is this laptop future proof?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by phospholipid1, Mar 4, 2015.

  1. phospholipid1 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 30, 2014
    #1
    rMBP 13"
    i5 2.8ghz turbo boost 3.3ghz
    500gb pci-e flash storage
    16gb ddr3 ram
    intel iris graphics

    I'm planning to buy this and use it as my main comptuer for a good 4-5 years. My main use for it is programming in Java and python, as well as dual booting windows for c++. A lot of my programming works involves a lot of data.

    Would this computer be good enough? I have two external 1080p moitors I will use with it also, and I enjoy the portability of the 13".

    I want this to last about 5-6 years - is this achievable? Should I go for the 15" instead? I don't care about gaming, or photoshop or anything like that, just programming and watching movies.
     
  2. exizeo macrumors regular

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    Mar 23, 2014
    #2
    For just programming and other light use it will likely be fine for the new few years. However keep in mind that 15" benchmarks almost 2x and has true quad core, and refurbs are not that expensive.

    Honestly, I would go for the $1499 refurb late 2013 haswell 15". 8GB RAM, 3.2GHz, 256GB SSD. And benches a crap ton over the 13". Driving the monitors it will likely be better due to having Iris Pro over the Intel Iris of the 13".

    I'm not sure how having less SSD and RAM would affect you though.
     
  3. phospholipid1 thread starter macrumors member

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    Jan 30, 2014
    #3
    Having less SSD and RAM wont affect me too much... but I do not care about graphics - I have no interest to play games and the maximum amount of external monitors I will use is 2, which the 13" can handle. Also, 15" seems just a little too big for me. I had a 2009 15" which was extremely heavy and luggish to carry around. I know the new ones are lighter but still...

    Do you have the name of both of the CPU's of the 13 and 15" so I can see the benchmarks?
     
  4. yjchua95 macrumors 604

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    Location:
    GVA, KUL, MEL (current), ZQN
    #4
    In the 13":
    2.6GHz i5-4278U
    2.8GHz i5-4308U
    3.0GHz i7-4578U

    15":
    2.2GHz i7-4770HQ
    2.5GHz i7-4870HQ
    2.8GHz i7-4980HQ

    You'll find that the 2.2GHz i7-4770HQ is almost twice as fast as the 3.0GHz i7-4578U.
     
  5. BasicGreatGuy Contributor

    BasicGreatGuy

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    #5
    Given your usage, that computer will serve you well.

    Don't get hung up on benchmarks. If you do, you could end up spending more money than you need to on a computer.
     
  6. Freyqq macrumors 68040

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    Dec 13, 2004
    #6
    It should last a while. The only foreseeable issue with the 13" is that it can't drive 4k at 60hz, which might be something you want to do after a few years.
     
  7. phospholipid1 thread starter macrumors member

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    Jan 30, 2014
    #7
    On the apple website it says that both the 15" and the 13" can only drive 4k at 30hz. What is the highest resolution the 13" can drive at 60hz?
     
  8. kage207 macrumors 6502a

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    Jul 23, 2008
    #8
    Yes, you'll be fine. It really depends on how large your applications grow and the compiler. It just really depends on the project but I'm using a MBA for the last few years and I'm fine.

    You can use 2 monitors at 1080p too.
     
  9. radioking, Mar 4, 2015
    Last edited: Mar 4, 2015

    radioking macrumors regular

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    Nov 5, 2012
    #9
    The 13" officially 2560x1600 x 2. I'm not sure about the ultra wide 3440x1440. The 15" can drive one 4k MST display at 60hz.
     
  10. Freyqq, Mar 4, 2015
    Last edited: Mar 5, 2015

    Freyqq macrumors 68040

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    #10
    The current 15" can actually do Single stream 4k at 60hz. The 13" can only do 4k at 30hz officially and 50hz with 3rd party software modifications.
     
  11. yjchua95 macrumors 604

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    #11
    The 13" has Thunderbolt 2, but Haswell-U's limitation means there is no 4K 60Hz support.
     
  12. Meister Suspended

    Meister

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  13. redheeler macrumors 603

    redheeler

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    #13
    Not necessarily, it depends on what your intended use is. For instance, had I bought a maxed-out Power Mac G4 15 years ago with the intention of doing word processing and spreadsheets I could still be doing that on it today. That's what future proofing is.
     
  14. TechZeke macrumors 68020

    TechZeke

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    #14
    Flawed logic. In that case I should buy a $10,000 12-core Mac Pro so that I can do word processing and spreadsheets in 10 years.

    For word processing and spreadsheets, I'd bet the base model was just as capable.

    Buying a higher clocked processor that's 10% faster than the base now just for the sake of future proofing isn't going to save me 5 years from now when the new processors are 50% faster. Same with RAM. Do you honestly think it's going to take 16GB of RAM to do the word processoring in 5 years?
     
  15. Meister Suspended

    Meister

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    #15
    I agree. Also since everything is soldered in todays computers, they will only last as long as their weakest part.
     
  16. redheeler macrumors 603

    redheeler

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    #16
    I'm just demonstrating what the concept of future proofing is. I certainly wouldn't recommend anyone buy a computer today with the intention of using it for 15 years.
     
  17. leman macrumors 604

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    Oct 14, 2008
    #17
    Short answer: there is no such thing.


    Long answer: the 13" will be more then enough in 5 years if you want to use it for programming. However, the 15" will be twice as fast if you do number-crunching and write code that can utilise multiple CPU cores. Of course, in 5 years both are likely to be on par or slower then a smartphone of that time ;)
     
  18. redheeler macrumors 603

    redheeler

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    #18
    This has nothing to do with future proofing, although it does mean it can't be guaranteed future proof.
     
  19. Meister Suspended

    Meister

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    #19
    Sure it does.
     
  20. redheeler macrumors 603

    redheeler

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    #20
    Care to elaborate?
     
  21. Starry macrumors member

    Starry

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    California
    #21
    I have a 15'' rMBP 2.5Ghz and I'm a computer science major... I'm guessing my MBP is probably overkill for my needs? Doesn't some programming need more power?
     
  22. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

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    #22
    I disagree, you can choose a machine/configuration that exceeds your needs now, but may not in the future - that's future proofing. This will delay any possible computer purchase because the machine was configured correctly.

    Its harder now a days to do that with Apple's current line up, since there's so little you can change, but I think configuring a computer with an eye to the future is a wise move.
     
  23. phospholipid1 thread starter macrumors member

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    Jan 30, 2014
    #23
    So do you think that this is future proof?
     
  24. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

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    #24
    I think the ram and storage are configured to meet your needs now and the future. The question mark is the CPU/GPU.

    Since you're not using app that rely on the GPU, that should be ok. The dual core CPU is fine for most people and I don't think coding is so multithreaded that you will wish you were on a quad core processor.

    All in all your configuration should last you several years imo, though we are just guessing at what the future may or may nor hold.

    If it were me, though I'd look to getting a quad core processor and a better GPU, i.e., 15" rMBP.
     
  25. joshlalonde macrumors 6502

    joshlalonde

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    Canada
    #25
    I know you said you work with a lot of data,
    but you don't even need that powerful of a machine unless I'm mistaken.

    I program with the 13" MBA i5. Run a couple of IDEs. Games, etc.

    But perhaps I'm wrong... but seems a bit like overkill to me.
     

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