15 inch (r)MBP - 2.3 vs 2.6

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by Windows&Apple, Oct 27, 2013.

  1. Windows&Apple macrumors regular

    Jan 1, 2013
    Is there really a difference between the 2.3Ghz i7 and the 2.6Ghz i7? With the student discount, I'll get the upgrade for $180 and I hear it adds like 8% more performance. My question is:

    • Is it worth the upgrade price of $180?
    • Will this be more future proof?
    • Will it cause the computer to run hotter (temperature)
    • Will it cause the battery to drain quicker?

    I will be using this laptop for the following:

    • Adobe Suite (Photoshop, Dreamweaver, Fireworks, Premiere)
    • Windows 7/8.1 (Bootcamp)
    • Spreadsheet work (Accounting softwares included)
    • 3Ds Max and Maya
    • Programming (C++, Javascript, etc)
    • Gaming in Windows (BF3 and alike)

    I also need this computer to run for atleast 6 years with little to no issues.

    PS: Extended warranty? Yes or no?
  2. patrick001 macrumors member


    Dec 16, 2008
    Definitely get the extended warranty. You'll probably get a solid 4 to 5 years out of this laptop, but you might get envious of the technology coming out by the time 2016 - 2017 rolls around.
  3. Windows&Apple thread starter macrumors regular

    Jan 1, 2013
    I'll probably end up going for it. My main concern is the processor. Any advice on that front? :)
  4. Atomic Walrus macrumors 6502a

    Sep 24, 2012

    • This is mostly a personal decision. Is 7-8% performance gain worth $180 (a 7.5% price increase compared to the student pricing of 2.3/16/512)?

      For comparison, the mid range CPU in this year's model (2.3) is just slightly faster than the 2.8 top upgrade option for the early 2013 model. And as already mentioned the 2.6 option beats that score by ~7.5% (according to Geekbench scores). If you're looking for a CPU speed upgrade over last year this is basically the only option.

      Consider a CPU 3 years from now that is, let's say 45% faster than the current speeds (based on an assumption of an average speed boost of 15% per year.) Will that 7.5% make it feel less outdated? Probably not IMO, but again this is a personal value judgement.
      Yes. However to know how much of an impact there would really be you'll need to wait until someone benchmarks these aspects. It's impossible for the CPU to be faster without using more power and producing more heat in the process when we're talking about the same architecture (between CPU generations is a different story obviously).

      It'd be great of Anandtech takes a look at this, but they don't usually end up getting multiple versions of Apple machines to test. They did run heat and power comparisons on the Air this year so maybe it's possible.
    If you want to have the computer for several years Applecare might be a good idea. Any repair on the retina MBP are going to be very expensive without Apple covering it because of how many of the parts cannot be replaced separately.

    Be aware that a 6 year old computer is going to be hopelessly outdated regardless of its initial stats (imagine using a 2007 machine for Photoshop and 3DS today, it would be almost completely unusable). Buy upgrades because they'll be useful today, not with the intention of keeping the machine from becoming obsolete years down the line (it won't work).
  5. ano0oj macrumors 6502

    Apr 20, 2010
    Not worth $180...I upgraded from 2.0 to 2.3 because it was only $90. But $180 is steep for something you'll hardly notice
  6. Windows&Apple thread starter macrumors regular

    Jan 1, 2013
    I'm leaning towards the 2.3Ghz model mainly because I don't have to wait 2-3 weeks for Best Buy to order me one. (I get a discount there + student discount). If you guys are saying no to the 2.6 (Which almost everyone is from my last post and this one), and the Apple reps.. I guess it's a no then. Thanks guys!!


    I was working on my last project on a core2duo just last year. It's from 2009 and it worked well, surprisingly. Hopefully this MBP can keep up lol ;)
  7. Starfyre macrumors 68030


    Nov 7, 2010
    Read this thread... it may help. If you can wait, maybe see some reviews on the 2.6.
  8. Windows&Apple thread starter macrumors regular

    Jan 1, 2013

    2.3 = Cooler and longer battery life
    2.6 = Hotter and not as long of a battery life.

    At an 8% increase in performance, honestly, I don't know if it's worth it.


    And I am planning a desktop build later next year which will be my baby. I also hate the fact that you have to buy online and than return online, I don't trust FedEx or UPS. They treat their packages like garbage and I don't want my $2500 machine thrown around like a toy.

    2.3Ghz it is!!


    I'll probably pick up a lens for my T3i or a GoPro... or even a Nexus 5!! Ohh goodie!!

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