2.4 GHZ N-Tbar vs Base 2.9 GHZ Tbar

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by Jker, Dec 2, 2016.

  1. Jker macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2016
    #1
    So I've tried both the base model of the non touchbar and touchbar.

    I really tried to love the touchbar, however, it's literally ****ing useless in my opinion after over a week with it. Sure, touch ID is nice, but having to adjust brightness and sound is a lot worse on this machine. The Non Touchbar base however was just a little too weak for my liking though, but the increased processor basically bumps it back to the same price as the touchbar. Now, this would seem a no brainer, but the lack of ports is the main issue for the non touchbar. What would everyone here do?
     
  2. thesaint024 macrumors 6502a

    thesaint024

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2016
    Location:
    Republic of California
    #2
    Aside from the price difference, which is what it is, the only question is do you value +2 hours of battery life or 2 more ports on the right side? The rest of the stuff is either not relevant to you or not a big deal. Pros and cons for each.
     
  3. tcoll150 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2016
    #3
    which one has more battery life?
     
  4. thesaint024 macrumors 6502a

    thesaint024

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2016
    Location:
    Republic of California
    #4
    Non touch.
     
  5. skids929 macrumors 6502a

    skids929

    Joined:
    Mar 24, 2011
    #5

    I've said it before I will say it again...You can make the TB look like the old function key strip in the settings if you don't like how the volume is and screen bright functions in app controls mode. Its just a digitized version of the old F key strip.

    So your point is moot really. Get the TB version, set it up the way you like, and get the power of the TB spec and the ports. Done.
     
  6. tcoll150 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2016
    #6
    You can do this with the FN key but can you make it so it stays?
     
  7. ncm34 macrumors member

    ncm34

    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2016
    Location:
    San Francisco, CA
    #7
    Been testing side-by-side the tb model and non-tb for a week.

    Touch bar specs:
    3.3i7, 16GB RAM, 512SSD (Silver)

    Non-Tb specs:
    2.4i7, 16GB RAM, 512SSD (Gray)

    Interestingly enough, I've found that the performance of the 2.4 i7 in the non-tb and the 3.3 i7 in the tb to be within 4-5% of each other in Geekbench.

    Aside from that, the battery life has been between 8-10 hours on non-tb and 4-6 hours in tb. Usage includes a bit of pycharm/xcode, terminal, spotify, messages, mail, safari, and sublime text.

    The non-tb runs WAY cooler than the tb. If you flip them over, you'll actually see that there are no vents on the undersides of the non-tb - guess that's the advantage of a 15W cpu.

    Under sustained loads (20m+ of hitting it hard), the tb holds up a little better than the non-tb. Most of my high-load scenarios are bursty - build/compile in IDEs and very occasional work in Adobe CS.

    I tried to get used to the touch bar, but just couldn't since my hands are totally mapped to function keys. It also feels odd to do keyboard shortcuts involving function + keyboard keys.

    As far as how useful the touch bar is to you - ymmv. Really depends on which apps and which types of apps you use - I can see the value in video/audio/design/engineering apps that require precise control of sliders. (Also worth noting that the Mac trackpad has been precise for a long time, and much bigger now!)

    The touch bar version totally wins on I/O. Not just having 2 more ports, but being able to choose which side of the machine you want to connect to peripherals is way more convenient.

    I was able to get both machines to drive 2x ASUS 1080p displays, connect to my USB3 hub, and charge my machine(s) with just 2 cables (one USB-C to HDMI I got for cheap on Amazon and one USB-C Multiport from Apple)

    I have owned both for a week now and I'm going to return the tb. The battery life and familiarity with the function keys made the decision for me. In my opinion, the maxed-out non-tb is the closest successor to last year's 13 inch with 3.1i7 - great performance and great all-day battery life.

    If the touch bar model was noticeably faster for my use case or if I needed 4 USB-C ports, I would have definitely considered the upgrade and taken the hit in battery life.

    But to each, his own :)
     
  8. xraydoc macrumors 604

    xraydoc

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2005
    Location:
    192.168.1.1
    #8
    Yes
     
  9. linguist macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2009
    #9
    How about combined CPU & GPU load for short and sustained load ? ( VM running directX application or native 3D gaming ) , I suspect touchbar version would be better for this kind of load, but so far nobody show real result running CPU and GPU load simultaneously.
     
  10. ncm34 macrumors member

    ncm34

    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2016
    Location:
    San Francisco, CA
    #10
    Don't have any VMs or games on either machine at the moment - if I try it out over the next week I'll let you know. I would also agree that the touch bar model would be better suited for these kinds of tasks given the higher wattage CPU and slightly faster graphics/RAM - but it's hard to say how big of a real-world difference this would make.

    It also appears that the touch bar model is using an Intel CPU from 2015, while the non-tb is using a CPU from 2016 - the performance gap between tb/non-tb may or may not widen if Apple puts the latest CPUs in the touch bar model.
     
  11. Jker thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2016
    #11
    I don't think it's moot, it's not physical keys and furthermore the battery is enticing to make the switch. The main point here really is the ports.

    Also, anyone know if they different graphics cards and RAM (2133 vs the non touchbar) have any difference? I haven't been able to tell.
     
  12. marc55, Dec 3, 2016
    Last edited: Dec 3, 2016

    marc55 macrumors 6502a

    marc55

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2011
    #12
    Interesting points.....

    I'm still trying to decide what I want. We only do web surfing, pages, numbers, Keynote, and playing around with pictures in Photos and a few other simple Apps.

    I know the Base NTB will more than meet those requirements, but Mac OS and other programs are becoming more advanced with every release, and I want a MB that will be usable for at least 5 years with no stuttering, etc.

    So here are the costs of the 13" models (Apple veterans Discount):

    NTB 2.0/16/512= $1,809
    NTB 2.4/16/512= $2,079
    TB 2.9/16/512= $2,079

    Seems to me the TB 2.9/16/512 would be the best choice, as it has extra ports, and I thought a better cooling system with different fans?

    However, I'm not sure what the actual battery life is between the NTB 2.4 and the TB 2.9?

    Confused to say the least
     
  13. skids929, Dec 3, 2016
    Last edited: Dec 3, 2016

    skids929 macrumors 6502a

    skids929

    Joined:
    Mar 24, 2011
    #13

    Based on what you said initially it is moot..You are now bringing a completely different detail into the discussion that you want physical keys. In that case go for the non TB model. Done. Any difference in graphics (the 13s don't have graphics cards, they are iGPUS) will likely not be noticeable, although you didn't cite what you are using the computer for. I am guessing casual use since any power user isn't going to get the 13, they'll go for the 15.

    The real point here is you are splitting hairs, if you want physical keys get the non TB since you feel that is important. If you want a little more power or alleged future proofing with less battery life get the 13 TB. I am on the 13 in TB and the battery is fine for me- I personally love the TB. And thats what I am defending here, your original comment of it's useless, and simple tasks being difficult. Not the case and you can make the TB look like the old layout and once you set things up the way you want I think the TB is great. Not a reason to buy this laptop but a nice little addition.

    Oh and the 2.4 in the non TB is an i7 which is likely to equal the battery life in a TB 2.9 with an i5. I haven't personally tested it, but some here have and reported out the battery life is similar. If battery life is one of your main criteria why not stick with the 2.0? Either way both models are great and you will likely be happy with whatever settle into.
     
  14. marc55 macrumors 6502a

    marc55

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2011
    #14
    Skids929, what is your battery life on th TB?
     
  15. Jker thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2016
    #15
    I get around 5-6 hours on it right now, but I do use it a almost max brightness. On the Non-Touchbar I was getting 8-10. Can anyone confirm battery life on the 2.4ghz non tocuhbar is worse?
     
  16. marc55 macrumors 6502a

    marc55

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2011
    #16
    Thanks Skids929; 5-6 hours just won't do it for me.

    I would also like to know how the 2.4 compares to the 2.0 in battery life
     
  17. Macalway, Dec 3, 2016
    Last edited: Dec 3, 2016

    Macalway macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Aug 7, 2013
    #17
    What I like about the touch bar machines is the dual side charging and just the additional USB-c ports. It's rather a breakthrough actually. This is where USB-C really shows it's worth. If you have these ports and move the machine around a lot, being able to charge on both sides is immediately noticed. The Touch bar itself is nice,, but not a huge improvement-yet.

    It would be nice to have the lower powered CPU with all these other options, but it's always something, right ;)

    The person who compared both (thanks!) is very attached to the fn keys, so the decision is made there. I don't think most people are. I also don't think most people need all the power. These things are almost OVER powered for regular users. The 2.0ghz base cpu is fine for most people
     
  18. ncm34 macrumors member

    ncm34

    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2016
    Location:
    San Francisco, CA
    #18
    Yup - my Mac is my primary development environment, so I do have a preference for the function keys I've been using for the last 10 years on Apple portables :)

    As far as i5 vs. i7 on the Fn keys model, I'd recommend the i5 to most people as it gets even better battery life than the model I have with the i7.
     
  19. iizmoo macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2014
    #19
    With your usage, you can use a CPU from 5 years ago and it'll go ;)

    The big big big difference between 5 years ago and now is the SSD. CPU for that kind of workload, not so much differences, unless you're opening a 30K rows spreadsheet in Numbers with a ton of formula or something. CPU performance gains from 5 years ago have been somewhat dismal. If the pattern hold for the next 5 years, CPU performance increases will be ~47% (8% annually compounded)

    Just got my 2016 MBP Classice @ 2.0Ghz i5. I plan to keep it for 5 years, not because I can't afford the upgrade, but because without something really major, there isn't enough performance gains to be worth an upgrade.
     
  20. Macalway macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Aug 7, 2013
    #20
    Yes, I forgot this. HUGE difference. Opening my Vmware Fusion files are really quick. I use this a lot so it helps.
     
  21. iizmoo macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2014
    #21
    Not just file I/O, as someone else on another thread pointed out, the speed is near DDR RAM speed from 20 years ago, and make it very interesting for SWAP space utilization. I'm not as dreadful of swapping in the file system anymore.
     

Share This Page