Nvidia launches new GeForce GPU – but not the one you were waiting for

(Image credit: Future)

Nvidia's MX GPUs are reserved for Ultrabooks and other super-portable machines that need a little extra graphics push, whether it's for casual gaming or for light photo and video editing workloads, and now we're getting a brand new one. 

Nvidia has just unveiled the Turing-based GeForce MX450, following up on the Pascal-based MX350, which was launched back in February 2020 to power devices like the HP Spectre x360 15, which was revealed back at CES 2020. This new version, with 2GB of GDDR6 VRAM on PCIe 4.0 should see a healthy boost in performance, making Ultrabooks a bit better at playing the best PC games in your downtime. 

However, beyond the faster memory and the PCIe 4.0 interface, which will surely boost the available bandwidth to the GPU – at least on supported CPU platforms – it's not especially clear just how much faster the GeForce MX450 will be. As it stands right now, the MX350 is basically just good enough for some light gaming, able to tackle most games at 1080p with Low-Medium settings. 

That's probably where this GPU will slot in, too, but until the chip starts making its way into laptops in October, we won't be able to speak to its performance – Nvidia hasn't listed out specs as thoroughly as it does with more performant GPUs.

Either way, if you're looking to grab an Ultrabook for the purpose of photo and video editing on the go, the Nvidia GeForce MX450 will definitely be a step up.

Not the GPU you're looking for

Nvidia is set to announce something at a September 1 GeForce event, which will probably be its next-generation Ampere GeForce cards, likely led by the RTX 3080. The release of the GeForce MX450, sadly, has nothing to do with that, and it will probably be a while before we see an Ampere GeForce GPU make its way into a laptop.  

Instead, we'll probably see laptops continue to be made with the Nvidia GeForce RTX 20-series cards for a while after the RTX 3080 makes its big premiere. It took almost a full year for gaming laptops to come equipped with Turing, and it's likely that will be the case this time around, too – especially if power consumption is as high as some rumors suggest. 

As for the Ultrabooks that the MX450 will be powering, we probably won't see an Ampere version until around the end of the lifespan for the architecture. We may see an improved iteration on it, much like how the MX350 followed up the MX250.

Bill Thomas

Bill Thomas (Twitter) is TechRadar's computing editor. They are fat, queer and extremely online. Computers are the devil, but they just happen to be a satanist. If you need to know anything about computing components, PC gaming or the best laptop on the market, don't be afraid to drop them a line on Twitter or through email.