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Is the $100 2.6GHz CPU upgrade worth it (over the stock 2.3GHz) on the rMBP?

pgharavi

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Nov 25, 2004
274
199
I noticed, via MacRumors, that you can now upgrade the stock Retina MBP from the 2.3GHz Quad-core CPU to 2.6GHz for $100.00.

Worth it? Waste of money?
 

terraphantm

macrumors 68040
Jun 27, 2009
3,793
613
Pennsylvania
I noticed, via MacRumors, that you can now upgrade the stock Retina MBP from the 2.3GHz Quad-core CPU to 2.6GHz for $100.00.

Worth it? Waste of money?

Most people probably don't need the extra speed... but for only $100, I'd go for it. It'll make a bigger difference than 2.6->2.7
 
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pgharavi

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Nov 25, 2004
274
199
That's what I was thinking...perhaps not the most needed upgrade on the stock Retina MBP (a cheaper 512 SSD would be #1), but as a long term deal (I've had my current MBP (5,5) for three years now), perhaps the extra CPU horsepower would be welcomed.
 
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Dangerous Theory

macrumors 68000
Jul 28, 2011
1,983
28
UK
I'd be weary, Engadget and anandtech both seemed to find the 2.6 performing significantly worse in the battery life test compared to the 2.3. It's not necessarily the case always, or something that can't be fixed if it isn't a hardware issue, but it does add an extra reason not to spend more money (for me anyway).
 
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Fandongo

macrumors 6502
Nov 2, 2011
313
1
Space
I noticed, via MacRumors, that you can now upgrade the stock Retina MBP from the 2.3GHz Quad-core CPU to 2.6GHz for $100.00.

Worth it? Waste of money?

I like sixes.
Hate threes.

2.6Ghz, 16GB ram, 256GB.
Hopefully OWC will offer retina SSDs soon and use the 256 as an external.

Edit: Fun fact - BTO PC companies (xoticpc) can charge up to $350 to upgrade from 2.3-2.6.
 
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pgharavi

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Nov 25, 2004
274
199
Not to mention the 3615QM is running 10C cooler at load mine top at 90C and I saw some 3720QM owners reporting 100C

I'm unfamiliar with the codes/model numbers you've listed...are those the stock rMBP and the $100 1.6Ghz upgrade?

So the consensus is that not only is it more expensive, but it comes at the additional cost of lower battery time and increased heat?
 
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Speedy Gonzalez

macrumors regular
Jun 12, 2012
153
10
Alligator Bayou
I'm unfamiliar with the codes/model numbers you've listed...are those the stock rMBP and the $100 1.6Ghz upgrade?

So the consensus is that not only is it more expensive, but it comes at the additional cost of lower battery time and increased heat?

exactly 2.3ghz is the 3615QM and 2.6ghz is the 3720QM the upgrade price is good only $100 bucks because most notebook retailers are charging $150 but with the limited rMBP cooling you better get the base CPU if you want to get more life out of your system because 10C less is a big difference specially if you are going to run CPU intensive apps :)
 
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Slivortal

macrumors 6502
Jun 14, 2012
399
2
Most people probably don't need the extra speed... but for only $100, I'd go for it. It'll make a bigger difference than 2.6->2.7

Not really. The 2.7 may not be as inexpensive as the 2.6, but with 2MB extra of L3 cache, many would make an argument for the 2.7 upgrade being the better one.

I'd be wary of those reporting vastly different battery life, though. I'm personally waiting for some form of scientific evidence.
 
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ixodes

macrumors 601
Jan 11, 2012
4,429
2
Pacific Coast, USA
Unless you truly have a need for speed, like gaming or some resource intense apps, I'd go with the 2.3GHz. Cooler, still fast and efficient. It has nothing to do with price, and everything to do with performance. The 2.3GHz is a highly capable processor.

That's my take on it :)
 
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MCAsan

macrumors 601
Jul 9, 2012
4,575
437
Atlanta
I went with 2.7 as it becomes my new desktop and I want it to still be a great machine in 3 year at the end of Apple Care. To me the CPU and memory upgrades are not bad. What is bad is the cost of going to 768SSD. :eek:
 
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PCWebbJR

macrumors member
Jun 20, 2012
83
0
Chicago, Illinois
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terraphantm

macrumors 68040
Jun 27, 2009
3,793
613
Pennsylvania
Not really. The 2.7 may not be as inexpensive as the 2.6, but with 2MB extra of L3 cache, many would make an argument for the 2.7 upgrade being the better one.

I'd be wary of those reporting vastly different battery life, though. I'm personally waiting for some form of scientific evidence.

2MB cache will have minimal impact for most real tasks. It's really only useful for major number crunching and other processes that can run in a limited amount of memory. For the more "typical" CPU intensive tasks, i.e. video rendering, the cache will have next to no impact.

----------

Not to mention the 3615QM is running 10C cooler at load mine top at 90C and I saw some 3720QM owners reporting 100C

Both are 45W TDP processors. Ambient temperatures probably played a role. You can't draw any conclusions about the heat difference without running both computers in the same setting with the same task.
 
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pgharavi

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Nov 25, 2004
274
199
Anandtech's review/results for the 2.6GHz rMBP appears to respond favorably to the cpu's temps. I originally ordered the base 2.3GHz / 16GB / 256GB, but decided to upgrade the processor to 2.6GHz. I think the boost in cpu speed is definitely worth the $100 (or $90 if you're ordering through the edu store, which I did). Was a no brainer for me.

http://www.anandtech.com/show/6023/the-nextgen-macbook-pro-with-retina-display-review/12

Odd...even through the .edu store I get this:

2.6GHz Quad-core Intel Core i7, Turbo Boost up to 3.6GHz [Add $100.00]

You sure it was only $90? Thanks for the Anandtech link.
 
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boto

macrumors 6502
Jun 4, 2012
437
28
Odd...even through the .edu store I get this:

2.6GHz Quad-core Intel Core i7, Turbo Boost up to 3.6GHz [Add $100.00]

You sure it was only $90? Thanks for the Anandtech link.

Yes, they changed it 2 days ago to resolve the $60+ refund requests from everyone who purchased it on the 2 days they made that option available.
 
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ohbrilliance

macrumors 6502a
May 15, 2007
976
300
Melbourne, Australia
Most people probably don't need the extra speed... but for only $100, I'd go for it. It'll make a bigger difference than 2.6->2.7

There's a bit more than just the difference in GHz between the chips. The 2.7 has 8MB of L3 cache, while the 2.3 and 2.6 have 6MB. I don't know how much difference that extra cache makes.
 
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M-X

macrumors member
Sep 6, 2006
41
17
Integrated graphics

According to Intel's spec page the HD4000 graphics in the 2.6 have a faster max clock speck 1.25ghz vs 1.1 in the 2.3. Could this lead to a slightly smoother experience on the 2.6 vs 2.3?

I'm a wondering whether to return my 2.3/16/256 for a 2.6/16/256 within the grace period. The machine i have is perfect other than a slightly creaky case. With the shipping times down to about 2 weeks to your door, I could live with the wait, but it kinda of annoys me that apple changed the bto options so close after release.

Has anyone else switched from 2.3 to 2.6 and noticed improved scrolling etc on iGPU - for me that would be more important than a slight bump in cpu speed.

Thanks!: cool:
 
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swamyg1

macrumors regular
Dec 11, 2007
206
51
According to Intel's spec page the HD4000 graphics in the 2.6 have a faster max clock speck 1.25ghz vs 1.1 in the 2.3. Could this lead to a slightly smoother experience on the 2.6 vs 2.3?

I'm a wondering whether to return my 2.3/16/256 for a 2.6/16/256 within the grace period. The machine i have is perfect other than a slightly creaky case. With the shipping times down to about 2 weeks to your door, I could live with the wait, but it kinda of annoys me that apple changed the bto options so close after release.

Has anyone else switched from 2.3 to 2.6 and noticed improved scrolling etc on iGPU - for me that would be more important than a slight bump in cpu speed.

Thanks!: cool:

I'm in the exact same boat as you and I'm wondering the same thing.

I recieve my machine on Monday but I do t want to keep having doubles and end up regretting my 2.3 purchase.
 
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appletechpro

macrumors regular
Jun 26, 2012
111
0
The new BTO options piss me off considering I just bought a base 2.3 on Monday. Granted, I only paid $2,000 for a brand new base rMBP, a $100 upgrade to 2.6 would have been SWEETTT

I think the upgrade itself from 2.3 --> 2.6 for $100 is a great deal, and negligible considering how much we're spending for a rMBP anyway.
 
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PS65

macrumors 6502
Jan 25, 2008
254
-3
United Kingdom
The new BTO options piss me off considering I just bought a base 2.3 on Monday. Granted, I only paid $2,000 for a brand new base rMBP, a $100 upgrade to 2.6 would have been SWEETTT

I think the upgrade itself from 2.3 --> 2.6 for $100 is a great deal, and negligible considering how much we're spending for a rMBP anyway.

Meh, $100 for a few seconds. Not worth it.
 
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pgharavi

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Nov 25, 2004
274
199
According to Intel's spec page the HD4000 graphics in the 2.6 have a faster max clock speck 1.25ghz vs 1.1 in the 2.3. Could this lead to a slightly smoother experience on the 2.6 vs 2.3?

Has anyone else switched from 2.3 to 2.6 and noticed improved scrolling etc on iGPU - for me that would be more important than a slight bump in cpu speed.

This is really interesting, I didn't know the clock difference at the GPU as well.

One final question: if I go the custom BTO route, my only option is ordering via Apple.com as opposed to walking into a store, correct?
 
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