Macbook pro i9 15'' 2018 and being desperate

duomot

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Original poster
Nov 12, 2018
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Italy
Hello guys.. You problaby already discussed about it, but I can't find a proper reply to my doubts now. I know some updates were released and I would need a present answer, I'm really desperate about it.

I think I made a mistake.. I ordered a couple four days ago a MacBook pro 15'' i9 2018 (it will be ready on the 16th and delivered to the shop on the 21st, I should be in time to cancel the order). I read just now that those Mac have important issues with heat. Is it really a problem? What is ypur point of view? I read they realeased an updated, but not working very well, is it right?

I'm going to pay 4.2k usd for that Mac, I don't want a bugged computer. Should I take the i7? Should I buy an used one? Should I buy a desktop one instead..? I would prefer to buy the notebook.

Thank you in advance SO MUCH for your opinion.
 

IdentityCrisis

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Sep 9, 2018
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Hello guys.. You problaby already discussed about it, but I can't find a proper reply to my doubts now. I know some updates were released and I would need a present answer, I'm really desperate about it.

I think I made a mistake.. I ordered a couple four days ago a MacBook pro 15'' i9 2018 (it will be ready on the 16th and delivered to the shop on the 21st, I should be in time to cancel the order). I read just now that those Mac have important issues with heat. Is it really a problem? What is ypur point of view? I read they realeased an updated, but not working very well, is it right?

I'm going to pay 4.2k usd for that Mac, I don't want a bugged computer. Should I take the i7? Should I buy an used one? Should I buy a desktop one instead..? I would prefer to buy the notebook.

Thank you in advance SO MUCH for your opinion.
The throttling and heat was fixed with an update a while back. So that issue is fixed. However, I would wait at least a few more days or so till Apple releases the new one with the Vega video card in it. It will perform a lot better than the current models. Also, if you want to save money, the i7 isn't hardly any slower than the i9 in benchmarks. So it maybe better to get the i7 anyways.
 

leman

macrumors G3
Oct 14, 2008
9,963
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I read just now that those Mac have important issues with heat. Is it really a problem?
No.

Of course, there will be members of the forums who would tell you otherwise. You decide ;)

And before this thread turns into a heated discussion like every other: yes, these machines run hot under load. The MacBook Pro's design ensures that the CPU eventually runs at its maximal safe operating temperature (100C) when put under continues constant load. And since the i9 is a very powerful CPU (in burst mode I have seen it draw 80 watts and more — which is substantial for a laptop CPU), it will reach this temperature very quickly. Apple chose this design since it allows them to fit a powerful CPU into a thin and light chassis, while keeping the operation relatively silent and battery life good. Other laptops, especially large gaming and workstation machines, have other design criteria so they can keep the CPU cooler and also potentially allow it to operate in higher performance mode for longer periods of time.

I read they realeased an updated, but not working very well, is it right?
The update did exactly what it was supposed to do. There was a bug in the power management system that caused degraded performance/overheating in certain scenarios. The update has fixed that.

I'm going to pay 4.2k usd for that Mac, I don't want a bugged computer. Should I take the i7? Should I buy an used one?
Depends on what you need. For a normal user, there is not much reason to get the i9... and you pay a large premium for a small performance increase that might not even be visible in what you use the machine for.

I got the i9 since the bursty nature of the processor helps me save time running my code prototypes. For my purpose, this machine is excellent.
 
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duomot

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Nov 12, 2018
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Thank you for the responses. I actually would use it to produce music.

For the i7 and i9: I don't actually need the i9 so badly, I just took it because I will keep this Mac for many years and I wanted to be sure to tkae something that will last more than the other options.

My major preoccupation is the heating problem, but if you say that they solved it I guess that I can be calmer now. (I read that some people still continue to sa that the i9 still continues to heat a lot even after the patch, that is not true I suppose?)

For the GPU: I don't know. Actually my girlfriend from US is gonna take it there now, cheaper than here in EU, so I can't wait, if I wait I'm gonna take it here in EU. Is really better to wait for newer GPU? I read that they're options that you need to pay, not inside the basic Mac, right?

Thank you!
 

leman

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Oct 14, 2008
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For the i7 and i9: I don't actually need the i9 so badly, I just took it because I will keep this Mac for many years and I wanted to be sure to tkae something that will last more than the other options.
This is a common misconception. The i9 is just a bit faster, that's it. It won't make your machine stay "relevant" longer than other specs. If the base 2018 CPU is too slow for normal software, do you thing that higher 10-20% peak performance will make any difference?


My major preoccupation is the heating problem, but if you say that they solved it I guess that I can be calmer now. (I read that some people still continue to sa that the i9 still continues to heat a lot even after the patch, that is not true I suppose?)
Yes, it still heats a lot even after a patch. As I wrote above, its normal and expected for that CPU. The difference is that before the patch, it was heating up abnormally which resulted in irregular throttling. After the part, its operating within its spec. But as I already mentioned, it will still run at 100C if you load it up with work — as did every MacBook Pro in last decade or so.
 

Pangalactic

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Nov 28, 2016
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Honesty, because the superthin chassis is the limitation, there is almost no point in getting an i9 compared to an i7. Yeah, it could theoretically boost to 4.8 if you are sitting in a freezer or work in Antarctica, but otherwise they perform almost identically. Ironically the i7 sometimes even outperforms the i9 thanks to lesser thermal throttling.
 

IdentityCrisis

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Honesty, because the superthin chassis is the limitation, there is almost no point in getting an i9 compared to an i7. Yeah, it could theoretically boost to 4.8 if you are sitting in a freezer or work in Antarctica, but otherwise they perform almost identically. Ironically the i7 sometimes even outperforms the i9 thanks to lesser thermal throttling.
It doesn't throttle any longer.

 

leman

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Oct 14, 2008
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Honesty, because the superthin chassis is the limitation, there is almost no point in getting an i9 compared to an i7. Yeah, it could theoretically boost to 4.8 if you are sitting in a freezer or work in Antarctica, but otherwise they perform almost identically. Ironically the i7 sometimes even outperforms the i9 thanks to lesser thermal throttling.
For all intends and purposes, the i9's max turbo is 4.6Ghz. The extra 200Mhz are not much more than a marketing gimmick since conditions for this turbo velocity boost are so extremely narrow. Still, in burst workflows, the i9 will outperform all other models because of its higher boost clock limit. At the same time, as I mentioned before, this is only 10% difference in performance at best, so not worth it for most users.

Multithreaded performance is a different topic since Coffee Lake CPUs doesn't seem to have clear multicore boost limits, unlike some previous SKUs. Since all the Coffee Lake models are essentially the same chip, the final performance will be down to the silicon lottery. It seems that all of these CPUs are able to sustain around 3.2-3.3 Ghz during sustained multicore operation, with base model SKU (i7-8750H) tending to show slightly lower performance on average, while i9-8950HK (as highest binned SKU) tending to show higher performance. Strictly speaking, all of them are operating above their spec here, so in the end it can be considered a win for the customer.

To sum it up, for an average user there is little reason to get above the base i7-8750H. If you are going for higher-end GPU and more SSD, you are getting the i7-8850H thrown in for free, so why not. Paying for i9 will guarantee that you are getting a high binned CPU, but you could just get lucky with another SKU as well. Plus, the i9 will give you guaranteed higher bust performance. But to an average user, it's certainly not worth the premium Apple is charging...
 
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duomot

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Nov 12, 2018
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Thanks you for your responses. I actually have a MacBook Pro 13’’ mid 2010, it was heating up a little bit too, but it was good.

My stupid question: lets say that the i7 is 8/10 and i9 is 10/10 of power. When both i9 and i7 are loading 8/10 of power (so maximum for i7), are the CPU heating the same way? What I’m saying is: is the i9 heating too much only when is going over the i7 power? Or even under? And yes, as I understand from your comments they fixed it now, so we should say that is heating a lot ONLY when pushed to the limit?

Still waiting for some opinion about the GPUs.

Thank you again, this is helping me
 

IdentityCrisis

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Thanks you for your responses. I actually have a MacBook Pro 13’’ mid 2010, it was heating up a little bit too, but it was good.

My stupid question: lets say that the i7 is 8/10 and i9 is 10/10 of power. When both i9 and i7 are loading 8/10 of power (so maximum for i7), are the CPU heating the same way? What I’m saying is: is the i9 heating too much only when is going over the i7 power? Or even under? And yes, as I understand from your comments they fixed it now, so we should say that is heating a lot ONLY when pushed to the limit?

Still waiting for some opinion about the GPUs.

Thank you again, this is helping me
CPU's don't work like that. Depends on the software. If the software demands 80% or 100% of the CPU, it will happen the same on either processor. It doesn't work like you said that the i7 will be hammered more than the i9.

The i9 will get hotter as it is just a hotter processor.
 

duomot

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Nov 12, 2018
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CPU's don't work like that. Depends on the software. If the software demands 80% or 100% of the CPU, it will happen the same on either processor. It doesn't work like you said that the i7 will be hammered more than the i9.

The i9 will get hotter as it is just a hotter processor.
Maybe I was not very clear. Lets say I need to produce some music with Logic X, same software on i7 and i9. Does the i9 get hotter while doing it?

Thank you
 

IdentityCrisis

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Maybe I was not very clear. Lets say I need to produce some music with Logic X, same software on i7 and i9. Does the i9 get hotter while doing it?

Thank you
Yes, the i9 will definitely get a few degrees hotter.

I switched my desktop from the i7-8700k 6 core processor to the i9-9900k 8 core and the temps at idle went up 5 degrees. No change in any other hardware. Under load, they went up 10 degrees. So I would expect it to be hotter.
 

duomot

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Nov 12, 2018
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Yes, the i9 will definitely get a few degrees hotter.

I switched my desktop from the i7-8700k 6 core processor to the i9-9900k 8 core and the temps at idle went up 5 degrees. No change in any other hardware. Under load, they went up 10 degrees. So I would expect it to be hotter.
Thank you for your response.

It could be nice to understand from someone that has it if it's so hot that it bothers you to use it, like you can't have your hand on it, not because you're gonna burn yourself, but because that's annoying.
 

Ploki

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Jan 21, 2008
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Return it

i would if i could

i9 performs marginally better under ideal conditions.

and there's a good chance it will have some issues
 

duomot

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Nov 12, 2018
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Return it

i would if i could

i9 performs marginally better under ideal conditions.

and there's a good chance it will have some issues
Yes, after all this discussion and the videos that I saw I want to return it. I'm gonna call them later. I still need to pick it up, so I guess I can return it or not even pick it up.

At this point, considering I need a mac, there's an interesting 15'' that I could take? The i/? Or Even an used one from past years that you would suggest?

Thank you
 

Martius

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Jul 12, 2008
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From what I have read, I agree with Ploki that the i9 is not worth it. I would rather invest that extra money into that new Vega GPUs that are coming as an 15" MBP option in few days (well if those are not much more expensive, than the extra $300 for the i9 :D).
 

KarmaRocket

macrumors regular
Jan 4, 2009
218
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Brooklyn, NY
A lot of these "problems" with the i9 MBP are from members who don't even own one. I have the i9 MBP, while not perfect I do like the machine and see some performance boosts over a friends i7 2.6 MBP with 4K editing. It depends on what you are going to do with your MBP.

If you need the performance I would probably return it and order one with the new Vega GPU.

There are a lot of people who complain about the TB, keyboard and i9 performance who don't even own a 2016-2018 MBP. You need to decide if the machine is worth it. You have 14 days. Use it and stress test the machine, if you like it, keep it. If not return it. Only you can really decide.
 

leman

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Oct 14, 2008
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Maybe I was not very clear. Lets say I need to produce some music with Logic X, same software on i7 and i9. Does the i9 get hotter while doing it?
I don't think that this can be answered with any degree with assurance. The only thing you can pretty much rely on is that the i9 is not going to be slower than the i7 in any task you throw at it.

And as to hot or not hot: if your task just take half a second, the i9 will probably completely it slightly quicker, so chances are that overall you laptop will even stay cooler. If the task takes five minutes, I don't think there will be any difference between the i7 or the i9, as both will heat up to their maximal temperature anyway. The i9 might or might not be quicker, depending on what you are doing and how lucky you are with your CPU.

KarmaRocket's suggestion above is spot on btw.
 

duomot

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Nov 12, 2018
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Italy
Hello everybody, thanks for helping me out. After all this this research and all yours responses I decided to ask for a refund, I'm not gonna pick it up, I don't have 14 days to try it out unfortunately.

Now the big question is if I should take the i7, or has the i7 thermal issues too? Is it a good computer? I would like a good one that could last! :)

I'm trying to figure it out asap, so I can order it and pick it up.

My potential choices are (the cost of the device is not a problem):

- Buy an i7 (is it really good or has it problem like i9? I read good stuff about it)
- Buy an old one (I don't kno which one)
- iMac or Hackintosh (I would prefer a powerful notebook instead..)

Thank you so much again guys.
 

fokmik

macrumors 68040
Oct 28, 2016
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Maybe I was not very clear. Lets say I need to produce some music with Logic X, same software on i7 and i9. Does the i9 get hotter while doing it?

Thank you
Ok, maybe my scenario will help you
First ive bought the i9+560X combo and for my work the heat of my mac was about above 90C and the area between the touchbar and the display was around 44C
Ive returned it and bought the base i7+555X and the difference was big for me since heat is a major issue, and for the same work i am hitting 82-83C and that same area is now around 38-39C
 

duomot

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Nov 12, 2018
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Italy
Thanks for all your answers, it's beautiful to see a community ready to help kindly like this way!

Apples website has been updated with the Vega options now.
Thank you, I'm gonna see some reviews, Considering the i9 experience I would like to see some before buying one with a new GPU now, lol. I'm buying it just to produce music actually, I don't think I would do anything more than produce music with it.. Are those GPU decent to play some game with the Mac too?

if you want to save money just use the education store pricing:

https://www.apple.com/us-hed/shop

apple doesn't do any verifications or checks and you get to save money.
They use UNiDAYS for verification that you’re a student. At least when it comes to the checkout process for the US.
Thanks, I'm gonna inform myself.

Ok, maybe my scenario will help you
First ive bought the i9+560X combo and for my work the heat of my mac was about above 90C and the area between the touchbar and the display was around 44C
Ive returned it and bought the base i7+555X and the difference was big for me since heat is a major issue, and for the same work i am hitting 82-83C and that same area is now around 38-39C
Wow, thank you for telling me your experience. 38-39 degrees is the temperature of the screen and touchbar outside that you can actually touch, right? It still sounds like a lot or it is normal for a laptop to do it? Definitely better than the i9 by the way. Does it bother you or it is ok now?

Thank you guys!