Can you change the graphics card in a laptop?

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silentprincess

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Hi, this probably sounds like a stupid question, but I was wondering if I could change the graphics card of my 5 year old Dell Inspirion 1545 to a newer version?

Also is there anything else you can change on a laptop? Or is it pretty limited in what you can do?

Again if this is a stupid question, I'm really sorry. Also I'm not sure if I have put this thread in the right place, and if not could someone move it please.
 

Surtur

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Depends, some can and some can't. What is the model of your laptop?

Depends, some can and some can't. What is the model of your laptop?

Derp you posted it, give me a second.
 

A-№1

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Since the Dell Inspiron 1545 uses the graphics built into its Intel CPU, you almost guaranteed can't upgrade the graphics. You'd have to replace the entire main board inside with a higher end one that has a more recent intel CPU. And that's assuming a higher main board even exists which it probably doesn't - the graphics performance within a single generation of intel processors is pretty identical across processors - an i3 will have about the same graphics as the same generation i7.

Sorry.
 

silentprincess

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Since the Dell Inspiron 1545 uses the graphics built into its Intel CPU, you almost guaranteed can't upgrade the graphics. You'd have to replace the entire main board inside with a higher end one (assuming that even exists).

Sorry.

Thank you
 

KatsuKitty

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I seem to remember reading about ExpressCard graphics units that would plug into the expansion bay and provide better graphics through an external monitor. Regardless, I can't seem to find them so I don't think there's any way to do it.
 

Surtur

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I found some pics of the motherboard and I can confirm what A-No 1 said, the GPU is built in and there does not appear to be an expansion slot for anything other than RAM. However, if you need advice on a new computer or something I will gladly help.
 

silentprincess

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Thank you all for your help, you've all been a great help, I wasn't expecting to be able to. But I'm probably going to be getting a new computer, probably an iMac or a MacBook Pro.
 

Surtur

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Thank you all for your help, you've all been a great help, I wasn't expecting to be able to. But I'm probably going to be getting a new computer, probably an iMac or a MacBook Pro.

Those are pretty expensive. Unless you really want iOS, you can get a better deal on a PC. You can even boot Linux if you do not want Windows.
 

A-№1

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Thank you
No problem. Sorry I can't be more help. That being said, if it's gaming video performance you're looking for you can build out a small desktop that can be quite capable for much less than the cost of a new laptop. I mean a LOT less.

Like Surtur I can help a bit in that too.
 

silentprincess

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My friend told me it would be easier to buy an Apple computer because they are built better, I'm personally not sure because I've only used Windows. And building a computer sounds very scary, my friend said that all the parts from all over, whereas Macs are work perfectly, so I'm still a little unsure.
 

Surtur

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My friend told me it would be easier to buy an Apple computer because they are built better, I'm personally not sure because I've only used Windows. And building a computer sounds very scary, my friend said that all the parts from all over, whereas Macs are work perfectly, so I'm still a little unsure.

I have built several computers and never had a compatibility issue. My current build is a custom job, though this one I had built for me, since I did not have the time to sit down a put it together. What do you NEED for you computer to do? Thats the first thing you need to ask, and if you want to do a bit of gaming, Macs are not really designed for that. Mac Pros are great if you need a lot of portability. They have a long battery life, are light weight and have excellent screen quality, but you pay a premium for that. It just depends on what you neeed.
 

HarryHowler

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The main advantage of current MacBook Pros is their Retina displays, which make text look WAY better than on the vast majority of other laptops. OS X is also specifically designed to work with ultra hi-resolution screens, whereas Windows 8.1 isn't nearly as good. You'd probably be best going somewhere that actually sells Apple computers and trying one out for yourself, to see if it's worth the added expense (I personally think it is, but then I'm a graphics professional).
 

A-№1

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My friend told me it would be easier to buy an Apple computer because they are built better,
It depends on who built the PC. Yes there are some horrible PC manufacturers out there (*cough* acer *cough*), but some have a much higher build quality than Apple (Asus, Toshiba). Like anything you have to do some homework to find out the best machine for you (and the best you can afford).
silentprincess then said:
I'm personally not sure because I've only used Windows. And building a computer sounds very scary, my friend said that all the parts from all over, whereas Macs are work perfectly, so I'm still a little unsure.
Building a computer is pretty easy, actually. Like Legos. Just remember to wear a $1 static strap. Things have come a LONG way since the old days of ISA boards and jumper blocks. With Apple there's a slightly smaller chance of incompatibilities (which is pretty damn small in any event - you have to be using some pretty obscure strange hardware to have compatibility issues these days), but you also get a much narrower selection at MUCH higher prices.
 

Surtur

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The main advantage of current MacBook Pros is their Retina displays, which make text look WAY better than on the vast majority of other laptops. OS X is also specifically designed to work with ultra hi-resolution screens, whereas Windows 8.1 isn't nearly as good. You'd probably be best going somewhere that actually sells Apple computers and trying one out for yourself, to see if it's worth the added expense (I personally think it is, but then I'm a graphics professional).

The thing is, most people don't need that high resolution of a display. My rig is really nice, I have an i7-4820k, 16 GB DDR3-1833 RAM and a factory overclocked R9 290 and ultra high resolutions would kill my FPS, so I game at 1920x1080. If you don't need that level of resolution its a moot point if text looks better or not. 4k or even 2.5k is out of most gamers reach unless the have a multi gpu set up or a Titan Z.
 

silentprincess

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I do ant to game, but I usually just play Minecraft, The Sims 3, and Angry birds on it. I also do some writing as well, surfing the net, and collecting information for research, as well as probably using the computer for assignments when I start my Open University courses in psychology. I don't really do anything graphic wise as I am not very good at drawing, though I would love to try to. I do watch movies, listen to music, I think that is all I do.
 

Surtur

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If the most intensive thing you play is like the Sims and Minecraft, than yeah a Mac Pro would be fine, if its worth the money to you. As a side note, does Minecraft work on Mac? I'll look it up.
 

silentprincess

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If the most intensive thing you play is like the Sims and Minecraft, than yeah a Mac Pro would be fine, if its worth the money to you. As a side note, does Minecraft work on Mac? I'll look it up.

Thank you so much for all your help, it's been really useful and I'm glad everybody here was kind enough to help.

I forgot to mention I would like to make videos of my sims gameplay for little movies, I also use TextSpeech software, and dictaphone. Will that affect it?
 

Surtur

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Thank you so much for all your help, it's been really useful and I'm glad everybody here was kind enough to help.

I forgot to mention I would like to make videos of my sims gameplay for little movies, I also use TextSpeech software, and dictaphone. Will that affect it?

Just check to see if your software is compatible with OSX. Also, they don't seem to have DVD drives anymore.