Laptop Recommendations

Hi all,

Looking at purchasing a new Laptop predominantly for Rhino & Rendering but also Revit.

Have narrowed it down to two MSI models both 17", 16GB Memory, 252GB SSD & 1TB HHD.

The differences being in the CPU and GPU.

Option 1
Skylake i7-6700HQ
Nvidia Geforce GTX970M GDDR5 3GB

Option 2- $500 more expensive.
Skylake i7-6820HK
Nvidia Geforce GTX970M GDDR5 6GB

Any insights will be greatly appreciated. I have looked at every benchmark/forum and there is just no clear answer, of coarse due to the programs used.

If you do GPU rendering, the 6 GB GPU RAM may be worth it. In Thea Render, while it’s quite efficient RAMwise, I had situations with heavy Grasshopper created geometry and huge render sizes when my 2 GB GPU was not enough. I was able to use GPU-bucketrendering and get the job done anyway, but having more GPU RAM will probably become more important over time and can’t be added later on in a Laptop.

The CPU doesn’t look different enough to be much of a deciding point.Overclocking in a Laptop depends on how good the cooling is - I never did it in my machines.



Thanks Tom,

Much appreciate your advice. I think I will go for the 6GB GPU option due
to handling such situations.

Overall do you think this machine would be capable of handling
revit/rhino/grasshopper effectively? I’m still a student but in my last
year of my masters degree. Designing medium to large scale projects. The
extra money for the Nvidia Quadro m2000m doesn’t seem worth it.

Kind regards,


I don’t know revit so can’t comment on that.
Rhino and grasshopper run ok on my similar laptop although for really heavy stuff I prefer my desktop where I have a 6 core i7 @ OC’d to 4.1 GHz and two good GPUs for Thea Render. For me the laptop is mostly for use when working on location at clients and if things get too heavy I usually continue work at my home office.
Laptops always are a compromise - I prefer the “real thing” :wink:

I personally think investing in Quadros is the worst money-sink possible if you don’t use a very specific CAD application that absolutely needs some of its features.

In my desktop I have a GTX660TI and a GTX980TI and it’s totally awesome for GPU rendering. Most people using Quadros are rather disappointed by their actual performance:
While this benchmark is still in beta, it already shows that speedwise even the higher end Quadros stand no chance against the so called gamer cards (if you don’t count the Titans as Quadros that is).
Be aware though, that Thea uses GPU & CPU at the same time so this benchmark measures the whole system, not only the GPU.