More manufacturers have been omitting the 'Max-Q' GeForce name from official listings and it's getting annoying
Nvidia unveiled the GeForce Max-Q series in 2017 designed for thin-and-light laptops. A Max-Q GPU is effectively an underclocked regular GeForce GPU that typically deviates only 10 to 15 percent in performance from the original version. Though marginal, the performance difference is tangible enough that users ought to know if they are purchasing a laptop with Max-Q or non Max-Q graphics. It would be frustrating, for example, to have bought a GeForce RTX 2080 laptop only to find out later that it comes with the RTX 2080 Max-Q instead for 10 to 15 percent slower performance than initially expected.
Unfortunately, more and more manufacturers and storefronts like Amazon have been omitting the 'Max-Q' moniker from their laptop specifications. Advertisement booklets, online listings, and brick-and-mortar spec cards don't normally go into very much detail about the GPU meaning that users would have to dig deeper to learn more about the actual hardware inside. We're seeing this more often and we think it's borderline deceiving to customers. As just one example, Lenovo is currently advertising its Yoga C940 15-inch with GeForce GTX 1650 graphics when it actually comes with a GTX 1650 Max-Q instead. We've seen similar habits from other OEMs including on Dell adbooks and even Razer during the initial reveal of the 2019 Razer Blade Stealth.
How can we solve this issue? A simple solution would be for Nvidia to require all its vendors to explicitly mention the 'Max-Q' name on products that sport the GPU. Until then, we recommend doing additional research before buying any GeForce laptop since the manufacturers themselves can't always be trusted with providing these basic specifications.
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