop you would like to see it in the comments section below.

GeForce GTX 1050 Ti Max-Q [in 7 benchmarks]

NVIDIA
GeForce GTX 1050 Ti Max-Q

  • PCIe 3.0 x16 interface
  • Core frequency 1151 — 1290
  • Video memory size 4 GB
  • Memory type GDDR5
  • Memory frequency 7000
  • Maximum resolution

Description

NVIDIA started GeForce GTX 1050 Ti Max-Q sales 3 January 2018. This is Pascal architecture notebook card based on 16 nm manufacturing process and primarily aimed at gamers. It has 4 GB of GDDR5 memory at 7 GHz, and coupled with a 128-bit interface, this creates a bandwidth of 112.1 Gb / s.

In terms of compatibility, this is a PCIe 3.0 x16 card. Power consumption — 40 — 46 W.

It provides poor benchmark and game performance at level

19.58%

from the leader, which is the NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Ti.


GeForce GTX
1050 Ti Max-Q

or


GeForce RTX
3090 Ti

General information

Information about the type (desktop or laptop) and architecture of the GeForce GTX 1050 Ti Max-Q, as well as when sales started and cost at that time.

  • 50
  • 100
  • Features

    GeForce GTX 1050 Ti Max-Q’s general performance parameters such as number of shaders, GPU core clock, manufacturing process, texturing and calculation speed. They indirectly speak of GeForce GTX 1050 Ti Max-Q’s performance, but for precise assessment you have to consider its benchmark and gaming test results.

    of 14400 (GeForce GTX 1080 SLI (mobile))
    Technological process 16 nm of 4 (h200 PCIE)
    energy supply (TDP)

    of 900 (Tesla S2050)
    Textory speed 68.02 of 939.8 (H200 SXM5)
    0036

    2.177 gflops of 16384 (Radeon Pro Duo)

    Compatibility & Dimensions

    Information on GeForce GTX 1050 Ti Max-Q compatibility with other computer components. Useful for example when choosing the configuration of a future computer or to upgrade an existing one. For laptop video cards, this is the estimated size of the laptop, the bus and the connection connector, if the video card is connected through the connector, and not soldered on the motherboard.


    Overall benchmark performance

    This is our overall performance rating. We regularly improve our algorithms, but if you find any inconsistencies, feel free to speak up in the comments section, we usually fix problems quickly.

    GTX 1050 Ti Max-Q
    19.58

    • Passmark
    • 3DMark Vantage Performance
    • 3DMark 11 Performance GPU
    • 3DMark Cloud Gate GPU
    • 3DMark Fire Strike Score
    • 3DMark Fire Strike Graphics
    • 3DMark Ice Storm GPU
    Passmark

    This is a very common benchmark included in the Passmark PerformanceTest package. He gives the graphics card a thorough evaluation, running four separate tests for Direct3D versions 9, 10, 11, and 12 (the latter being done at 4K resolution whenever possible), and a few more tests using DirectCompute.

    Benchmark coverage: 26%

    GTX 1050 Ti Max-Q
    5781

    3DMark Vantage Performance

    3DMark Vantage is an outdated DirectX 10 benchmark. It loads the graphics card with two scenes, one of which shows a girl running away from some kind of military base located in a sea cave, and the other of a space fleet attacking defenseless planet. Support for 3DMark Vantage was discontinued in April 2017 and it is now recommended to use the Time Spy benchmark instead.

    Benchmark coverage: 17%

    GTX 1050 Ti Max-Q
    29504

    3DMark 11 Performance GPU

    3DMark 11 is Futuremark’s legacy DirectX 11 benchmark. He used four tests based on two scenes: one is several submarines exploring a sunken ship, the other is an abandoned temple deep in the jungle. All tests make extensive use of volumetric lighting and tessellation and, despite being run at 1280×720, are relatively heavy. Support for 3DMark 11 ended in January 2020 and is now being replaced by Time Spy.

    Benchmark coverage: 17%

    GTX 1050 Ti Max-Q
    8752

    3DMark Cloud Gate GPU

    Cloud Gate is a legacy benchmark that uses DirectX 11 feature level 10, used to test home PCs and low-end laptops. It displays several scenes of some strange teleportation device launching spaceships into the unknown at a fixed resolution of 1280×720. As with the Ice Storm benchmark, it was deprecated in January 2020 and 3DMark Night Raid is now recommended instead.

    Benchmark coverage: 14%

    GTX 1050 Ti Max-Q
    46952

    3DMark Fire Strike Score

    Benchmark coverage: 14%

    GTX 1050 Ti Max-Q
    6688

    3DMark Fire Strike Graphics

    Fire Strike is a DirectX 11 benchmark for gaming PCs. It features two separate tests showing a fight between a humanoid and a fiery creature that appears to be made of lava. Using resolution 1920×1080, Fire Strike shows quite realistic graphics and is quite demanding on hardware.

    Benchmark coverage: 14%

    GTX 1050 Ti Max-Q
    7324

    3DMark Ice Storm GPU

    Ice Storm Graphics is an obsolete benchmark, part of the 3DMark suite. Ice Storm has been used to measure the performance of entry-level laptops and Windows-based tablets. It uses DirectX 11 feature level 9to display a battle between two space fleets near a frozen planet in 1280×720 resolution. Support for Ice Storm ended in January 2020, now the developers recommend using Night Raid instead.

    Benchmark coverage: 8%

    GTX 1050 Ti Max-Q
    324705


    Game tests

    FPS in popular games on the GeForce GTX 1050 Ti Max-Q, as well as compliance with system requirements. Remember that the official requirements of the developers do not always match the data of real tests.

  • Full HD
    Medium Preset
  • Full HD
    High Preset
  • Full HD
    Ultra Preset
  • 1440p
    High Preset
  • 1440p
    Ultra Preset
  • 4K
    High Preset
  • 4K
    Ultra Preset
  • Cyberpunk 2077 20-22
    Assassin’s Creed Odyssey 43
    Assassin’s Creed Valhalla 20-22
    Battlefield 5 57
    Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 20-22
    Cyberpunk 2077 20-22
    Far Cry 5 48
    Far Cry New Dawn 49
    Forza Horizon 4 67
    Hitman 3 20-22
    Horizon Zero Dawn 20-22
    Red Dead Redemption 2 20-22
    Shadow of the Tomb Raider 39
    Watch Dogs: Legion 20-22
    Assassin’s Creed Odyssey 34
    Assassin’s Creed Valhalla 20-22
    Battlefield 5 48
    Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 20-22
    Cyberpunk 2077 20-22
    Far Cry 5 44
    Far Cry New Dawn 45
    Forza Horizon 4 61
    Hitman 3 20-22
    Horizon Zero Dawn 20-22
    Metro Exodus 31
    Red Dead Redemption 2 20-22
    Shadow of the Tomb Raider 32
    The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt 46
    Watch Dogs: Legion 20-22
    Assassin’s Creed Odyssey 18
    Assassin’s Creed Valhalla 20-22
    Battlefield 5 45
    Cyberpunk 2077 20-22
    Far Cry 5 38
    Far Cry New Dawn 42
    Forza Horizon 4 47
    The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt 25
    Watch Dogs: Legion 20-22
    Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 20-22
    Hitman 3 20-22
    Horizon Zero Dawn 20-22
    Metro Exodus 20-22
    Red Dead Redemption 2 20-22
    Shadow of the Tomb Raider 20-22
    The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt 20-22
    Assassin’s Creed Odyssey 20-22
    Assassin’s Creed Valhalla 20-22
    Battlefield 5 20-22
    Cyberpunk 2077 20-22
    Far Cry 5 20-22
    Far Cry New Dawn 29
    Forza Horizon 4 20-22
    Watch Dogs: Legion 20-22
    Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 20-22
    Hitman 3 20-22
    Horizon Zero Dawn 20-22
    Metro Exodus 5
    Red Dead Redemption 2 20-22
    Shadow of the Tomb Raider 11
    The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt 16
    Assassin’s Creed Odyssey 7
    Assassin’s Creed Valhalla 20-22
    Battlefield 5 17
    Cyberpunk 2077 20-22
    Far Cry 5 13
    Far Cry New Dawn 15
    Forza Horizon 4 20
    Watch Dogs: Legion 20-22

    Relative performance

    Overall GeForce GTX 1050 Ti Max-Q performance compared to its closest competitors in notebook graphics cards.


    AMD Radeon HD 7970M Crossfire
    108.73

    NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1650 Max-Q
    102.45

    NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 Ti Mobile
    102.4

    NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 Ti Max-Q
    100

    NVIDIA GeForce GTX 970M
    99.8

    AMD Radeon RX 470 (mobile)
    95.71

    AMD Radeon RX Vega 8 (Ryzen 5000)
    95.1

    Competitor from AMD

    We believe that the nearest equivalent to GeForce GTX 1050 Ti Max-Q from AMD is Radeon RX 470 Mobile, which is slower by 4% on average and lower by 7 positions in our rating.


    Radeon RX
    470 (mobile)

    Compare

    Here are some of AMD’s closest competitors to the GeForce GTX 1050 Ti Max-Q:

    AMD Radeon RX Vega M GH
    116. 7

    AMD Radeon RX Vega M GL/870
    115.53

    AMD Radeon HD 7970M Crossfire
    108.73

    NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 Ti Max-Q
    100

    AMD Radeon RX 470 (mobile)
    95.71

    AMD Radeon RX Vega 8 (Ryzen 5000)
    95.1

    AMD Radeon RX Vega 8 (Ryzen 4000/5000)
    90.96

    Other graphics cards

    Here we recommend several video cards that are more or less similar in performance to the one considered.


    GeForce GTX
    1050 Ti (mobile)

    Compare


    GeForce GTX
    1650 Max-Q

    Compare


    Radeon RX
    470 (mobile)

    Compare


    Radeon RX
    Vega 8 (Ryzen 5000)

    Compare


    GeForce GTX
    1650 Ti Max-Q

    Compare


    Radeon RX
    560X (mobile)

    Compare

    Recommended Processors

    According to our statistics, these processors are most often used with the GeForce GTX 1050 Ti Max-Q.


    Core i7
    8750H

    11.8%


    Core i5
    8300H

    8.2%


    Core i5
    9300H

    7.3%


    Core i7
    9750H

    2.9%


    Core i7
    7700HQ

    2.8%


    Core i5
    8250U

    2.4%


    Core i5
    7300HQ

    2.1%


    Core i3
    9100F

    2.1%


    Core i7
    8565U

    2%


    Core i7
    8550U

    1. 6%

    User rating

    Here you can see the rating of the video card by users, as well as put your own rating.


    Tips and comments

    Here you can ask a question about the GeForce GTX 1050 Ti Max-Q, agree or disagree with our judgements, or report an error or mismatch.


    Please enable JavaScript to view the comments powered by Disqus.

    GeForce RTX 2060 Max-Q graphics card [in 7 benchmarks]

    NVIDIA
    GeForce RTX 2060 Max-Q

    • PCIe 3.0 x16 interface
    • Core frequency 975
    • Video memory size 6 GB
    • Memory type GDDR6
    • Memory frequency 11000
    • Maximum resolution

    Description

    NVIDIA started GeForce RTX 2060 Max-Q sales 6 January 2019. This is Turing architecture notebook card based on 12 nm manufacturing process and primarily aimed at gamers. It has 6 GB of GDDR6 memory at 11 GHz, and coupled with a 192-bit interface, this creates a bandwidth of 264. 0 GB / s.

    In terms of compatibility, this is a PCIe 3.0 x16 card. Power consumption — 65 W.

    It provides good performance in tests and games at the level of

    33.04%

    from the leader, which is the NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 Ti.


    GeForce RTX
    2060 Max-Q

    or


    GeForce RTX
    3090 Ti

    General information

    To obtain an index, we compare the characteristics of video cards and their cost, taking into account the cost of other cards.

    • 0
    • 50
    • 100

    Features

    GeForce RTX 2060 Max-Q’s general performance parameters such as number of shaders, GPU core clock, manufacturing process, texturing and calculation speed. They indirectly speak about GeForce RTX 2060 Max-Q’s performance, but for an accurate assessment you have to consider its benchmark and gaming test results.

    Information on GeForce RTX 2060 Max-Q compatibility with other computer components. Useful for example when choosing the configuration of a future computer or to upgrade an existing one. For laptop video cards, this is the estimated size of the laptop, the bus and the connection connector, if the video card is connected through the connector, and not soldered on the motherboard.

    6

    7 Open
    Parameters of memory installed on GeForce RTX 2060 Max-Q — type, size, bus, frequency and bandwidth. For video cards built into the processor that do not have their own memory, a shared part of the RAM is used.


    Overall benchmark performance

    This is our overall performance rating. We regularly improve our algorithms, but if you find any inconsistencies, feel free to speak up in the comments section, we usually fix problems quickly.

    RTX 2060 Max-Q
    33.04

    • Passmark
    • 3DMark Vantage Performance
    • 3DMark 11 Performance GPU
    • 3DMark Cloud Gate GPU
    • 3DMark Fire Strike Score
    • 3DMark Fire Strike Graphics
    • 3DMark Ice Storm GPU
    Passmark

    This is a very common benchmark included in the Passmark PerformanceTest package. He gives the graphics card a thorough evaluation, running four separate tests for Direct3D versions 9, 10, 11, and 12 (the latter being done at 4K resolution whenever possible), and a few more tests using DirectCompute.

    Benchmark coverage: 26%

    RTX 2060 Max-Q
    9755

    3DMark Vantage Performance

    3DMark Vantage is an outdated DirectX 10 benchmark. It loads the graphics card with two scenes, one of which shows a girl running away from some kind of military base located in a sea cave, and the other of a space fleet attacking defenseless planet. Support for 3DMark Vantage was discontinued in April 2017 and it is now recommended to use the Time Spy benchmark instead.

    Benchmark coverage: 17%

    RTX 2060 Max-Q
    50957

    3DMark 11 Performance GPU

    3DMark 11 is Futuremark’s legacy DirectX 11 benchmark. He used four tests based on two scenes: one is several submarines exploring a sunken ship, the other is an abandoned temple deep in the jungle. All tests make extensive use of volumetric lighting and tessellation and, despite being run at 1280×720, are relatively heavy. Support for 3DMark 11 ended in January 2020 and is now being replaced by Time Spy.

    Benchmark coverage: 17%

    RTX 2060 Max-Q
    19779

    3DMark Cloud Gate GPU

    Cloud Gate is a legacy benchmark that uses DirectX 11 feature level 10, used to test home PCs and low-end laptops. It displays several scenes of some strange teleportation device launching spaceships into the unknown at a fixed resolution of 1280×720. As with the Ice Storm benchmark, it was deprecated in January 2020 and 3DMark Night Raid is now recommended instead.

    Benchmark coverage: 14%

    RTX 2060 Max-Q
    58890

    3DMark Fire Strike Score

    Benchmark coverage: 14%

    RTX 2060 Max-Q
    13716

    3DMark Fire Strike Graphics

    Fire Strike is a DirectX 11 benchmark for gaming PCs. It features two separate tests showing a fight between a humanoid and a fiery creature that appears to be made of lava. Using resolution 1920×1080, Fire Strike shows quite realistic graphics and is quite demanding on hardware.

    Benchmark coverage: 14%

    RTX 2060 Max-Q
    14910

    3DMark Ice Storm GPU

    Ice Storm Graphics is an obsolete benchmark, part of the 3DMark suite. Ice Storm has been used to measure the performance of entry-level laptops and Windows-based tablets. It uses DirectX 11 feature level 9to display a battle between two space fleets near a frozen planet in 1280×720 resolution. Support for Ice Storm ended in January 2020, now the developers recommend using Night Raid instead.

    Benchmark coverage: 8%

    RTX 2060 Max-Q
    308872


    Game tests

    FPS in popular games on the GeForce RTX 2060 Max-Q, as well as compliance with system requirements. Remember that the official requirements of the developers do not always match the data of real tests.

  • Full HD
    Medium Preset
  • Full HD
    High Preset
  • Full HD
    Ultra Preset
  • 1440p
    High Preset
  • 1440p
    Ultra Preset
  • 4K
    High Preset
  • 4K
    Ultra Preset
  • Notebook size Large
    Interface PCIE 3.0 X16
    Additional power connectors NO

    Cyberpunk 2077 30-35
    Assassin’s Creed Odyssey 79
    Assassin’s Creed Valhalla 30-35
    Battlefield 5 30-35
    Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 30-35
    Cyberpunk 2077 30-35
    Far Cry 5 30-35
    Far Cry New Dawn 75
    Forza Horizon 4 30-35
    Hitman 3 30-35
    Horizon Zero Dawn 30-35
    Red Dead Redemption 2 30-35
    Shadow of the Tomb Raider 87
    Watch Dogs: Legion 30-35
    Assassin’s Creed Odyssey 65
    Assassin’s Creed Valhalla 30-35
    Battlefield 5 30-35
    Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 30-35
    Cyberpunk 2077 30-35
    Far Cry 5 30-35
    Far Cry New Dawn 70
    Forza Horizon 4 30-35
    Hitman 3 30-35
    Horizon Zero Dawn 30-35
    Metro Exodus 57
    Red Dead Redemption 2 30-35
    Shadow of the Tomb Raider 75
    The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt 105
    Watch Dogs: Legion 30-35
    Assassin’s Creed Odyssey 45
    Assassin’s Creed Valhalla 30-35
    Battlefield 5 30-35
    Cyberpunk 2077 30-35
    Far Cry 5 30-35
    Far Cry New Dawn 63
    Forza Horizon 4 30-35
    The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt 57
    Watch Dogs: Legion 30-35
    Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 30-35
    Hitman 3 30-35
    Horizon Zero Dawn 30-35
    Metro Exodus 30-35
    Red Dead Redemption 2 30-35
    Shadow of the Tomb Raider 30-35
    The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt 30-35
    Assassin’s Creed Odyssey 30-35
    Assassin’s Creed Valhalla 30-35
    Battlefield 5 30-35
    Cyberpunk 2077 30-35
    Far Cry 5 30-35
    Far Cry New Dawn 30-35
    Forza Horizon 4 30-35
    Watch Dogs: Legion 30-35
    Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 30-35
    Hitman 3 30-35
    Horizon Zero Dawn 30-35
    Metro Exodus 30-35
    Red Dead Redemption 2 30-35
    Shadow of the Tomb Raider 20
    The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt 35
    Assassin’s Creed Odyssey 30-35
    Assassin’s Creed Valhalla 30-35
    Battlefield 5 30-35
    Cyberpunk 2077 30-35
    Far Cry 5 30-35
    Far Cry New Dawn 30-35
    Forza Horizon 4 30-35
    Watch Dogs: Legion 30-35

    Relative performance

    Overall performance of the GeForce RTX 2060 Max-Q compared to its closest competitor in laptop graphics cards.


    NVIDIA RTX A2000 Laptop GPU
    104.24

    NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980 Mobile
    102.85

    NVIDIA RTX A1000 Laptop GPU
    100.45

    NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2060 Max-Q
    100

    NVIDIA GeForce GTX 970M SLI
    98.94

    NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 Max-Q 6 GB
    95.46

    NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3050 Mobile
    93.52

    Competitor from AMD

    We believe that the nearest equivalent to GeForce RTX 2060 Max-Q from AMD is Radeon RX 6800M, which is 5% faster on average and higher by 12 positions in our rating.


    Radeon RX
    6800M

    Compare

    Here are some of AMD’s closest competitors to the GeForce RTX 2060 Max-Q:

    AMD Radeon RX 6600M
    112. 14

    AMD Radeon RX 6650M
    109.99

    AMD Radeon RX 6800M
    105.18

    NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2060 Max-Q
    100

    AMD Radeon RX 580 (mobile)
    88.38

    AMD Radeon HD 8970M Crossfire
    82.66

    AMD Radeon RX 5600M
    77.27

    Other video cards

    Here we recommend several video cards that are more or less similar in performance to the reviewed one.


    RTX A2000
    Laptop GPU

    Compare


    GeForce GTX
    1660 Ti (mobile)

    Compare


    GeForce GTX
    1060 Max-Q 6GB

    Compare


    GeForce GTX
    1080 Max-Q

    Compare


    Radeon RX
    6800M

    Compare


    GeForce RTX
    3050 Mobile

    Compare

    Recommended Processors

    According to our statistics, these processors are most often used with the GeForce RTX 2060 Max-Q.


    Core i7
    10750H

    21%


    Core i5
    10300H

    16.9%


    Ryzen 9
    4900HS

    10.3%


    Ryzen 7
    4800HS

    6.4%


    Core i7
    1185G7

    4.3%


    Ryzen 7
    4800H

    3.9%


    Ryzen 9
    4900H

    3.9%


    Core i5
    9300H

    3.5%


    Core i7
    9750H

    3.1%


    Core i7
    10875H

    2. 4%

    User rating

    Here you can see the rating of the video card by users, as well as put your own rating.


    Tips and comments

    Here you can ask a question about the GeForce RTX 2060 Max-Q, agree or disagree with our judgements, or report an error or mismatch.


    Please enable JavaScript to view the comments powered by Disqus.

    What are NVIDIA MAX-Q laptops?

    UNCACHED CONTENT

    If you’re looking for a new Windows-based laptop and are somewhat interested in performance, you may come across models that are marketed as »

    with «NVIDIA MAX-Q

    . » But this description is somewhat vague: MAX-Q is not a specific NVIDIA graphics card, or even a hardware feature. So what exactly does this description mean, and does it make a gaming-grade laptop more desirable than a non-Q laptop?

    «Ultrabook» 2.0, now with more games

    The best way to characterize the MAX-Q is as a marketing push. .. which is admittedly less than helpful. Essentially, this is NVIDIA pushing its laptop makers to cram insanely powerful GPUs into thin and light laptop chassis in the hope that it can get rid of the general notion that your laptop should be the size of a briefcase if you want it. to run the latest high quality games.

    Intel’s inconsistent «ultrabook» name became more or less meaningless after a while.

    Several years ago, Intel experimented with this marketing strategy. Remember when you had to buy «ultrabooks» instead of laptops? It was a somewhat amorphous designation, describing laptops that were much thinner and lighter than their contemporaries, but featured energy efficient Intel Core series processors. The «spec sheet» for an ultrabook, if it ever existed at all, was somewhat vague: models could come from any partner manufacturer, but had to be less than 0.8 inches thick, typically without bulky hardware features like floppy drives or ports. ethernet. Although all initial designs were 13-inch, a rejection by manufacturers extended the loose definition to similar designs with 14- and 15-inch screens.

    Maximum marketing, minimum specificity

    So what are NVIDIA’s criteria for the MAX-Q laptop? Essentially, it must have a mobile version of the GTX 1070 or GTX 1080 GPU, and it must be at least superficially «thin». The company does not assign a numerical value to this thickness, merely indicating that laptops bearing the MAX-Q marketing label are designed with smaller dimensions in mind. NVIDIA marketing claims that MAX-Q laptops are «only 18mm» (0.71 inches) thick, and indeed, all labeled models are less than 0.8 inches tall.

    NVIDIA’s marketing for MAX-Q laptop performance is not entirely accurate.

    The only other significant difference is that the MAX-Q laptops are specifically equipped with rugged speakers with at least 40 decibels of power output. This is significantly better than the weak speakers found on most laptops, especially those marketed as «thin and light» or «ultrabooks». Other common features of current models (not necessarily listed on the MAX-Q promotional pages) include a 120Hz screen and the latest Core i7 processors.

    As with Intel’s ultrabook program, NVIDIA’s definition of MAX-Q goals may change over time. At the very least, this will likely allow for the newer GeForce 1170 and 1180 chips when they become available — they are less likely to move to XX60 series GPUs as they are also used in more pedestrian projects.

    Small selection, big prices

    At the moment, there are only a few models from manufacturers of medium and smaller sizes that have a MAX-Q design. Here is the list for now.

    MSI GS73VR Stealthn Pro

    as well as

    GS63VR Stealthn Pro


    : This design is offered in 17.3″ and 15.6″ sizes, but both feature a GeForce GTX 1070 GPU and other similar features. These include a Core i7-7700HQ processor, a whopping 32GB of RAM, a combination of a 512GB SSD and regular 1TB hard drives, and full-size RGB backlit keyboards with number keys. The matte screens on both models are only 1080p, but they’re capable of 120Hz motion (with G-SYNC, of ​​course), which is the perfect match for gaming graphics. MSI bills both models as «virtual reality ready,» and they cost $2,400 for the 15-inch model and $2,500 for the 17-inch.


    ASUS ROG Zephyrus GX501

    : This 15.6-inch design comes with a GTX 1070 or GTX 1080 but otherwise has similar specs to the MSI model with a 1080p 120Hz screen, Core i7-7700HQ processor, and «VR ready» designation. Both versions have «only» 16 GB of RAM, but

    a cheaper version of the GTX 1070 for $2,300

    only uses a 256 GB SSD, and

    Deluxe GTX 1080 for $2,700

    gets a 512 GB SSD. None of them have a conventional hard drive. ASUS’ design is the thinnest of them all, at just 0.7 inches, but its push-to-front design with no palm rest might be a deal breaker for some buyers.


    Aorus X5 MD

    : This boutique design has many variations, but only the high-end variant of the GTX 1080 is specifically labeled as a MAX-Q laptop.

    2022 © All rights reserved