13" or 15" for everyday use.

wilds94

macrumors member
Original poster
Jul 26, 2012
48
0
So i've saved up some cash (in my gap year), and after almost a month of obsessing, buying and sending back an iMac and then ordering and cancelling another iMac, i've decided to build a gaming computer for my gaming needs and buy a rMBP for my every day use, and let them share a 27" 1440p monitor. (If anyone has any objections to this, let them be heard).

So basically i need to choose a configuration of a laptop to be partnered with this gaming computer for my every day use of OSX, I;

- Browse the internet, with more than 10 tabs open at once, often side by side
- Collect some music on there (upwards of 40gb so far)
- Try to do some logic pro stuff here and there
- The same with aperture.
- Will be carrying to and from uni most days.

I'm looking at either the 13" or 15" with the dual and quad core i7's
I'm not sure how much RAM i'll need
I'm not sure about 256gb sad or a 512gb ssd, as i have an external 4tb hdd.
I want to be able to comfortably run a 1440p 27" monitor off it, whilst having multiple desktops and my safari tabs and word and itunes running at the same time.

Can anyone make any suggestions? I'm happy to wait until the refresh of the rMBPs, but its a toss up between Dual Core and Quad Core processors?
 

wilds94

macrumors member
Original poster
Jul 26, 2012
48
0
Umm, initially i wanted a laptop to carry around with me, to uni and such, and while i go interstate/overseas, and a desktop to do all the heavy work.

After much thought, i decided that maybe a desktop just for gaming would work, and then a laptop for everything else seeing as the stuff i do on OSX isn't that heavy.
 

omgitscro

macrumors 6502a
Jul 12, 2008
570
87
Umm, initially i wanted a laptop to carry around with me, to uni and such, and while i go interstate/overseas, and a desktop to do all the heavy work.

After much thought, i decided that maybe a desktop just for gaming would work, and then a laptop for everything else seeing as the stuff i do on OSX isn't that heavy.
I can relate to your indecisiveness. I'm about to return my maxed-out 2013 13" Air for a 2012 13" rMBP (got it $600 off through a corporate employee friend at Apple; it's faster and $450 cheaper than the Air).

The HD5000 was nice but like you I won't be playing any games on my laptop. I think with Mavericks we'll be seeing a lot of performance increases. The 13" Retina should run your setup just fine. I'm planning on using the laptop for the next four years at least. I got 512GB in both cases but 256 would probably be okay for me; I could always move some old movies and photos to a couple of external hard drives (never have your files on just one drive at a time).
 

maflynn

Moderator
Staff member
May 3, 2009
65,042
30,969
Boston
Why not get your gaming rig and then buy a MacBook Air?

If you're looking for a laptop for mobility needs and you have a desktop, then there's no real reason to get a 15" since the 13" will be hooked up to the monitor when you're home and the 13" will be easier to deal with in school.
 

wilds94

macrumors member
Original poster
Jul 26, 2012
48
0
If you're looking for a laptop for mobility needs and you have a desktop, then there's no real reason to get a 15" since the 13" will be hooked up to the monitor when you're home and the 13" will be easier to deal with in school.
I want the laptop to be able to run logic pro and apeture on occasion, and to be able to run multiple web tabs, itunes, and other programs at the same time on two monitors. Think the 13" will do this ok?
 

maflynn

Moderator
Staff member
May 3, 2009
65,042
30,969
Boston
It can as I have run Aperture myself but tbh, the 15" MBP would be better suited thanks to the larger screen. When I had my 13" MBP I found the screen size too constraining for such work.

If you'll be hooked up to a larger monitor when working on this stuff that point is moot and again the 13" laptop makes sense
 

Dwinguel

macrumors member
Feb 2, 2010
49
0
Geneva, Switzerland
The 13" is fine for what you're doing, since you won't need so much graphic performance so can get away with the integrated graphic card.

It's lighter and smaller, more portable for uni and travelling.

I would stick to a 256 GB SSD drive, that's plenty enough since you have and will be using an external drive to store data you don't need all the time.

My only slight concern here is with the amount of RAM, limited to 8GB on the 13" model. Right now this is enough, but in 2-3 years it might start getting a bit low if you are using the latest releases of the software and OS. If you are not planning to keep your laptop for more than 3-4 years, it's fine. Also if you are planning to keep it longer but don't upgrade to the latest OS and software any more after 3 years, that should work.

So my advice is to go for the 13" model 256 GB SSD, 8GB RAM. And if you want to save money and are disciplined with your data, you could even manage with a 128 GB SSD...

Now with the refresh, the options above might not be available any more...
 

wilds94

macrumors member
Original poster
Jul 26, 2012
48
0
The 13" is fine for what you're doing, since you won't need so much graphic performance so can get away with the integrated graphic card.
Do you think that the Dual Core in the 13" will be good enough? Even for some light logic pro work stuff?
 

ValSalva

macrumors 68040
Jun 26, 2009
3,744
195
Burpelson AFB
So i've saved up some cash (in my gap year), and after almost a month of obsessing, buying and sending back an iMac and then ordering and cancelling another iMac, i've decided to build a gaming computer for my gaming needs and buy a rMBP for my every day use
What about waiting for the new Mac Pro? Just kidding :D It's too bad Apple doesn't have a true desktop gaming option.

I think the 13" rMBP would be perfect for your needs even if it is dual core. The native resolution is the doubled 1280x800 but that can be increased to 1440x900 with it still looking good. The option for 16GB of memory would be a nice bonus but not a deal breaker.
 

tann

macrumors 68000
Apr 15, 2010
1,720
401
UK
I recently finished school and I feel that the best computer for this task would be a new 13" air. With the 8gb of ram upgarde (i5/256gb model).

It's portable, has a ridiculous battery life, is super fast and more than capable of doing the sort of things you want to do on the go.

Unless you specifically want the extra ports or screen in the 13" rMBP I would say MBA.

Also, if you don't need it ASAP (i.e. not in the next week or two) just stick around for a bit to see if the rMBP's are updated.

But based on today's computers I would say MacBook Air with the 8gb ram upgrade.
 

arsimoun

macrumors member
Jan 24, 2013
63
1
California
13" vs. 15" screen...

You will never say of a 15" screen, "Oh my, God. That is just too much!" There are times when you will have a 13" screen and say, "I wish I had more screen real estate." I would opt for the 15".

FWIW

Adam Rodman
 

sofianito

macrumors 65816
Jan 14, 2011
1,207
2
Spain
You will never say of a 15" screen, "Oh my, God. That is just too much!"
You would probably say "That is too expensive and I am not taking advantage during my daily usage of this beast's horse power and screen estate. Oh my God, what a remorse and waste of money, I ruined myself or my parents who work so hard to earn that money..."
 

GermanyChris

macrumors 601
Jul 3, 2011
4,185
2
Here
Whatever light means. Just saying that with Logic it really depends what you do with it. Light could mean seldom or mean few tracks, no effects...
Logic came out in 09, the year before there was any core i any thing, 9.1 hit in 10 and killed Power. Should we start making comparison between a dual core 13" MBP and an 09 17"..Unless the dude is laying on a silly number of tracks a 13 will be more than adequate, though he'll likely need some RAM
 

Badrottie

Suspended
May 8, 2011
4,317
332
Los Angeles
I think you will be fine with either 13" rMBP and Haswell based MBA, both will handle all of your apps just fine. Also you said you plan to travel oversea then 13" MBA is perfect and when you come home you can hook it up to big monitor. Oh by the way both save more money than 15" rMBP. :apple: