2015 1.1Ghz M3 rMB fast enough?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by anon08, Oct 7, 2016.

  1. anon08 macrumors member

    anon08

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2016
    #1
    hey,

    I'm looking at leaving the world of windows and coming to MacOS for the first time. Basically I don't do anything intense on my computer. Generally just browse the web, youtube, a word doc every now and then, read a pdf, and some netflix. But I do tend to do a few of these things at once, like watching youtube while I browse the net. I like a relatively smooth experience, it doesn't have to be lightning fast, but it shouldn't be agonizing.

    So I'm thinking of getting a refurb 2015 1.1Ghz macbook due to the heavily discounted price here in Australia. When they were in store they felt pretty fast to me, nothing to complain about.

    But what about a few months later when all your things are installed?
    Does it still perform well or should I not be so tight and opt for the 1.2Ghz 2015 rMB or get a 2016 MB?

    I will most likely upgrade again in 2 years or whenever I see a MB worth upgrading to for a good price, so I don't need something that is future proof so much.

    Thanks guys :D
     
  2. macfish macrumors newbie

    macfish

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2006
    Location:
    Toronto, Ontario
    #2
    I have the 1.2 ghz machine and it's plenty fast for everything I need it to do. It handles multiple large raw files in Photoshop without a hiccup. I can have dozens of windows open on multiple browsers and rarely get the spinning beach ball.

    I have quite a few apps installed and it still boots in 10-12 seconds. I love the wifi radio in it as it connects to my routers in places that my other devices struggle to see the network. I use my rMB more than my Mac Pro beast 'cause I can use it on the couch.
     
  3. anon08 thread starter macrumors member

    anon08

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2016
    #3
    This sounds pretty good to me, that's the 2015 model yeah?
     
  4. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    May 3, 2009
    Location:
    Boston
    #4
    I think overall performance may be ok, but given that the MacBook is not built for speed, using Intel's lowest powered CPU, it may not be a great representation of what Macs can do.

    From my perspective, the MacBook is a great secondary computer, something small, and light to take on the road when you travel. I'm sure plenty of people use the Macbook as their only computer, but that's not for me.
     
  5. macfish macrumors newbie

    macfish

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2006
    Location:
    Toronto, Ontario
    #5
    yes, bought it it 2015. Have had for exactly one year. It works and looks like I just bought it :)
     
  6. MacBAir macrumors member

    MacBAir

    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2016
    Location:
    Portugal
    #6
    OP, see this post? Ignore it 100%.

    A modern core M chip, such as the one that you will have on your retina Macbook, is as fast as ULV chips (Surface Pro, Macbook air, Zenbook, series 9) from a few years ago (blazingly fast for 9 out of 10 users) and, because it is modern, it has some amazing features built in that older, big, power hungry and even powerful chips don't.

    With that Core M, you get hardware acceleration and hardware features that allow you to watch full HD Netflix without a problem, for example, for hours and hours and hours. Computers from some years ago, with huge powerful chips but no hardware acceleration for some codecs, would struggle with it and all you would hear would be fans spinning. Since it is also fanless, and as a fantastic SSD, everything on your computer will feel and be faster than 95% of computers being used today, for an workflow similar to what you described. For your usage, that might even be overkill! Buy one and enjoy it. If, for some reason you don't like it, return it and see it for yourself.

    Anyway, one warning: If you use Word for complex documents, with a lots of plugins, expect it to be slightly slower than on windows, because each office app on OS X is huge and "heavy", because they have to be standalone apps. So, while the complete office 2016's windows version is 2GB in size, each OS X office app is 2 GB, give or take. Having said that, for light normal usage word is fast and pleasant, and it is always dogsh*t (I apologize for my french) with plugins like endnote on windows, anyway.
     
  7. GreatDrok macrumors 6502a

    GreatDrok

    Joined:
    May 1, 2006
    Location:
    New Zealand
    #7
    Don't worry about the clock speed, these things overclock when they need to so they're plenty fast and the SSD is really quick too which is what makes the whole machine much faster. I use my rMB for everything I do. No problems.
     
  8. azt33 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2006
    Location:
    Zurich, Switzerland
    #8
    I have the model you are looking to get, the 1.1GHz / 256GB version. I use it as my main computer, with similar uses as you have, except I use Handbrake almost daily to convert videos - never had any issue to this, did not get warm or anything, and gosh the silence is just bliss. Plus the size is awesome that I can just take it anywhere. It is actually not much heavier than my iPad Pro with the Apple Smart Keyboard.

    I believe it will fit your use case perfectly and would go for it. The keyboard is also pretty awesome, once you get used to it after a few days :)
     
  9. anon08 thread starter macrumors member

    anon08

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2016
    #9
    What about to run a 4k monitor? Looking at one of these lg 4k screens with the USB c hub inbuilt. 1.1ghz 2015 quick enough ?
     
  10. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    May 3, 2009
    Location:
    Boston
    #10
    I disagree, I think my logic and advice is sound. Yes there are die hard fans that say the rMB is the greatest thing since sliced bread, it can run games do everything else a Macpro can do on a Core M chip but the fact remains its a lower powered less powerful chipset. I've seen enough posts and comments by people disappointed in its performance.

    Its the GPU that will be driving the 4k monitor

    Here's what Apple states:
    Capto_Capture 2016-10-15_06-56-50_AM.png
     
  11. kiwipeso1 Suspended

    kiwipeso1

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    Sep 17, 2001
    Location:
    Wellington, New Zealand
    #11
    It won't run a 4k monitor above 30Hz. Ask yourself if you can live with jerky playback on the monitor.
     
  12. bingeciren, Oct 17, 2016
    Last edited: Oct 17, 2016

    bingeciren macrumors 6502a

    bingeciren

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2011
    #12
    Do you own a rMB and find it inadequate from your personal experience, or is this your opinion based on your intuition?

    As an example, my wife has a 2012 15" MBP with 2.6 GHz quad core i7 and I have the 2016 rMB 1.3 m7. Obviously her machine is faster for CPU intensive tasks such as Handbrake, iMovie imports, video editing etc, but the difference is not that huge to dismiss the rMB as the main computer and classify it as a secondary computer.

    Straming Airplay videos from MB to Apple tv, especially if the content is Flash based, taxes the 15" MBP so much that the fans work like a hair dryer. My rMB accomplishes the same thing very quietly, without a glitch or stutter, even though it gets hotter than normal.

    There was not a single task I threw at my rMB so far which made me wish that it was faster.

    On the other hand, I don't know the performance of the 1.1 GHz rMB, and won't be able to comment on it.
     
  13. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    May 3, 2009
    Location:
    Boston
    #13
    Opinion based on my research and not intuition.

    I've seen enough people say that many tasks that the rMB is slower then their other computers or expectations..
     
  14. bingeciren, Oct 17, 2016
    Last edited: Oct 17, 2016

    bingeciren macrumors 6502a

    bingeciren

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2011
    #14
    Slower, yes. However, not too slow to annoy or make it unusable. In fact, the perceived speed and the quick response of this machine is fantastic.

    Like I said, it performs very well doing many things that kicks the fans to full speed on many other computers. I run Parallels without a hitch, watch Netflix, stream video to ATV, import videos to iMovie and do video editing and many other tasks without noticing a slowdown. Most of the time the CPU is not even used at 100% capacity.

    Carbon Copy Cloner sometimes taxes the CPU to 80% but other than that, it hasn't hesitated or slowed down no matter what I did to it. If I have to import a 2 hour long video, I go and do it on my quad core i7, and save perhaps 30 minutes. Big deal!

    For all practical purposes, this machine can be used as a main computer. However, if you are coding and compiling over and over again, or doing heavy video conversion or watching 4K video on a big display, then you have no reason to complain, this is not the machine for it. Go and do your job on a desktop or a MacBook Pro.

    My research and what I've heard from other people, like you have, made me very apprehensive about buying the rMB in the first place and I was ready to return it if it didn't perform well. That's why I opted for the 1.3 m7 model because I didn't want to take a chance. I was pleasantly surprised about its performance. My only complaint is the keyboard. After 4 months of daily use, I still think it's not that pleasant.
     
  15. Silvestru Hosszu macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 2, 2016
    Location:
    Arad, Romania
    #15
    I have both a 15'' macbook pro mid 2015 with discreet graphics and the new m3 2016 rMB.
    Although this little machine is quite capable and nice, I can't deny that my macbook pro is a significantly faster machine.
    In my experience, the rMB is very usable for everyday tasks but for my usage (quite extensive photo editing and advanced ms office) I would not take it for my daily driver.
     
  16. davidg4781 macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Oct 28, 2006
    Location:
    Alice, TX
    #16
    Gotta chime in here as I've had my eye on a rMB but either couldn't afford it or now I'm waiting to see if they update it soon.

    At the end of the day, it really depends on what you uses are. It's a personal choice, but you can get input from others.

    Since 2006 I've been wanting to convert some VHS tapes to DVD using iMovie. Still haven't done it, but I'm thinking of doing that on a PowerMac G5 (long story).

    Other than that, my uses are pretty much internet, iWork stuff, Netflix, Quicken, iTunes... stuff like that that a rMB should have absolutely no issues with. For the average home user, you should be fine. It may warm up and chug through some video edits but if you're just doing a few then it's worth the savings and portability. If that's bringing you income, use that income and get a MBP. Or a nMP.

    I'm normally a get the top of the line type of person but even I'm considering a rMP because I really don't need anything more. Of course I may try to max out the SSD and RAM.

    You may want to look over at the MB section and see what people are complaining about and what they like about it.
     
  17. bingeciren macrumors 6502a

    bingeciren

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2011
    #17
    Well, speed-wise I think rMB would be able to cope with converting videos using iMovie, however, since I've done the conversion you plan on doing it, let me give you my 2¢ worth and share my experience.

    I used an old DVI camera I had lying around and/or a Sony 8mm Digital player (GV-D200) to convert the old VHS tapes. The reason for that is the fact that both the DVI camera or the Sony player have iLink FireWire output. I connected the analog output of the VHS player to the analog input of either one of the digital players and connected the Firewire output to the Firewire input of my Mac Mini server. I suggest you to use any Mac with a FireWire port in order to do the conversion. iMovie sees the player and imports them as mov files.

    Now, we all know that the rMB does not have a FireWire port. So, you would need a USB-C to FireWire adapter if you want to use the rMB for this task.

    Also, I had terrible results using the "new and improved" iMovie 10.x. Instead, I used the old iMovie 9.0.9 without a problem. You may have no problem with iMovie 10 but if you run into trouble, I suggest you to give it a try to the old (and much better in my opinion) iMovie 9.
     
  18. davidg4781 macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Oct 28, 2006
    Location:
    Alice, TX
    #18
    Thanks. I read somewhere it's best to use, I think, iMovie 6, as it's the best that natively supports 4:3 and lower image quality, or something like that. I keep losing the link to where I read it. It basically said that using a newer version will cause a lower image than this version. And the PMG5 will handle it nicely.

    I picked up a used Grass Valley ADVC 110 to help with the conversion. Unfortunately it's been sitting on the shelf for years.

    I really just need to get started on it and get it done.
     

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