Loaded 13" rMBP for wife's flash usage?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by puma1552, Feb 28, 2013.

  1. puma1552 macrumors 603

    Nov 20, 2008
    Looking to get my wife a new 13" rMBP, I'd be going for the 3 GHz i7/256/8 combo since I want it to last several years.

    Not thrilled that the RAM isn't upgradeable to 16, but oh well. 16 GB RAM would make me feel really solid about the purchase.

    How will this machine be with heavy flash usage? My wife plays animated flash games on a Japanese social networking site a good bit and I know it taxes my 2.66 Ghz i7 Arrandale 2010 15" MBP, with 4 gigs of RAM and a 7200 rpm HDD.

    Just want to make sure this machine will last a good while for her and won't bog down with flash animation sites?

  2. Interstella5555 macrumors 603


    Jun 30, 2008
    Flash sucks. Flash on OSX is a nightmare, but if that's how she rolls it will be fine... Just let her know fans will spin. A lot.
  3. Krauser macrumors regular

    Jan 19, 2009
    Truth. You know there's a problem with flash on Macs when a flash video or game ramps up the fans and temps higher than Call of Duty or video encoding does on my machine. Flash is pretty horrid, but you shouldn't have a problem.

    Then again, if you're just getting a machine for your wife to play flash content and do some occasional work, a loaded rMBP is the true definition of overkill. Might as well get a Chromebook if you ask me and if you're dead set on a Mac, save yourself the money and get an Air.
  4. puma1552 thread starter macrumors 603

    Nov 20, 2008
    Thanks guys.

    She wanted an air originally, but with retina and the fact the back of the Macbook Air isn't really any thinner than the retina pro, the air becomes a very tough sell just to have the taper through towards the front. I personally am not a huge fan of the air having owned a rev. B that kind of sucked, and I figure for around $2k for the loaded 13" pro, it seems like a relative bargain to the $3k my machine cost at the time. I figure going from a 2.6 i5 to a 3.0 i7 is plenty worth the 200 bucks, considering usually apple charges 100 bucks just to get a 100 mhz bump on the same architecture.

    I figured she'd probably be ok since my old crusty pro does handle it, but I don't want her to be disappointed and thought I should ask given that the 13" will have to drive both the retina screen and the flash using integrated graphics.

    If it sounds fine though, I think I might scoop one up for her birthday in a few weeks.:)
  5. Sleepy01 macrumors member

    Feb 28, 2013
    I would not get a loaded 13 inch. If anything is the bottle neck in the future it will be the HD 4000 GPU. I would just get the base and just did :cool:
  6. BeeJee macrumors 6502

    Nov 27, 2011
    Long Island/North Jersey
    Exactly, OP, if you want to future proof go with the 15". Your gonna pretty much pay the same anyway.
  7. snaky69 macrumors 603

    Mar 14, 2008
    A macbook air is plenty powerful enough for her needs and will cost you a lot less.

    She definitely doesn't need 16GB of RAM, let alone 8GB, so I don't see why you're bummed about this...

    In my honest opinion, it's rather stupid to pay $2000 for a laptop for flash games, but that's just me. A cheap desktop PC would run circles around any Mac laptop for less than half the price.
  8. alphaod macrumors Core


    Feb 9, 2008
    Your wife should be fine with the base model. More than fine…
  9. MacKid macrumors 6502

    Jan 1, 2003
    Or, if one really wants a Mac and is willing to spend a little extra, there's always the option of Boot Camping an Air. But that's another hundred, at least, beyond the cost of the computer. An unopened copy of Windows 7 is like a rarified, precious metal these days, given how troublesome 8 is for normal computers.
  10. puma1552 thread starter macrumors 603

    Nov 20, 2008
    That's what I would get for myself, but she doesn't want something that big. She's set on a 13".

    Been down that road, made that mistake before with my own Air. Air is nice but overrated and the least future proof of any Apple portable, especially in the era of the retina 13". Seeing as the retina 13" is now more or less the same thinness as the back edge of the air, with a much better screen and far better processors, the Air is a tough sell...it has very little going for it at this point, IMO.

    If I got her the 2.6 GHz i5 (Ivy Bridge) 13" rMBP, how does that processor stack up against my 2.66 GHz i7 (Arrandale)? I'm assuming that an i5 dual core Ivy Bridge is better than an i7 dual core Arrandale, but I'm not sure. I'd still lean towards the 3 GHz i7 just because that's a lot more processor for not a lot of cash, but figured I may as well compare the 2.6 to mine.
  11. chrise2 macrumors 6502

    Sep 17, 2012
  12. theuserjohnny macrumors 6502

    Jul 7, 2012
    I'm sorry but personally I find it hard to justify paying for a Retina just to play flash games. An iPad (which has retina) could fill that need and the Air is more than powerful enough to fit that need.

    However if you have the money and retina really means that much to her and you can justify it then a base 13rMBP should suit her needs.
  13. agaskew macrumors 6502

    Dec 3, 2009
    And how can she play these Flash games on an iPad?
  14. theuserjohnny macrumors 6502

    Jul 7, 2012
  15. puma1552 thread starter macrumors 603

    Nov 20, 2008
    Guys, I didn't say I'm buying her a computer only to play flash games.

    Flash games are one aspect of what she uses the machine for, and I wanted opinions in regards to flash games on a retina machine because I have no experience with owning a retina machine and how flash might tax it.

    I didn't ask which of the 13" machines to buy. Im not buying an air and I'm not going to buy a base 13" if I want it to last 4-5 years. My 2.5 year old computer has it's issues as it is and this too was a top of the line machine in late 2010.
  16. MacKid macrumors 6502

    Jan 1, 2003
    To answer your specific question here, Flash doesn't "do" Retina, so it's not going to be any more processor-intensive than on a cMBP.

    The only computers that last 5 years are the ones for people who strictly use web browsers and Microsoft Word. Let's be honest, in 5 years, no one's going to be playing Flash games, because there won't be any.

    Is a 13" rMBP strong enough for playing Flash games? Yes.
  17. Sleepy01 macrumors member

    Feb 28, 2013
    This thing you are missing is that the Base 13 and fully loaded 13 will have similar lifespans. The GPU HD4000 is the same, which is going to be the bottle neck in the future, not your CPU or RAM. Well thats my advice, I'm trying to save you money but you might be pretty rich so its a non issue
  18. KPOM macrumors G5

    Oct 23, 2010
    Don't let your Rev B experience sour you on the Air. It was significantly improved with the Rev D, and today it is rock solid. I had the Rev B, Rev D, and Rev E.

    That said, I now have the 13" rMBP (2.5GHz, 256GB), though, and see it as a step up. The screen is significantly better (it's brighter and has better colors). The speed of the 2.5GHz is pretty good, so the i7 ought to work well for quite a while.
  19. goMac macrumors 604

    Apr 15, 2004
    If Flash is the most complicated thing your wife is doing, the Air should be just fine.

    I use a 2011 Macbook Air, and I'm throwing a lot more complicated things at it than Flash, and it runs fine.
  20. theuserjohnny macrumors 6502

    Jul 7, 2012
    They're all the same computer.

    No matter which one you buy it'll be outdated within 6 months.

    The only difference between the Air and the Retina is that they cores are clocked higher and it has retina screen.

    They're using the same processor, use the same integrated graphics, and supports the same amount of RAM.

    No matter what computer you buy it'll last you as long as you let it last. These processors are powerful and can pretty much handel anything you throw at it and unless your wife within the next few years takes up some sort of heavy duty software usage via video/photography/CAD then this computer will last a long time.

    Had it not been for my increase in usage my CD2 2006 Macbook would still be my main computer. How long the computer lasts is a determinate on what the person will do.

    So buy a base model if anything just upgrade the RAM since you can't replace it in the future. The processor speed will be fine for her I honestly doubt she'll push the computer to its max speed. If its just for everyday usage such as internet, word documents, powerpoint, flash games, etc that base model computer will last as long as she'll let it last.
  21. RSL macrumors regular

    Nov 6, 2012
  22. Krauser macrumors regular

    Jan 19, 2009
    The 13" Air is just as future proof as a 13" Retina, at least in their current states. Hear me out, the things that are going to piss you off in 3 or so years about your computer are going to be speed related. That said, the base i5 in the Retina 13" benchmarks only a little bit faster than the i7 in the Air. They're both really fast cores. Also, the main reason computers end up feeling slow is their hard drives, and both of these having SSD's, you'll probably never have to worry about it feeling slow when accessing files.

    So really, what are you benefitting from when getting the retina? Well, you get that screen, so if you just can't live without it, I'm not going to convince you otherwise. Also, RAM is moot because you're getting 8GB's with each machine as of right now so it's irrelevant. Plus, 8 is a lot more than you think, and not much shy of heavy editing, rendering, and OS virtualization is going to need 8GB.

    So what you're left with is the GPU, the BIGGEST factor for holding back the machine in the future. Both feature the HD4000, so they're both going to be just as quick in the future. What's even worse is that this HD4000 has to push retina on the 13" Pro, meaning you'll see performance decreases much earlier into the life of the 13" Retina than you will the Air, so if you're talking about perceived longevity in a "future-proof" laptop, you're better off getting an Air unless you just step up and get the 15" with the Dedicated GPU.

    Here's what I'm going to recommend.

    If you need it now... like absolutely need it:

    Get the Air instead of the 13" Retina

    If you can wait until Haswell (and it's all it's cracked up to be):

    The 13" Retina may very well be worth it (might get a quad core CPU, might get 16GB of RAM as an option, etc.).

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