The NVIDIA GeForce MX230 and MX130 are well-known low-end GPUs. You can find them in some low to mid-range machines and they are able to provide respectable FPS results if you stick to Low settings in most of the new games. We have some previous GPU comparison regarding those two video cards. From our articles, you know that the MX230 is way faster than a powerful iGPU like AMD RX Vega 8 but it’s around 25% slower than MX250.
As for the MX130, we saw that it’s almost on par with Intel Iris Plus G7, it’s faster than Iris G4, and the MX250 is a lot faster than it. We don’t have a comparison between MX230 and MX130 and that’s why we’re going to compare those two video cards. Yes, this is a battle with a destined end but we have to find how big the gap between them really is.
The GeForce MX230 is a lot similar to MX250 (but with fewer shaders and lower frequencies). It’s a Pascal GPU that has 256 shader units, 16 ROPs, 1519 MHz / 1531 MHz base and boost clocks, 7000 MHz memory frequency, and 64-bit memory bus.
The GeForce MX130 is based on the Maxwell architecture but despite that, it has more shader units than MX230 – 256 vs 384. Unfortunately, the other specs of MX130 don’t look that impressive – 8 ROPs, 1122 MHz / 1242 MHz base and boost frequencies, 5012 memory clock, and a 64-bit memory bus.
GPU comparison table
|GeForce MX230||GeForce MX130|
|Shader units||256||384 (+50%)|
|Base Clock (MHz)||1519 (+37%)||1122|
|Boost clock (MHz)||1531 (+23%)||1242|
|Memory clock (MHz)||7000 (+40%)||5012|
|Memory size (MB)||2048-4096||2048-4096|
|Memory bus width (bit)||64||64|
|TGP (Total Graphics Power)||TDP: 10-30W||TDP:15 (+50%)-30W|
Ok, enough with those specs, let’s check the benchmarks.
Nothing spectacular or unexpected in terms of synthetic benchmarks – the MX230 is 23% faster on average in this category.
|GeForce MX230 over GeForce MX130||3Dmark Fire Strike (G)||Unigine Heaven 3.0||Unigine Heaven 4.0||Unigine Superposition||Average difference %|
|NVIDIA GeForce MX230||14%||44%||30%||2%||23%|
|NVIDIA GeForce MX130|
After the synthetics, we have to check the performance of those two low-end GPUs.
|CS:GO||HD 1080p, Low (Check settings)||HD 1080p, Medium (Check settings)||HD 1080p, MAX (Check settings)|
|NVIDIA GeForce MX230||80 fps||69 fps (+21%)||57 fps (+39%)|
|NVIDIA GeForce MX130||93 fps (+16%)||57 fps||41 fps|
For some reason, the MX130 is faster than MX230 in CS:GO at Low setting – maybe because of the bigger shader count, we aren’t sure but it is what it is. The MX230 is much faster than the MX130 at Low and Max settings. One advice – if you’re planning to play CS:GO a lot and you have a laptop with of those video cards just stick to Low preset.
|DOTA 2||HD 1080p, Low (Check settings)||HD 1080p, Normal (Check settings)||HD 1080p, High (Check settings)|
|NVIDIA GeForce MX230||92 fps (+6%)||66 fps (+2%)||49 fps (+69%)|
|NVIDIA GeForce MX130||87 fps||65 fps||29 fps|
In DOTA 2, the MX130 isn’t that far away from MX230 at Low and Medium settings. Things are getting serious if you want to play with maxed-out visual quality and the MX230 shows its power against MX130 with a 69% higher FPS result.
Performance summary (gaming tests)
The MX130 isn’t a bad performer but the MX230 is faster than it.
|GeForce MX230 over GeForce MX130||Full HD, Low||Full HD, Normal||Full HD, High||Average difference %|
|NVIDIA GeForce MX230||+12%||+54%||31%|
|NVIDIA GeForce MX130||5%|
At the begging of this article, we mentioned that everybody knows that the MX230 is faster than MX130 but the question was how much exactly the difference between them is? The answer is 31% on average. It’s not that much, but it’s not a small difference too. Just an example – if you want to play DOTA 2 on Max settings, the MX130 will struggle with a below 30 FPS result while the MX230 will provide much smoother gameplay experience with almost 50FPS – that is a significant difference. The MX230 is faster, and it has almost the same power draw like its smaller sibling, on top of that even the thermals are close too.
The MX130 has a good amount of power for such a low-end GPU. Its biggest problem is that the end prices of the devices configured with it are very close to the MX230-based notebooks. That’s why you always have to compare the prices before buying a new laptop because sometimes for a small extra amount of money you can buy a laptop with a faster GPU – in our case MX230 over MX130.
All laptops equipped with the NVIDIA GeForce MX230
All laptops equipped with the NVIDIA GeForce MX130