Do I need the AMD Radeon R9 M370X Video Card?

selfilm

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Sep 30, 2015
12
0
Hello,
I am new to MacRumors, so forgive me if this sounds like a newbie question:
I purchased a brand new Macbook Pro 15" with i7 2.5ghz 512GB SSD and the standard Intel Iris Pro Graphics card.
I will definitely be doing Final Cut Pro X editing with the system and will be using it as a laptop as well as docking it and using it with 2 monitors as a replacement to my older intel Mac Pro which I will keep to use as a hard drive hub.
I have not opened the box yet on this new purchase because I was reading that if I wanted to do gaming that I probably would require the upgraded video card with memory (the AMD Radeon R9 M370X with 2GB onboard memory). I was just wondering if this was true considering the speed of these new systems?
Thanks for any input!
 

Niarlatop

macrumors member
May 13, 2015
75
25
Indeed, if you plan to launch demanding games, the Radeon R9 M370X will fare better than the Iris Pro 5200.
You might gain a 10% speed increase in Final Cut Pro X too, thanks to OpenCL.
If you don't, you might as well keep the base model, which will run quieter and have a bit longer battery life.
 
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selfilm

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Sep 30, 2015
12
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Hi Niarlatop, thank you for the response! Now one further question for you: Which of these two cards is better in your opinion and why?
  • NVIDIA GeForce GT 750M Graphics (2GB)
  • OR
  • AMD Radeon R9 M370X Graphics (2GB GDDR5)
I couldn't tell if one comes with the 512GB drive on the new Macbook Pros or if you can choose which model you'd like on any of the Macbook Pros?
Then I think I figured it out, the Nvidia was for 2014 unit sand the AMD is for 2015? Do I have that right?
 

Kissmyne

macrumors 6502
Apr 21, 2015
354
48
It will depend on how you would quantify better.. The AMD r9 M370X is roughly 20-30% faster than the Nvidia GT 750M. This performance increase is accompanied by about 5-15% more heat depending on the usage case scenarios involved. The cooling profile was changed to compensate for the additional heat, so the main take away will be fan noise, which to put briefly, the fans are far more active in the models equipped with the AMD Radeon R9 M370X.

You are correct about which model design year(s) the GPU(s) correspond to.
 

selfilm

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Sep 30, 2015
12
0
Hi Kissmyne,
This is very helpful information, thank you.
I have a quick follow up question:
If I am using the computer for regular computing such as web surfing, outlook, word, excel - and not gaming, will the card fan come on and make excess noise or heat? Or does it only come on in that manner of very challenged by processing?
 

Kissmyne

macrumors 6502
Apr 21, 2015
354
48
I would say that *typically* the fans will not kick up during those types of tasks. It does depend on what you are doing in these applications. But this is true of either version of the rMBP.. None of those *typically* stress a GPU, and therefore should not yield a difference in performance or behavior between the two models you are comparing.
 

xsdeus

macrumors regular
May 24, 2012
150
66
San Diego, CA
OP, you should take a look at the Similar Threads that are shown at the bottom of this page. There have been many threads over the exact same questions as yours..
 

selfilm

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Sep 30, 2015
12
0
OP, you should take a look at the Similar Threads that are shown at the bottom of this page. There have been many threads over the exact same questions as yours..
Hello Xsedeus,
I reviewed each of the threads at the bottom. I think that Kissmyne has the answers I am looking for but I thought I would ask one more clarifying question to get the answer which I am looking for before I press "checkout" on the order button: So Kissmyne says that the fans will not kick up during those types of tasks, so if I am hearing that correctly, when I am doing non heavy tasking of the card, should I be expecting to get the same battery life and the same noise level as the Iris Pro Graphics card when I am using these lower level applications? (i.e. - without gaming, would the computer generally have the same sound level and noise output using either card?)

Thanks for the continued support on this one everyone.
 

Samuelsan2001

macrumors 604
Oct 24, 2013
7,694
2,123
Hello Xsedeus,
I reviewed each of the threads at the bottom. I think that Kissmyne has the answers I am looking for but I thought I would ask one more clarifying question to get the answer which I am looking for before I press "checkout" on the order button: So Kissmyne says that the fans will not kick up during those types of tasks, so if I am hearing that correctly, when I am doing non heavy tasking of the card, should I be expecting to get the same battery life and the same noise level as the Iris Pro Graphics card when I am using these lower level applications? (i.e. - without gaming, would the computer generally have the same sound level and noise output using either card?)

Thanks for the continued support on this one everyone.
It's a difficult question to answer sometimes a quick burst of the dGPU working at a faster level than the IRIS pro will actually use less battery and create less heat sometimes it won't. But to answer the question basically yes Apple rate both machines as the same battery life and unless you require it the dGPU should not turn on. However if you are outputting to an external screen it will always use the dGPU, the iGPU is not connected to the ports, but I would plug the machine in then anyway.
 

selfilm

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Sep 30, 2015
12
0
It's a difficult question to answer sometimes a quick burst of the dGPU working at a faster level than the IRIS pro will actually use less battery and create less heat sometimes it won't. But to answer the question basically yes Apple rate both machines as the same battery life and unless you require it the dGPU should not turn on. However if you are outputting to an external screen it will always use the dGPU, the iGPU is not connected to the ports, but I would plug the machine in then anyway.
Hi again Samuelsan2001, thanks for responding. I am 100% on getting the 1TB drive for the new MBP 15" I am purchasing this week. I am still not 100% on the card and am leading to purchasing the AMD Radeon - I had a silly question: I intend to use this Mac with Parallels and Windows 10 so that I can use Outlook and Microsoft Office products for all my work. The Video card notes you gave may imply that I can "turn off" the dGPU when I don't want either the noise or procesing drain on battery, is this possible or am I dreaming? The follow up to that is if I do actually have the ability to turn off the dGPU, then does the computer run normally, quieter, and with less heat issues and more like the Iris Pro Graphics system?
 

xsdeus

macrumors regular
May 24, 2012
150
66
San Diego, CA
Hi again Samuelsan2001, thanks for responding. I am 100% on getting the 1TB drive for the new MBP 15" I am purchasing this week. I am still not 100% on the card and am leading to purchasing the AMD Radeon - I had a silly question: I intend to use this Mac with Parallels and Windows 10 so that I can use Outlook and Microsoft Office products for all my work. The Video card notes you gave may imply that I can "turn off" the dGPU when I don't want either the noise or procesing drain on battery, is this possible or am I dreaming? The follow up to that is if I do actually have the ability to turn off the dGPU, then does the computer run normally, quieter, and with less heat issues and more like the Iris Pro Graphics system?
It's possible through third-party apps.
 
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