Is quad core future proof?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by dk808, Nov 1, 2016.

  1. dk808 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    May 13, 2015
    #1
    I went with the base 2.6ghz 15 inch and was wondering how long this would last me. My current laptop is a mid 2010 13 inch with a 2.4 ghz dual core and it slowed down considerably. There was no way for me to pay the extra cash to max out the processor. Do you think the base quad core will still be fast 4-5 years from now?

    Can anyone that has a 2011-2012 quad core share their experience?
     
  2. fs454 macrumors 65816

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    Dec 7, 2007
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    Los Angeles / Boston
    #2
    Considering I still have a 2008 and 2009 Mac Pro 8-core still kicking and crunching through 4K footage as fast as a modern MBP - you're in the clear. Intel has seriously stagnated performance increases seemingly due to lack of competition so you're for sure in the clear. It's got a lot of horsepower - it's the RAM you'll be worried about in 3-4 years, not the CPU.
     
  3. Count Blah, Nov 1, 2016
    Last edited: Nov 1, 2016

    Count Blah macrumors 68030

    Count Blah

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    Jan 6, 2004
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    US of A
    #3
    I am typing on a quad core 2012 15" cMBP, with 16Gigs of RAM and an SSD. This machine does no gaming.

    Since Apple's move to glue/solder, I swore I would keep this machine as long as I could. This machine has only gotten better over time, not worse, thanks to the upgrades. As with most Macs over time, the graphics is usually the first component that causes the machine to feel slower.

    Did you upgrade the RAM, or install an SSD in your 2010? Did you upgrade to the latest MacOS? Your answers to these questions will likely play a larger role in the slowness, than dual v quad.
     
  4. New_Mac_Smell macrumors 65816

    New_Mac_Smell

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    Oct 17, 2016
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    UK / China
    #4
    The 'base' quad core isn't exactly a cheap quad core processor, just FYI. They're all pretty much top end, unless you're doing heavy CPU work the base one is going to be amazingly good. Even then, the upgrade only really makes things faster (During processing), not really under every day use.

    If you're going from a 6 year old dual core to a new quad core, you'll have no problem with it lasting another 4-6 years.

    Computer hardware got way beyond what people needed about 5 years ago, so the head room a new device gives you these days is pretty hefty. Also kind of why Intel are slowing down because people just don't need as much power as current chips offer, so the market is more in the longevity.
     
  5. dk808 thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    May 13, 2015
    #5
    Yes, i upgraded to a 512 gb ssd and 8 gb ram but theres still some sluggishness. Mainly when I use Chrome, youtube, and Ableton Live.
    Thank you! I think i'll definitely be fine with the base cpu then
     
  6. JTToft macrumors 68040

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    Apr 27, 2010
    Location:
    Aarhus, Denmark
    #6
    - It will be plenty fast for many years. My 2011 quad-core is 5 and a half years. No problems at all.

    As others mentioned, the CPU is probably the most "future proof" of all the components in the machine.
     
  7. andreyush macrumors 6502

    andreyush

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    Oct 24, 2015
    #7
    How about the battery? Did you replaced it so far?
     
  8. JTToft macrumors 68040

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    Apr 27, 2010
    Location:
    Aarhus, Denmark
    #8
    - Nope, still on original battery, and still gives me 4-5 hours of use. 80 % health at 577 cycles.

    Logic board replaced twice, though. :D
     
  9. jerryk macrumors 68020

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    Nov 3, 2011
    Location:
    SF Bay Area
    #9
    A big maybe from me. Desktop systems run 6 cores and more are common. Work needs to be done to adopt this technology for laptop use (power consumption, heat, etc). But it is coming. Also, because the current performance curve has been stagnant too long. My guess performance leaps will come soon in more CPU cores or smarter software that uses GPU technology to make a big leap in performance.
     
  10. sgript macrumors member

    sgript

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2016
    Location:
    UK
    #10
    Some good points here. By moore's law standards, jumps in power are definitely beginning to slow down now. There's just comes a point where you can't find new performance as easily.
     
  11. New_Mac_Smell macrumors 65816

    New_Mac_Smell

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2016
    Location:
    UK / China
    #11
    We're getting close to physical limitations on current chip designs, not too far off size of single electrons and stuff. I think it all shifted when dual cores became the norm, it seemed to take an age for software to be optimised to actually use the extra core. At that point the market shifted a little in to core-wars, when seemingly more cores were better, but again not much software made use of them, it just provided a bigger number for sales mostly. So now I think the focus is in efficiency and power. That's why we're seeing faster chips in the low power side of things.

    Truth is not many people need 12 cores and stuff, 4 cores is overkill for most software. And when putting 6-8 core chips in a mobile package would push the cost up too high for people, the market would collapse. So it's better to tout things like battery life and thinness as adding more 'power' would cost too much, and not be usable to most people.
     

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