future-proof??????

jkcerda

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Jun 10, 2013
880
41,444
Criminal Mexi Midget
been trying to read & learn la ot here, I keep seeing "future-proof."in some threads as well as "haswell processor" , VM's and "bootcamp".

obviously I have little to no idea what all of this means, trying to keep a purchase as secret to my son https://forums.macrumors.com/threads/1686924/
at the same time , pretty wary of buying something that is not upgradable or getting stuck with the wrong mac.

use (that I know off )
Adobe full suite
X-code
Blender 3-D
Maya


settled on 2 macs.

1.) Refurbished 15.4-inch MacBook Pro 2.4GHz Quad-core Intel i7 with Retina Display
Originally released February 2013
15.4-inch (diagonal) Retina display; 2880-by-1800 resolution at 220 pixels per inch
8GB of 1600MHz DDR3L SDRAM
256GB Flash Storage
720p FaceTime HD Camera
NVIDIA GeForce GT 650M with 1GB of GDDR5 memory

$1659 or so

2.) 13" MBP (non-retina) 2.9GHz Dual-core Intel Core i7, Turbo Boost up to 3.6GHz
8GB 1600MHz DDR3 SDRAM — 2x4GB
128GB Solid State Drive
$1400 or so.
*****

#1 seems like the better choice, drawbacks are only 8 GBS, can't upgrade at all, pros are Quad core AND 1 GB video card.

#2 is a dual core, but it IS up-gradable up to 32 GB (if they ever release that, I heard I can get 16 GBs mem for it)

seems SOME of the threads who talk about "future proof" mention 16 GBs on all of them, , should I be worried at all? or just spring for #1?


EDIT, THANKS for the help AND the patience.
 

KimJonNumberUn

macrumors regular
Dec 18, 2013
168
0
its kinda obvious that the 15" for only a couple hundred more is nicer.

but theirs no such thing as future proofing. things will always get replaced and be better around the corner.
 

jkcerda

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Jun 10, 2013
880
41,444
Criminal Mexi Midget
Found this one

Refurbished 15.4-inch MacBook Pro 2.3GHz Quad-core Intel i7
Originally released June 2012
15.4-inch (diagonal) LED-backlit glossy widescreen display, 1440-by-900 resolution

4GB (2 x 2GB) of 1600MHz DDR3 SDRAM
500GB Serial ATA @ 5400 rpm
8x double-layer SuperDrive (DVD±R DL/DVD±RW/CD-RW)
NVIDIA GeForce GT 650M with 512MB of GDDR5 memory


I can upgrade the memory and move to a SSD later

EDIT. Just got off the phone with apple support, guy mentioned that you CAN upgrade the memory on the retina models
 
Last edited:

KimJonNumberUn

macrumors regular
Dec 18, 2013
168
0
Found this one

Refurbished 15.4-inch MacBook Pro 2.3GHz Quad-core Intel i7
Originally released June 2012
15.4-inch (diagonal) LED-backlit glossy widescreen display, 1440-by-900 resolution

4GB (2 x 2GB) of 1600MHz DDR3 SDRAM
500GB Serial ATA @ 5400 rpm
8x double-layer SuperDrive (DVD±R DL/DVD±RW/CD-RW)
NVIDIA GeForce GT 650M with 512MB of GDDR5 memory


I can upgrade the memory and move to a SSD later
i have a retina and upgraded form a 15", far superior computer
 

priitv8

macrumors 68040
Jan 13, 2011
3,628
473
Estonia
EDIT. Just got off the phone with apple support, guy mentioned that you CAN upgrade the memory on the retina models
Yes, but only at the time of configuring your order. Not later.
PS why leave the upgrades to later, when you can do them now and just use your laptop for years to come?
The hardest bullet to bite with retinas is the comparatively high price of SSD storage. But once you've bitten that, there's no way back to working on a HDD computer.
There's also no way back from retina either, btw. Both will spoil your perception of a "good computer".
 

thekev

macrumors 604
Aug 5, 2010
6,780
2,063
#2 is a dual core, but it IS up-gradable up to 32 GB (if they ever release that, I heard I can get 16 GBs mem for it)
This is incorrect in practice. The reason is that you're unlikely to ever see 16GB sodimms in the correct specification. Note that there are notebook machines available today that can take 32GB in a 4 x 8GB configuration. You don't have that with the mbp. It will go to 16GB. It's highly unlikely that this model will ever take 32GB.
 

jkcerda

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Jun 10, 2013
880
41,444
Criminal Mexi Midget
Yes, but only at the time of configuring your order. Not later.
PS why leave the upgrades to later, when you can do them now and just use your laptop for years to come?
The hardest bullet to bite with retinas is the comparatively high price of SSD storage. But once you've bitten that, there's no way back to working on a HDD computer.
There's also no way back from retina either, btw. Both will spoil your perception of a "good computer".
Money. The 8 GB mem & 256 SSD retina model is $1669
The 16 GB & 512SSD is $2169
Been watching videos on YouTube, memory is soldered into the board , no way to upgrade before purchase
 

drought

macrumors newbie
Dec 22, 2013
15
0
don't get #2. i saw in your other thread that this is for your student programmer son. a 1280 x 800 screen SUCKS for programming (he probably won't have his external monitor everywhere). imo, you are focusing way too much on upgradability. 8gb RAM will suffice for his needs given your budget.

having such a crappy resolution will be a permanent inconvenience that will fundamentally and negatively affect the way he uses the computer for his needs that you lined out.

on the other hand, with 8gb RAM the worst case scenario is that SOMETIMES things will not be as fast as they could be.

#1 has the added bonus of the video card, which if your son uses blender/maya will benefit him more than luxury RAM. refurb from apple is generally a great value too, it will arrive like new.
 
Last edited:

leman

macrumors G4
Oct 14, 2008
10,661
5,181
Get option 1. Its good price and 8GB is absolutely sufficient for the majority of users.
 

priitv8

macrumors 68040
Jan 13, 2011
3,628
473
Estonia
Its good price and 8GB is absolutely sufficient for the majority of users.
Still, Adobe full suite, Maya and Blender 3D are not what majority of users run on their computers.
One thing to consider: Mavericks is more efficient in managing memory, so the memory pressure is lower than on previous versions of OS X. 8GB will look like having 10-12GB on Mountain Lion.
 
Last edited:

jkcerda

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Jun 10, 2013
880
41,444
Criminal Mexi Midget
Still, Adobe full suite, Maya and Blender 3D are not what majority of users run on their computers.
One thing to consider: Mavericks is more efficient in managing memory, so the memory pressure is lower than on previous versions of OS X. 8GB will look like having 10-12GB on Mountain Lion.
that is good to hear, going to wait a week or 2, hope a 16GB model pops up
like this one

MacBook Pro 15.4” Retina - Quad-Core i7 2.4Ghz
Originally released February 2013
15.4-inch (diagonal) Retina display; 2880-by-1800 resolution at 220 pixels per inch
16GB of 1600MHz DDR3L SDRAM
256GB Flash Storage
720p FaceTime HD Camera
NVIDIA GeForce GT 650M with 1GB of GDDR5 memory

price keeps climbing up.:mad:
 

AirThis

macrumors 6502a
Mar 6, 2012
505
0
15" is better for Blender

It's difficult to speak about future-proof, but I'll gladly explain why 15" is better for Blender since I use it with some regularity on an rmbp.

The main thing to know about Blender is that it will use up any free CPU that you have whilst rendering. The new Cycles renderer is progressive, and you can turn it on at any moment to see what your model looks like. So it's a very useful tool that's used frequently. Now, the faster your machine is, the quicker you will get an idea of what your model looks like. And the faster you "see" what your model looks like, the faster you will free up your CPU for other tasks.

To show that Blender will consume practically all your CPU resources whilst rendering, I've first run a Flash movie and then a Blender render. In the exhibit below (Activity Monitor), we can see the Flash movie on the left side of the CPU history (8 black and green bars), and the Blender render on the right side of that same history chart. As you can see, the Flash movie leaves some overhead for other tasks (black area), whereas the Cycles render uses 2 hyper-threads per core on all 4 cores continually (green area on the right). That's why you see 8 solid green bars in the CPU history and probably also why the CPU column indicates 760%.

So now, of course, you can run Blender on the 13", but the bigger your project gets, the harder it becomes to work on the lesser hardware. As the size of your project grows, the simple fact of rotating your model 180 degrees in the viewport (without rendering it) will consume resources and even tend to make your computer laggy (regardless of whether it's an rmbp or not). Therefore the more horsepower you have, the better. I've only used Maya for very small projects, but I suspect that it's probably the same as Blender as far as computational resources go.

Well, that was my sales pitch for the 15 inch. Hope this helps you with your decision. :)
 

Attachments

jkcerda

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Jun 10, 2013
880
41,444
Criminal Mexi Midget
It's difficult to speak about future-proof, but I'll gladly explain why 15" is better for Blender since I use it with some regularity on an rmbp.

The main thing to know about Blender is that it will use up any free CPU that you have whilst rendering. The new Cycles renderer is progressive, and you can turn it on at any moment to see what your model looks like. So it's a very useful tool that's used frequently. Now, the faster your machine is, the quicker you will get an idea of what your model looks like. And the faster you "see" what your model looks like, the faster you will free up your CPU for other tasks.

To show that Blender will consume practically all your CPU resources whilst rendering, I've first run a Flash movie and then a Blender render. In the exhibit below (Activity Monitor), we can see the Flash movie on the left side of the CPU history (8 black bars), and the Blender render on the right side of that same history chart. As you can see, the Flash movie leaves some overhead for other tasks (black area), whereas the Cycles render uses 2 hyper-threads per core on all 4 cores continually (green area on the right). That's why you see 8 solid green bars in the CPU history and probably also why the CPU column indicates 760%.

So now, of course, you can run Blender on the 13", but the bigger your project gets, the harder it becomes to work on the lesser hardware. As the size of your project grows, the simple fact of rotating your model 180 degrees in the viewport (without rendering it) will consume resources and even tend to make your computer laggy (regardless of whether it's an rmbp or not). Therefore the more horsepower you have, the better. I've only used Maya for very small projects, but I suspect that it's probably the same as Blender as far as computational resources go.

Well, that was my sales pitch for the 15 inch. Hope this helps you with your decision. :)
thank you, 15" it is, hoping a 15" with a 16GB of mem comes up in the refurbished area.
this is what caught me eye ..

MacBook Pro 15.4” Retina - Quad-Core i7 2.4Ghz
Originally released February 2013
15.4-inch (diagonal) Retina display; 2880-by-1800 resolution at 220 pixels per inch
16GB of 1600MHz DDR3L SDRAM
256GB Flash Storage
720p FaceTime HD Camera
NVIDIA GeForce GT 650M with 1GB of GDDR5 memory

@ 1829 , hefty price (for my walllet) but like a lot of things, cry once instead of crying a lot later. no way I can stretch my wallet more than that :eek:
 

thekev

macrumors 604
Aug 5, 2010
6,780
2,063
that is good to hear, going to wait a week or 2, hope a 16GB model pops up
like this one

MacBook Pro 15.4” Retina - Quad-Core i7 2.4Ghz
Originally released February 2013
15.4-inch (diagonal) Retina display; 2880-by-1800 resolution at 220 pixels per inch
16GB of 1600MHz DDR3L SDRAM
256GB Flash Storage
720p FaceTime HD Camera
NVIDIA GeForce GT 650M with 1GB of GDDR5 memory

price keeps climbing up.:mad:

Will your son be using it solely at home or does he need to take it to school? I prefer something bigger than a notebook if I have to review a lot of code, and I'm not that old. As for Blender, if he plans to eventually incorporate the use of 3d apps in his career in any way, I suggest registering for a student version of maya. It's really quirky, but it's somewhat ubiquitous in certain industries.
 

jkcerda

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Jun 10, 2013
880
41,444
Criminal Mexi Midget
Will your son be using it solely at home or does he need to take it to school? I prefer something bigger than a notebook if I have to review a lot of code, and I'm not that old. As for Blender, if he plans to eventually incorporate the use of 3d apps in his career in any way, I suggest registering for a student version of maya. It's really quirky, but it's somewhat ubiquitous in certain industries.
No, school then home.

Is there a big difference between the 2012 & the 2013 models?
The 2013 flew out the store

Does anyone know if the video card can be swapped? I would love a 2-3 GB video card
 

saturnotaku

macrumors 68000
Mar 4, 2013
1,924
51
Blender 3-d
bigger is always better.
Then you should consider a proper Windows-based workstation (Dell Precision, HP Elitebook, Lenovo W530).

As far as early 2013 Macs versus 2012, the only difference is the former have slightly faster processors. They are otherwise identical.
 

jkcerda

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Jun 10, 2013
880
41,444
Criminal Mexi Midget
Then you should consider a proper Windows-based workstation (Dell Precision, HP Elitebook, Lenovo W530).

As far as early 2013 Macs versus 2012, the only difference is the former have slightly faster processors. They are otherwise identical.
considered it, a sweet toshiba with a 32GBs of mem , I7 Processors & 3 GB video card is $1799, but son will also be learning X-code.
 

leman

macrumors G4
Oct 14, 2008
10,661
5,181
Blender 3-d
bigger is always better.
I doubt there is any noticeable difference between a modern integrated GPU and a 650M/750M for modelling work like you would usually do with Blender. And the amount of video RAM is rather irrelevant in this context.

And by the way: bigger is not always better. At some point, it just does not matter. It won't be worse, surely, but it also won't be better. So why waste money/energy for something which you won't use? ;)
 
Last edited:
Register on MacRumors! This sidebar will go away, and you'll see fewer ads.