13" Macbook Pro or Razorblade Stealth?

Discussion in 'Alternatives to Mac Hardware' started by roxics, Aug 27, 2017.

  1. roxics macrumors regular

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    Aug 4, 2013
    #1
    I'm really struggling here guys. I'm in the market for a new laptop. My late 2008 macbook is getting pretty old. Even my 2012 mac mini, which I edit 4K video on, is getting a little old. I really don't want to spend $3000 on a 15" Macbook Pro with a dedicated GPU. I've found a lot of MSI and ASUS machines out there in the price range I want to spend ($1000-$1600) that have nVidia 1050ti or 1060 GPUs with 4GB graphics memory. It's $2800 minimum to get into a Macbook Pro with 4GB of GPU memory.

    Then I found the Razorblade Stealth for $1600. It seems to have everything I want except the dedicated GPU, but they offer that externally. Then I remember hearing that Apple will soon support external GPUs as well and I'm wondering if that applies to the current 13" Macbook Pro and how soon we can expect that.

    Now I'm torn. In many ways I would like to stick with Mac, but in many ways I'm really turned off by Apple lately with nothing being user upgradable like my old 2008 model. Plus it's $2200 for a 13" Macbook Pro vs $1600 for the Razorblade Stealth with similar specs. And the RBS offers the external GPU option right now.
     
  2. ilikewhey macrumors 6502a

    ilikewhey

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    #2
    depending on what you wanna do with it. is a dgpu your main priority? if so i would look into alienware r15 with 1070, plus the cooling is very good, so much its more quiet than competitors the razorblade is def not one of the bang for your buck when it comes to pc laptop
     
  3. Glockworkorange macrumors 68000

    Glockworkorange

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    #3
    2016 and later 13 inch models will work with eGPU's in High Sierra, which should be released next month.

    If I am not mistaken, the developer and public betas out right now will reun eGPU's.
     
  4. roxics thread starter macrumors regular

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    Aug 4, 2013
    #4
    My goal is to pretty much replace my 2008 macbook and 2012 Mac Mini with a single laptop. So it will have to handle everything from casual web browsing, photoshop work and editing 4K video off my Panasonic GH4. I do video work as a side job for clients. So the main reason I want a dedicated GPU is so I can run stuff like Premiere Pro, After Effects, Adobe Media Encoder and I would like to start working with Da Vinci Resolve as well, but none of my current machines will run it, it's heavily GPU dependent.

    I prefer the portability of a 13" screen and both the Macbook Pro and Razorblade Stealth seem to offer long battery life and portable size. The option to plug them into an external GPU when I want to sit down at a desk and edit is appealing. Sort of the best of both worlds. The alternative is either a much more expensive 15" Macbook Pro at nearly twice the price or a cheaper 15" plastic body MSI or ASUS machine spec'd really well at a great price but with suspect customer support, build quality and a larger size with less battery life.
     
  5. _Kiki_, Aug 27, 2017
    Last edited: Aug 27, 2017

    _Kiki_ macrumors 6502a

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    #5
    Razer Blade 14 2017 has strong GPU GF GTX 1060 and nice 4K screen, but be careful with temps (monitoring & fan control recommended)
     
  6. roxics thread starter macrumors regular

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    Aug 4, 2013
    #6
    Yeah but the 1080p screen version has quality control issues, so I don't even want to tempt that one and the 4K version is too expensive. My goal is to stay closer to $1500 or so, not $2500, otherwise I would just buy a 15" Macbook Pro and be done with it.
     
  7. Bending Pixels macrumors 65816

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    #7
    One runs a solid OS and the other runs an OS that looks like it was designed by Fisher Price
     
  8. roxics thread starter macrumors regular

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    Aug 4, 2013
    #8
    I use both Mac OS and Windows on a daily basis. I edit on two Windows desktops at my day job. One running 8 and the other running 10. Both are solid. If anything I've been having more issues with Mac OS. The quality of Apple software has gone down hill in recent years. I've been running macs as my main machines for over a decade and some years before that part time. It's one of the reasons I'm even considering a switch for my personal machines, which would have been heresy to me in the past. So I'm cool with the OS. I'm really just looking for he best hardware at a good price point right now.
     
  9. _Kiki_ macrumors 6502a

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    Aug 13, 2017
    #9
    still better deal than MacBook Pro 13 with only dual core CPU and weak Intel Iris

    also external station + GPU will cost you extra $600-$700

    MacBook Pro 15 2017 still has quite weak GPU
     
  10. Queen6 macrumors 604

    Queen6

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    #10
    Sadly one of the primary reasons I switched to W10 was also the depreciation in quality of Apple's software. I simply tired of things "just not working" Clearly much is related to workflow and usage, equally W10 has proved to be a lot more stable.

    As for choices external GPU's are still relatively expensive, give the cost so the enclosure and card, I'd be more inclined to look towards a 15" Windows notebook with a dGPU, although is might push the budget to around $2K, yet likely cheaper than a 13" plus eGPU.

    Q-6
     
  11. polbit macrumors 6502

    polbit

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    #11
    Honestly if you are looking at loaded MBP 13", might as well get the 15", they price difference is not that great. Unfortunately new MBPs definitely do not compete on price, so it's really a personal choice if you want to pay the Apple "tax" or go with something like Razer or IMHO even better, XPS 13 or 15.
     
  12. ZapNZs macrumors 68020

    ZapNZs

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    Jan 23, 2017
    #12
    If you can hold out for a couple of months, it sounds like your needs would align well with a 13-inch laptop that uses a Coffee Lake quad core CPU and has Thunderbolt 3 for external GPU connectivity?
     
  13. QueenTyrone macrumors 6502a

    QueenTyrone

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    Sep 21, 2016
    #13
    So you mean Mac os is the one that looks like Fisher price? Interesting

    OP have you thought about the older dell xps 13/15?
     
  14. roxics thread starter macrumors regular

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    Aug 4, 2013
    #14
    Does anyone know if these external GPUs/enclosures that will be made to work with Mac OS will also be supported in bootcamp with Windows 10?
     
  15. leman macrumors G3

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    Oct 14, 2008
    #15
    The Razorblade Stealth is basically a lower-spec clone of the MBP 13". It uses lower-tier CPUs with slower iGPU and cheaper display. I don't see any reason at all to go for the Stealth as compared to non-TB 13" MBP.

    I don't know whether Windows 10 "officially" supports eGPUs. I suspect that will be at the driver end, since the eGPU is probably seen as another internal card (its connected via the PCI-E just like an internal one). Gaming laptops with eGPU support often use their own proprietary interfaces and driver layers.
     
  16. Harthag macrumors 6502a

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    U.S.
    #16
    @roxics - would you consider the Alienware 13 as an option? As a current Razer Blade gtx 1060 owner I'd definitively tell you, do not buy the Stealth or anything else directly from Razer. The Core has its own set of issues. You are severely bottlenecked by the low voltage CPU in the Stealth.

    You should either stick with a new MBP or try Alienware 13 or the Razer Blade, in my opinion. You can get a Blade from the Microsoft store and take advantage of the 2 year warranty and really great support. Yes QC is horrible. I have no hands on experience but I have read that the Alienware Graphics Amplifier performs better than the Core. And you get actual competent after sale support from Dell unlike the imbeciles at Razer.

    Mobile quad core Coffee Lake is right around the corner. But they are still ultra low voltage. The current 7700HQ is full power mobile quad core.
     
  17. roxics thread starter macrumors regular

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    #17
    Good suggestions. I will look into that.
     
  18. roxics thread starter macrumors regular

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    Aug 4, 2013
    #18
    Just an update. I ended up with a Lenovo Yoga 720. For $1350 this thing has a i7 7700HQ, 16GB Ram, 512SSD, GTX 1050 with 2GB VRam, fingerprint sensor, 4K touch screen with Wacom pen support and flips over to become a tablet. The overall style and keyboard remind me of an older Macbook Pro, which is a plus.

    The specs for the price are incredible. Unfortunately I have to return it. The screen has a hardware issue that causes a thin black line to appear at the top right. This is a common issue many people are having and there is no fix for it. I just discovered it tonight on mine. Luckily I'm still within my return window.

    So this puts me back on the market for a new machine. Considering all the horror stories I hear about every other brand, I'm afraid I may have to bite the bullet and but a Macbook Pro. This kind of depresses me. To get something even remotely similar to this Lenovo I have to spend twice as much money ($2700 vs $1350) for a 15" Macbook Pro. But even then, there is no 4K touchscreen and I have to spend more money buying dongles to hook anything up to it.
    More likely I'll probably just have to accept defeat an get a cheaper 13" with integrated graphics and an i5 while still spending $400 more than I paid for this Lenovo.

    I just hate the fact that there are no good alternatives to an expensive and feature deprived Macbook Pro if you want anything with some quality control and good customer service.
     
  19. leman macrumors G3

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    Oct 14, 2008
    #19
    Just because Apple doesn’t want to turn their laptops into cumbersome “tablets” doesn’t make them “feature deprived”. And some food for thought: the 7700hq alone costs the manufacturers $378. Imagine how many corners Lenovo must cut in order to reach that customer price and be profitable.
     
  20. Queen6, Sep 13, 2017
    Last edited: Oct 23, 2017

    Queen6 macrumors 604

    Queen6

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    #20
    Lenovo obviously purchases in bulk with significant discount. The Yoga 720 is an excellent productivity orientated notebook, nor does Apple have much to shout about with the 15" MBP with the majority of model's over years being significantly flawed, thanks to cutting corners and poor design decisions, indeed food for thought...

    Major difference one company isn't hosing it's customers with excessive margins, fuelled by corporate greed.

    Q-6
     
  21. theitsage Suspended

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    Aug 28, 2005
    #21
    @roxics I tried about all of the options mentioned so far and without a doubt the build quality of the new MacBook Pro is way better. If you plan on using an eGPU, my recommendation is to wait for a quad-core 13" MacBook Pro. There's no Bootcamp eGPU support from Apple but it's not that bad to set it up.
     
  22. Harthag macrumors 6502a

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    Jun 20, 2009
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    U.S.
    #22
    Sorry to hear that, has to be incredibly frustrating. Have you looked at the Gigabyte Aero 15? It is not gamer blingy and has solid specs and battery life (7700hq, gtx 1060, edge to edge 15" matte display in a 14" body). Also has TB3 port if you want e-gpu. But it isn't 4K. If you really want help finding a PC alternative the folks at notebookreview.com will be able to throw several PC options your way. Sounds like you would be most comfortable with a Mac honestly, you won't find better support and service. And screens are best in the industry. And native e-gpu support is coming.

    High Sierra will support e-gpu from what I've read so far, which is huge.

    https://9to5mac.com/2017/06/07/hands-on-macos-high-sierra-native-egpu-support-shows-promise-video/
     
  23. roxics thread starter macrumors regular

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    Aug 4, 2013
    #23
    Yeah I think I'm just going to jump on a 2017 13" Macbook Pro. The model I have in my sights is a 3.1Ghz i5 with Touch Bar, 512SSD and 8GB Ram. Yeah I'm losing the dedicated GPU, half the ram, the i7 and the 4K touchscreen while paying $300 more (for an open box Macbook Pro versus new Yoga 720), which sounds insane, but at least I'll have something with good quality control and customer service that I can count on holding up for 5-7 years. With eGPU support coming that gives me some upgrade options for desktop work should I need it. Which DaVinci Resolve really does. But I'm mostly a Premiere Pro editor anyway and that is less resource intensive.
     
  24. monkmartinez macrumors newbie

    monkmartinez

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    Feb 1, 2016
    #24
    This is not true like it was in 2008. Look at all the problems people are having with the newest MBP. I have a 2011 17" that I hold like a baby so it doesn't break. I am also in the market for a new laptop... I am also looking at Lenovo Thinkpads.

    There are going to be problems with all electronics. I am done paying a premium for a device that is intentionally crippled with inferior hardware billed as the "best, most revolutionary, super duper, incredible awesomest EVER!" When the truth is most of the other manufactures are making better spec'ed machines at prices where you don't have to wait 6 years to change your computer. AKA - The total cost of ownership is much lower with HP, Dell, Lenovo. If you were to break it down to price per month or day the OBJECTIVE value proposition is a no brainer.

    Buy a $3000 dollar MBP and then shell out some more for dongles... "Oh, macOS and iOS are so seamlessly integrated!" BS! One has USB-C while the other has lightening. Here let me get my bag-o-dongles to hook basic stuff to this computer. SO DUMB! I used to be a major Apple evangelist... not anymore.
     
  25. groove-agent macrumors 65816

    groove-agent

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    Jan 13, 2006
    #25
    I'm thinking that too, but will they upgrade the 13" with the on-die thunderbolt 3? If you're using an EGPU, the 15" MBP would be a better choice.

     

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30 August 27, 2017