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What are the highest levels that one could set the graphics settings for a bottom of the range mid-2009 Macbook Pro using bootcamp? I don't mind if they involve installing different drivers or tweaking other settings elsewhere, but after seeing MW2 running at high settings, I really can't go back to the lower end. I want to play multiplayer with said settings.

Currently, I have got 4x anti-aliasing, texture, object and specular map resolutions are all at extra and all settings (except sync every frame) are on. However, the screen resolution is pretty low (800x600).

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With all due respects to tweaking, there's only so much you can do with a given set of hardware. I doubt anything anyone might suggest will give you a meteoric performance boost. – Aubergine Aug 11 '10 at 10:35
@Aubergine The question is a little bit open ended: I am wondering if there are system tweaks, etc. What I really want is to know whether or not I'm at the performance/picture tradeoff boundary and if there are any ways to extend that boundary. A resounding negative answer is still a good answer as long as it is correct. – mechko Aug 11 '10 at 10:45
My only qualm, then, is that your question seems extremely specific, as I doubt anyone will be able to give you an answer without having experienced the exact same situation. Did you try to check what think of your machine? – Aubergine Aug 11 '10 at 11:27
@Aubergine The question is quite specific, but the knowledge specificity is mostly with people playing games on bootcamp on Macs – mechko Aug 11 '10 at 11:45

Since you're running at such a low resolution, you're better off turning down antialiasing. AA smoothes out the jagged edges left by the pixel grid of a monitor, effectively faking a higher resolution. It takes a hell of a lot of processing power to run, so you can turn it off and get a huge performance increase. As a general rule, I suggest (especially on LCD monitors, like your laptop has) you run at the highest possible resolution (native resolution, if you can) and turn on AA only if you're getting a good framerate at the native resolution.

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heh... I turned down the resolution in order to be able to run AA – mechko Aug 13 '10 at 10:02
I used to do that, until I realized that the game would look better with the higher res and no AA. YMMV. – Andrew Scagnelli Aug 13 '10 at 14:46
One of the biggest problems with my graphics experiments is that they aren't variable controlled. I had low textures to compensate for a bad external hard drive, but when I turned down the res, I maxed out the textures so I never compared the two properly. – mechko Aug 14 '10 at 0:16

There is only so much you can push your hardware. Modern Warfare 2 is a very demanding game, so demanding in fact, that my gaming PC, which is much better than your MAC sometimes struggles to run in.

The short answer is that you wont be able to run Modern Warfare 2 with ultra high settings on your laptop the way you want to be able to.

The long answer is you may be able to add some programs that allow you slightly to increase what settings you can play on, but in the end I think you have to accept that it just isn't possible.

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