Anyone use a docked 13'' MBP setup with a 4k+ display?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by B3yondL, Apr 24, 2017.

  1. B3yondL macrumors member

    B3yondL

    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2015
    #1
    I thought about this hard but I think for the first time in a long time, I will be retiring my iMac and leaving desktops as a whole. I've evaluated my use cases and realized I just don't need the power of desktops anymore/laptops have caught up enough. I'm going to use my MBP as my one all-round machine that I'll keep docked at home and get myself a nice monitor (looking forward to that Apple branded one next year!). And if somewhere along the line I do need power, eGPU solutions will become viable enough.

    My question is, for a high res display, are the 13'' MBPs capable? Will there be noticeable stuttering? Will having the machine docked in clamshell cause it to overheat? Are there any seamless 'plug and play' docks where it works fast by sliding in your machine and having the monitor display the screen easily? I also use AutoCad, Matlab, R and do compiling on xcode, would a 13'' MBP be enough to handle these?

    Thanks.
     
  2. csurfr macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2016
    Location:
    Seattle, WA
    #2
    I had the touch bar 13 and the LG 4K ultrafine when they were both first released. The picture was amazing and when the 13" worked well (mine had issues and eventually went back), it was plenty fast with no noticeable lag. Mine was kept in the twelve south book arc almost the entire time. Never heard the fans kick on, and never had any problems with heat.

    The touch bar model has a step up in gpu from the non tb model, and I was able to run illustrator/photoshop/etc on it with no issues. I can't imagine autocad is much more demanding, but I could be wrong.

    I should note that I had the 512gb model with 8gb of ram. If I ordered the 13" again, I'd get the 256 with 16gb, as that's what my 15" 2016 has and it flies with that extra mem.
     
  3. Samuelsan2001 macrumors 604

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2013
    #3
    Well AutoCAD can work with small stuff on just about anything but the more you do the better specs you need, Matlab will depend if you are using polyspace as quadcore and 4gb RAM/core is recommended. xcode compiling should be fine.

    https://uk.mathworks.com/support/sysreq.html

    To be honest it looks like the 15 inch is a better bet for you especially going forward but I'd imagine the 13 inch will work fairly well for most of your work.
     
  4. richinaus macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2014
    #4
    I have the base TB 13" and it runs auto cad fine. However as others have said, it depends on what you are doing. What I use Acad for is quite basic but if you were doing some complicated modelling it may push it.
    I also run Rhino on it and is fine again for basic modelling.

    I personally feel the 13" is underrated. For non-GPU intensive tasks it is great most of the time but can stutter.

    As an aside I will be upgrading this to the i7 model with 16gb when the next refresh happens. I feel this would be perfect for me as my laptop solution [good for 50 - 70% of my tasks, the remainder needs a decent desktop workstation]
     
  5. Samuelsan2001 macrumors 604

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2013
    #5
    Your 15 inch flies because it has a quad core processor and a dgpu, 16gb of ram only makes a difference if you are using it, you may well be using it but from you description of the 13 inch use RAM was not a problem.
     
  6. csurfr macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2016
    Location:
    Seattle, WA
    #6
    I say the 15" flies, but the 13" was perfectly fine as well. My usage isn't so heavy that the processors have to ramp up. Probably used the wrong choice of words there.
    :(
     
  7. ninja2000 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2010
    #7
    I am using the 13" with a Samsung 40" 4k tv. Running native 4k is amazing and I have so much real estate.
    The 13 handles is brilliantly, the only issue I had was finding an HDMI adapter that did 4k 60hz (the apple multipart adapter only does 30hz). I bought the Anker HDMI 2 usb c adapter and it works perfectly.
     
  8. bluespark macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2009
    Location:
    New York
    #8
    How does 4k look at that size when working with text, etc.? Are the lines sharp and "Retina"-like? Like the OP, I'm an iMac user considering a MBP+4k display option. My only reason is the lack of Target Display Mode on the new iMacs, since I sometimes need to connect my work laptop (running Windows) to my setup. This has been seamless on my 2011 27" i7 iMac and I need it to be on my new setup as well. Like OP, my concern is making sure the performance is what it needs to be.
     
  9. doitdada macrumors 6502a

    doitdada

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2013
    #9
    4K will give your 13", even the 2016 model, problems. Lag in transitions, launchpad, mission control. Would go for 15" if plugged into an external monitor most of the time, but beware of the problems people have been having with the new 2016 model, both 13" and 15".

    Videos and reports from users on the issue here...
    https://forums.macrumors.com/posts/24527316/
     
  10. CaptRB macrumors 6502a

    CaptRB

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2016
    Location:
    LA, California
    #10
    I have the 13" and 15" TB models and either runs my Dell 4K units with perfection. Part of the use is for professional still photography, so I'm running LR and Photoshop and working with large RAW files.

    No issues of any kind with this setup and could not be more pleased.

    The 15" is (of course) snappier, but these machines led to me retiring desktops for good.


    R.
     
  11. doitdada macrumors 6502a

    doitdada

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2013
    #11
    Do you have a picture of your setup and a link to the adapters/cables you use?
     
  12. ninja2000 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2010
    #12
    It is not quite as crisp as the retina iMac 5k, but much clearer than the dell u3415w 3440x1440 ultra wide I also have in the office. The real estate is amazing. I have some pictures but then realised I have some sensitive work open. When I get down to the office later I will take some more.
     
  13. Ayemerica macrumors demi-god

    Ayemerica

    Joined:
    Oct 18, 2011
    Location:
    Atlantis but in space
    #13
    I have only had one slight issue using my MacBook NTB in clamshell mode hooked up to a 4k display, it turned out to be software related. I experienced no issues using it as a desktop at home when I want to have a work station / desktop feel.
     
  14. bluespark macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2009
    Location:
    New York
    #14
    Thanks -- that's great to hear. Pics would be very much appreciated if you have a chance.
     
  15. B3yondL thread starter macrumors member

    B3yondL

    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2015
    #15
    what was the issue?
     
  16. Ayemerica macrumors demi-god

    Ayemerica

    Joined:
    Oct 18, 2011
    Location:
    Atlantis but in space
    #16

    Tearing on the edges of software that had "hardware acceleration" such as discord and light room.
     

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