15” spend extra $ on Vega or Ram? Advice Please

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by MacDonaldTrump, Nov 29, 2018.

  1. MacDonaldTrump macrumors member

    MacDonaldTrump

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2018
    #1
    Long time lurking posting virgin.

    Hi nice to greet you all.
    I would love some help as I don’t have the knowledge you all do.

    Abut to purchase a new machine (upgrading from 2012 mbp, 2015 5k combo)
    I need portability for uni and workhorse when I travel.

    Primarily photography running creative cloud, also drone video in fcp.


    I wanted the 2.2 to keep the temperature down a little but do think the Vega is a nice upgrade option.

    I think I’m leaning toward the mid spec 2.6 now with upgrade to Vega or 32ram, both upgrades are similar price, I cannot afford both upgrades. I need this machine to last three years if possible, so would like to future proof as much as possible.

    Thanks for any help to understand how these upgrades would help me in the real world.
     
  2. Ploki macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2008
    #2
    Both are good upgrades frankly. And both benefit in a photography workflow...
    maybe get a 2.2 with 32+vega? I think this will benefit the most.

    all 3, 2.2, 2.6, and 2.9 max out at 3.1GHz under multicore load.

    so most of the benefits are for single core/burst operations.

    But since a lot of graphic operations are GPU accelerated, vega20 would give you a good boost here.
     
  3. MacDonaldTrump thread starter macrumors member

    MacDonaldTrump

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2018
    #3
    Thanks, yeah I’m stuck which way to go, unfortunately I can seem to see a 2.2 Vega option?
    I think I am leaning towards Vega as I believe it will help take the load off and machine runs cooler?
    I also heard that most programs would not use more than 16gb ram?
    Only read these facts and have no experience myself to back them up... that’s why I’m here, trust all you over bloggers.
    --- Post Merged, Nov 29, 2018 ---
    Sorry - Can’t seem to see Vega option on 2.2
     
  4. Ploki macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2008
    #4
    oof, my bad. Thought you could BTO vega on all CPU options.

    iirc vega doesnt run all that cooler - these machine run hot. Be prepared for it.

    I'd vote for Vega in that case.
    Radeon 560x is a 3y old chip, it has no place in such a machine.
     
  5. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

    Staff Member

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    Location:
    Boston
    #5
    I wouldn't recommend it, I think the premium up charge for the Vega is a pricey and I'm not sure its worth it. You're talking about spending 3,000 for the laptop (with taxes). Photography won't really benefit that much the GPU and while FCP will, I'm not sure the speed increase is worth the price, especially if you don't rely on FCP to make money, (time is money in that case).
     
  6. 88Keys macrumors regular

    88Keys

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2007
    #6
    I say go with the ram increase. Simply because if you later run into performance limitations with the dGPU, an eGPU is a very solid option.
     
  7. MacDonaldTrump thread starter macrumors member

    MacDonaldTrump

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2018
    #7
    Thanks for taking the time, still unsure but you all sound like ram is the way to go.
    Could maybe get the 2.2 upgrade the i9, 512gb, 32 ram?

    I’ll go price that up, getting a 15 discount at apple which will help a little but I’m tight for budget and these prices stink.
    Even the 2.2,512,32ram sounds nice, egpu is a good option down the track as it will be desktop based a lot of the time.
     
  8. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

    Staff Member

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    #8
    You have a 2012 MBP, does that work decently with your tasks? I know using my 2012 MBP with photoshop, and lightroom it was decent. My point is this: Do you need the i9, (or as you originally requested the Vega)? I think you're over speccing your build and the base model or the 2.6 may be a better fit.

    how's your ram utilization now? How much ram does the iMac have/use and are you low on utilization of ram on the MBP? My point again is, do you really need 32GB. It seems most people here at MacRumors recommends 32GB of ram just because they can and just in case. If you're not using and pushing the ram now, going to 32GB won't help anything. The future is such that there's no major updates to the hardware or software that would make 32GB a viable option.
     
  9. MacDonaldTrump thread starter macrumors member

    MacDonaldTrump

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2018
    #9

    Hello maflynn,

    Thanks so much for taking the time to help me.
    Sorry I forgot to mention at the beginning that I sold both the other machines to get ready to finance this.

    I am about to return to university to study photography fine art, I was worried that my old machines were getting older, no warranty support etc and I need to be covered for the 3 years of my degree so I thought now is a good time to invest/need to.

    I think, I am feeling the need to over spec, due to replacing both machines at once. It will primarily be photography but heavy use as I have already been shooting for years but aim to step it up quite seriously. I was running a nice video business last year but that has now ceased and not likely to begin again.

    I am hearing some issues of the new range of mbp’s but I have no option really.

    I have the new iPad Pro 12.9 but mostly for my artwork, duet display, jumpdrive, portfolio. It can’t really replace a mbp in the field working.
     
  10. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

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    #10
    How much ram did those machines have, and were you running into issues when you had them?

    You do have a return period, so why not get a stock unit and see if it works for your need, if not, exchange it for a higher end machine.
     
  11. leman macrumors G3

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2008
    #11
    You don't need 32Gb and you don't need the Vega GPU. You might see some performance improvements in fpc with the Vega though. Also, 2.2Ghz CPU will not give you lower temperatures.
     
  12. PBG4 Dude macrumors 68030

    PBG4 Dude

    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2007
    #12
    The Vega GPU customization is only allowed on the 2,799 tier 15” MBPs. Unless you can downgrade the CPU on that model (doubtful since it’s priced into the 2,799 tier), you won’t be able to get 2.2 and Vega.

    (Posted this in case anyone was wondering, I think OP already has their answer.)
     
  13. mr.anthonyramos macrumors 6502

    mr.anthonyramos

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    Hong Kong
    #13
    Personally, I would go for 32GB and then get a eGPU if you really need it. You can't do it the other way around if you got the Vega and 16GB.

    I think in most instances, even some day to day instances you might find more use with the 32GB RAM.
     
  14. MacDonaldTrump thread starter macrumors member

    MacDonaldTrump

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2018
    #14
    Thank you all for the help, all great advice and I am thinking hard.

    Possibly just the 2.2 still may add 32 would be okay for me.
    If not I could push I think to the 2.6 with 32 I like the idea of egpu if needed down the line.
     
  15. leman macrumors G3

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2008
    #15
    Nonsense. There are many more professional and casual use cases where faster GPU is beneficial. In contrast to having 32gb in a laptop. For a normal user, getting the ram upgrade is literally throwing money away.
     
  16. Padsterman, Nov 29, 2018
    Last edited: Nov 29, 2018

    Padsterman macrumors member

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    Boston
    #16
    Doesn't more RAM help when editing really large, multi-layered photoshop files, stitched or composites etc? I planned on ordering 32gb and Vega 20 as I do heavy photoshop editing and video editing.
     
  17. mr.anthonyramos macrumors 6502

    mr.anthonyramos

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    #17
    Professional Use: Having to open Lightroom and Photoshop with your 3000 RAW shots of the event. RAM is important for both opening these files as well as processing them. Not the GPU. If you are IT engineers, developers (in some cases), sales engineers, technical writers, software product managers and run a lot of VMs then the additional RAM is more beneficial than GPU. Now let's not even talk about editing long length 4K video. This is one of the reasons why a lot of my video buddies are happy that we finally have 32GB of RAM as an option.

    Now imagine if you are also doing other "casual" stuff with multiple applications, multiple tabs on chrome (its a RAM hog), etc.

    I still stand that having the extra RAM would be beneficial in the long run especially since once you get the machine you re stuck with that amount of RAM. If you really need the extra oomph of a GPU, then the OP can purchase a eGPU.

    Bill Gates once said that we will never need more than 640k of memory...
     
  18. FrostyF macrumors regular

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    Nov 2, 2018
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    Western Canada
    #18
    There's a simple solution to this.....get both 32GB and Vega 20. :D
     
  19. puma1552 macrumors 603

    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2008
    #19
    Honestly I don't think the OP really needs either if he only needs three years out of the machine.

    That said, given the choice, I'd personally opt for the 32 GB RAM.
     
  20. koyoot macrumors 603

    koyoot

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    Jun 5, 2012
    #20
    2.6 GHz/16GB RAM/Vega 20 will perfectly last you more than 3 years, considering how is progress on silicon side slowing down.
     
  21. leman macrumors G3

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2008
    #21
    @mr.anthonyramos: your examples are all highly specialised, narrow domain use cases with extreme requirements. For example, load and edit 3000 RAW shots simultaneously you'd need a high-end workstation machine with multiple CPUs and 128GB RAM at least. Not something one usually does at a laptop.

    At any rate, that is exactly my point. If you are one of those professionals that needs large amount of high-performance cache, its great that you have the 32Gb option (your case really calls for a large workstation, but sure, sometimes one does need to be mobile). However, a person who does photography and drone video editing as a hobby, or runs one or two Windows VMs on a side, will not benefit from having more RAM. In contrast, a faster GPU — provided the software they use can utilise GPU acceleration (FPCX can) — will offer immediate benefit by accelerating processing.

    My personal case: I am an IT professional and data scientist who routinely works with multi-GB datasets. I also use multiple VMs (virtual linux servers + Windows for software testing). I do not need 32GB RAM. Lower RAM latency + faster CPUs, sure. Frankly, I also do not need a fast GPU, but since I am starting to play with deep learning more, having 6GFLOPS of FP16 computational power does make some things quicker. And of course, having the ability to play AAA games in my spare time makes this laptop to a true multi-purpose tool, which is great.
     
  22. unglued macrumors regular

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    Feb 20, 2016
  23. Ma2k5 macrumors 68020

    Ma2k5

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    London
    #23
    No way you need 32GB RAM, you’ll realise no benefit.

    At least with the dGPU, you’ll gain maybe some seconds or minutes perhaps in some tasks, maybe not. But at least it can do something in your use case compared to the extra RAM.

    Not that you need either, the 560X is enough for university and beyond.
     
  24. FrostyF macrumors regular

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    Nov 2, 2018
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    Western Canada
    #24
    Well, my Chrome tabs exceed 16GB of RAM, so if I want to fire up a VM with that open, 32GB certain would help.
     
  25. Ma2k5 macrumors 68020

    Ma2k5

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    Location:
    London
    #25
    Your Chrome tabs could also eat 32GB RAM, it’s how RAM works. You didn’t actually think you functionally needed 16GB of RAM of chrome did you? That would have been ridiculous and unacceptable.

    It uses whatever is not being used, whenever it can.
     

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